Misconception Clarified: Hinduism and Christianity

by Dr. Samuel Inbaraja

Not long ago as I was discussing religion with my friend. He being a Hindu, told me that Hinduism is a way of life, whereas Christianity is just a set of beliefs. Again as I was scanning through the latest issue of Hinduism today and I saw the same claim that Hinduism is a way of life whereas Christianity is just a set of beliefs.
Well it’s true that Hinduism prescribes a way or even many ways of living. But it is equally true that Christianity also is a way of life. The belief is always coupled with prescribed behavior. Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount is a call to a new lifestyle, kingdom lifestyle or way of living. Jesus, at the end of the sermon, warns his hearers that if they just hear and don’t live according to it, they will be considered foolish, whereas those who hear and live according to it are wise in God’s sight.
The earliest Christians were called followers of the ‘WAY’. They had a particular way of life, moral life, which was in accordance to the teachings of Christ.
The apostle James writes in his epistle that faith without deeds is dead. Faith or belief without the right behavior or way of life is dead faith. The apostle Paul in one of his epistles writes that the right expression of faith is love.

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Swami Vivekananda’s Christ,The Messenger Part 2

By Dr. Samuel Inbaraja

Swami Vivekananda on the message and mission of Jesus Christ

“He had no other occupation in life , no other thought except that one, that he was a Spirit. He was a disembodied , unfettered, unbound spirit. And not only so, but he with his marvelous vision, had found that every man and woman, whether Jew and Gentile, whether rich or poor, whether saint or sinner, was the embodiment of the same spirit as himself. Therefore, he one work of his whole life showed was to call upon them to realize their own spiritual nature. Give up he says, these superstitious dreams that you are low and that you are trampled upon and tyrannized over as if you were slaves , for within you is something that never can be tyrannized over , never be trampled upon , never be troubled and never be killed. You are all  Sons of God , immortal spirit. ‘Know’ , he declared , ‘the Kingdom of God is within you’. ‘I and my father are one’……………………………he wants to get rid of the whole world as it is a, give it a push and drive it forward and onwards until the whole world has reached to the effluent light of God, until everyone has realized his spiritual nature, until death is vanished and misery banished.”
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Swami Vivekananda’s Christ ,The Messenger Part 1

by Dr. Samuel Inbaraja

“Vivekananda renounced the world and criss-crossed India as a wandering monk. His mounting compassion for India’s people drove him to seek their material help from the West. Accepting an opportunity to represent Hinduism at Chicago’s Parliament of Religions in 1893, Vivekananda won instant celebrity in America and a ready forum for his spiritual teaching.For three years he spread the Vedanta philosophy and religion in America and England and then returned to India to found the Ramakrishna Math and Mission. Exhorting his nation to spiritual greatness, he wakened India to a new national consciousness. He died July 4, 1902, after a second, much shorter sojourn in the West.”
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