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Author Topic: Hinduism in Catholicism and Orthodoxy  (Read 1774 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: January 21, 2013, 07:34:13 PM »

Would Orthodox agree with Nostra Aetate's statement on Hinduism:

Nostra Aetate affirms: "In Hinduism men contemplate the divine mystery and express it through the unspent fruitfulness of myths and through searching philosophical inquiry. They seek release from the anguish of our condition through ascetical practices and deep meditation or a loving, trusting flight towards God" (n. 2).
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« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2013, 07:37:53 PM »

The only thing I'd note is that most Orthodox I've read who speak highly of ascetic practices do not praise them because they help us "from the anguish of our condition," but for exactly the opposite reason, because they help us escape the pleasures and worldly enticements and fleetingly enjoyable aspects of our condition. In both cases I guess it is about bringing the body into submission, but the root of the reason seems to me to be different.
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« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2013, 07:57:20 PM »

On the Catholic side, perhaps the farthest in exploring/integrating Hinduism are Fr. Bede Griffiths and his 'Benedictine' monastery/ashram of Shantivanam (now affiliated to the Order of Camaldoli):

http://www.myspace.com/shantivanam/videos

http://www.bedegriffiths.com/

Their indianised liturgy includes readings from Hindu Scriptures and incorporates many elements from the Indian puja (sacrifice) ceremonies:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rigaS9QPors

Of course, there has been harsh criticism of this within the Catholic Church:

http://www.kath-info.de/hinduismus.html (this is an interesting article by Paul Hacker, a German indologist who converted to Catholicism - maybe Google translate can produce an intelligible translation, if you can't read German)
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« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2013, 08:11:03 PM »

Didn't Hinduism theologically develop in the 2nd Century due to Christian influence?
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« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2013, 08:35:59 PM »

Didn't Hinduism theologically develop in the 2nd Century due to Christian influence?
"Hinduism" has always been in theological development, but the Christian influence is more of 19th-century influence. Before then, Jainism, Buddhism, and Islam were major influences.
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« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2013, 11:43:11 PM »

Didn't Hinduism theologically develop in the 2nd Century due to Christian influence?
"Hinduism" has always been in theological development, but the Christian influence is more of 19th-century influence. Before then, Jainism, Buddhism, and Islam were major influences.

Yeah, all the big iconic ideas of Hinduism today seem to have been copied from Buddhism to combat its popularity. Ex. how most modern Hindus are vehemently against blood sacrifice and meat eating. They even resort to now saying the Vedas are essentially meaningless to get around all the animal sacrifices in them - its the 'sound vibration' that matters, not the apparent meaning of the words "Sacrifice horses/cows/whatever."
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« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2013, 11:46:48 PM »

I was really into Bede Griffiths four years ago or so.  I read two of his books . . . see also Wayne Teasdale, Bruno Barnhart, Swami Abhishiktananda (I read books by/about this folks too). I'm trying to sell them on amazon now.

As for the OP, is it possible to make such a simple statement about Hinduism?  Hinduism seems so diverse, multi-faceted . . .
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« Reply #7 on: January 21, 2013, 11:51:37 PM »

Didn't Hinduism theologically develop in the 2nd Century due to Christian influence?
"Hinduism" has always been in theological development, but the Christian influence is more of 19th-century influence. Before then, Jainism, Buddhism, and Islam were major influences.

Yeah, all the big iconic ideas of Hinduism today seem to have been copied from Buddhism to combat its popularity. Ex. how most modern Hindus are vehemently against blood sacrifice and meat eating.
The anti-meat eating part of modern Hinduism actually comes from Jainism. Siddhartha Gautama and his monks and nuns accepted meat from lay-people.
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« Reply #8 on: January 21, 2013, 11:54:33 PM »

I was really into Bede Griffiths four years ago or so.  I read two of his books . . . see also Wayne Teasdale, Bruno Barnhart, Swami Abhishiktananda (I read books by/about this folks too). I'm trying to sell them on amazon now.

