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By Klaus K. Klostermaier

With entries on every thing from Manu to Gandhi and the Ramesvaram to the Himalayas, this is often a useful reference e-book.

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The Bhärgavas earned fame as a family of scholars/editors. The final redaction of the MAHÄBHÄRATA is ascribed to them. Bhartøhari (450–510 CE) Celebrated grammarian and poet, whose Väkyapadïa is the most important work in the area of Indian philosophy of language. He is also credited with the composition of 300 didactic verses contained in the Ÿøögära Ÿataka (dealing with erotic matters); Nïti Ÿataka (dealing with polity and etiquette); and Vairägya Ÿataka (dealing with renunciation). Bhäsa (third century bhasma CE) Famous classical Indian dramatist, author of Svapna-vasava-datta and 12 other plays.

Hindu strategies of liberation are aimed at annihilating the subtle body, neutralizing the force of karma and freeing the ätman from its bondage to the (gross and subtle) body. ) bondage (bandha) Hindus believe that due to the influence of immemorial KARMA (2) every human being is born in (spiritual) bondage and that every effort must be undertaken to achieve LIBERATION. Bondage is caused by AVIDYÄ (ignorance, lack of wisdom). It consists of the triad of moha–lobha– krodha (delusion–greed–anger) which causes people to commit acts that bind them into the cycle of rebirths.

The Mahäbhärata offers a veritable guidebook of such places, and it became fashionable for religious teachers to visit the most famous of these. The äÿrama tradition is still alive in India. Mahatma GANDHI founded an äÿrama to train his co-workers, and it is quite common today for Hindus to spend some time in an äÿrama, performing religious exercises. Sacred ashes play a great role in Hinduism. ŸAIVITES besmear their bodies with ashes. The famous SATHYA SAI BABA creates and distributes ashes which are said to be efficacious in healing all kinds of diseases of body and mind.

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