Exploring Hinduism for Teens and Parents

Course content: This course involves approximately 20 sessions of  90 minutes each delivered in one quarter. These sessions will cover a variety of topics and themes, such as: 

  1. Hindu Geography – The land of the Hindus
  2. Hindu History – How ancient is Hinduism really?
  3. The Ramayana – Historical Figure or Mythical Hero
  4. The Mahabharata – Did the Kurukshetra war actually happen?
  5. The Spread of Hindu thought and ideas around the world
  6. Hindu conception of Divinity – Understanding Gods and Goddesses
  7. Hindu conception of Divinity – Consciousness and Matter
  8. Hindu symbolism – Representing the Divine
  9. Hindu conception of Divinity – Male and Female divinities
  10. Hindu Sampradaya and Parampara – Rishi, Guru, Yogi, Acharya
  11. Hindu Cosmology and Astronomy – Jyotisha
  12. Hindu Timekeeping and Calendar – Panchanga
  13. Hindu accomplishments and contributions to the world
  14. The Hindu worldview and lifestyle – The emphasis on spirituality
  15. The Hindu Social System – Varna, Jati and the so-called Caste system
  16. Women in Hindu Society – Breaking some myths
  17. Invasions and Colonization
  18. India’s Freedom Struggle
  19. Hindu Ethos
  20. Hindu Life today – Being happy, healthy, organic and responsible

Learning Objectives: 

In this course students will be able to: 

  1. Develop a deeper understanding of the history, culture, and traditions of Hinduism
  2. Discover the various ways in which Hindus conceptualize and relate to the Divine
  3. Examine the wisdom of ancient Hindu traditions in the light of contemporary life
  4. Revisit and Clarify certain pervasive myths that are prevalent regarding Hinduism 
  5. Recognize the place of Hinduism in the world and its contribution to humanity
  6. Discover new conversational spaces within the family unexplored so far 
  7. Learn to describe and talk about Hindu ideas and thought with others 

This course can be taken as the inaugural course of a whole series titled “Exploring Hinduism – The Overview”, or as a stand-alone course. It can be enjoyed by teenagers in the age group 12-18, on their own or together with their parents. Alternatively, parents who have teens may also benefit from this course. 

Required/Elective: Elective

Prerequisites: None

Faculty/Instructor: Dr. D.K. Hema HariDr. D. K. Hari

Quarter Offered: Fall 2020

Area of Study: Hindu Studies Foundation

Start Date: October 4, 2020

End Date: December 20, 2020

Day: Every Friday & Sunday

Time: 09:00 pm EST – 10:30 pm EST

Hindu Contributions to the world in the realm of matter

Course Content:

“Exploring Hinduism” is a series of courses that facilitate a structured exploration of various facets of one of the world’s most ancient families of traditions and civilization.  This course moves past the modern myth that the Hindus were ‘other-worldly’ and were immersed in nothing more than the Vedas, Yoga, Spirituality, Meditation, Penance, and in seeking Liberation from birth and death. It uncovers a holistic view of the source of the sustained prosperity and wealth of the Hindus across vast stretches of time. It investigates the question – “Are Hindu ideas obsolete? Or do they have contemporary relevance?”

Over 20 sessions, spanning a quarter, this course will cover a variety of areas of innovation, inventions, development and trade, and sustained contributions that characterized the Hindu civilization for millennia. These areas will include Metals, Textiles, Dyes, Spices, Diamonds, Navigation, Fireworks, Perfumes, and how these innovations impacted the world. During this course, students will acquire newfound confidence from the dawning of a recognition that the Hindu Civilization has been quite different from what our received knowledge has led us to believe and renew their trust in the Hindu worldview and way of life, that has been so sustainable and successful for so long.

Course Learning Objectives:

In this course, students will

  1. Discover the prosperity of the Hindu Civilization that lasted for millennia, till about a few hundred years ago.
  2. Uncover the advanced state of technology and industry practiced by the Hindus.
  3. Discover the Hindu ethos and perspective of practicing industry and trade in a sustainable manner.
  4. Examine the forces that can upset and destroy such millennia-long cultivated prosperity in a short time
  5. Gain insight into the secret of prosperity and balance that the Hindus possessed which enabled their civilizational advancement and affluence
  6. Develop the confidence to think laterally with regard to the challenges and problems facing humanity and propose paradigm-shifting approaches towards the future

Class Structure:

The course spans 1 Quarter with 2 online sessions per week. Each session will comprise of 60 minutes with lectures and interactions with the faculty and will include Quizzes and Assignments.

Faculty: Dr. D.K. Hari & Dr. Hema Hari

Required/Elective: Elective

Prerequisites: Admission to Program of Study

Area of Study: Hindu Studies Foundation

Program of Study: Community Education Program (CEP), Certificate Program in Hindu Studies (CPHS)

Start Date: October 5, 2020

End Date: December 16, 2020

Day: Every Monday and Wednesday

Time: 09:00 pm EST – 10:00 pm EST

Quarter Offered: Fall 2020

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