As for the OP, is it possible to make such a simple statement about Hinduism?  Hinduism seems so diverse, multi-faceted . . .
I was really interested in whether Orthodox would agree with the idea that Hindus contemplate "the divine mystery", which would seem to be applicable whether one worshipped Vishnu, Shiva, Shakti, and/or practiced jnana, bhakti, or karma yoga.
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« Reply #9 on: January 22, 2013, 02:45:40 AM »

Didn't Hinduism theologically develop in the 2nd Century due to Christian influence?
"Hinduism" has always been in theological development, but the Christian influence is more of 19th-century influence. Before then, Jainism, Buddhism, and Islam were major influences.

Yeah, all the big iconic ideas of Hinduism today seem to have been copied from Buddhism to combat its popularity. Ex. how most modern Hindus are vehemently against blood sacrifice and meat eating.
The anti-meat eating part of modern Hinduism actually comes from Jainism. Siddhartha Gautama and his monks and nuns accepted meat from lay-people.

Isn't the Mahayana Buddhism that was big in India strictly vegetarian though? I know Theravadin monks can eat meat (so long as they don't ask for it).
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« Reply #10 on: January 22, 2013, 07:35:36 AM »

The only thing I'd note is that most Orthodox I've read who speak highly of ascetic practices do not praise them because they help us "from the anguish of our condition," but for exactly the opposite reason, because they help us escape the pleasures and worldly enticements and fleetingly enjoyable aspects of our condition. In both cases I guess it is about bringing the body into submission, but the root of the reason seems to me to be different.

I think this borders on pathology. Like on the other side of the border.
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« Reply #11 on: January 22, 2013, 07:36:42 AM »

Didn't Hinduism theologically develop in the 2nd Century due to Christian influence?
"Hinduism" has always been in theological development, but the Christian influence is more of 19th-century influence. Before then, Jainism, Buddhism, and Islam were major influences.
Yeah that was a stupid question, but had no idea until the 19th century.

Too much history revisionism for me at the barrel of a quick wikipedia edit.
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« Reply #12 on: January 22, 2013, 08:40:54 AM »

I'd be interested to know how the Oriental Orthodox in India learned to live with Hinduism and to what extent it influences them. Experiments a la Griffiths seem rather artificial and might not have much of a future once the guru is departed. They have more of a following in the West than among Indians.
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« Reply #13 on: January 22, 2013, 10:14:04 AM »

I'd be interested to know how the Oriental Orthodox in India learned to live with Hinduism and to what extent it influences them. Experiments a la Griffiths seem rather artificial and might not have much of a future once the guru is departed. They have more of a following in the West than among Indians.

Culturally, I'd say we borrowed quite a bit. For example, during marriage ceremonies, we use necklaces instead of crowns and we use the thali and mantrakodi as well. There are some other customs we have which are retained from Indian culture such as boiling milk after house blessings. Linguistically, since literary Malayalam is highly Sanskritized, we use many loan words from Hinduism to represent Orthodox concepts such as: Moksha for Theosis; Atma for Soul/Spirit; and Dharma for Righteousness/The Law.
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« Reply #14 on: January 22, 2013, 10:20:46 AM »

Didn't Hinduism theologically develop in the 2nd Century due to Christian influence?
"Hinduism" has always been in theological development, but the Christian influence is more of 19th-century influence. Before then, Jainism, Buddhism, and Islam were major influences.

Yeah, all the big iconic ideas of Hinduism today seem to have been copied from Buddhism to combat its popularity. Ex. how most modern Hindus are vehemently against blood sacrifice and meat eating.
The anti-meat eating part of modern Hinduism actually comes from Jainism. Siddhartha Gautama and his monks and nuns accepted meat from lay-people.

Isn't the Mahayana Buddhism that was big in India strictly vegetarian though? I know Theravadin monks can eat meat (so long as they don't ask for it).

