To start with, no hard feelings against anyone who subscribes to Islam or Christianity.

When the Muslims invaded 'Iran' or 'Egypt' they were able to convert the whole population to Islam in a few decades e.g., the present day Iran was largely Zoroastrian at that time. Also, when the Christians moved to the European region, they converted the whole population to Christianity in a few decades.

Although, India has faced centuries of Muslim invasion. This was followed by nearly two centuries of Christian domination (read British). Despite this, the population of our country is largely Hindu. How is that?

I know there would have been many historical reasons for that. Although, I am interested in the attributes of Hinduism that allowed it and us to survive.

  • 8
    In short since God himself is protecting the Sanatana Dharma it will survive all atrocities and opposition without doubt.
    – Rickross
    Commented Apr 22, 2016 at 6:25
  • 2
    @Rickross: Agreed, but God is also protecting Zoroastrians. That did not prevent them from being converted to Islam in Iran (in mere 15 years). There has to be something more in Hinduism, that ensured its protection. Commented Apr 22, 2016 at 11:47
  • 6
    God will protect only the true dharma.Now what is true dharma?What is the dharma of water ?-To always flow down,What is the true dharma of fire?-To always go up.Does this dharma change wrt persons belonging to so called different faiths? NO.Sanatan Dharma is the true dharma and that is the only one that is there and that will always be protected till the end.
    – Rickross
    Commented Apr 22, 2016 at 14:19
  • 3
    The natural inclination of fire is to go upwards .. you can forcefully make water to go up too but that's not water's true nature @PrasannaR That's what I meant
    – Rickross
    Commented Jun 18, 2019 at 17:11
  • 3
    nature is not dharma -> Dharma ->(intention to good) ->but the intention is it good to satvik souls and pleasing to all gods or not is a question, Krishna himself said doing dharma is good, but to identify what is dharma is very difficult..that is why Dronacharya and bhisma (failed badly) i think in one reference i heard by first 10000 years worship of krishna will stop then full Kali effect will be in progression that is where even uttering nama Krishna is as powerful as doing penance @Rickross so hindusim is heading for deep dive no worries its all gods will
    – Prasanna R
    Commented Jun 19, 2019 at 11:34

8 Answers 8


Did Hinduism really survive the proselytization efforts of Islam and Christianity? The content in the above question seems to be seeing the glass half full.

To say Hinduism is in majority in India despite Islamic invasion and British occupation conveniently ignores the fact that Hinduism has lost out to Islam in Afghanisthan, Pakistan and Bangladesh. Outside of India, Hinduism has lost out to Islam in Indonesia. Some date Hinduism in Indonesia all the way back to the time of Ramayana when vanara sena had reached its' shores in search for Sita mata. Today Hinduism is only practiced in Bali. Thus, I don't believe arguments along the lines of "absolute truth cannot be overturned by false claims" helped Hinduism survive and thrive throughout the centuries.

Hinduism vs related philosophical schools Before I proceed with Islam and Christianity, it is important to understand how Hinduism dealt with related philosophical schools like Buddhism, Jainism etc that originated in India. Hinduism didn't survive because ultimate truth is unassailable. Adi Shankaracharya traversed the length and breadth of India debating with various philosophical schools and unifying them under one umbrella. It is important to note they were not unified by force, material benefits or deceit.

The philosophical schools were deep rooted in India's culture. These "purva-paksha" and "uttara-paksa" encounters, included debate and intellectual resistance, were with fellow dharmiks and not with outsiders. As a result focus was always inwards, geared towards systems that originated from our culture.

Even outside of India where Hinduism lost out to related philosophical schools we didn't see obliteration of Hinduism. For instance Cambodia has the world's largest religious monument, Angkor Wat dated 12th century A.D., a Hindu temple that later got converted to a Buddhist temple. However they didn't discard the idols of Lord Vishnu. They just moved the shrine of Lord Vishnu to front and kept Buddha in the main shrine. Similarly the prominent Temple of the Tooth (that has sacred tooth relic of Lord Buddha) in Kandy, Sri Lanka has a few shrines of Lord Vishnu in the same compound.

