PDA

View Full Version : Are we worshiping the same God ?



Vrindavan
09 September 2007, 07:24 AM
Are we worshiping the same God ?

Do you think Christianity is rooted from Judaism ?

How is Judaism came out ?

Do you believe the God of Christianity is the same as the God of Judaism or the God of Hinduism ?

What are the evidences ?

Yajnavalkya dasa
29 September 2007, 01:44 PM
No, we are not worshipping the same God.

Although it is popular to say, "same God, different names", there are imposter Gods.

Yahweh, the god of the Christians and Jews, was just one of the many minor desert deities of the Semites. Others were Baal, Dagon, Moloch and so on.

The Bible itself does not deny the existence of other gods; the commandment "Thou shalt have no other gods before me" implies that there are other gods.

For some reason, the deity Yahweh was able to convince Moses that it was the only god worthy of worship.

This god is vengeful (Romans 12:19-21) and jealous (Deuteronomy 5:6). It savors violence and blood (too many references to mention; Google "dark bible").

Allah, the god of the Muslims, is well known as a lunar deity of southern Arabia. Hence the crescent in Islamic motifs.

No, we do not worship the same God.

As a mundane example, both George W. Bush and Al Gore both claimed to be the sole President of the United States in the election of 2000. To say that "George Bush and Al Gore are the same President, different names", is, of course, ridiculous.

There are many who claim to be the Supreme God.

Eastern Mind
29 September 2007, 02:55 PM
I believe it is the same God we all worship. Here is my analogy. Fifty people are all reading the same book. Each is on a different page, in fact a different word. Each are at his/her own point in the book. Some are at the intro, some are in the middle, and others are nearly finished. All are reading the same book. Aum Namashivaya

Yajnavalkya dasa
29 September 2007, 05:12 PM
"All are reading the same book".

That is pie-in-the-sky nonsense. The Aztecs used to perform human sacrifice. Does God demand human sacrifice? What page is that on? After all, all religions are the same, right?

David Koresh said that he was God made flesh. Do you acknowledge that David Koresh is God? If no, why not? God is God, right?

What about Zeus, and Jupiter? Odin and Woden? Or the Flying Spaghetti Monster? All religions worship the same God?

Maybe you just have a very liberal definition of "God". What do you think "God" means? If you think "God means whatever you think it means", that waters down any legitimate meaning.

Eastern Mind
29 September 2007, 05:44 PM
Trust me, I do not have a liberal idea of God. God is all and in all. Do you recall sages (Ramakrishna for one) that have had stories written about how certain mundane seemingly low sights on the street put him into samadhi. Its ALL God, in my view.

saidevo
29 September 2007, 10:33 PM
The mind makes different gods out of the same God immanent in everything, just like a potter makes different objects with the same clay or the readers of a novel have different ideas about the same situation.

The intellect arrives at the unity and the absoluteness of the one God in the plurality of the world.

The Self realizes this unity and finds it to be the only Truth.

Eastern Mind
29 September 2007, 11:02 PM
Namaste Saidevo: Wonderfully put. A better analogy than mine, I guess. :)Aum Namashivaya

Madhavan
30 September 2007, 03:16 AM
I would say that all common men worship the same God ~ the god they have 'created' in their minds based on sensory inputs. This is not the same case with yogis, because their worship is based on actual divination of God with the 'inner eye'.

What God you worship is based on adhikAri bedha, that is the qualification of the worshipper. Most of us worship only "gross forms" of god based on visual and auditory signals. Advanced Yogis are able to directly worship the dieties, and even greater yogis directly worship the fullest form of Saguna Brahman as vishvarUpa(paramAtma). Those who have realized their identity with paramAtma do not worship.

