|“||The Hindu Pantheon is the most powerful pantheon of pagan gods on Earth, and this is a well-known and accepted fact. They are the leader of the unofficial Eastern Triumvirate, alongside the Shinto Pantheon of Japan and the Celestial Bureaucracy of China.||„|
|— Matt Wright.|
Hinduism is an Indian religion and dharma known as the way of life.
It is the world's third-largest religion with over 1.25 billion followers, or 15–16% of the global population, known as Hindus. While Hinduism has been called the oldest religion in the world, many practitioners refer to their religion as Sanātana Dharma or "the Eternal Way," which refers to the idea that its origins lie beyond human history.
Hinduism includes a range of philosophies, and is linked by shared concepts, recognisable rituals, cosmology, pilgrimage to sacred sites and shared textual resources that discuss theology, philosophy, mythology, Vedic yajna, Yoga, agamic rituals, and temple building, among other topics.
Hinduism prescribes the eternal duties, such as honesty, refraining from injuring living beings, patience, forbearance, self-restraint, virtue, and compassion, among others. Prominent themes in Hindu beliefs include the four Puruṣārthas, the proper goals or aims of human life; namely, Dharma (ethics/duties), Artha (prosperity/work), Kama (desires/passions) and Moksha (liberation/freedom from the cycle of death and rebirth/salvation), as well as karma (action, intent and consequences) and Saṃsāra (cycle of death and rebirth).
Hindu practices include rituals such as worship and recitations, japa, meditation, family-oriented rites of passage, annual festivals, and occasional pilgrimages. Along with the practice of various Yogas, some Hindus leave their social world and material possessions and engage in lifelong Sannyasa (monasticism) in order to achieve Moksha.
While there are many gods with a myriad forms within Hinduism, those most popularly worshiped by practicing Hindus are Vishnu, Shiva, Brahma, Shakti, and Shiva’s sons Ganesha and Kartikeya. According to some interpretations, all divinities are in fact a manifestation of a single godhead, divine force, or abstraction. The Trimurti, or "triple form", explains basic beliefs about the roles of Hindu gods, but is largely a Western interpretation of the main deities that has an obvious basis in the idea of the Christian Trinity.