Not studying the Opposition Unfortunately similar efforts were never expended in learning Mleccha epistemologies. Take for instance Madhavacharya's treatise Sarva Darshana Sangraha dated 14th century, where he reviews 16 philosophical systems from Advaita point of view. But there is no mention of Islam and Christianity, which were well known in India by then. Similarly nothing was done to understand the Abrahamic religions's social and political system until it was too late. Indian traders routinely traveled to Arabia. But there is no evidence of any Indian texts that captures accounts of Hindu intellectuals who traveled to Arabia, engaged in dialogue, understood them and built effective responses. Similarly Christianity has been present in India since the arrival of Syrian christians arrival thousand of years ago. But there was hardly any study done of its theology or ambitions for world conquest.

Loss of Arthashastra

It is said that the text had disappeared until a copy resurfaced in Kerala or Tamil Nadu in early 20th century. The text taught about use of "physical force" in dealing with others. The loss deprived Indians of intellectual tools necessary to understand strategies for such encounters. It also included the concept of Chakravarti, whose domain is to from ocean to ocean, and who was above all other kings. Perhaps that could have served as inspiration to Hindu kings to be offensive instead of defensive.

At some point Arthashastra ceased to be taught for learning realpolitik. After all before invasion of Islam, India had successfully warded off the threat from Greeks.


While passivism may have crept in at some point after defeating the Greeks, we know that there have been several military responses against Islam and Christianity that enabled Hinduism to survive in India. But these were exceptions. Moreover our history curriculum in schools don't go beyond the Rajputs, Marathas and Vijaynagar empire. Maybe it is limited because it won't gel well with the modern sensibilities that wants to only espouse peaceful nature of Hinduism as means of attraction. But that is akin to condemning it a false sense of security.

For instance c.200 years had elapsed between Ghazni and Ghori invasions. Ghazni invasion didn't stop because they got tired of plundering or got awestruck with the peaceful nature of Indians. Resistance came from Pasi warriors in UP/Bihar who successfully routed Ghazni's forces. Simimarly North East survived Mughal's onslaught thanks to likes of Lachit Borphukan


It would be inaccurate to say that Hinduism had successfully countered Islam or Christianity as its' geographical spread is much less than before. There are no attributes inherent in Hinduism that enabled it to thrive in India. It was the intrepid response of some of its' practitioners that enabled to survive. Hindus ought to keep memory alive of all such practitioners.

P.S. While Hinduism has wisened up against Islam and Christianity, the threat is now coming from western secularism and intellectual kshatriyas are the need of the hour. But I'll stop here as that is beyond scope


Everything is controlled by God. The countries like Iran, Iraq, Egypt, Europeans divated from original spirituality in Kaliyuga about 2000-3000 years ago into some random local religion practices. For example Egyptians practiced incest, slavery, aristocracy, human sacrifices and many other wrong practices, similarly Europeans became Wiccans and Goths etc., Even Hinduism had malpractices like caste-system and fixed occupations based upon that, Vaishnava vs Shaivaism vs Shaktism(who is Superior?) quarrels as Vedas/Vedanta were given lesser importance than Puranas. Thats, why Jewish Abrahamic religions arose with simple concept of explaining abstract unseen God as one and to unite whole Europe and Africa who were battling earlier in the name of local gods like Zeus of Greece to Horus of Egypt to Thor of Nords, all trying to fight in the name of idols and different forms and names that know. God is unity/oneness not division in reality.

This is also one of the crux of Vedanta, that is unity of God, the underlying base of Vedas which was forgotten in India during deep Kaliyuga leading to disunity based on caste and different names of deities.

They call him Indra, Mitra, Varuna, Agni, and he is heavenly-winged Garutman. To what is One, sages give many a title. — Rigveda 1.164.46

But in Kaliyuga because of tamsik intellect, the common people ended killing each other, sacrificing children, humans in the name of some local Gods like Moloch and greedy unauthorized local random priests, especially in barbarian Mleccha regions. Hence, unifying Abrahamic religions with one God and standard new scripture Bible/Quran/Torah were given to them as dharma, yoga and Moksha of huge Vedas are beyond their comprehension. In India, verbal quarrels in the name of God are present which can be seen in the form of defaming Shiva in Vishnava scriptures and Vishnu in Shaiva scriptures, for example later interpolation of Padma Puranan calling Advaita Vedanta of Shankarachaya is to mislead atheists. Battle with Abrahamic religions over past few centuries has brought unity within Hindus who had earlier become lethargic towards understanding spiritually, customs, logicality and Vedas, rather into superstitions, cramming because of Kaliyuga, its like "Just below the lantern - lies the darkness". Thats why many yogis like Swami Vivekananda etc., appeared in 20th century with motive of unifying Hinduism based on Vedanta philosophy also.


