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indianx
14 July 2009, 03:52 PM
I came across this argument against the validity and coherence of the Hindu scriptures on another forum, Christian Forums.com. Most of the arguments that you find there against Hinduism are not as structured and substantive as this. I am not as well versed in the theological framework of Hinduism to respond in a suitable manner. I am also interested in seeing and understanding answers to the questions posed here from more learned members.


The samhitas, the four original vedas, have many concepts in them which contradict each other, but all hindu philosophies teach that the samhitas, at least, are infallible. All hindu scriptures, both sruti (those meant to be divinely inspired) and smriti (those which are 'remembered'), are considered vedas. Those sciptures more recent then the samhitas, espouse even more disparate concepts then the vedas, because they are written from the point of view of differing sects and philosophical schools. I'm not sure whether all of the vedas are beleived to be infallible, or if it is just the samhitas, but if it is all the vedas, then this presents massive problems. The belief that just the samhitas are infallible presents problems too.

Many schools of philosophy are much older then most of the scriptures, or at least originated before most of the scriptures existed, which means that at the time, only the samhitas could have been considered infallible. But does the doctrine of infallibility of the vedas by extension include all scriptures that were later written? which adhere to the views of differing philosophical schools?

I understand that the vedas were revealed by many different rishis which accounts for the disparate concepts, but if that is the case then what is the neccessity of believing every statement in the vedas is infallible? Isn't that just irrational tradition? And if gurus or rishis are enlightened or at least very knowledgeable wouldn't they know better than to say all of the disparate concepts and statements in the vedas are infallible? If the rishis who revealed the vedas were enlightened and all of them saw the truth, and all their revelations are infallible, why do these revelations contradict each other? If the rishis had knowledge and experience of the infinite, and this meant that they could reveal very advanced things which have only been discovered by western science recently, why didn't they have advanced technology and medical knowledge? Why didn't they know all of the things that are now known about the brain, for example?

Furthermore many of the so called sages taught reprehensible things like rape, mysogony, human sacrifice, oppression of the lower castes, bestiality etc. In the puranas, the sages don't exactly act like enlightened people. That's not the biggest problem of hindu mythology, considering how ridiculous, inane and irrational it all is. I'm sorry, but its true. And these myths were supposedly revealed by enlightened sages. Even the most staunch non-dualists are steeped in the myths and legends of the puranas. Just how does that make sense? It's just the contradictory and irrational nature of hinduism. Sadhus who are supposed to believe in the uncomprehendable, attributeless supreme reality which is the nature of shiva which we and everything are all a part of, and in the oneness of everything, also believe in the stories of shiva killing the other deities he is supposed to be one with, having wives and children, etc.This is a link to the thread on the other forum if you are interested in responding to the questioner directly: http://www.christianforums.com/t7381217-8/

atanu
14 July 2009, 04:27 PM
Dear indianx,

I do not find any arguments there, only opinions.

Om

Hiwaunis
14 July 2009, 05:00 PM
Dear indianx,

I do not find any arguments there, only opinions.

Om

I agree. Being an X-Christian I could have easily ripped that post to shredds. But Christian bashing is getting old. It is like being the bully on the playground. Also, it seems to rob one of prescious energy attained through meditation.

Only those who want to know the truth will actually look for it.

Namaste,
Hiwaunis

Ekanta
14 July 2009, 05:27 PM
Those arguments are hanging in the air... there isnt a single quote in the original post at that site. Besides most stories have a deeper symbolic meaning.

indianx
14 July 2009, 06:13 PM
Those arguments are hanging in the air... there isnt a single quote in the original post at that site. Besides most stories have a deeper symbolic meaning.

The original post is #79 on the link I posted earlier.

To Atanu, I agree that the post contains some unsupported opinions, but I would still like to respond to the post with ample support showing why those opinions are incorrect. I think the poster is mistaken when he refers to the Puranas as if they are to be regarded as literal stories when, as Ekanta stated, they are meant symbolize deeper concepts.

Ekanta
14 July 2009, 06:25 PM
The original post is #79 on the link I posted earlier.
You mean post 78 right? And they are just taken out of the blue as said. And I seriously dont have time with all these dogmatic ground sniffers.

About esoteric meaning, here's a nice example I found a few days ago:

The Esoteric Significance of the Devi-Mahatmya
By Swami Krishnananda
E-Text Source: http://www.swami-krishnananda.org/fest/fest_14.html

(The Devī Māhātmya consists of chapters 81-93 of the Mārkandeya Purana)

Eastern Mind
14 July 2009, 06:37 PM
And I seriously dont have time with all these dogmatic ground sniffers.



