Thursday, April 22, 2004
I, the Traditionalist

Something seriously wrong with this quiz... These are the answers I chose, and it called me a traditionalist.

Q1. What is your concept of God?
Ancient scriptures describe God in a variety of ways that allow for Hindus to appreciate the complexity of the divine.

Q2. Are the Vedas the final scriptural authority for Hindus?
The Vedas should be interpreted in light of modern, scientific standards of rationality.

Q3. Is the social order described in the Laws of Manu relevant for the modern world?
The Laws of Manu describe a different time and are incompatible with modern values, such as democracy and social equality.

Q4. How do you approach myths about Hindu gods and goddesses?
Myths are enjoyable stories, but the essence of Hinduism lies in its philosophical truths.

Q5. What text do you consider the most important for someone who wishes to be Hindu?
No single text captures the essence of Hinduism.

Q6. Do you go to a Hindu temple frequently?
Temples have community functions that people need and enjoy, but I am also interested in other, non-Hindu, religious practices.

Q7. How important are the caste rules of purity and pollution as described in traditional shastras?
Caste rules limit human potential and possibilities.

Q8. Does your home include a puja room or shrine?
Yes. We regularly worship in the home.

Q9. Do you regularly participate in Hindu festivals and holidays?
We participate because we want to celebrate Indian culture or pass along our traditions to our children.

Q10. What is your position on astrology?
Astrology is a minor science in India, not as important as the other great philosophical traditions.

Q11. Would you marry, or allow your children to marry, a non-Hindu?
I think more important than religious affiliation is a common set of interests and values; so yes, possibly.

Q12. What do you consider most essential to being a Hindu?
No one thing. Hinduism means many different things to different people.

The site helpfully added this about me:
You are a traditionalist, staunch in your conviction that the authority of the Vedas (scripture), Shastras (rules of conduct), and Parampara (traditions) contain all that Hindus need to know about how to live. You have great reverence for the past and for tradition. You're most unwilling to cast aside what is tried and true in favor of passing fads or modern interpretations of Hinduism.

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