Mahayana Buddhism's approach varies. In China they tend to be quite strict, some even adhering to a vegan diet (which was advocated in one of the Mahayana sutras). Japan's discipline can be more lax among the Buddhist "priests" (an office unique to Japanese Buddhism.) In Tibet, where vegetables are hard to grow, many monks eat meat regularly.

In any case vegetarianism was not introduced to India by the Buddhists.
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« Reply #15 on: January 22, 2013, 10:26:08 AM »

What about social status - are you assimilated to one of the casts or are you considered a different 'kind' altogether? Is such a thing as inter-marriage between a Hindu and an Orthodox Christian possible?

I always wondered what things like "I am the Truth, the Way and the Life" would sound like in Sanskrit, but I guess your Church used Syriac as the traditional language of the liturgy. Sanskrit wasn't anybody's spoken language, so I assume it didn't stand much of a chance in penetrating your liturgy otherwise than via Malayalam. Does your Church use other vernacular languages, perhaps outside of Kerala? Tamil maybe or Telugu?     
 
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« Reply #16 on: January 22, 2013, 10:54:41 AM »

What about social status - are you assimilated to one of the casts or are you considered a different 'kind' altogether? Is such a thing as inter-marriage between a Hindu and an Orthodox Christian possible?

I always wondered what things like "I am the Truth, the Way and the Life" would sound like in Sanskrit, but I guess your Church used Syriac as the traditional language of the liturgy. Sanskrit wasn't anybody's spoken language, so I assume it didn't stand much of a chance in penetrating your liturgy otherwise than via Malayalam. Does your Church use other vernacular languages, perhaps outside of Kerala? Tamil maybe or Telugu?     
 

After taking an entire year of the history of the sub-continent, primarily focusing on how the past shaped the India of however long ago that was when I didn't go to that class, I feel entirely competent to answer your question.

Indians don't necessarily like to cast off their caste.

With liberal notions of quotas throughout the Indian public sector to set aside place in government along with the bureaucracy and seats in universities, some Indians retain their "untouchable" (Dalit) status to take advantage of this fact.

They've even had a Dalit as a head of state, IIRC.

OK, in theory, jumping to Islam, Buddhism (which according to their Westerns lovers was founded in part to remove such social injustices), whatever would take you out of the caste system, but like most cultural norms throughout any society, it isn't that easy and patterns of caste can been seen historically throughout Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, whatever communities.

As to a marriage between a Hindu and an Orthodox? I would imagine that is up to the Priest. (I know how it is technically dealt with, but I've seen some G-A weddings that would make [insert celebutard-couple-of-month's] wedding look conservative.)

Probably not helpful. It was a waste of a year I suppose.
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« Reply #17 on: January 22, 2013, 11:03:38 AM »

How about social status - are you assimilated to one of the casts or are you considered a different 'kind' altogether? Is such a thing as inter-marriage between a Hindu and an Orthodox Christian possible?

Traditionally, most Christians were either merchants, farmers, or fisherman, and were treated as such. Nowadays though, that doesn't really hold true. As to intermarriage, it's been known to happen, but definitely not encouraged by either side.

I always wondered how things like "I am the Truth, the Way and the Life" would sound in Sanskrit, but I guess your Church used Syriac as the traditional language of the liturgy. Sanskrit wasn't the language of the people, so I guess it didn't stand much of a chance in penetrating your liturgy otherwise than via Malayalam.  

The Sanskrit for that would be something like "Soham Satya, Marga, cha Jeeva". I've probably mangled it up horribly so don't quote me on that. Traditionally, the only language for Liturgy was in Syriac. This backfired on us in the 1800's when Anglican Missionaries came to Kerala and "translated" the Syriac into Malayalam. They edited it to fit their theology and managed to convert a good number of the Orthodox flock who didn't know better. That was I think when we started to translate the Liturgy into the vernacular.

Does your Church use other languages, perhaps outside of Kerala? Tamil maybe or Tagalog?

