Ch 3: History of Hinduism

About This Chapter

Carve out time to enhance what you know about the history of Hinduism, including topics like the four goals of Hindu life, Mohandas Gandhi, and Hindu festivals. These lessons and quizzes can help boost your confidence before an exam or class discussion.

History of Hinduism - Chapter Summary

This chapter on the history of Hinduism will broaden your knowledge of Hindu deities, Hindu castes, and the four goals of Hindu life. Our instructors will engage you with interesting video lessons on sacred texts of Hinduism and the British invasion. By the end of the chapter, you should feel ready to:

  • Discuss the Harappa culture
  • Provide an overview of Upanishadic and Vedic periods
  • Recount the three paths to salvation
  • Explain why Vishnu is important
  • Describe the Hindu belief system
  • List the four stages of life
  • Recall Hindu ceremonies and rituals
  • Outline how Hinduism reacted to the West

Our experts are great at presenting information on the history of Hinduism in a way that's engaging and easy to follow. If you find yourself wanting to revisit a specific topic covered in the lesson, you can do so by using the video tags found in the timeline. The short self-assessment quizzes will give you a chance to test your knowledge of each lesson.

13 Lessons in Chapter 3: History of Hinduism
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
The Origins of Hinduism: the Indus River Valley & the Harappa Culture

1. The Origins of Hinduism: the Indus River Valley & the Harappa Culture

This lesson will seek to explain the origins of Hinduism. Highlighting the Harappa culture and the Vedic period, it will also explore the Hindu beliefs in Moksha and Brahman.

The Vedas: Hinduism's Sacred Texts

2. The Vedas: Hinduism's Sacred Texts

This lesson will explore the ancient Hindu texts known collectively as the Vedas. It will stress the importance of the Rig-Veda, while also explaining the roles of the three lesser Yajur, Sama and Atharva Vedas.

The Vedic and Upanishadic Periods: Description, Influences & Texts

3. The Vedic and Upanishadic Periods: Description, Influences & Texts

This lesson will define the Vedic and Upanishadic periods of Hinduism. In doing so, it will discuss the Harappa culture, the melding with Aryan culture, the sacred Vedas and the birth of the concept of Karma.

Hindu Deity: Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva

4. Hindu Deity: Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva

This lesson will explore the Hindu system of belief in reference to its deities. It will explain the concept of Brahman, while also explaining the attributes of Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva.

The Bhagavad Gita's Story of Arjuna & Krishna: The Three Paths to Salvation

5. The Bhagavad Gita's Story of Arjuna & Krishna: The Three Paths to Salvation

This lesson will focus on the sacred Hindu text of the Bhagavad Gita. In doing so, it will also highlight Hinduism's belief in the Three Paths to Salvation, known as the Karma, Jnana and Bhakti Yogas.

The Epic of Ramayana: Importance of the Vishnu

6. The Epic of Ramayana: Importance of the Vishnu

This lesson is a summary of the famous Hindu epic of 'Ramayana.' In summarizing this great love story, it will focus on Hindu virtues, like loyalty and duty. It will also highlight the deity of Vishnu.

The Hindu Belief System: Dharma, Karma, and Moksha

7. The Hindu Belief System: Dharma, Karma, and Moksha

This lesson will explore the Hindu belief system by explaining the concepts of karma, dharma and moksha. It will also highlight the importance of atman within the Hindu faith.

Hindu Castes and the Laws of Manu

8. Hindu Castes and the Laws of Manu

This lesson will seek to explain the complex Hindu castes of Brahmin, Kshatriya, Vaishya, Shudra, and the Untouchables. It will also highlight the Laws of Manu.

Hinduism: The Four Stages of Life

9. Hinduism: The Four Stages of Life

This lesson will define and explore the four stages of Hindu life. In doing so, it will highlight the stages of the Student, the Householder, the Hermit, and the Sannyasin.

The Four Goals of Hindu Life: Kama, Artha, Dharma & Moksha

10. The Four Goals of Hindu Life: Kama, Artha, Dharma & Moksha

This lesson will seek to explain the four permissible goals of Hindu life. In doing so, it will define the ancient concepts of kama, artha, dharma and moksha.

Hindu Rituals, Ceremonies, and Festivals

11. Hindu Rituals, Ceremonies, and Festivals

This lesson will explore the rituals and ceremonies of Hinduism. It will explain the concept of puja, while also highlighting upanayana, antyeshti, Holi, Diwali, and cow veneration.

Mohandas Gandhi and the British Invasion

12. Mohandas Gandhi and the British Invasion

This lesson will explore the life of Mahatma Mohandas Gandhi. It will explain his role in India's independence while also highlighting the concepts of satyagraha and brahmacharya.

Theosophy and Hinduism's Reaction to the West

13. Theosophy and Hinduism's Reaction to the West

This lesson will seek to explain the beliefs of the modern religious movement known as Theosophy. In doing so, it will highlight its link to Hinduism and its ties to the West.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
Not Taken

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