HINDUISM ARYAN’S MIGRATE INTO INDIA ~2000 B.C. Aryan people migrated across Europe and Asia and arrived in the Indian subcontinent. The religion of Hinduism developed gradually out of the ancient traditions of the Aryan people. THE CASTE SYSTEM One important element of Hinduism has been the rigid class system, also called the Caste system. THE CASTE SYSTEM Brahmins • Priests Kshatriyas • Warriors Vaisyas •Herders, farmers, artisans and merchants Sudras • Farm workers, servants and other laborers. DALITS (UNTOUCHABLES) A fifth group of people were completely excluded from the Hindu Caste System. Untouchables were considered impure and unclean. They did the jobs such as digging graves, cleaning streets, or turning animal hides into leather. THE VEDAS AND BRAHMAN The main Hindu religious text is called the Vedas Brahman: the idea that all living souls are connected to each other. One force underlies everything Hindus worship a variety of gods but all are part of the unchanging, all-powerful spiritual force called Brahman. REINCARNATION Hindus believe that a soul may live many lifetimes through a cycle of reincarnation KARMA AND DHARMA To improve a soul’s status from one lifetime to the next, a Hindu must do their duty (dharma) so that they can improve their karma a record of all the good, and bad conduct throughout a soul’s existence. People who live virtuously earn good karma and are reborn at a higher level of existence. Those who do evil are reborn into a lower level. MOKSHA The ultimate goal of Hindus is to achieve Moksha which is the ending of the reincarnation cycle.