Indian overview of society and characteristic of Urban: Multi-Culture

Indian overview of society and characteristic of Urban


  • The majority of Indians follow Hinduism. Bhagavad-Gita is the holy book of the Hindus
  • Hinduism is an Indian religion and dharma. Hinduism has been called the oldest religion in the world. Hinduism includes a diversity of ideas on spirituality and traditions
  • Hinduism advocates the four main values: – Dharma, Artha, Kama, and Moksha
  • Dharma: This is the ultimate value that governs the next two values. Anything you do in life should not go against a ‘social value,’ in other words; an individual always contributes towards the greater good of the society, and a ‘personal value,’ which means he will work towards his own and his family’s betterment.
  • Artha: the goal of a man is to make great efforts to his (his family’s) economic betterment within the framework of dharma.
  • Kama: the goal of a man is to make great efforts for satisfying his own desires, for pleasure through five senses of sight, hearing, touch, taste, and smell under the control of the mind.
  • Moksha: the ultimate goal of anyone is to realize the ‘absolute truth.’ He has the right to pure bliss. The right of the quest for pure happiness grants him freedom from family and societal norms.


  • Islam began in Arabia and was revealed to humanity by the Prophet Muhammad. Those who follow Islam are called Muslims.
  • Muslims believe that there is only one God. The Arabic word for God is Allah.
  • The Profession of Faith—the Shahada

It simply states that “There is no God but God and Muhammad is his prophet.”

  • Daily Prayers—Salat

Muslims are expected to pray five times a day. Muslims can pray anywhere; however, they are meant to pray towards Mecca.

  • Alms-Giving—Zakat

The giving of alms is the third pillar. Although not defined in the Qu’ran, Muslims believe that they are meant to share their wealth with those less fortunate in their community of believers.

  • Fasting during Ramadan—Saum

During the holy month of Ramadan, the ninth month in the Islamic calendar, Muslims are expected to fast from dawn to dusk.

  • Pilgrimage to Mecca—Hajj

All Muslims who are able to are required to make the pilgrimage to Mecca and the surrounding holy sites at least once in their lives.


  • Christian faith was introduced in India by Apostle Thomas who reached Malabar Coast(Kerela) in 52AD.
  • Christianity gained roots in India especially after the Portuguese invasion (to enter a place in large numbers) in Goa in the early 16th century and letter by the British in the 17th century
  • The holy book of Christian is the Bible
  • The Christian religion is based on the 10 commandments of the Lord
  •  Do not have any other god before God
  • Do not make yourself an idol
  • Do not take the Lord’s name in vain
  • Remember the Sabbath Day and keep it holy
  • Honor your mother and father
  • You shall not murder.
  • You shall not commit adultery.
  • You shall not steal.
  • You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
  • You shall not covet your neighbor’s house.
  • You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male or female slave, or his ox or his ass, or anything that is your neighbor’s.


  • Its founder Guru Nanak and the letter nine Gurus who followed his preached against the hypocrisy in religion. The holy book of the Sikhs is Guru Granth Sahib.
  • The religious symbols of Sikhism are five ‘Ks’:

Kesh (hair)

Kangha (comb)


Kirpan (sword)

Kachha (shorts)


  • Buddhism follows the teachings of Lord Gautam Buddha. About 85% of Buddhists in India are located in Maharashtra. Hinayana and Mahayana are the two major schools of thought in Buddhism.
  • Tripitaka is the holy book of Buddhism.
  • The main aim of Buddhism is to attain Nirvana (ultimate spiritual goal). Nirvana means to achieve enlightenment (perfect peace and happiness)
  • The truth of suffering (Dukkha)
  • The truth of the origin of suffering (Samudāya)
  • The truth of the cessation of suffering (Nirodha)
  • The truth of the path to the cessation of suffering (Magga)
  • The Buddha is often compared to a physician. In the first two Noble Truths, he diagnosed the problem (suffering) and identified its cause. The third Noble Truth is the realization that there is a cure.
  • The fourth Noble Truth, in which the Buddha set out the Eightfold Path, is the prescription, the way to achieve a release from suffering.

