Friday, February 20, 2009

Types of Hinduism

In the Oxford Handbook of Religion and Emotion (ISBN 0195170210 ), June McDaniel, Professor of Religious Studies at the College of Charleston classifies Hinduism into 6 generic types. This kind of classification makes more sense to the diverse variety in which Hinduism is practised.

  1. Folk Hinduism - Hinduism according to local customs spanning thousands of years; even beyond vedic era.
  2. Vedic Hinduism - Traditional Hinduism practised by Brahmins, especially Shrautins.
  3. Vedantic Hinduism - One of the modern types of Hinduism; practised by Smartins based on Upanishads
  4. Yogic Hinduism - Based on Patanjali's Yoga sutras
  5. Dharmic Hinduism - Based on the concept of Karma, societal rituals etc
  6. Bhakti (Devotional) type - Based on pure devotion to God; eg: Vaishnavism, Saivism etc.


  1. I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first

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  2. This is a very useful classification of Hinduism. Congratulations for the site. Very complete.