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Indus River Valley Ancient Cultures

  • Evidence - The core beliefs outlined in the Sanskrit scriptures formed the basis of the Vedic religious, later known as Hinduism. It does not become a codified religion as they bring it in. Then it was codified into Hinduism.
  • Evidence - The vedic religion is what contributes to the social and political roles of what we call the caste system. Religion brings both social and political order.
    • Upanishads said that there is a path for everyone and that there is a path of joy and a path of pleasure. It also sets up the four levels of society.
      • Brahmins
      • Kshatriyes
      • Vaishyas
      • Shudras - example would be a farmer out in the field
        • The untouchables are not a part of Hindu society and these are the lowest people. The butchers, the people who worked with the dead, the slaves, etc. *These people are not the lowest class, they are below the bottom (they are out of the caste system).
  • Evidence - The Vedic religions gave importance to the multiple manifestations of Brahma to promote teachings about reincarnation.
    • Brahma is the creator
    • Vishnu is the protector
    • Shiva the destroyer
      • Moksha
        • Complete and total understanding and it is the end of the line in reincarnation
  • Three paths
    • Right thinking
    • Right action
    • Right devotion
  • Evidence - New belief systems and cultural traditions emerged and spread, often asserting universal truths.
    • Buddha is not a god, he is a human who got it right and he can show you the path. In the beginning, you could be hinduist and buddhist at the same time because your religion could be hinduism but your way of life was buddhist.
    • Mahvira is Jainism
    • Siddhartha is Buddhism
  • Evidence - The core beliefs about desire, suffering, and the search for enlightenment preached by the historic Buddha were a reaction to Vedic beliefs.
    • Hinduism - only if you were a brahmin could you reach maksha
    • Buddhism - enlightenment can be achieved by anyone who does well and this meant that it looked really good for the bottom social classes.
      • Four Noble Truths:
        • Life is Suffering - dukkha
        • The cause of all suffering is desire - tanha
        • The cure for suffering is to remove desire
    • To remove desire, follow the Eightfold path
      • Right view
      • Right intention
      • Right speech
      • Right action
      • Right livelihood
      • Right effort
      • Right mindfulness
      • Right concentration
  • Evidence - Buddhism changed over time as it spread throughout Asia through Ashoka and then through missionaries and merchants. He walks out on the battlefield and realizes that he is not on the right path and then he converts to Buddhism. Then he spreads buddhism throughout his entire empire
    • He did not force buddhism, he encouraged it
    • A stupa is something that houses a relic of buddhism
  • Evidence - Buddhist monks established educational institutions to promote is core teachings.

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