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Sri Ramakrishna – Hindu spiritual figure claiming to have practiced different religions

Sri Ramakrishna (1836-86) began life as an obscure, unschooled village boy, Gadhadhar Chatterji. His first major religoius experience came at age six. Ramakrishna describes his first spiritual ecstasy…while walking along the paddy fields, a flock of white cranes flying against a … Continue reading


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Suttee – A violent and cruel remnant of Hinduism that continues today (without any attempt to legitimize it spiritually)

Embed from Getty Images Sati handprint on the entrance to Junagarh Fort. Sati was the practice where a woman burned herself on the her husband’s funeral pyre or when her husband died in battle defending the fort. Suttee or Sati (Skt. … Continue reading


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The three Hindu gunas – a meeting of psychology, spirituality and cosmology

The Samkhya philosophy of Hinduism outlines three gunas (Skt. = string or tendency) of sattva, rajas and tamas. The gunas are qualities apparently found in material nature (prakṛti) with a corresponding consciousness found in living beings. A refined guna in material … Continue reading


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Religion – As diverse as peoples of the Earth?

Embed from Getty Images What is religion? With so many different religions out there can we come up with a concise or, for that matter, comprehensive definition? It seems not. In fact, there are many different definitions of religion in … Continue reading


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The Belief in Reincarnation – Man-Made Theory or Sacred Truth?

Also called metempsychosis and transmigration, reincarnation is a man-made theory usually presented as fact or sacred law by believers. Elements of the theory can be found in diverse religions and philosophies, including ancient Greek, Egyptian, Hindu, Buddhist, Taoist, Jain, African … Continue reading


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Reification – Are things always as they seem?

Reification is a sociological, philosophical and literary concept concerning language and symbolization.¹ For Marxist, Weberian and postmodern sociologists, reification also involves social power. It occurs whenever ideas, concepts or theories are falsely assumed to accurately represent some entity or thing. … Continue reading


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Reaction Formation – A neurotic response to fear

In Sigmund Freud‘s psychoanalytic theory, reaction formation is a defense mechanism in which a repressed, socially unacceptable impulse is expressed in an exaggerated, opposite way. The original impulse, perceived as bad or anxiety producing, remains unresolved in its unconscious, infantile form. This … Continue reading