Hinduism and Food

1423 Words Jan 29th, 2018 6 Pages
The activities surrounding food, although certainly not unimportant as the consumption of food is necessary for the survival of humanity, are an example of a seemingly mundane and uncomplicated process that Hindu thought attributes a deeper meaning or purpose to. Not all Hindus will necessarily have the same identical perception of food as differing beliefs and backgrounds will undoubtedly lead to varying views across the numerous Hindu denominations such as the Ascetics, Brahman Householders, Tantric Shakti and the ISKCON. The ultimate goals sought by its devotees; and the beliefs that ultimately cascade from them, play a huge role in forging the religion’s approach in regards to food. The beliefs, thoughts and goals of a Hindu denomination play a substantial role in shaping how food is: produced, consumed, ritualized, and symbolically viewed. Food while recognized as a necessity for the continuation of life is approached by followers of Hindu Asceticism with “fear and ambivalence”. (Olivelle 2011:117) Ascetics are hesitant in their approach food because their way of thinking tends to promote separation from all things that could bring the body pleasure. In their view, when the body is brought pleasure the soul becomes further connected to the flesh, inhibiting their abilities to reach moksha. Ascetics have to walk a fine line in their approach food as “…on…
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