Engaging Critically with the Indic Religions: Dharma-Charcha
Principal Teacher: Mr. Hemant Rajopadhye
Medium – English
The Indian subcontinent, which is widely regarded as a melting pot of various ethnicities, religious faiths, sects and subjects, has always been a hotbed of the conflicts arising from the hundreds of religious, sectarian identities. On this backdrop, it is a dire need that the religions and religious politics must be addressed in a formal academic framework with an interdisciplinary approach.
Dharma Charcha is a course that intends to engage critically with some of the basic yet important themes that define and shape the classical religious thinking and formulate the religious identities in the larger ʻIndic religious mindsetʼ. The core idea behind the course is to create an academic awareness about the complexity and overlapping structure religious themes. It also intends to bring forth the patterns of perception about various religious, cultural and faith related memories.
Part I: The Basics of the Dharma in classical India
1. Texts, Power, Authority and Identities
2. Vedic texts and Vedism, Buddhist texts and Buddhism
3. The Texts and the historicity of ‘isms’
4. Authority of the texts, authority of the seers and sages
5. Philosophy, identity and philosophical identities
6. Classical texts and Modern religiosity
Part II: Dharma, Religion and Politics
1. Meanings of Dharma, Dhamma and Dharma in Indic Religions
2. Dharma in Practice : Dharma for the kings, priests and the masses
3. Religion, Violence and Political Economy
Part III: Dharma and Modernity
1. Discoveries of Dharma in medieval and modern times
2. What constitutes Dharma in postcolonial India?
3. Dharma, Printing Technology and Religious Imageries in Colonial India
Can Religion be progressive?