Hmmm. Good one. How long did it take you to figure that out? My experience was at 17 years. Kind of like trying to teach your dog to meow.

Aum Namasivaya

Ekanta
14 July 2009, 07:34 PM
How long did it take you to figure that out
If I interpret you right... I've carried it as a memory since birth. 17 was a good year for me too. :)

Znanna
14 July 2009, 07:53 PM
Namaste,

One cannot "understand" paradox. That's the paradox :)

Any Scripture, Christian, Hindu or otherwise ... all are subject to the bias of translation and interpretation. There is no such thing as "literal Word" .. in that "Word" can't be literal, as time, space and conception have no bearing on "Word" exclusive of our interpretation of same; literal implies ego bias, bottom line.

There's an interesting deconstructionist (ala Sassure and Derrida) version of Buddahism which is gaining in popularity in intellectual circles here in the US, which transits the twilight of interpretation in an interesting way, fwiw.

To me, the bottom line is, if Godz manifest and show, that's good enough for me!


ZN/consider the source

atanu
15 July 2009, 01:37 AM
Namaste,

One cannot "understand" paradox. That's the paradox :)

Any Scripture, Christian, Hindu or otherwise ... all are subject to the bias of translation and interpretation. There is no such thing as "literal Word" .. in that "Word" can't be literal, as time, space and conception have no bearing on "Word" exclusive of our interpretation of same; literal implies ego bias, bottom line.

There's an interesting deconstructionist (ala Sassure and Derrida) version of Buddahism which is gaining in popularity in intellectual circles here in the US, which transits the twilight of interpretation in an interesting way, fwiw.

To me, the bottom line is, if Godz manifest and show, that's good enough for me!


ZN/consider the source

I suppose that word is like a still body of water. One approaches it with muck on face and it reflects that. One approaches it wearing mask and it reflects that.

Similarly of course the deconstructionist will be reflected. Only mergence in word (OM) can be reflection free.

Regards to all

Znanna
15 July 2009, 05:21 AM
I suppose that word is like a still body of water. One approaches it with muck on face and it reflects that. One approaches it wearing mask and it reflects that.

Similarly of course the deconstructionist will be reflected. Only mergence in word (OM) can be reflection free.

Regards to all

I really like that analogy, thanks.

Namaste,
ZN

rainycity
04 October 2009, 12:01 AM
Hi,
I'm the original poster of the argument on christian forums.
I am not a christian, and my faith icon on christian forums is atheist.
I don't agree with my own argument anymore, I think that the perception of disparate concepts in the Rig Veda for example is mostly due to analyses of exegetes (people outside of hindu tradition and culture, like western scholars).

Sri Aurobindo's analysis and interpretation of the Rig Veda is far more correct in my opinion, although he was a deluded person, I don't think he was on this matter. There's a fine line between genius and insanity as they say.
I have more to say and I have questions as well, so I'll probably make another post in this thread later, they're quite relative to this topic.

atanu
04 October 2009, 01:39 AM
Dear IndianX,

See. This is also a miracle. But this is bound to happen with all, as time will ripen all on its own time.

Om Namah Shivaya

yajvan
04 October 2009, 11:43 AM
hariḥ oṁ
~~~~~

Namasté raincity


Hi,

Sri Aurobindo's analysis and interpretation of the Rig Veda is far more correct in my opinion, although he was a deluded person, I don't think he was on this matter. There's a fine line between genius and insanity as they say.

I have read some of Śrī Aurobindo's (some write Śrī Ôrobindo) work, along with śiṣya's and śāstri's that use his work for their foundation. I am at a loss of finding any of this delusion you mention. Can you point this out perhaps when you have the time, in examples, or behaviors ?


praṇām

rainycity
05 October 2009, 01:11 AM
hariḥ oṁ
~~~~~

Namasté raincity



I have read some of Śrī Aurobindo's (some write Śrī Ôrobindo) work, along with śiṣya's and śāstri's that use his work for their foundation. I am at a loss of finding any of this delusion you mention. Can you point this out perhaps when you have the time, in examples, or behaviors ?


praṇām

read this: http://www.strippingthegurus.com/stgsamplechapters/aurobindo.asp

sm78
05 October 2009, 02:52 AM
I don't agree with my own argument anymore, I think that the perception of disparate concepts in the Rig Veda for example is mostly due to analyses of exegetes (people outside of hindu tradition and culture, like western scholars).

