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Danielle Hernandez

Ms. Miranda

World Religions

October 8, 2010

Comparing Two Faiths: Christianity and Hinduism

Calling one’s self a Christian, one may look at Hinduism as a complete deviation

from one’s own beliefs. Although both of these religions may seem to be very different

from each other, it is very easy to find similarities between the two if they are sought out.

Both Hinduism and Christianity are monotheistic faiths but believe that God may

come in different forms. Christians accept the idea of one God existing in three persons

just as Hindus believe in one God existing in, for example, Shiva the destroyer as well as

Brahma the creator. Along with a monotheistic belief system, both Christians and Hindus

use intercession to pray to their God. Christians may pray to the Blessed Mother or to

Saint Anthony and Hindus may pray to one of their 330 million deities. It is not

considered heresy in either religion because the worshiper knows that the deities and

saints do not take the place of God.

The basic way of living is also very similar between the two religions. In

Christianity, we believe that good works will lead us to eternal salvation in heaven.

Similarly, Hindus believe that good karma (achieved through good works) will eventually

allow a person to achieve Moksha and return to the Brahman. Non-violence is an

apparent theme in Hinduism and is also seen as theme for Christianity when Jesus

instructs his followers to “turn to other cheek.” Respect for one’s self and others is

essential in Hinduism because of the belief in the Atman in all things. Christianity adopts
the idea that “your body is a temple of God” that must be protected because of the need to

preserve the soul within. Finally, rituals may seem different but, for all intents and

purposes, they are the same. Both religions have specified places of worship where

believers come together to pray and celebrate.

Although the two belief systems are, indeed, very much alike, one can not ignore

the differences. Reincarnation is the most apparent topic of discord. Hindus believe that

humans as well as the whole universe is constantly going through cycles of death and

rebirth. Christians, on the other hand, believe that there is one universe created by God

and that we only have one life to live. Christians believe that, based upon your good and

bad deeds during this one life, you will either be saved or face an eternity of damnation,

whereas Hindus believe that, eventually, everyone reaches salvation and no one is

eternally lost. Furthermore, Hindus, when faced with a handful of bad karma, must make

up those wrongs with good deeds. Less harshly, Christians’ bad “karma” is taken away

by God by simply asking Him of forgiveness. Finally, Hindus, being very open-minded,

believe that, although various religions may have different forms of worship and different

names for God, they are all on paths to lead them towards one common God. More

exclusively, Christians believe that it is their way or the highway and that if you don’t

follow their path, then there is no way that you will be saved.

When you lay out the beliefs of many religions, you begin to notice that human

faiths aren’t all that much different. Although wars have been fought over religious

differences and geographic boundaries separate believers it seems that the Hindu’s have

the right idea: we are all on our own paths, but they will ultimately lead us to the same

God.