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Musings on Hinduism Paperback – Import, 9 Mar 2017
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The book is divided in 5 sections 1) Hindu religion and philosophy where NS discusses about topics such as nivrutti and pravrutti margas, sadhna and tantras. The concluding essay of this section tries to put the myth of prudish Hinduism to rest by discussing sex and Hinduism. 2) Vedanta- this section deals with topics that are subject to most misinformation such as Moksha, infinity (and the inevitably mentioned zero) and Vedas as a valid means of knowledge. 3) Hindu society & miscellaneous- these two sections have essays that deal with more contemporary topics related to dharma. The author rounds off with translation of Sanskrit hymns.
In the highly polarized times with internet acting as the biggest source of myth making and misinformation, books like "musings on Hinduism" are of immense importance both as laying down the groundwork for the true dharmic scholar and a ready source of reference for rebuttals if needed. Nithin Sridhar's scholarship and erudition makes him the ideal choice to tackle this subject. Must read!
Book is divided into five sections -
Hindu Religion and Philosophy
Translation of Sanskrit Hymns
Nithin ji’s writing style is simple, non-persuasive, clear and free of fear. He is not afraid to talk on topics considered as ‘taboo’ like sex in Hinduism or the tantras, which are often wrongly criticised as ‘Manuals of sensual worship’. He does not put tons of references in an article, which makes it easy to read. Necessary references are given at the end of article.
Nithin ji considers himself as a proud Hindu and is inclined to the philosophy of advaita. His reverence to Sanātana Dharma and advaita is evident from his tribute to Jagadguru Śrī Bhārathī tirtha Mahasvāmī, Śankarāchārya of Sringeri Matha by putting the great saint’s photo on the first page of his book. So it is natural that his thoughts are of dhārika nature with reverence to the ancient tradition. This is reflected in his writings.
Titles are explained from dhārmika perspective. Nithin ji does not try to sound neutral and as one does not need to sound like non-Hindu to be neutral.
In general, this book covers wide variety of topics and gives clarity and understanding of Sanātana Dharma from Dhārmika perspective. It is a good read for all sections of society.
Collection of articles in the book, ‘Musings on Hinduism’ is the journey taken by a common Hindu, who just like most of us was, at one time, lacking answers to misconcepts and accusations on sanātana dharma. What is important, which is reflected through this book, is the diligent study of śāstra-s and books related to Hinduism for many years. This state of mind is reflected in the section, Hindu Society’. The very first chapter ‘Indians have forsaken Dharma’ talks about disinterest in dharma (which is due to false equivalence of dharma with religion) and indriya nigraha (control over senses). Young Hindus must come out of this spiritual crisis. If Nihin Sridhar can, you too can. All it requires is a bit of dedication. You may not be a gifted writer or orator, but you dont need to. All you need is to get clarity of the real Sanātana Dharma ‘as it is’ from a dhārmika perspective, according to the tradition followed since 1000s of years, and not what is projected by the west or by historians or fact finders or linguists.
While the book aims at giving dhārika perspective of Sanātana Dharma, it is written in a way acceptable to the common men especially the educated youth. The real aim is to rekindle interest in dharma. We have grown up in a tradition which has it’s own concepts and culture. Our thoughts shape us. We get thoughts from itihāsa and purāṇa-s and other śāstra-s and also from family tradition as heredetiary knowledge. These thoughts and culture shape our personality, our identity. They shape us. If they do not exist, even we do not exist. Hence we must all contribute to protect our own śāstra-s which are neglected by many.
Nithin ji's book helps give us clarity and knowledge about our dharma.
The e-book formatting needs to be improved and is surprisingly more expensive than the print edition. There were a few grammatical errors and the editing could have been better as well. Overall it is a great read and would recommend it to all those interested in Sanatana Dharma.
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