The eight divisions

  • Right Understanding
  • Right Intention
  • Right Speech
  • Right Action
  • Right Livelihood
  • Right Effort
  • Right Mindfulness
  • Right Concentration


  1. The followers of Jainism are mostly located in Maharashtra, Gujarat, and Rajasthan. They follow the preaching of Lord Mahavira.
  2. Jainism is an ancient religion from India that teaches that the way to liberation and bliss is to live a life of harmlessness and renunciation.
  3. The aim of Jain life is to achieve the liberation of the soul.
  4. Jainism, the Indian religion teaching a path to spiritual purity and enlightenment through disciplined nonviolence (ahimsa, literally “noninjury”) to all living creatures.
  • Three jewels of Jainism
  • Right faith.
  • Right knowledge.
  • Right conduct.

The practice of these three qualities purifies the heart. The practitioner becomes conscious of irrelevant worldly attachment.

In order to promote spiritual development and achieve liberation, Jainism has laid down five main Vows:

  • Ahimsa(Non-violence)
  • Satya (Truth)
  • Asteya (Not stealing)
  • Brahmacharya (Chastity or celibacy)
  • Aparigraha (Renunciation)

Rural Characteristic of Indian Society

  1. Caste System: In Indian Villages, the caste system is widespread. Each village has several cast, although in some villages a particular caste dominates.
  2. Intimate Relations: In Indian villages, there is face to face relations among the people. Generally, every person knows each other in the village. This is because; the village population is of small size, and therefore personal contact or relations can b maintained through regular interactions.
  3. Status of women: The rural women mostly engage in indoor activates and they work in the field as well. They are very much attached to their family members. Women adjust themselves to the family conditions, ad make sacrifices in the interest of the family.
  4. Occupation: Rural people are mostly engaged in agriculture. About 80% of village people are directly or indirectly connected with agriculture and other related areas.
  5. Size of the Population: The majority of India’s population lives in villages. As per 2011 census, 68.84% of India’s total population
  6. Location Pattern: The rural population lives in about 6,41,000 villages. At present, only about 4000 villages have a population of 10,000 plus. In 2,36,000 villages, the population is less than 500 persons.
  7. Literacy: The literacy level of rural people is low as compared to the urban population. The rural literacy rate is less than 50% in many states due to lack of education facilities in villages and poverty among the rural masses.
  8. Poverty: 25.70% of people living below the poverty line in rural areas. Rural poverty is very high, especially in the state of Orissa, Bihar ad Madhya Pradesh. The main causes of rural poverty are the High growth of the population.
  9. Media Exposure: The media exposure of rural masses is comparatively low as compared to urban areas due to poverty and lack of education.

Urban Characteristic of Indian Society

  1. Heterogeneity: The urban population is heterogeneous. It consists of various shades of people—different castes, classes, ethnic groups, religions, etc. They are not all alike. The urban community is noteworthy for its diversity.
  2. Social Mobility: Urban people are socially mobile as compared to rural folk. Social mobility refers to the movement of people from one social status to another, i.e. from lower-status to higher status in society.
  3. Secondary relations: In urban social life, relations are not intimate. Most routine social contacts in the city are impersonal. Formal politeness takes the place of genuine friendliness. The impersonality of urban life is a necessary and convenient way of urban living.
  4. Occupation: In urban areas, the major occupations are industrial, administrative, and professional in nature. Divisions of labour and occupational specialization are very much common in towns/cities/metropolises.
  5. Literacy: The literacy rate of urban areas is high as compared to rural areas. Most of the major cities/towns have a literacy rate of over 70%.
  6. Media Exposure: The media exposure of urban are is high as compared to rural areas. Most of the urban population is exposed to radio, TV, and the internet.
  7. Poverty: The poverty in urban areas is low as compared to rural areas. 13.70% of people living below the poverty line in urban areas. Urban poverty due to unemployment, gambling, large size families.


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Reference: Manan Prakashan, Smart Notes


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