We've really just started the process of translating the Liturgy into other Languages. We didn't even have a proper English Translation until the 1990s. Now that the Diaspora is starting to assimilate into the other regions of India, we'll probably see more translations on the way. The extant version I know of are Hindi and Konkani. I know the Metropolitan of Bangalore is working on a Kannada translation but I don't know if he finished or not.

Also I think you meant Telugu, Tagalog is the language spoken in the Philippines.
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« Reply #18 on: January 22, 2013, 11:15:07 AM »

Indians don't necessarily like to cast off their caste.

With liberal notions of quotas throughout the Indian public sector to set aside place in government along with the bureaucracy and seats in universities, some Indians retain their "untouchable" (Dalit) status to take advantage of this fact.

So, if a Brahmin, for instance, converts to Christianity/Islam/Buddhism, he doesn't 'cast off his caste' and become a Dalit?

A while ago I read about the first Catholic missions in India and how, despite all their efforts, they couldn't get people of different casts to even sit next to one another in church. 

They've even had a Dalit as a head of state, IIRC.

Well, I hear it's no longer politically correct to even admit that there are 'untouchables' in modern India. Nevertheless, they do indeed exist. I was curious to see where the traditional Christian communities stand on this issue. I hope I didn't commit an indiscretion by asking this...

As to a marriage between a Hindu and an Orthodox? I would imagine that is up to the Priest.

Canonically, it probably isn't possible unless the other party converts. But I imagine exceptions would be made, should a Christian marry somebody of higher extraction, for instance. Or maybe if one converts to Christianity when already married to a Hindu.   
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« Reply #19 on: January 22, 2013, 11:22:17 AM »

Traditionally, the only language for Liturgy was in Syriac. This backfired on us in the 1800's when Anglican Missionaries came to Kerala and "translated" the Syriac into Malayalam. They edited it to fit their theology and managed to convert a good number of the Orthodox flock who didn't know better. That was I think when we started to translate the Liturgy into the vernacular.

Same story in Romania, only one hundred years earlier. We started translating our liturgy (from Slavic and Greek) into the vernacular under the impulse of Calvinist propaganda. We should be grateful to them for that.     

Also I think you meant Telugu, Tagalog is the language spoken in the Philippines.

Yup, I get them mixed up for some reason. I edited my message to correct that.

Thank you both for your answers.
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« Reply #20 on: January 22, 2013, 11:44:20 AM »

Traditionally, most Christians were either merchants, farmers, or fisherman, and were treated as such.

Vaishyas?
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« Reply #21 on: January 22, 2013, 11:53:28 AM »

Indians don't necessarily like to cast off their caste.

With liberal notions of quotas throughout the Indian public sector to set aside place in government along with the bureaucracy and seats in universities, some Indians retain their "untouchable" (Dalit) status to take advantage of this fact.

So, if a Brahmin, for instance, converts to Christianity/Islam/Buddhism, he doesn't 'cast off his caste' and become a Dalit?

A while ago I read about the first Catholic missions in India and how, despite all their efforts, they couldn't get people of different casts to even sit next to one another in church.

In theory, again this is what I gathered from from a year long course I never went to or something, you exit the caste system in a pedestrian political sense. But since there are advantages to being a Dalit (for a few of course) some folks evidently don't "officially" opt out of the system and use the bureaucratic political benefits while suffering the real day to day stigmas which vary obvious upon many things.

To your last question, that was my point I was trying to make. Caste is rather ingrained to say the least. I dunno where you are from but chattel slavery wasn't practiced in the US for too long along with the racist rhetoric to justify it and yet more than a hundred of years later we feel the effects of those times.

Now imagine a world where a different social stratification were dominate for much longer.

It's going to take more than a parish and some candles or whatever to change that.

As I mentioned I remember reading about how caste wove its way back into (I doubt it ever left) Buddhism of all "faiths".

It is probably best if you were to ask a wide range of Indians for their everyday experience.
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« Reply #22 on: January 22, 2013, 11:56:55 AM »

They've even had a Dalit as a head of state, IIRC.