Scholarly belief is that the rg veda samhita was structured by collecting together a much more ancient body recollections around 1500BC by brahminical tradition.

There is a disconnect between the original rg vedic time to the brahmanic times when the scripture was given its current form.

There has been effort by modern lingusitic scholars to retrive the original form of the samhita that is now lost. Pls search around the internet to find more about this.

The brahmanic rg veda and the subsequent tradition does seem to have slips here and there, but is still very very powerful and mystical. Most hynms of vedas seems to be asking for material boons and victory. While to the present mind high on dope of intellectualization and abstraction may find this simplistic and non-spiritual, this simple straigtforward meaning has deep implication and is the basis of mimamsha, and to me seems much evolved thought process than the so called esoterics of later hindusim (this is my opinion).

Puranic hinduism is a much later layer. Puranas were not given much importance in the real brahmanic religion. When you talk of infallibilty of scriptures etc, it makes little or no sense in hinduism as there is no one scripture or one interpretation. The scripture as a basis of the knowledge of what is not known (brahma) only makes sense within a very narrow concept of the sect. Unless you belong to the sect, this approach is meaningless.

In understanding hinduism (as an outsider from a particular sect) one must be aware of successive layers, successive spiritual revolutions (both positive and negative) which happend in the geographic region broadly defining India. Most importantly one has to be critique of the hindu culture and not the religion, for there is no one religion - and the abrahamic concept of infallibilty of scriptures is as I said a total nonsense.

Early vedic layer->brahmanic layer->philosophical layer->Agama, Tantra layer ->puranic layer

But the biggest problem in understanding indic thought both vedic and post vedic, is the inability to understand concept of conciousness. So the earliest prayers to the thunders in the sky as rudra seems to the western mind as a primitive gesture of uncivilized men to pacify the forces of nature he has no clue about, while for 'me' it is the 'secret formula' of divine manisfesting in the terrible thunder in the sky.



Sri Aurobindo's analysis and interpretation of the Rig Veda is far more correct in my opinion, although he was a deluded person, I don't think he was on this matter. There's a fine line between genius and insanity as they say.
I have more to say and I have questions as well, so I'll probably make another post in this thread later, they're quite relative to this topic.

Sri Aurobindo's fascination with manifestation of the supermind in humanity and the concept of spiritual unfoldment seems very unusual in the back drop of traditional thought.

But, something new and different doesn't mean it is wrong, quite contrary given the history of religion in india. But the main problem I felt was Sri Aurobindo's treatment of classical yogas. Even with my limited knowledge I found that it was highly flawed. His basis for the new yoga was his critique of the traditional yoga ~ but when his understanding and critique seemed very flawed, it took the air out of his supermind concept for me.

And finally, all the predictions of supramental manifestation has not happened and the world seems to be in a bigger mess-heading towards a major catastrophy. But then a cataclasmic event does have the seed for a radical evolution-as seen in natural history.

sm78
05 October 2009, 03:31 AM
read this: http://www.strippingthegurus.com/stgsamplechapters/aurobindo.asp

Hardly a critque, hardly touches any of the main points.

Delusion is a funny word when used by the atheist. I find most atheists (there are exceptions always) to be highly delusional, destructive and pseudo scintific.

Atheism is a closely related cousin of the original Abhrhamisim and shares almost all its concepts and ideas except for the core dogma. But those who understand Abrahamism, know that dogma is 2ndary in this strange devolution of human thought and culture.

