India is separated from the north by the Himalayan and Hindu Kush Mountains.

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1 Ancient India

2 Geography Of India India is called a subcontinent. Subcontinent: a large landmass that is smaller than a continent India is separated from the north by the Himalayan and Hindu Kush Mountains. North western part of India is composed of the Thar Desert (Great Indian Desert) Rest of India is fertile due to many rivers and snow melted on the Himalayans. This produced silt. The Indus River Valley is where its first civilization started.


4 Climate Of India Most of India is hot and humid because of monsoons. Monsoons: Seasonal wind patterns that causes wet and dry seasons. Monsoons affect India drastically different in the summer and winter seasons. Summer: Brings lots of rainfall from the Indian Ocean, causing massive floods. Winter: Winds blow from the Himalayans that cause dry, warm winter months.


6 First Civilization: Harappa Lasted between 2300 to 1700 BCE Located along Sarasvati River Focused on agriculture Two main cities were Harappa and Mohenjo Daro


8 First Civilization: Harappa s Achievements Known for their advanced plumbing with bathrooms in houses Stored pottery, ivory, and cotton products Had advanced writing system Their end is a mystery to this day. Could have been due to natural disasters or invaders.



11 Aryan Civilization The Aryan peoples migrated from the northwest to reach to India. Arrived 2000 BCE. Unlike the Harrapan big cities, the Aryans formed small communities. Each village was led by a raja. Raja: Skilled warrior leaders who ruled a village and the land around it. Rajas had family ties with other rajas; but mostly in war with one another. Sanskrit was the most important language formed by the Aryans.


13 Caste System Aryan society was divided into four different varnas. Varnas: Social divisions Caste System: Division of peoples cause of birth, wealth, or occupation. Sutras are strict rules w/ example: No intermarriage Can t eat with members from different varnas Breaking rules resulted Untouchables

14 Origins of Hinduism

15 Brahmanism The priests were known as Brahmins The religions consisted of four religious texts known as the Vedas. First collection: About sacrifices Second collection: Secret rituals Third Collection: Upanishads: Upanishads: Reflections of Vedas by students and teachers

16 Hinduism Hinduism consists of 330,000,000 gods. But there are three main gods. Brahma: the Creator Shiva: the Destroyer Vishnu: the Preserver Brahman: A universal spirit that the gods are a part of. Hindus believe everything is part of Brahman.


18 Reincarnation All peoples have an atman. The atman is the very essence of the person s being. Atman: Soul Hindus goal is to reach moksha. Moksha: The ultimate goal to reunite their soul with Brahman. Hindus believe the world we live in is an illusion. Brahman is the only real existence in this world. It requires multiple lifetimes to reach Brahman. Therefore Hindus go through reincarnation. Reincarnation: Belief that the atman goes through a cycle of rebirth in a new body.

19 Reincarnation The person s form depends on their karma. Karma: positive or negative effects on a person s atman determined by their actions Karma and the caste system is intertwined. Good actions lead to a higher varna in the following life and evil actions are vice versa. Each Hindu must do their dharma. Dharma: Spiritual duties.

20 Jainism Founded by Mahavira in 599 BCE Main focus is on nonviolence Nonviolence: Avoidance of violent actions Jains practice ahimsa. Ahimsa: Sanskrit word or nonviolence. No harm to any creature, against animal sacrifice, and are vegetarians.

21 Sikhism Founded by Guru Nanak in 1400 AD Guru: Teacher It is monotheistic Reunite with God after death Reincarnation is common until Sikhs have spiritual enlightenment. Treat everyone equally

22 Origins of Buddhism

23 Pre-Buddhism Siddhartha Gautama was a restless prince in northern India around 563 BCE. One day he saw people suffering and grievance over people who died. He questioned why pain was such a common thing. So he questioned the meaning of life.

24 Buddhism s Founding Gautama sought answers through strict disciplined actions such as fasting and meditation. Fasting: Not eating food Meditation: Focusing on spiritual ideas Six years pass and eventually he finds the answers under a tree near the Ganges River. Under what is known as the Tree of Wisdom he realized human suffering comes from: Desiring what we like but don t have Wanting to keep what we want Not wanting what we have At the age of 35 he becomes known as the Buddha. Buddha: The Enlightened One


26 Four Noble Truths 1. Suffering and unhappiness is unavoidable 2. Desire is the reason why suffering exists. 3. People can overcome desire and ignorance by reaching nirvana. Nirvana: A perfect peace 4. People can stop the cycle desires by following the Eightfold Path


28 Buddhism versus Hinduism Buddhism is against animal sacrifice, which is common in Hinduism Against the Brahmins. Enlightenment is done by the individual, no one else is responsible for it. Anti-Caste System. Castes only caused division. Nirvana can be reached at any level in life. Many people became Buddhists because their varnas wouldn t prevent them from reaching nirvana. Also the higher classes liked how extremism isn t necessary.

29 Spread of Buddhism After the Buddha s death, his teachings spread throughout India within 200 years. A king by the name of Asoka becomes Buddhist and builds universities. He also sent missionaries to spread Buddhist teachings. Missionaries: People who spread their religious beliefs Buddhism spreads to Southeast Asia and some parts of Central Asia.

30 Division Theravada Strict view of the Buddha s teachings Mahayana Loose interpretation of the Buddha s teachings to help others to reach nirvana.

31 Indian Empires

32 Mauryan Empire Ruled by Candragupta Maurya in the 320s BCE. His empire lasted for 150 years. Organized with an army of 600,000 soldiers and strong network of spies. Army consisted of elephants and chariots. The army protected the farmers and in return the farmers paid a heavy tax to the government. He became a Jainist, so he passed his throne to his son.


34 Asoka 270 BCE Candragupta s grandson takes over. Strongest emperor and made the empire richer through conquest. Eventually converts to Buddhism. Stopped launching wars. He improved the infrastructure (wells, shade trees, rest houses) for people. He sent missionaries to spread Buddhism. After his death his sons caused division among themselves and India was divided into smaller kingdoms in 184 BCE.


36 Gupta Empire After 500 years the Guptas united India as one empire. Candra Gupta I conquered many lands and controlled the northern part of India. Gupta rulers brought back Hinduism as the major religion once more. They were tolerant toward Buddhists and Jainists.


38 Gupta Empire Candra Gupta II takes over in 375 CE. Hinduism s caste system becomes an important part of Indian society because it helps keep the empire stable. By 400s a nomadic peoples known as the Huns invade and caused the Gupta Empire to collapse, leaving India divided once more.

39 Indian Achievements

40 Temples Hindu temples were once simple. The Guptas made it more complex by adding towers and with carvings of the patron god inside. Buddhist temples were carved out of mountains. Some known as stupas, which have domed roofs and house sacred items. Most arts were located in the temples


42 Sanskrit Literature Mahabharata A story about two families in war with each other. Ramayana A prince named Rama came to the world to defeat all demons. A god s avatar known as Krishna encourage a man named Arjuna. His wife is captured by a demon, so he saves her with the help of monkey king. Moral is about ideal marriage and rule.

43 Scientific Achievements Experts at metallurgy: Science of working with metals. Hindu-Arabic numerals: Numbers still used today. Introduced inoculation: injecting a person with a small dose of a virus to help someone to build up defenses against diseases. Astronomy: Study of stars and planets