Comparison chart

Catholicism versus Hinduism comparison chart
Edit this comparison chartCatholicismHinduism
CatholicismHinduism
Place of origin Roman province of Judea, which is part of present-day Israel, Palestine and Lebanon Indian Subcontinent
Place of worship Church, chapel, cathedral, basilica. Temple (Mandir)
Use of statues and pictures Crosses, statues and pictures are acceptable in Catholicism. Catholics widely use them as depictions of Christ, Mary, and the Saints. Common
Belief of God One God: The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit Many gods, but realize that they all come from Atman.
Clergy Heirarchial clergy in Holy Orders Deacons, monks, nuns, Priests and Bishops, other ranks are only offices (archibshop, cardinal Pope etc. although several other offices also exist) No official clergy. Gurus, Yogis, Rishis, Brahmins, Pundits, priests, priestesses, monks, and nuns.
Human Nature Man has inherited "original sin" from Adam. Mankind then is inherently evil and is in need of forgiveness of their sin. Depends on sects.
Means of salvation Received at baptism; may be lost by mortal sin; salvation through faith and penance. Belief in Jesus as the sole savior of humanity. Must have a relationship with Jesus. Good Works. Seven Sacraments. Reaching enlightenment by the Path of Knowledge, the Path of devotion, or the Path of Good Deeds.
Founder Jesus Christ, St. Peter the Apostle. Not credited to a particular founder.
Confessing sins Confess to priests for absolution from sins in the name of Christ (John 20:22-23). Prayer to the Saints. Repentance for unintentional sins are prescribed, but intentional sins have to be repaid through karmic consequences.
Life after death Eternal Salvation in Heaven; Eternal Damnation in Hell; Temporal third state before Heaven for those who desire purification, known as Purgatory. A constant cycle of reincarnation until enlightenment is reached.
Literal Meaning catholic - from the Greek adjective καθολικός, (katholikos) meaning "general" or "universal". The followers of Vedas are called as Arya, noble person. Arya is not a dynasty, ethnicity or race. Anyone who follows the teachings of Vedas is considered Arya.
Marriage Marriage is sacrament between one man and one woman. Divorce does not exist in Catholicism, but there is annulment (that the marriage was invalid to begin with) by competent church official. Man may marry one woman. However, kings in mythology often married more than one woman.
Practices Catholics are expected to participate in the liturgical life, celebrate and revere Jesus' sacrifice on the cross at Mass. The celebration of seven sacraments Baptism, Eucharist, Confirmation, Matrimony, Anointing of Sick, Holy Orders and Confession. Meditation, yoga, contemplation, yagna (communal worship), offerings in the temple.
Holy days/Official Holidays Sunday (The Lord's Day), Advent, Christmas, Lent, Holy Week, Easter, Pentecost. Diwali, Holi, Janmashtami, Ganesh Chaturthi, etc.
Goal of religion To give glory to God and share Eternal Life in Him. To break the cycle of birth, death and reincarnation, and attain salvation.
About Belonging to the Church Founded By Christ, when He chose St. Peter as His Rock (first Pope). Apostles creed gives summary of Catholic creed, man fell and Christ came to redeem mankind. Devotion to the various gods & goddesses of Hinduism.
Authority of Dalai Lama N/A. N/A.
Religious Law 10 Commandments, Canon law , Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC), papal decrees and orders. Dharma shastras
Status of women Women are Equal to men and have the same dignity as men, but women are not eligible for Ordination in Catholicism.They can be religious (sister, or commonly called "Nun") and can lead many offices assisting the clergy within the church. Women can become priestesses or nuns.
Goal of Philosophy Eternal Salvation. Salvation, freedom from the cycle of birth and reincarnation.
Second coming of Jesus Affirmed. N/A.