yajvan
05 October 2009, 02:51 PM
hariḥ oṁ
~~~~~

Namasté raincity

I reviewed the URL you have offered. I also took a look at one book:

THE SCIENCE OF THE SOUL - On Consciousness and the Structure of Reality by Geoffrey D. Falk, Blue Dolphin publication.

Mr. Falk then lets us know the following:
" PLEASE NOTE THAT I NO LONGER HAVE ANY CONFIDENCE THAT ANY OF THE IDEAS I'VE PRESENTED IN THE SCIENCE OF THE SOUL HAVE ANY VALIDITY AT ALL—notwithstanding that they still make much more sense than do Ken Wilber's 'theories' " ( note this his his capitalization of words, not mine)

It seems to me Mr. Falk has become dis-enchanted with his experiences and observations. His discrimination (viveka) is now at work and will have to provide a service to ferret out the truth in his life, his world. I admire an individual's ability to change his mind after new information is obtained, yet is his view accurate? I am not to say - for the accuracy lies with Mr. Falk.

Yet I struggle with the notion that Mr. Falk has issues with the list below¹… and that he profits by selling his book, Stripping the Gurus: Sex, Violence, Abuse and Enlightenment.

That said, I weigh what Mr. Falk says of Śrī Aurobindo & Mirra Alfassa known as "the Mother", against what I have read from Śrī Aurobindo and there is a serious misalignment of character that is offered.

praṇām

references

1. the list of people found in his book Stripping the Gurus: Sex, Violence, Abuse and Enlightenment.

Ramakrishna
Vivekananda
Aurobindo
Krishnamurti
Zen Buddhism
Satchidananda
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi
Ram Dass
Satya Sai Baba
Swami Rama
Chinmoy
Thai Buddhism
Scientology
Yogi Bhajan
Chögyam Trungpa
Muktananda
Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh
The Dalai Lama
Yogi Amrit Desa

sm78
06 October 2009, 12:38 AM
1. the list of people found in his book Stripping the Gurus: Sex, Violence, Abuse and Enlightenment.

Ramakrishna
Vivekananda
Aurobindo
Krishnamurti
Zen Buddhism
Satchidananda
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi
Ram Dass
Satya Sai Baba
Swami Rama
Chinmoy
Thai Buddhism
Scientology
Yogi Bhajan
Chögyam Trungpa
Muktananda
Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh
The Dalai Lama
Yogi Amrit Desa

Seems an accurate list of people to strip-off the false glory attached to them. For me only vivekananda is a sort of mis-fit in the list.

rainycity
06 October 2009, 06:07 AM
Seems an accurate list of people to strip-off the false glory attached to them. For me only vivekananda is a sort of mis-fit in the list.

his chapter is less defaming then the others, it mentions that he was a chain smoker and believed that he would spread vedanta all over the world in his lifetime (converting all of the west to hinduism). And he was a disciple of ramakrishna, who is portrayed in this book as an eccentric suffering from hysteria who was homosexual and hermaphradotic (falk to me comes across as homophobic).

Yajvan, the book is very dissapointing and disillusioning, but it is well referenced and very convincing. I'd prefer it if the things in the book weren't true, but the truth doesn't depend on what we want it to be.

Rereading the chapter on aurobindo calls his interpretation of the Rig Veda into question for me, but the accuracy of his interpretation doesn't rest on his character. The Rig Veda is a highly esoteric, mysterious and enigmatic ancient book, who can say what it's meaning is. But so far all of the western intrepretations have been through the lens of the aryan invasion theory and regarding it as primitive superstition.

yajvan
06 October 2009, 11:45 AM
hariḥ oṁ
~~~~~

Namasté raincity


Seems an accurate list of people to strip-off the false glory attached to them. For me only vivekananda is a sort of mis-fit in the list.

While I respect your opinion, I do not agree , but will leave the debate for another time.


praṇām

sm78
07 October 2009, 02:08 AM
hariḥ oṁ
~~~~~

Namasté raincity



While I respect your opinion, I do not agree , but will leave the debate for another time.


praṇām

No, no we need not debate on this, its just opinion ... i do have reasons, but I am not conviced that they can be considered sound enough to start a debate.

yajvan
07 October 2009, 03:47 PM
hariḥ oṁ
~~~~~

Namasté sm78


No, no we need not debate on this, its just opinion ... i do have reasons, but I am not conviced that they can be considered sound enough to start a debate.

I apologize for mixing up your post with raincity's authorship.
As I see it the debate can easily become dubious. How so? Good , reliable information to form viable opinions come from direct personal experience, from reliable sources, from research and insight, then from 3rd parties that may or may not have a vested interest in the final outcome.

For a few of the folks above my experience has been direct, for others my experience has been via reliable ( respectable as I see them) resources, then from my studies and a view of their works of these people mentioned in the list. There is much hearsay about the people on the list offered and that for me muddy-s the waters of clarity. It becomes a conversation of he said, she said. Yet I am open to listen to your views as well as others.

As we find the scoundrels of the list what then do we do? Acknowledge their bad behaviors and move on or is there more we can do? For me and the list, I know who I wish to get closer to and those I prefer to keep my distance.

This is just my view , I could be wrong.

praṇām