Hinduism and Islam are two of the worlds major religions, with sizeable following in various parts of the world. They have some core ideals and flashes of a grand vision which they share. If we accept religion as a product of the environment in which it arises, chosen by God to deal with certain predominant problems of human existence peculiar to the times and the place in which they originate, we will understand why both Hinduism and Islam remained unfamiliar to each other till they stood face to face. Yet God has not rendered them entirely new so that He could keep the theologians on both side busy and arguing, but made provision for bridges of understanding. Hidden in the bosom of Islam are some of the finest and the best ideals of human life and religious aspiration, which also find their unmistakable expression in the core concepts of Hinduism, pulsating with vibrant energy, that are difficult to ignore even by a superficial glance. The differences are in relation to practice, code of conduct and interpretation of scriptures and traditions that should not, if we want to live in peace and harmony all over the world and fulfill the will of God for peace and universal amity, interfere with the process of normalization that began sometime in medieval India and still continuing, despite the challenges of mutual distrust and animosity that still linger on in some vicious minds of both communities. Hindus and Muslims can coexist, wherever they are, if they are willing to accept religion as an instrument of peace and human salvation rather than as a conduit through which they can compensate their feelings of inadequacy and pent-up animosity, the very vices that seem to contradict and negate the Divine Law which every religion proclaims to uphold. To achieve proper unity, there is also a need for give and take and appreciation of mutual differences without being threatened by them. As remarked by Rabindranath Tagore, "The world-wide problem today is not how to unite by wiping out all differences, but how to unite with all the differences intact; a difficult task, for it permits of no trickery and calls for mutual give-and-take...The Muslims in our country are striving for advancement as a separate community. However disagreeable and disadvantage that may be for us for the time being, it is the only right way to achieve genuine unity someday in the future."
India is perhaps the only country where a very large section of Hindus live in harmony with a large section of Muslims, without the compulsion of making any significant adjustments and sacrifices in their beliefs and practices. There are still many issues between the two that remain to be resolved, but overall it is not a gloomy picture, especially when we view it in the context of what has been happening in the other parts of the world. This understanding and synthesis of ideas between the two communities is a product of centuries of interaction and mutual adjustment. It culminated in the development of a distinct culture that is peculiarly Indian. Since it is built on a strong foundation, without coercion, over a long period of time, it survives the vicissitudes of the present day conflicts, which are usually ignited by the uninformed and the ignorant, who are unfamiliar with the ethos of the Indian psyche. Some of the features, concepts and practices that emerged out of the process of integration between the two religions are described below.
Islam by all means is a religion founded by a prophet. Hinduism, in contrast, is a group of religious traditions, established over a period of time, through the revelations received by innumerable saints, seers, incarnations and emanations of God. It contains various traditions such as Saivism, Vaishnavism and Shaktism that are religions by themselves. In Hinduism personalities do not count as much as the divine law or the dharma. So it is in Islam, where the message of Islam is far more important than the person of Muhammad himself. Muslims therefore do not worship their prophet, unlike the Christians.
The word "Hindu" or "Hindoo" is derived from the Sanskrit root word "Sindhu" and used by Persians, ancient Greeks and many foreigners to denote the people who lived beyond the river Indus, whom Alexander could not conquer. During the medieval period, Islamic scholars and Muslim travelers referred the Indian subcontinent as Hindustan or the land of the Hindus. The word stuck for several centuries and throughout the Islamic Caliphate. During the British rule, the word Hindu was used to distinguish the native Indians who were not Christians, nor Muslims, nor Sikhs, nor Jains, nor Buddhists. The word Hinduism was coined in the 1830s by British scholars to denote the religious traditions of the native Indians to distinguish them from other recognized religions. While they are now popular all over the world under the generic name Hinduism, for generations Hindus recognized their religious traditions as aspects of one eternal Truth that went by the name "sanatana dharma" or eternal law. It is interesting that for over 6000 years, Hinduism went by many names but Hinduism.
Muslims worship and submit themselves to none but Allah, the one and only God, who is Merciful, Eternal, Mighty and Infinite. He is the Creator, the Provider and Sustainer of all creatures and the entire creation. He is considered to be not just the highest God of Muslims, but of all the people in the world, including the Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, atheists, agnostics and others. Allah is the ruler of the heavens, the earth and all that is between them. Yet He is closer to His pious and thoughtful worshippers, to whom He responds with overflowing love, forgives their sins and grants peace, happiness, knowledge and abundant wealth. Although He is known to most by His popular name Allah, He has 99 other names, which are enumerated in the Qu'ran. According to the Hadith, he who memorizes all the names of Allah, would go to paradise.
The word "Islam" is derived from the Arabic root word "salaama," meaning peace, obedience, purity, and submission. Islam means abiding peace and unconditional obedience to the will of God and His divine law. While other religions derive their names from either a tribe (Judaism), or a geographical area (Hinduism), or a founder (Zoroastrianism, Buddhism and Christianity), Islam derives its name from its central doctrine of peace and submission to God. Thus the chief message of Islam is hidden in its very name. While the followers of other religions may call themselves as Christians, Jains, Buddhists etc., the followers of Islam refer themselves as Muslims or Mussalmans, but never as "Muhammadans," which some non-Muslims however tend to call them erroneously.
Weddings in India - WikipediaWeddings in India vary regionally, the religion and per personal preferences of the bride and Nevertheless, there are a few key rituals common in Hindu weddings Indian Muslims celebrate a traditional Islamic wedding following customsShort Essay on An Indian WeddingAn Indian wedding is a grand occasion, very colorful and very lavish with a lot of pomp Exchange of gifts, greetings is a common sight at an Indian wedding,The Big Fat Indian Wedding | Teen Essay About asia, my heritageSaying that you went to an Indian wedding is just wrong because you can never attend an Indian weddi
Other assessments, however, emphasize that Partition, far from emerging inevitably out of a policy of divide-and-rule, was largely a contingent development. As late as 1940, it might still have been avoided. Some earlier work, such as that of the British historian Patrick French, in “Liberty or Death,” shows how much came down to a clash of personalities among the politicians of the period, particularly between Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the leader of the Muslim League, and Mohandas Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru, the two most prominent leaders of the Hindu-dominated Congress Party. All three men were Anglicized lawyers who had received at least part of their education in England. Jinnah and Gandhi were both Gujarati. Potentially, they could have been close allies. But by the early nineteen-forties their relationship had grown so poisonous that they could barely be persuaded to sit in the same room.
For four days scientists, most of them Christians, Jews or Muslims, testified about their efforts to resolve personal conflicts over science and religion.
But if any one here hopes that this unity will come by the triumph of any one of the religions and the destruction of the others, to him I say, "Brother, yours is an impossible hope." Do I wish that the Christian would become Hindu?
The relevance of investigation into, and appreciation of, The Perennial Philosophy is becoming more and more evident due to the disparity of birth-rates between the existing civilizational regions of the world and due to mass movements of populations bringing, in particular, Muslims, Hindus and Africans often accepting of a vibrant Christian faith, into what have been largely secularised western states.