Hinduism is one of the most ancient religions and considered to be one of the four major religions in the world. Originating from India (Asia) and the Vedic culture, Hinduism is now spread in most parts of the world. There are over 1.08 billion of Hindus living around the globe today. Hinduism, also referred to as Sanatan Dharma by certain scholars, is polytheistic by nature.
- A majority of Hindus are found currently living in India, Nepal, Mauritius, the Caribbean, and Bali in Indonesia. India is dominated by an 80% majority of Hindus.
- The name'Hindu' is taken from the Sanskrit name "Sindhu" of the Indus river given to it by the Aryans in the second millennium BCE.
- A red dot that is placed on the forehead is a symbol of being a Hindu. It is placed on the forehead before any worshipping or prayers begin. Hindu women use this a beauty symbol and in their context, it is called a Bindi. The red dot implies the divine sight and the spiritual evolution.
- The religion was founded by no single founder. It is understood from the ancient texts, The Vedas, Puranas, and the Upanishads. Also, epics such as Ramayana and Mahabharata are considered of high importance. A portion of Mahabharata evolved as a separate book of teachings by Lord Sri Krishna, "The BhagvadGita".
- The religion is polytheistic by nature, i.e. it involves worshipping many gods and goddesses. However, the basic premise is the existence of one supreme power (Brahma) that is channelized in the many gods and goddesses.
- Buddism, Jainism and Sikhism have all evolved from Hinduism at different times due to different callings from society and times.
- Karma Theory is an important theory of Hinduism. Reincarnation is believed to be based on karma. They say the cycle of birth, that includes birth, death, and rebirth is based on the Karma (actions) of a human
- Important symbols of Hinduism are Swastika, Om, lotus, trisula.
- Hindus respect the cow animal. It is regarded as a mother. Hindus do not eat cow or buffalo flesh and eating such a thing is considered a sin. On the contrary, whatever is naturally created/secreted by cow, such as, cow milk, ghee, even cow urine and dung is considered pure and sacred.
- The knowledge of Hinduism is preserved in the ancient texts called the Vedas - Rig Veda, Sam Veda, Yajur Veda and Atharva Veda.
- Yoga is one of the biggest contributions of Hinduism to the whole world. It is a set of techniques of training the mind, body, and soul for the attainment of superior well-being and longevity, spirituality and as well mental balance.
- Casteism was a form of a division of the society on the basis of the occupation and would be applicable on generations to follow. This practice led to discrimination and exploitation of the lowest class. It has been done away with in modern India post Independence. Presently it is against law to discriminate against or look down up insultingly or abuse on the basis of caste, gender or even region.