Well, I hear it's no longer politically correct to even admit that there are 'untouchables' in modern India. Nevertheless, they do indeed exist. I was curious to see where the traditional Christian communities stand on this issue. I hope I didn't commit an indiscretion by asking this...

My point about the Dalit attaining high level of society stature is that caste is for a few has become a bit of a help, even those from the lowest caste, while of course for many it remains quite problematic, at least in my opinion.

And this "success" within the system can be very problematic. After all, if the head of state is Dalit . . . I think you get where I am going with this, especially in light of the US's recent head of state and how people like to extrapolate a lot based on his race.

I'll stop there, lest this turn too political.
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« Reply #23 on: January 22, 2013, 12:02:33 PM »

Traditionally, most Christians were either merchants, farmers, or fisherman, and were treated as such.

Vaishyas?

Er, not exactly. Syrian Christians mostly formed their own "caste" and were considered Higher Caste as tradition had it they were the descendants of converted Hindu Brahmins. The ones I mentioned are mostly internal divisions based on occupation. Anyway, it's mostly a moot point now.
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« Reply #24 on: January 22, 2013, 12:11:40 PM »

In theory, again this is what I gathered from from a year long course I never went to or something, you exit the caste system in a pedestrian political sense. But since there are advantages to being a Dalit (for a few of course) some folks evidently don't "officially" opt out of the system and use the bureaucratic political benefits while suffering the real day to day stigmas which vary obvious upon many things.

So you could theoretically opt out of the system altogether?

My understanding was that the worst case scenario is for one to be retrograded to the Dalit status, but I guess that wouldn't happen, because you'd belong all your life to the cast you were born into, regardless of how you choose to define yourself religiously/politically. Would that be right?    

Now imagine a world where a different social stratification were dominate for much longer.

It's going to take more than a parish and some candles or whatever to change that.

The Malankara Church has existed for centuries, so I imagined Christianity could have made a difference - at least within the community and in the places where they outnumber other religions. But I suppose the cast system is larger and would engulf them.

It is probably best if you were to ask a wide range of Indians for their everyday experience.

I don't get to meet them much in real life. But I did see documentaries and read about what it means to be an untouchable in India - you can't even take water from a public source, or touch somebody of a different caste, their food, etc. It's like having a contagious disease.
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« Reply #25 on: January 22, 2013, 12:20:03 PM »

My point about the Dalit attaining high level of society stature is that caste is for a few has become a bit of a help, even those from the lowest caste, while of course for many it remains quite problematic, at least in my opinion.

I do get your point - being a Dalit can have its advantages for the small minority who make it to the top, paradoxically. For the rest, it's more like a disease you're born and learn to live with.   

 
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« Reply #26 on: January 22, 2013, 12:31:11 PM »

My point about the Dalit attaining high level of society stature is that caste is for a few has become a bit of a help, even those from the lowest caste, while of course for many it remains quite problematic, at least in my opinion.

I do get your point - being a Dalit can have its advantages for the small minority who make it to the top, paradoxically. For the rest, it's more like a disease you're born and learn to live with.   

 

Moreover, "success stories" can act as ways of taking away from the systemic nature of such discrimination. It proves "anyone" can do it!

Anyhoo.
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« Reply #27 on: January 22, 2013, 12:55:05 PM »

Didn't Hinduism theologically develop in the 2nd Century due to Christian influence?
"Hinduism" has always been in theological development, but the Christian influence is more of 19th-century influence. Before then, Jainism, Buddhism, and Islam were major influences.

Yeah, all the big iconic ideas of Hinduism today seem to have been copied from Buddhism to combat its popularity. Ex. how most modern Hindus are vehemently against blood sacrifice and meat eating.
The anti-meat eating part of modern Hinduism actually comes from Jainism. Siddhartha Gautama and his monks and nuns accepted meat from lay-people.

