MIDTERM ESSAY EXAM – Research Paper 101

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Answer TWO (2) QUESTIONS in essay form.  Minimum of two (2) pages for question for a total of 4-6 pages for the entire exam.  SUBMIT YOUR ANSWERS TO TURNITIN ASSIGNMENTS (IN BLACKBOARD). Remember, Turnitin is omniscient and sees where you are getting your material.  Plagiarism is the unpardonable sin of academia.  EXAM DUE: WEDNESDAY, MARCH 18TH, BEFORE 11:30 P.M.  INTERNET OR OTHER OUTSIDE SOURCES ARE NOT ALLOWED.  USE ONLY THE TEXTS AND THE VIDEOS.

1.  What are the paths to salvation in the Bhagavad Gita?  Illustrate these paths from the Gita itself with relevant quotes that support your exposition.  Again, your quotes must come from the required reading and the Gita only.

2.  What are the fundamental concepts of the Upanishads?  Why and how were these concepts so revolutionary, then and now?   How do these concepts stand in sharp opposition to the fundamental assumptions of Vedic religion, and how do Upanishads accommodate themselves to this religion in spite of this apparent or real opposition?   Again, only the lectures, films, and required reading can be used to answer the questions. 

3.   What are the Four Noble Truths and what role do they play in the Buddhist religion?  Do the Four Noble Truths support the view that Buddhism is a religion, a philosophy, or the end of religion?  Or is religious Buddhism in contradiction with its fundamental assumptions?  How is religious Buddhism to be reconciled with philosophical Buddhism?    Again, only the lectures, films, and required reading can be used to answer the questions. 

4.  Buddhism and Jainism arose as revolts against Vedic religion.  What do they have in common, and how do they differ?  Even as revolts against Vedic religion (including the Upanishads), what elements from Vedic religion do they incorporate into their system of beliefs and which do they reject?

5.  The Sikh religion draws elements from two religions.  What are these two religions and what elements does Sikhism borrow from each?  Also, what elements of Sikhism are original and not dependent on the influence of the other two religions which influenced it?

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