noun Hinduism.

  1. any of a class of speculative prose treatises composed between the 8th and 6th centuries b.c. and first written a.d. c1300: they represent a philosophical development beyond the Vedas, having as their principal message the unity of Brahman and Atman.


  1. Hinduism any of a class of the Sanskrit sacred books probably composed between 400 and 200 bc and embodying the mystical and esoteric doctrines of ancient Hindu philosophy

class of treatises in Sanskrit literature, 1805, from Sanskrit upa-nishad, literally “a sitting down beside,” from upa “near to” (see up) + ni-shad “to sit or lie down.” A group of writings sacred in Hinduism concerning the relations of humans, God, and the universe.

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