Hinduism is the predominant religious tradition of the Indian subcontinent. Hinduism is often referred to as Sanatana Dharma (a Sanskrit phrase meaning "the eternal law") by its adherents. Generic "types" of Hinduism that attempt to accommodate a variety of complex views span folk and Vedic Hinduism to bhakti tradition, as in Vaishnavism. Hinduism also includes yogic traditions and a wide spectrum of "daily morality" based on the notion of karma and societal norms such as Hindu marriage customs.

Among its roots is the historical Vedic religion of Iron Age India, and as such Hinduism is often called the "oldest living religion"[3] or the "oldest living major tradition". Hinduism is formed of diverse traditions and has no single founder. Hinduism is the world's third largest religion after Christianity and Islam, with approximately one billion adherents, of whom approximately 905 million live in India. Other countries with large Hindu populations can be found across southern Asia.

Hinduism's vast body of scriptures are divided into Sruti ("revealed") and Smriti ("remembered") texts. These scriptures discuss theology, philosophy and mythology, and provide information on the practice of dharma (religious living). Among these texts, the Vedas and the Upanishads are the foremost in authority, importance and antiquity. Other major scriptures include the Pura?as and the epics Mahabharata and Ramaya?a. The Bhagavad Gita, a treatise from the Mahabharata, spoken by Krishna, is sometimes called a summary of the spiritual teachings of the Vedas


Aum is a mystical or sacred syllable in the Indian religions, including Hinduism, Sikhism, Jainism and Buddhism, and in Bon.

Aum is commonly pronounced as a long or over-long nasalized close-mid back rounded vowel, though there are other enunciations pronounced in received traditions. It is placed at the beginning of most Hindu texts as a sacred exclamation to be uttered at the beginning and end of a reading of the Vedas or previously to any prayer or mantra. The Mandukya Upanishad is entirely devoted to the explanation of the syllable. The syllable is taken to consist of three phonemes, a, u and m, variously symbolizing the Three Vedas or the Hindu Trimurti or three stages in life ( birth, life and death ). Though ostensibly in some traditions it is polysyllabic and vocalized as a triphthong, the Omkara is held to move through and contain all vowels possible in human speech.[citation needed]. One important version has five components, flowing from h through a, u, oo to m.

The name Omkara, (Sanskrit: the syllable om) is taken as a name of God in the Hindu revivalist Arya Samaj. Similarly, the concept of om, called onkar in Punjabi, is found in Sikh theology as a symbol of God. It invariably emphasizes God's singularity, expressed as Ek Onkar ("One Omkara" or "The Aum is One"), stating that the multiplicity of existence symbolized in the aum syllable is really founded in a singular God


The swastika (from Sanskrit svastika) is an equilateral cross with its arms bent at right angles, in either right-facing form or its mirrored left-facing form. Archaeological evidence of swastika-shaped ornaments dates from the Neolithic period and was first found in the Indus Valley Civilization of the Indian Subcontinent. It occurs today in the modern day culture of India, sometimes as a geometrical motif and sometimes as a religious symbol; it remains widely used in Eastern and Dharmic religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism.

Despite this usage, the symbol has become stigmatized and to some extent taboo in the Western world because of its iconic usage by Nazi Germany, and it has notably been outlawed in Germany if used as a symbol of Nazism (usage of the sign by religious groups is tolerated). Many modern political extremists and neo-nazi groups such as Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging, the Syrian Social Nationalist Party and Russian National Unity use stylised swastikas or similar symbols

God in Hinduism

Hinduism is a diverse system of thought with beliefs spanning monotheism, polytheism, panentheism, pantheism, monism, and atheism, and its concept of God is complex and depends upon each particular tradition and philosophy. It is sometimes referred to as henotheistic (i.e., involving devotion to a single god while accepting the existence of others), but any such term is an overgeneralization.

Most Hindus believe that the spirit or soul the true "self" of every person, called the atman is eternal.

Puja (Hinduism), Yajna, Murti, Mandir, Hindu iconography, Japa, and Mantra