Mother Bhumi: Hinduism and Creation
Once or twice a year during Lent I'm in a church: I am fortunate to be invited to speak during the house of worship's Lenten Lecture Series about my faith journey as a Hindu. This Lent, I had an opportunity to share how Hindus value all of Creation.
The issue came up when I mentioned the many misconceptions about Hinduism: how people believe that Hindus are polytheistic or that we worship cows -- a question that comes up often because public school curricula provides this misrepresentation. Hindus have to answer collectively, as in the Hindu American Foundation's media toolkit, or individually, as in Gautham Pathial's 2007 essay in Hinduism Today.
When someone asked during the Q&A if we also worship snakes, I simply stated: "All of Creation is sacred."
Matthew McDermott quoted from the part of Hinduism's sacred scriptures known as the Upanishads. In the latest issue of Hinduism Today, his article on Hinduism and the Environment opens with three words in Sanskrit and its 11-word English translation: Ishavasyam idam sarvam: "This entire universe is to be looked upon as the Supreme" (Shukla Yajur Veda, Ishavasya Upanishad-1). More
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