Principle Adam and Eve sinned, as have all subsequent human beings because God created us with a free will to make choices. Man was unable to adhere to laws of God, so Christ came as the ultimate sacrifice to reconcile us to God. To follow dharma, i.e. eternal laws
Time of origin Approx. 33 AD. circa 3000 B.C.E
Birth of Jesus Virgin Birth, through God. N/A.
Identity of Jesus God Incarnate. Son of the Father. The Messiah saviour of mankind sole mediator between God and man. N/A.
Rites 7 Sacraments: Baptism, Eucharist, Penance, Confirmation, Marriage, Holy Orders, Anointing of the Sick; exorcisms, blessings of objects, dedication of churches sacred garments installation into clerical offices. Roman Missal and eastern rites. Some Hindus believe in a "thread ceremony" for men.
Death of Jesus Death by Crucifixion, Resurrection, and Ascent to Hevean N/A.
Scriptures Holy Bible, a collection of 73 canonical books in two parts, 46 in the Old Testament, and 27 in the New Testament. Vedas, Upanishad, Puranas, Gita. Smrti and Sruti are oral scriptures.
Population 1.1 Billion. 1 Billion.
God's role in salvation God sent His only Divine Son to save humanity from their sins. Beliefs vary by sect. Upanishads (scripture) say God chooses who gets salvation. Salvation is attained via good deeds and righteousness (following the "dharma" and avoiding sin)
Definition Universal. The word Hindu has geographical significance and was used originally for those people who lived beyond the river Sindhu or the region watered by the river Indus. Hindus themselves, call their religion "Sanatana Dharma, " meaning "Eternal Law."
Religion which atheists may still be adherents of None. Faith is integral to Catholicism, a christian who rejects Christianity altogether is considered an Apostate. Atheism is a sin against Faith. Charvakas and Sankyas are atheistic groups in Hinduism.
Branches Latin rite & Eastern rite and as of 2008 the Anglo-Catholic derivative of Latin Rite. Shaivism and Vaishnavism
Position of Mary The Queen of all Saints. View is similar to the Orthodox church - the title 'Mother of God' being used more commonly than Theotokos. In addition, it is claimed that at various points in history, Mary has revealed herself to the world in apparitions. N/A.
Views on other religions The Catholic Church contains the fullness of Truth and is the only means of salvation. Other faiths have access to that truth and non-Catholics may be saved by a special grace of God. Some scriptures say the path they describe is the only path to God and salvation. Other scriptures are more philosophical than religious. Beliefs vary. Some believe that all spiritual paths lead to the same God.
Belief of God God is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The deity often varies from sect to sect. Smarta/Monists sect believes Everything is God. There are monotheistic sects also.
Status of Muhammad False Prophet. N/A.
Virtue on which religion is based upon Love. Follow righteousness.
Day of worship Worship should be a continual process in the lives of Roman Catholics. Sunday is not the only day Catholics can attend Church for Mass. Orthodox schools prescribe three prayer times a day: at dawn, noon and dusk.
Promised Holy one. Second Coming of Christ Kalki, the 10'th avatar of Vishnu.
Belief Believe that Jesus Christ is the Messiah, the King of Heaven, and Saviour of the entire world. Diverse beliefs depending on sects.
Geographical predominance Catholicism has spread worldwide across all six settled continents, predominantly Europe, North, Central, and South America, Australia, Africa and New Zealand. India, Nepal
View of other Abrahamic religions According to Catholic doctrine, Catholicism is the original Christian Church. Christianity is the true religion, and Catholicism is true Christianity. Hinduism is a Dharmic religion, not an Abrahamic religion.
Authority of Pope Successor of St. Peter. N/A.
Status of Adam Adam was the first man created by God. He fell into temptation and brought sin and death to the human race. N/A.
Angels Angels are God's messengers. Spirits seen as immortal and always praising God. They never disobey God except for Lucifer (Satan) and the angels who follow him (demons). The concept of angels does not apply in Hinduism. Some mythological stories include rishis, who sometimes serve as the messengers of God.

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