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Providence In The Context Of Hinduism: Its Use In Everyday Life

Faculty Supervisor:
Paul Lewis
Year of Project Completion:
2003
Student:
Sophia Muthuraj

Abstract

Providence in Christianity has been a well-debated theological idea. Numerous empirical studies have been conducted to understand this aspect of Christianity. However, interest for understanding the role of providence in other religious communities has been small. This study concentrates on understanding providence in the Hindu and the Christian community. Hindu community members in Kansas City, Kansas, were given surveys relating to experiential accounts of divine intervention and Christian community members from a Mennonite affiliated church were also given surveys. The questionnaires were coded and analyzed. The results alluded to different understandings of the deity in both communities. Hindu participants used the metaphor of the deity as a sustainer rather than the deity as an intervener. The Hindu community did not qualify their use of providence as much as the Christian sample. The Christian sample qualified their responses to their use of providence rather then using any other metaphor of the deity. The differences were attributed to Modern Hinduism emphasis on the deity, Brahman, as a sustainer of the world rather than an action-oriented deity. In the Christian sample, the high level of education was related to high usage of qualifications.

Related file

SophiaMuthuraj2006.pdf

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