Then Swamiji said that on the way back he returned to Srinagar by the common route by which the pilgrims return. A few days after returning to Srinagar, he went to visit Kshir Bhavani Devi and staying there for seven days worshipped the Devi and made Homa to her with offerings of Kshira (condensed milk). Every day he used to worship the Devi with a maund of Kshira as offering. One day, while worshipping, the thought arose in Swamiji's mind: "Mother Bhavani has been manifesting Her Presence here for untold years. The Mohammedans came and destroyed her temple, yet the people of the place did nothing to protect Her. Alas, if I were then living I could never have borne it silently." When, thinking in this strain, his mind was much oppressed with sorrow and anguish, he distinctly heard the voice of the Mother say - ing, "It was according to My desire that the Mohammedans destroyed this temple. It is My desire that I should live in a dilapidated temple, otherwise, can I not immediately erect a seven - storeyed temple of gold here if I like? What can you do? Shall I protect you or shall you protect me!" Swamiji said, "Since hearing that divine voice, I cherish no more plans. The idea of building Maths etc. I have given up; as Mother wills, so it will be." The disciple, speechless with wonder, began to think, "Did he not one day tell me that whatever I saw and heard was but the echo of the Atman within me, that there was nothing outside?"-- and fearlessly spoke it out also --"Sir, you used to say that Divine Voices are the echo of our inward thoughts and feelings." Swamiji gravely said, "Whether it be internal or external, if you actually hear with your ears such a disembodied voice, as I have done, can you deny it and call it false? Divine Voices are actually heard, just as you and I are talking."


There are possibly many reasons why Hinduism survived. Here I will discuss one attribute of Hinduism that enabled Dharma to survive the Islamic onslaught. Islamic invaders destroyed numerous Hindu temples in their goal of eradicating Hinduism.

There is a fascinating exchange of letters between Anundpal (Raja of Delhi) and Sultan Mahmud of Gizhnevy about temple destruction. The question as to why temples were being destroyed by Islamic invaders was asked by Raja of Delhi, Anundpal in the year 1011 ce to the most famous (or infamous) of Islamic invaders Sultan Mahmud of Gizhnevy on the eve of the destruction of the temple of Tahnesur.

'The Raja's brother, with two thousand horses was also sent to meet the army, and to deliver the following message:- "My brother [Anundpal] is the subject and tributary of the King, but he begs permission to acquaint his Majesty, that Tahnesur is the principal place of worship of the inhabitants of the country: that if it is required by the religion of Mahmood to subvert the religion of others, he has already acquitted himself of that duty, in the destruction of the temple of Nagrakote. But if he should be pleased to alter his resolution regarding Tahnesur, Anundpal promises that the amount of the revenues of that country shall be annually paid to Mahmood; that a sum shall also be paid to reimburse him for the expense of his expedition, besides which, on his own part, he will present him with fifty elephants, and jewels to a considerable amount." Mahmood replied, "The religion of the faithful inculcates the following tenet: 'That in proportion as the tenets of the Prophet are diffused, and his followers exert themselves in the subversion of idolatry, so shall be their reward in heaven;' that, therefore, it behoved him, with the assistance of God, to root out the worship of idols from the face of all India. How then should he spare Tahnesur?'

History of the Rise of the Mahomedan Power in India by John Briggs Translated from the Original Persian of Mahomed Kasim Ferishta

How did Hinduism survive this mass destruction of temples?

The answer is given by Swami Vivekananda.

