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Hindu Enlightenment Principles

In Congress July 4, 1776

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen United States of America,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that theyshould declare the causes which impel them to the separation. We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

Text from a Christmas Letter from John Adams to Thomas Jefferson, December 25, 1813 and Adams’ translation of a passage from the Bhagavat Gita:

Pythagoras passed twenty years in his travels in India … He ought to have told us that in India he conversed with the Brahmins [Hindu priests] and read the Shastra [Hindu scripture], five thousand years old, written in the language of the sacred Sonsosistas [Sanskrit] with the elegance and sentiments of Plato. Where is to be found a theology more orthodox or a philosophy more profound, than in the introduction to the Shastra [Bhagavat Gita]? … “God is one creator of all universal sphere, without beginning, without end. God governs all the creation by his eternal designs. Search not the essence and the nature of the eternal, who is one; your research will be vain presumptions. It is enough that, day by day, and night by night, you adore his power, his wisdom and his goodness, in his works. The eternal willed in the fullness of time, to communicate of his essence and of his splendor to beings capable of perceiving it. They as yet existed not. The eternal willed and they were. He created Birma, Vitsnou, and Siv.” These doctrines, sublime, if ever there were any sublime, Pythagoras learned in India

Swami Vivekananda on the Platform of the 1893 Parliament of Religions in Chicago before addressing the conference.

In 1894, American disciples of Vivekananda, founded the Vedanta Society and the Rama Krishna Order of Missionaries in New York City.

Swami Vivekananda

Listen Original Speech of Swami Vivekananda in Chicago 1893

Swami Vivekananda

BHAGAVAT GITA, Chapter 4, Verse 7

यदा यदा हि धर्मस्य ग्लानिर्भवति भारत । अभ्युत्थानमधर्मस्य तदात्मानं सृजाम्यहम् ॥४-७॥

Yada yada hi dharmasya glanirbhavati bharata
Abhythanamadharmasya tadatmanam srijamyaham

Whenever there is decay of righteousness, O Bharata,
And there is exaltation of unrighteousness, then I Myself come forth;

BHAGAVAT GITA, Chapter 4, Verse 8

परित्राणाय साधूनां विनाशाय च दुष्कृताम् । धर्मसंस्थापनार्थाय सम्भवामि युगे युगे ॥४-८॥

Paritranaya sadhunang vinashay cha dushkritam
Dharmasangsthapanarthay sambhabami yuge yuge

For the protection of the good, for the destruction of evil-doers,
For the sake of firmly establishing righteousness, I am born from age to age.

AMERICAN HINDU Practitioners

VEDANTA SOCIETY
SHAIVISM
VAISHNAVISM
SMARTA TRADITION
SHAKTISM
SRI VAISHNAVISM
AGAMA HINDU DHARMA
BRAHMO SAMAJ
HARE KRISHNA MOVEMENT
SWAMINARAYAN SAMPRADAY

AMERICAN HINDU SECTS

• SIKHISM
• JAINISM
• BUDDHISM

Who are American Hindus?

Hinduism today is a minority religion in the United States. Pew Research Center studies cite Hindu practitioners (not including the Hindu sects) account for an estimated 0.8% of the total US population or an estimated 2.23 million Americans. Other Pew Research Center studies indicate that American Hindus have the lowest divorce rates, the highest education levels, with half holding post-graduate degrees, over 50% with a household income of $100,000 or more, and 70% with at least $75,000. American Hindus primarily originate from India. But they are also from Nepal, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, and the Caribbean (Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, Suriname, and Jamaica), Bhutan, Myanmar, Maldives, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. Additionally, the United States has a number of converts to Hinduism. Many concepts of Hinduism, such as karma, reincarnation, and yoga, have entered into mainstream American vernacular. Indeed, a quarter of the US population believe in reincarnation, a core concept of Hinduism.

The End