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How did Hinduism begin?

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Quick Answer

Hinduism did not begin with a specific founder, text or point in time, but the earliest evidence of religious activity in India dates back to 5,500 B.C.E. However, The blending of Vedic and non-Vedic ideas made the practice of Hinduism evolve over the centuries.

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Full Answer

The initial Hindu leaders were the rishis, ancient sages who went unnamed and whose words were passed down through an oral tradition. The Vedas are a collection of ritual texts and hymns that adherents have compiled over time, and they have many different types of teachings that sages promulgated during Hinduism's earliest phases.

While some religions only occupy one aspect of a person's life, Hinduism also engages the wider society. As the centuries have gone by, Hinduism has become one of the most diverse religions on the planet. The fact that there is no one book that contains stated claims about infallible truth coupled with the fact that no one group or individual with religious authority over the institution also makes it a huge philosophical umbrella. Even those texts that Hindus read for religious purposes do not claim that their ideas are superior to any others, which means that all ideas exist together in a peaceful cohesiveness.

Over time, Hinduism has come to include the expression of sophisticated philosophies about a number of metaphysical puzzles. Rituals range from meditation and physical activities such as yoga to the reading and appreciation of legends and tales from the past that are almost juvenile in nature.

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