The temples in India are not like the churches here. They may all vanish tomorrow, and will not be missed. ..... I need not go there at all, because all my worship is in the home. In every house is a special room set apart, which is called the chapel. The first duty of the child, after his initiation, is to take a bath, and then to worship;

The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, Volume 5, Questions and Answers, A Discussion

Islamic invaders thought that destroying the idols will uproot idol worship in all of India. What they did not realize is that temple worship is not an essential aspect of Hinduism. Hindus can worship in their homes.


The key attribute of Sanathan Dharma which is responsible for its existence in current form is uninterrupted lineage of exalted people and the births of exalted persons itself. Guru-Sishya relationship and the births of avaduta, avatar etc., are the sole attributes.

Although there is a role of temples, scriptures etc., The role is partial. They alone are not responsible for its existence in current form.

Consider the following lines from the book by Paramhansa Yogananda

The characteristic features of Indian culture have long been a search for ultimate verities and the concomitant disciple−guru relationship. My own path led me to a Christlike sage whose beautiful life was chiseled for the ages. He was one of the great masters who are India's sole remaining wealth. Emerging in every generation, they have bulwarked their land against the fate of Babylon and Egypt.

[CHAPTER 1. MY PARENTS AND EARLY LIFE, Autobiography of a Yogi]

If you read (almost) any scripture in Sanathan Dharma, it clearly mentions the (Guru-Sishya lineage) flow of knowlege from person to person.

And the exalted people (Guru's) are not just the transmitters of facts. Guru is an embodiment of facts i.e., only experienced person can become a guru and then only the person can transmit the experienced knowledge to his/her disciple based on the eligibility of the disciple and the purpose.

Rakshasas partially achieved success in destroying temples, burning scriptures. But they are failed in breaking the lineage, they are failed in preventing the exalted people from experiencing the eternal facts from scriptures, they are failed in preventing parabrahman taking avatars in India.

The underlying insight is that Sanathan Dharma is very broad. It covers instructions from daily routines to achieving parabrahman. It is eternal. It is applicable to all kinds of humans at all levels of their life. The scriptures increments. It is not based on a single or a fixed number of books. It is not based on the works or life of a single person or a fixed number of persons. It allows the interpretations of all experienced and exalted persons. It prioritizes implementation (in ones life) rather than possessing mere knowledge.

Some of the excerpts that emphasizes implementation are given below

"Vaisampayana continued,--After the Rishi had finished, Yudhishthira asked,--"How, O Rishi, do the Vedas, wealth, wife, and knowledge of the Sastras bear fruit?"

"The Rishi answered,--"The Vedas are said to bear fruit when he that hath studied them performeth the Agnihotra and other sacrifices. Wealth is said to bear fruit when he that hath it enjoyeth it himself and giveth it away in charity. A wife is said to bear fruit when she is useful and when she beareth children. Knowledge of the Sastras is said to bear fruit when it resulteth in humility and good behaviour."

[Section 5, Lokapala Sabhakhayana Parva, Sabha Parva, The Mahabharata]

Argument leads to no certain conclusion, the Srutis are different from one another; there is not even one Rishi whose opinion can be accepted by all; the truth about religion and duty is hid in caves: therefore, that alone is the path along which the great have trod.

[Section 311, Aranya Parva, Vana Parva, The Mahabharata]


OP: What attributes of Hinduism allowed it to survive centuries of proselytisation by Muslims and Christians?

The main attributes of Hinduism that allowed it to survive for millennia is syncretism and evolution.

This will become apparent when you read the wikipedia article "History of Hinduism".

Hinduism, is arguably the world's longest continuously active religion, but there is not a specific single thing called Hinduism. It's the result of syncretism and evolution.

There were different stages starting from the Vedic religion to Brahmanism to the Upanishadic movement and the shramanic movement to pre-classical and classical Hinduism and so on.

At every stage, Hinduism absorbed the previous stage and evolved. Hinduism also allowed and absorbed multiple views, philosophies and practices, even if opposing each other, to sit under the giant umbrella of Hinduism. This is called syncretism.

For e.g. did you know that Samkhya, Yoga and Mimamsa, while not rejecting either the Vedas or Brahman, typically reject a personal God, creator God, or a God with attributes? This is totally opposite to the Bhakti Movement. Please see the wikipedia article "Hindu atheism". Hinduism absorbed the ancient atheistic movements into itself.

