Philosophy Answer Writing Practice 2018 - Week 10 - Question 6
90 Days Philosophy Answer Writing Practice Question 2 for 18-Jan-2019
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18-Jan-2019 - Question 2
Explain the nature of mysticism in Hinduism and Islam (2015)
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Mystical experience is a major and intense form of religious experience, it is a claim to the perception of other reality. According to the people who have experienced it, mystical experience is in-describable as it transcends language and expression. Jerome Gellman in his book Mysticism defines it as “A super sense-perceptual experience granting acquaintance of realities or states of affairs that are of a kind not accessible by way of sense perception”.
Mysticism in Hinduism:
In Hinduism, various doctrines expound ways to experience mysticism. Hinduism with its Upanishadic doctrine propagates three such way particularly, Bhakti Marga, Jnana Marga and Karma Marga.
The Upanishads, turned the vision from Vedic Gods to the ultimate reality, which is often termed as the Brahman or the Atman which is sachidananda.
For example, Mandukya Upanishad says, by stressing upon the three letter pious word AUM, one can realize the Brahman or the ultimate reality.
The sages through these Upanishads, claim that there lies a certain and fundamental perception of the unity underlying all diversity. And most of them follow the guru-shishya parmpara, as they consider the tradition of imparting mystical experience from teach to disciple. The nature of mysticism in Hinduism strives for moksa (liberation) as the ultimate goal.
Mysticism in Islam:
Source of Mysticism in Islam can be traced back to Quran and the doctrine that followed it. Tasawwuf (Sufism) expresses the philosophical aspect of the search for truth in Islam. It proposes the doctrine that by being freed from the vices and weaknesses particular to human nature and acquiring angelic qualities and conduct pleasing God, one lives one’s life in accordance with the requirements of knowledge and love of God. Here, mysticism can be reached through practical wisdom, which includes inner purification and ascetisms, hece both practical and philosophical.
It requires one to be like a honeybee flying from the hive to flowers and from flowers to hive, continuously in pursuit of knowledge of God. Hence, by purifying a man’s heart and employing his senses in the way of God, Sufism enables man to deepen his consciousness to the highest level, the lover of God. It enables him to renounce this transient world, awakens him to the other world that is towards the Divine.