Brindala -- Los Angeles -- J.S. Jayaram, M.D. -- Success and Peace from Holistic Living
Menu -- Writing

Article I: Truth is One

There exist quite varied opinions on what Hinduism is and what defines a person as Hindu. Hinduism can be a culture, a religion, a philosophy, worship, prayer, ritual, scriptures, or a way of life. A Hindu can be a Bhakta, a Jnani, a Vedantin, a Christian, a Muslim, or even an atheist. The beauty of Hinduism is that there are many paths that all lead to the same ultimate Truth. In the Sama Veda, it says that, "Truth is one. Sages call It by various names... These various names manifest the different aspects and attributes of the same and one Reality." India is often described as "unity in diversity," and I think the same applies to the practices of Hinduism. All Hindus strive for the same eternal Truth.

Quotes from Gandhi

"Hinduism is a living organism liable to growth and decay, subject to the laws of Nature. One and indivisible at the root, it has grown into a vast tree with innumerable branches. The changes in the seasons affect it. It has its autumn and its summer, its winter and spring. It is, and it is not, based on scriptures. It does not derive all its authority from one book. The Gita is universally accepted, but even then it only shows the way... Hinduism is like the Ganges, pure and unsullied at its source, but taking in its course, the impurities in the way. Like the Ganges, it is beneficent in its total effect. It takes a provincial form in every province, but the inner substance is retrained everywhere. Custom is not religion. Custom may change, but religion will remain unaltered."

"I have said Truth and non-violence is my creed. If I were asked to define the Hindu creed, I should simply say: search after Truth through non-violent means. A man may not believe even in God and still call himself a Hindu. Hinduism is a relentless pursuit after truth and, if today it has become moribund, inactive, irresponsive to growth, it is because we are fatigued, and as soon as the fatigue is over, Hinduism will burst forth upon the world with a brilliance perhaps unknown before. Of course, Hinduism is the most tolerant of all religions. Its creed is all-embracing."

"Every Hindu believes in God and his oneness, in rebirth and salvation."

"The Vedas represent the truth, they are infinite. But who has known them in their entirety? What has ever been known it its entirety? What goes today by the name of the Vedas are not even a millionth part of the real Veda -- the Book of Knowledge. And who knows the entire meaning of even the few books we have? Rather than wade through these infinite complications, our sages taught us to learn one thing: "As with the self, so with the Universe." It is not possible to scan the universe, as it is to scan the self. Know the self and you know the universe."

"I do not believe in the exclusive divinity of the Vedas. I believe the Bible, the Koran, and the Zend-Avesta to be as much divinely inspired as the Vedas. My belief in the Hindu scriptures does not require me to accept every word and every verse as divinely inspired. Nor do I claim to have any first-hand knowledge of these wonderful books. But I do claim to know and feel the truths of the essential teachings of the scriptures."

"Continuing, the lecturer described what was meant by the title 'Hindu,' referring it to the branch of the Aryan people that had migrated to the trans-Indus-districts of India, and had colonised that vast country. As a matter of fact, Aryanism would have been a better descriptive word than Hinduism, in explanation of the faith accepted by so many millions of his countrymen."

"I should reject it [Hinduism], if I found it inconsistent with my moral sense or my spiritual growth. On examination I have found it to be the most tolerant of all religions known to me. Its freedom from dogma makes a forcible appeal in as much as it gives the votary the largest scope for self-expression. Not being an exclusive religion, it enables the followers not merely to respect all other religions, but to admire and assimilate whatever may be good in other faiths. It is an evolutionary religion."

(Gandhi, Hindu Dharma)

East-West Counseling & Meditation -- Modern Psychiatry Integration -- Himalayan Philosophy -- Penn & Stanford Medicine
Home About Treatment Appointment Payment Writing FAQ Contact