It also evolved. For e.g. encountering Jainism and Buddhism, animal sacrifices were reduced or eliminated. And syncretism happened. Buddhism influenced the Advaita Vedanta movement (so much so that Adi Shankaracharya was accused of being a crypto-Buddhist) and Buddha was absorbed into Hinduism to become an incarnation of Vishnu. In a sense, Hinduism absorbed either parts or most of Buddhism in India to become a part of itself.

Another sign of evolution in Hinduism, is Hinduism encountering Christianity and Islam, and this gave rise to monotheism and formlessness in the form of the Brahmo Samaj and Arya Samaj movements. But this is also syncretism. Hinduism absorbed monotheism and formlessness of the Abrahamic religions, and produced Brahmo Samaj and Arya Samaj.

The famous Hindu saint Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa also practised Christianity and Islam at some points of his practice. Eventually he returned to Hinduism. Or perhaps, we can look at it another way. His Hinduism absorbed Christianity and Islam, and made them a part of itself. This is syncretism.

It's also not unusual if Hindus put a statue or picture of Jesus or Virgin Mary on their altar alongside Hindu deities. This is syncretism.

Syncretism and evolution are the reasons why Hinduism survived the past millennia and will survive into the foreseeable future.

  • Hello! We insist on citing some authentic sources while answering questions. Here you can find some useful resources to get texts.
    – Mr_Green
    Commented Jan 19, 2021 at 8:44
  • What is "pre-Vedic religion"?
    – RamAbloh
    Commented Jan 20, 2021 at 14:41
  • @RamAbloh You can find it here on wikipedia.
    – ruben2020
    Commented Jan 20, 2021 at 14:46
  • 1
    Wikipedia is the last place to go to if you want an authentic, unbiased and true account of the history of the Vedic era. That article is written with the "Aryan invasion" theory which has been disproved by many scholars many times, but the western academic establishment rejects in order to further its own vested interest. The Harappa religion of swastikas and Pashupati etc represent the second stage of the Vedic era. There's no such thing as "pre-Vedic".
    – RamAbloh
    Commented Jan 20, 2021 at 14:51
  • 1
    The Vedas in their present form are only a culmination of the Vedic culture that was prevalent for millenia before it. You find references to ancestors and ancient people who followed the same path. So yes, there were religious practices for a very long time, but they form part of the Vedic religion.
    – RamAbloh
    Commented Jan 20, 2021 at 18:28

A religion should have broadly

  • A holy book of its own (Bible/Quran, etc)
  • A God of fixed attributes. The followers of that religion will eulogise that qualities of their God
  • A religious place, which is very sacred to its followers
  • A list of dos and don'ts, which guide its followers


Coming to Sanatana Dharma aka Hinduism, it does not represent any religion unlike Islam/Christianity, etc.

However, there are religions in India that are prevalent under the name of Hinduism.

For example: Vaishnavism, Shaivism, Saakteism, Buddhism, Jainism, etc,

The core values of Sanatana Dharma aka Hinduism advocate self enquiry. No Temple, no sacred texts like Puranas, represent Sanatana Dharma.

The below mentioned article on Indus Valley Civilisation (3300 BCE to 1300 BCE) and considered to have existed in Vedic Era, states that (4th sub-para) there is no conclusive evidence of palaces or temples – or of kings, armies, or priests.


Vedas, which are stated to be oldest and divine, advocated self enquiry for realising the TRUTH.



Sri Krishna, who was a Yogi of highest order, stated that only one among thousands will realise that TRUTH.

मनुष्याणां सहस्रेषु कश्िचद्यतति सिद्धये।

यततामपि सिद्धानां कश्िचन्मां वेत्ति तत्त्वतः।।7.3।।

Among thousands of men a rare one endeavours for perfection. Even of the perfected ones who are diligent, one perchance knows Me in truth.

So the TRUTH advocated by the sages of Vedic era, through vedas, is applicable to all ages to all humans. So this Knowledge is Divine, which cannot be done away with by ordinary mortals, however hard they may try.

That is how Sanatana Dharma survived.

