Showing posts with label Bihar. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bihar. Show all posts

Hinduism - Where Is Bihar?

Bihar is one of the contemporary northern Indian states, wedged between Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal, and bordered on the north by Nepal. 

Bihar has a long and illustrious history; it was the birthplace of the Maurya dynasty, which controlled most of the Indian subcontinent during the fourth and third centuries BCE. 

  • Pataliputra, which is now known as Patna, was the capital city. 
  • Bihar also includes the town of Bodh Gaya, where the Buddha gained enlightenment, as well as many other sites connected with his life. 
  • Despite its rich history, contemporary Bihar is an exceedingly tough place to live, with high rates of illiteracy and infant mortality, a short life expectancy, and feudal social circumstances. 
  • The majority of its people struggle to make ends meet and depend on agriculture, while a tiny portion of the population is very rich. 

Bihar is also a classic example of what contemporary Indians refer to as the "criminalization of politics," in which convicted criminals work for politicians or occupy political office themselves. 

  • Despite the fact that Bihar has rich natural resources, corruption guarantees that just a few people profit from them. 

Despite these drawbacks, Bihar boasts a number of well-known holy places (tirthas). 

  • The village of Gaya, for example, is well-known for performing funeral rituals (antyeshthi samskara). 
  • Another holy location is the Vaidyanath temple, which is one of the twelve jyotirlingas, or sacred places dedicated to the deity Shiva. 

Christine Nivin et al., India. 8th ed., Lonely Planet, 1998, is an accessible resource for general information on Bihar and all of India's provinces.

You may also want to read more about Hinduism here.

Be sure to check out my writings on religion here.