Isn't the Mahayana Buddhism that was big in India strictly vegetarian though? I know Theravadin monks can eat meat (so long as they don't ask for it).

Mahayana Buddhism's approach varies. In China they tend to be quite strict, some even adhering to a vegan diet (which was advocated in one of the Mahayana sutras). Japan's discipline can be more lax among the Buddhist "priests" (an office unique to Japanese Buddhism.) In Tibet, where vegetables are hard to grow, many monks eat meat regularly.

In any case vegetarianism was not introduced to India by the Buddhists.

No, but the idea that you have to vegetarian to be Hindu wasn't even a figment of any one's imagination in the early days.
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« Reply #28 on: January 22, 2013, 03:19:14 PM »

Huh ... reading this, it occurred to me for the first time that you guys might have a better understanding of Hinduism than of Catholicism.

Kidding (somewhat).
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« Reply #29 on: January 23, 2013, 09:44:46 AM »

Would Orthodox agree with Nostra Aetate's statement on Hinduism:

Nostra Aetate affirms: "In Hinduism men contemplate the divine mystery and express it through the unspent fruitfulness of myths and through searching philosophical inquiry. They seek release from the anguish of our condition through ascetical practices and deep meditation or a loving, trusting flight towards God" (n. 2).

You do realize that in that document the Church is describing what Hindu's believe and do, it is not saying that the demons they adore are divine.
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« Reply #30 on: January 23, 2013, 01:00:51 PM »

Would Orthodox agree with Nostra Aetate's statement on Hinduism:

Nostra Aetate affirms: "In Hinduism men contemplate the divine mystery and express it through the unspent fruitfulness of myths and through searching philosophical inquiry. They seek release from the anguish of our condition through ascetical practices and deep meditation or a loving, trusting flight towards God" (n. 2).

You do realize that in that document the Church is describing what Hindu's believe and do, it is not saying that the demons they adore are divine.
This raises two issues.

(1) The statement "In Hinduism men contemplate the divine mystery" is different from, say, "In Hinduism men think that they contemplate the divine mystery". If the Council really wanted to stress the second statement, then I would think that it would have made its statement less ambiguous.

(2) Is it possible for non-Christians to "contemplate the divine mystery"? If it is impossible for non-Christians to do so, then what were the Athenians doing in making an altar to "The Unknown God" (Acts 17:23)?
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« Reply #31 on: January 23, 2013, 10:00:27 PM »

Would Orthodox agree with Nostra Aetate's statement on Hinduism:

Nostra Aetate affirms: "In Hinduism men contemplate the divine mystery and express it through the unspent fruitfulness of myths and through searching philosophical inquiry. They seek release from the anguish of our condition through ascetical practices and deep meditation or a loving, trusting flight towards God" (n. 2).

You do realize that in that document the Church is describing what Hindu's believe and do, it is not saying that the demons they adore are divine.
This raises two issues.

(1) The statement "In Hinduism men contemplate the divine mystery" is different from, say, "In Hinduism men think that they contemplate the divine mystery". If the Council really wanted to stress the second statement, then I would think that it would have made its statement less ambiguous.

(2) Is it possible for non-Christians to "contemplate the divine mystery"? If it is impossible for non-Christians to do so, then what were the Athenians doing in making an altar to "The Unknown God" (Acts 17:23)?

1) The Vatican II I am familiar with choose to be ambiguous and wordy. 

As far as your second question, this is my opinion and anyone is free to correct with what the Roman Catholic Church teaches if they find something authority.

As to your second question, yes they can, however it is in spite of their false religion not because of their false religion. Any genuine contemplation they received would lead them towards Jesus Christ and his Church.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2013, 10:02:31 PM by domNoah » Logged

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« Reply #32 on: January 23, 2013, 11:33:29 PM »

Would Orthodox agree with Nostra Aetate's statement on Hinduism:

Nostra Aetate affirms: "In Hinduism men contemplate the divine mystery and express it through the unspent fruitfulness of myths and through searching philosophical inquiry. They seek release from the anguish of our condition through ascetical practices and deep meditation or a loving, trusting flight towards God" (n. 2).