  • 8
    this is wrong on so many aspects. it sounds like neo-hinduism news-media 3rd-standard-level understanding of hinduism. there is definitely temples, sacred texts and traditions which represent Vedic aka sanatana dharma
    – ram
    Commented Jun 18, 2019 at 20:35
  • @ram: you can quote from vedas that temples were a part of vedic era. Commented Jun 19, 2019 at 0:46
  • 2
    we absolutely have a book of our own - it's Vedas. Everything else is commentary on vedas, and equally important to understand Vedas.
    – ram
    Commented Jun 19, 2019 at 1:16
  • 1
    i already told you archa-avatara (where bhagavan is in form of murty) is primary in kali-yuga. in previous eras, they would see god through dhyana,yoga,&yagna. each yuga is different. almost nobody practices ashtanga yoga today seriously. does that mean it is not part of sanatana dharma ? it was prevalent in previous yuga. but for this yuga, we need easier means because distractions are higher. lack of large no. of temples in previous yugas in no way undermines their importance in current yuga.
    – ram
    Commented Jun 19, 2019 at 1:22
  • 1
    Can you quote sources for statements like "The core values of Sanatana Dharma aka Hinduism advocate self enquiry. No Temple, no sacred texts like Puranas, no traditions represent Sanatana Dharma"? Meanwhile i will add "Post notice" and flag mods to remove it once you add sources for other statements in answer.
    – The Destroyer
    Commented Jun 20, 2019 at 7:36

There are multiple socio-political and economic factors involved, but let us focus on the attributes of Hinduism:

  1. Hinduism in its early days got independent of the political power for its sustenance. This was more so due to the rivalry between Brahmins and Kshatriyas right from the Upanishadic age1, whereby the Brahmins established their hegemony over religious matters.

This is quite evident from the fact that Hinduism survived long eras of powerful Jain and Buddhist kings (attempts at proselytization by them cannot be denied altogether).

As pointed out in other answers, Hinduism has no geographical or symbolic locus (central place of worship, central idol or figurehead) - an attack on which would lead to disenchantment or disbelief throughout.

The force of Hinduism remained rooted in social structure and convention more than political patronage, making it difficult to proselytize through political force (most usual approach of Muslim invaders).

  1. The strict stipulations of caste/purity combined with the complete ostracism of those who converted by their caste communities acted as a strong force against proselytization through inducements (missionary approach), even for lower castes.

Contrary to popular belief that lower castes converted en masse to Islam due to its egalitarian virtues,

Further, there is no evidence, writes Jackson, that there ever was a "widespread conversion to Islam at the turn of twelfth century" by Hindus of lower caste.2 Jamal Malik, a professor of Islamic studies, extends this observation further, and states that "at no time in history did Hindus of low caste convert en masse to Islam"3.

However, the utter sensitivity towards caste rules also acted as an easy route for mass conversion by trick or force (Christianization of Goa 5)

  1. To counter the intellectual approach, Hinduism itself has a diverse array of philosophical schools and theological canon, and long tradition of fierce debate. It had specialized in communicating the religion through folk lore, festivities and performances to a widely illiterate audience, as opposed to the focus on scripture reading by Islam and Christainty.
    Further, it allows the space to assimilate foreign beliefs into its fold (Brahmo Samaj integrated the anti-idolatory and monotheistic beliefs of Christianty4) without asking for complete conversion.

Lastly, it would be apt to point out that the "centuries of attempts at proselytization" is not quite true, as the focus of many Mughals and the British was mostly on politics than religion.

  • Christian Evangelics agenda of mass conversion goes on, togheter with some Islamic attempt of conquests. Despite that, through the encomiable works of Sanatani, Hindu, Sanatana Dharma survived.
    – user22667
    Commented Jan 31, 2021 at 3:08
  • While I agree with past divisions among Varnas, I disagree that SD became monistic because of Christians and Muslims. Sri Vaishnavites will disagree.
    – user22667
    Commented Jan 31, 2021 at 3:09
  • And last but not least, SD was either polytheistic and monistic pluralistic since before Griffith learnt Sanskrit.
    – user22667
    Commented Jan 31, 2021 at 3:10
  • @hindustudent- I agree that Sanatani Hindus played a great role in survival of SD despite onslaughts, but Im focusing on attributes of SD that enabled Sanatani Hindus to exert themselves despite socio-political pressures.
    – SMJoe
    Commented Feb 3, 2021 at 18:52
  • @hindustudent- Nor am I claiming that Hinduism became monistic because of Christians and Muslims. Rather, monistic trends and schools of thought (Madhva, Ramanuja) prevented conversion to Christianity on grounds of intellectual superiority/novelty
    – SMJoe
    Commented Feb 3, 2021 at 18:58

