Escape From Reincarnation: Guide to Hindu Soul Salvation

Modern day Hinduism equates permanent salvation of the soul with the liberation from its cycle of reincarnation or the series of life, birth, and rebirth. The ways of escaping the cycle of endless rebirths are found in Vedic rituals and the path of knowledge stated in the Upanishads. These rituals are grounded on Vedic tradition, requiring the passing down of the knowledge through the teachings of Vedic priests or Brahmin pandits. Since this was largely centered on the elite social classes, a new school of religious thought emerged to include the lower castes in the pursuit of salvation


shraddha pooja
shraddha pooja


This new path to salvation which includes all of Hindu devotees is expressed in the Bhagavad Gita, a non-Vedic text. In both schools of religious thought, devotion to God is the overarching means to achieve permanent salvation or escaping the cycle of reincarnation. If one practices the words of God and lives a life reflective of his words, his soul is saved because he would be avoiding, shortening, or hastening the painful journey of the soul in the afterlife (cycle of birth and rebirth) on its way to being with God.

Most importantly, a Hindu devotee unites with God by preserving himself as a devotee. This he should do by sharing or sacrificing the fruits of his material abundance with God. If he chooses to be selfish of the resources that he acquires in his material life, the cycle of births and rebirths or what is known as reincarnation will continue. Hence, the tradition of Hindu afterlife rests on the thought that reincarnation is the result of selfish action. So, to be unselfish is to escape reincarnation.

Why Hindu Religious Rituals are Important: A Message to Non-Resident Indians (NRI)

To ultimately get the blessings of God is the principal importance of Hindu rituals. When God is pleased with Hindus validating their devotion, God showers blessings upon them. Most of these rituals are performed in holy sites such as places of nature and temples. A number of rituals may be performed in the home. Some rituals are performed daily, most especially during the two most important times of dawn and dusk. Rituals, prayers, and sacred ceremonies are manifestations of devotion to God. Rituals in the form of respectful homages to the dearly departed members of the family and ancestors or forefathers are also ultimate forms of devotion to God through fully practicing being Hindu devotees.  




Some Hindu worshippers perform ceremonial rituals before their very own dedicated home shrines or altars. Prayers or poojas are a central part of the Hindu devotee’s life. Most Hindu followers perform their prayers at shrines or temples and with the aid of Hindu priests who are presented with offerings to the gods. These offerings become sacred and are considered as grace or prasada of the Divine Being.

Non-resident Indians (NRI’s) who have been influenced by foreign cultures tend to skip traditional Hindu rituals that have been practiced since the time of ancestors. Lifestyle changes and a shift in priorities have made some of them forget how it is to be strictly devoted followers of the Hindu religion. But the right path to a better life, peaceful minds, and peaceful relations with fellowmen lies in the strict adherence to the philosophical tenets and sacred beliefs of religion. In the rituals that are prescribed in Hindu sacred texts such as the Vedas is found the overall spiritual betterment and growth of human beings.

Importance of Hindu Rituals Held in Sacred Sites: Message to Non-Resident Indians (NRI)

Rituals are a central part of Hindu life. The Hindu sacred texts, holy epics, and ancient traditions have laid down the various rituals that Hindu devotees must perform and conduct throughout his lifetime. In the Hindu religion, the dedication of holy sites is also important because these are regarded as the holy abodes of the gods. The Hindu’s life is a prayerful life that is complete with rituals, homages, and ceremonies. Most of these devotional forms of worship that complete a Hindu devotee’s life are held in temples and other sacred sites such as bodies of water and other forms of nature.




Scriptural manuals specify the sanctity of these sacred sites. Vedic priests or Brahmin pandits perform rituals at these purified sacred locations. The overreaching concept behind these is the attainment of peace by pleasing the gods. When devotees visit these sacred sites or abodes of the gods, they should be clean and pure in body and mind. After all, the main purpose of visitations is to perform rituals that ultimately cleanse the soul or spirit through the process of atonement. Rituals held at prescribed sacred sites are important because they formalize the Hindu identity and his devotion to the worshipful gods.


Visits to Hindu sacred sites and performing devotional worship and prayers in them make the Hindu closer to the Divine Being, a concept that is of prime importance in the Hindu religion. At these sacred sites, the Hindu reflects upon his life as a Hindu follower and how God has helped shape his progress in the material life. It is also a place where religious homages to the dearly departed loved ones and ancestors are conducted, making them pure and sacred—thereby pleasing the souls in the afterlife and helping ancestors journey more easily towards uniting with the Divine Power.

The Core of Hindu Life: A Reminder to all Indians Across the Globe

The Upanishads play a very important role in the essence and strength of the Hindu religion. It forms the basis for the formation and preservation of Hindu religious culture. These holy texts lay down the principal Vedic doctrines such as self-realization, reincarnation, and karma. The word Upanishad means mystic or inner teachings. It is the very doctrine of Hindu life where ignorance is destroyed through the achievement of the highest knowledge. By and large, the Upanishads contain both the philosophical tenets and spiritual vision of the Hindu religion.




At the center of the Upanishads, which is the core of Hindu religious culture, is the concept of knowledge of the truth. Knowledge brings about certainty. Knowledge sets forth understanding. And understanding brings about peace and prosperity. To achieve all this, it is underscored that one can reach the truth only through a strictly personal effort. All these emphasize the spiritual meanings of the Vedic scriptures.
The essence of this very important thought is contained in this most significant line from the Upanishads: “Understanding without practice is better than practice without understanding. Understanding with practice is better than understanding without practice. Residing in your true nature is better than understanding or practice.” This underscores the philosophical concept that one can obtain the knowledge of truth only through strictly personal effort, and that man’s journey to salvation is taken by himself alone. It also emphasizes that freedom is attained through this knowledge, and when pursued becomes wisdom that transforms into a way of life.

The Essence of Being Indian: Message to Non-Resident Indians All Over the World

Culture is the sum total of how people live their lives. Hindu culture is highly religious because religion is the center of Hindu lives. The religious culture harks back to ancient times when wisdom and teachings, which form the basis of learned culture, were handed down to Hindu devotees through the ages. Culture manifests in traditions and beliefs and these comprise a huge part of the Hindu religious culture.




Hinduism is the oldest religion on Earth. The Hindu religion is cultural. It is a people’s way of life. Wherever Hindus are located anywhere in the world, religion is part and parcel of their everyday living because Hinduism is their way of life. Customs and traditions are part of the very fabric of the Hindu religion. There are numerous festivals and ceremonies that show devotion and reverence to the gods, as well as to ancestors. One integral part of the Hindu religion is showing complete respect to elders. In the Hindu religious culture, father, mother, and teacher are highly respected, and are even considered next to God.


So, to be an Indian in the truest sense is to embrace the practice of rituals and ceremonies that revere the gods, as much as pay utmost respect to elders. These devotional homages are performed to honor them, such as those rituals for the dearly departed loved ones and ancestors. Moreover, the essence of being Indian is to immerse oneself in prayer and continually seek for the truth. And since the Hindu operates from his own personal effort to seek truth and destiny, he is responsible for his own actions. The fundamental essence of being an Indian is love for truth.