You do realize that in that document the Church is describing what Hindu's believe and do, it is not saying that the demons they adore are divine.
This raises two issues.

(1) The statement "In Hinduism men contemplate the divine mystery" is different from, say, "In Hinduism men think that they contemplate the divine mystery". If the Council really wanted to stress the second statement, then I would think that it would have made its statement less ambiguous.

(2) Is it possible for non-Christians to "contemplate the divine mystery"? If it is impossible for non-Christians to do so, then what were the Athenians doing in making an altar to "The Unknown God" (Acts 17:23)?

As to your second question, yes they can, however it is in spite of their false religion not because of their false religion. Any genuine contemplation they received would lead them towards Jesus Christ and his Church.
On the other hand, Pope John Paul II, in his Redemptoris Missio (28), implies that the Holy Spirit can also act, in a limited way, through these other religions, pointing to the role of these other religions in helping people contemplate the divine mystery and, ultimately, Christ in particular:

"The Spirit manifests himself in a special way in the Church and in her members. Nevertheless, his presence and activity are universal, limited neither by space nor time....

The Spirit's presence and activity affect not only the individuals but also society and history, peoples, cultures and religions. Indeed, the Spirit is at the origin of the noble ideals and undertakings which benefit humanity on its journey through history....

Again, it is the Spirit who sows the "seeds of the Word" present in various customs and cultures, preparing them for full maturity in Christ."
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If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
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Ἄνω σχῶμεν τὰς καρδίας
"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
Y dduw bo'r diolch.
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« Reply #33 on: February 28, 2013, 10:57:46 AM »

Quote
I was really interested in whether Orthodox would agree with the idea that Hindus contemplate "the divine mystery", which would seem to be applicable whether one worshipped Vishnu, Shiva, Shakti, and/or practiced jnana, bhakti, or karma yoga.

I don't like the expression "divine mystery". It's too general and there's no detailed explanation what you should understand by it. Another point is that you cannot contemplate "the divine mystery", but rather the revelation comes to you and you cannot force it by ascetism. It depends on the mercy of God.
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« Reply #34 on: February 28, 2013, 11:11:08 AM »

Quote
I was really interested in whether Orthodox would agree with the idea that Hindus contemplate "the divine mystery", which would seem to be applicable whether one worshipped Vishnu, Shiva, Shakti, and/or practiced jnana, bhakti, or karma yoga.

I don't like the expression "divine mystery". It's too general and there's no detailed explanation what you should understand by it. Another point is that you cannot contemplate "the divine mystery", but rather the revelation comes to you and you cannot force it by ascetism. It depends on the mercy of God.
Could a Hindu receive the revelation of God, and yet still remain Hindu?
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If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
सर्वभूतहित
Ἄνω σχῶμεν τὰς καρδίας
"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
Y dduw bo'r diolch.
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« Reply #35 on: February 28, 2013, 11:27:32 AM »

Quote
I was really interested in whether Orthodox would agree with the idea that Hindus contemplate "the divine mystery", which would seem to be applicable whether one worshipped Vishnu, Shiva, Shakti, and/or practiced jnana, bhakti, or karma yoga.

I don't like the expression "divine mystery". It's too general and there's no detailed explanation what you should understand by it. Another point is that you cannot contemplate "the divine mystery", but rather the revelation comes to you and you cannot force it by ascetism. It depends on the mercy of God.
Could a Hindu receive the revelation of God, and yet still remain Hindu?

In my view a Hindu who uses hindu-methods to find out the true, can only get a revelation on a certain level. For example concerning some moral codes. In order that a hindu can receive genuine and full revelation of God he have to change his spiritual methods to find out the true. And then he cannot remain Hindu any longer. Do you know the story of Sadhu Sundar Singh??
« Last Edit: February 28, 2013, 11:28:34 AM by Nathanael » Logged

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