The Hinduism has the holistic aproach of defining God realisation. The two main vedic scripture, for example, the B.Gita and the Bhagavatam always describe God as Brahman, Parmatama and Bhagwan. (Ref : S.M.Bhagwatam #1.2.11)

Bhagvatam 1.2.11

वदन्ति तत्तत्त्वविदस्तत्त्वं यज्ज्ञानमद्वयम् । ब्रह्मेति परमात्मेति भगवानिति शब्द्यते ॥ ११ ॥

vadanti tat tattva-vidas tattvaṁ yaj jñānam advayam brahmeti paramātmeti bhagavān iti śabdyate

Synonyms: vadanti — they say; tat — that; tattva-vidaḥ — the learned souls; tattvam — the Absolute Truth; yat — which; jñānam — knowledge; advayam — nondual; brahma iti — known as Brahman; paramātmā iti — known as Paramātmā; bhagavān iti — known as Bhagavān; śabdyate — it so sounded.

Translation: Learned transcendentalists who know the Absolute Truth call this nondual eternity as Brahman, Paramātmā or Bhagavān.


Bhagwan is the Supreme Transcendental Person, the Parmatama is His Supreme Personality and the Brahman is His undefined form. Those who know Him with all His complete divine features (viz. "Lila" i.e. pastimes eternal and/or mundane,"Dham" or transcendental domains/planets, "Jana" or realised eternal devotees, "Naam" or featured divine names, "Guna" attributes, "Rupa" or Divine forms) are known as His "Bhakta" or devotees. (B.Gita # 9.34 &18.65)

The "Yogi" is whom who doesn't want to know His realm with "Lila", "Dham" and "Jana". Here most of the Yogis are "mukti" or liberation seekers thru His "Parmatama" personal features. <Ref: The Gita, Chapter #6.46> https://asitis.com/6/46.html

The Brahman, here the followers are known as "Jnani" or the knowers/seekers of His supreme unknown features, without manifested attributes. <Ref: Bh.Gita chapter #7, Verse #17-19>

No other religion in the history of the world has evolved around all the three aspects of God realisation. Only Hinduism suggest every approach of God realisation holistically and confidently. Most of the other religious platforms practice only the Brahman aspect of God realisation. Right now, if there are eleven active religious beliefs in this world, some are new, and the few are old. The Hinduism is the oldest one and in this religion there was the inclusion of the basic fundamentals of all the other religious thoughts. So, the religious conversion was minimum. They did not find anything new and saturating in other religious practices.

Nevertheless, religious practices can also be imposed under the political and/or other circumstances, but those are never penetrated deep in the social infrastructure due to the cultural richness of that region and the inhabitants' higher level of God realization, already existing in that region.

  • Hello! We insist on citing some authentic sources while answering questions. Here you can find some useful resources to get texts.
    – Mr_Green
    Commented Jan 18, 2021 at 12:36
  • @Mr_Green We always insisted on the authenticity of Bh.Gita. Known to everyone who knows about the Hinduism, most authintic and easily accessible scripture worldwide.
    – user30612
    Commented Jan 19, 2021 at 3:07
  • Hello. yes, this is one of the rules on this site. We can't assume everyone knows it or can access it. If you at least mention the verse number or section number of any scripture, we will help you out with citing.
    – Mr_Green
    Commented Jan 19, 2021 at 3:14
  • Looks like you accidentally made this post community wiki. Doing so will make you not earn the reputation points you get for this post. If you did it intentionally, please ignore me.
    – Mr_Green
    Commented Jan 19, 2021 at 3:51
  • Nice answer I hope this understanding will foster unity among humanity by integrating other religion as suggested here hinduism.stackexchange.com/a/56575/225
    – user225
    Commented Sep 23, 2023 at 4:50

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