Contemporary Hinduism: Ritual, Culture, and Practice illuminates the modern-day ritual, range, and reach of this ancient and diverse religion. A brief historical overview is followed by discussions of the oral and written origins of Hinduism that give context for the main emphasis—contemporary thought, practice, and key issues. Unique to this work is the consistent attention given to the practice of Hinduism for both men and women.
What roles do caste and gender play in modern Hinduism? How are issues like ethics and the environment approached? What are the differences between urban and rural Hinduism, fundamental and secular Hinduism? To what countries has this religion spread, and how do the beliefs and practices of their people compare and contrast? Essays written by Indian and Western scholars answer these and other intriguing questions, introducing readers to the whole world of “living Hinduism” rather than the perspectives and traditions of a small elite.
- Ten essays explore the history, modern practice, and contemporary issues of Hinduism
- Maps including ancient and contemporary India and the Hindu diaspora, as well as illustrations within individual essays
- The book includes a glossary of terms and a guide to pronouncing words from Indian languages
- A comprehensive introductory essay provides a basic historical overview and addresses the development of the definition and study of Hinduism