Where to begin?

There are many ways to start talking about Hinduism, and obviously this depends on the age of pupils and any syllabus followed. Some textbooks take an historical approach and begin with the Indus Valley Civilisation, others see more relevance in starting with the life of a Hindu child of an age near to that of the pupils in the UK today. Others start with the concept of dharma or central beliefs about ultimate reality. Symbols such as yantras (including mandalas) as diagrammatic representations of ultimate reality, and even rangoli patterns might capture attention, and fit with the current fashion of colouring-in as a form of mindfulness. Artefacts can create interest such as the arti tray, or images of deities. Ganesh is a particular favourite with small children. Older children might respond to something concerning Hindus in the news, whether controversial such as the laying of the foundation stone of the new temple to Rama in Ayodhya or the worship of Coronadevi, to use two 2020 examples. The simple greeting ‘Namaste’ can open up a discussion of respecting the divine within all people.

This account will start by stressing diversity before looking at ‘matters of central importance’ which is where the National Entitlement starts, in order to avoid giving the impression of an ‘essence’ of Hinduism (but the main thing is to start).

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Hindu Worldview Traditions


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