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Hindu Theology

Press Release

H A R V A R D   U N I V E R S I T Y
Department of South Asian Studies

Series on "Indian Society through the Ages"

Spring  2011
Lecture XI

"Hindu Theology"
Professor Francis X. Clooney, SJ
Harvard Divinity School

Sunday, December 11, 2011, 3:00 PM
Hall A, Harvard University Science Center
1 Oxford Street, Cambridge

Some important schools of Hindu religious thought, ancient and modern, are rightly called "Hindu Theology."  Mimamsa, Vedanta, and many devotional traditions draw not just on sense knowledge and philosophical reasoning, but also on oral and written sacred texts. Faith is important, and teachings imbedded in the scriptures are considered true and beneficial. Communities revere traditions passed down over the centuries, interpreting them over and over. Religious thinking, study, and teaching are often meant to have direct implications for religious practice and spiritual experience, implications for well-being in this life and for life after death. All of this can be understood as Hindu theology.  Non-theological ways of studying Hinduism are proper and beneficial, but there is more to the study of Hinduism than Indology or Indian and South Asian Studies.

Francis X. Clooney, SJ, is the Parkman Professor of Divinity and Director of the Center for the Study of World Religions at Harvard Divinity School. A Roman Catholic priest, he has studied Hindu religious traditions for over thirty years.  Through trips every other year to India, he studies the roots of Shrivaishnavism, Vedanta, and related darshanas, and constructs
comparative analysis with the western traditions.

Contact: Dr. B. Misra 617-864-5121

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