This is what Adi Shankara says in his BG comentary on 6.47:

6.47 Api, even; sarvesam yoginam, among all the yogis, among those who are immersed in meditation on Rudra, Aditya, and others; yah, he who; bhajate, adores; mam, Me; antaratmana,with his mind; madgatena, fixed on Me, concentrated on Me who am Vasudeva; and sraddhavan, with faith, becoming filled with faith; sah, he; is matah, considered; me, by Me; to be yukta-tamah, the best of the yogis, engaged in Yoga most intensely.

( you can find it here http://www.gitasupersite.iitk.ac.in/)

Madhavan
30 September 2007, 03:39 AM
No, we are not worshipping the same God.

Although it is popular to say, "same God, different names", there are imposter Gods.


All worship of devatas is the same, from the POV of the common man. The worship of ghosts, ancestors and evil spirits are condemned practices. There is nothing such as an imposter god. Perhaps, the goal of worshipping god determines if the God worshipped is the same or not. Those who worship the paramAtma for getting moksha are all worshipping the same God regardless of the means of worship. Those who do it for wordly gains are worshipping an inferior God regardless of what name or form of the God is given to God. Those who are doing it for harming others are the worst of species even if he claims to be worshipping paramAtma.



Yahweh, the god of the Christians and Jews, was just one of the many minor desert deities of the Semites. Others were Baal, Dagon, Moloch and so on.

The Bible itself does not deny the existence of other gods; the commandment "Thou shalt have no other gods before me" implies that there are other gods.


Yahweh is God Yama of Hinduism. Note the judgement day of the bible and how it compares with Hinduism. Yama is an enlightened being(like a jIvanmukta), because he is the one who instructs Nachiketa.



This god is vengeful (Romans 12:19-21) and jealous (Deuteronomy 5:6). It savors violence and blood (too many references to mention; Google "dark bible").


The same is true of Hindu gods like kALi and bhairava. It only means god destroys the wicked.



Allah, the god of the Muslims, is well known as a lunar deity of southern Arabia. Hence the crescent in Islamic motifs.


Allah is Shiva, the almighty.

Yajnavalkya dasa
02 October 2007, 01:54 PM
You say "There is nothing such as an imposter god". So do you worship David Koresh? Why not?

Madhavan
03 October 2007, 04:03 AM
I was never talking of humans being treated as gods. A human who still has the individual ego cannot be god. Something worshipped is either a true worship ( if it is a devatA or the supreme principle) or no worship( in the case of ghosts or David Koresh).

David Koresh is simply an imposter. The term 'imposter god' is out of place.

Achanda
04 October 2007, 01:41 PM
There are many who claim to be the Supreme God.

I agree with this. It would seem that the Jews, Christians, and Muslims elevated their regional/tribal gods to the position of 'supreme God'.

Though I'm not Hindu myself, I share the belief in Brahman as being above all regional gods with their cultural trappings and dogmas.

Madhavan
05 October 2007, 02:03 AM
I agree with this. It would seem that the Jews, Christians, and Muslims elevated their regional/tribal gods to the position of 'supreme God'.

Though I'm not Hindu myself, I share the belief in Brahman as being above all regional gods with their cultural trappings and dogmas.

Is there any good reason to beleive that God is a 'private property' of Hindus or that Vishnu incarnates only in this small part of the world known as India? If this can be beleived, then it is not much better than the "cultural trappings and dogmas" of other nations.

It is reasonable to argue that God has revealed himself to all people in the world in all sorts of ways, in accordance with time and need. A religion or its god by itself is not a dogma, but its interpretation by some fanatic followers maybe so.

How can the Hindu God, the Christian God and the Islamic God be different from each other in effect, if each of them beleives that their God created the universe? Yes, the understanding of kAla Brahman need not be the same for everybody, though it does not mean that these gods are different.

Different mental perspectives of human beings demand different philosophical ideas. Some people cannot really grasp the idea of a transcendendal and immanent idea of Godhead. They think that God becomes stained due to contact with matter, forgetting that God sets all the laws of nature and nothing can stain him. Such people are taught that God sits somewhere high in the sky and looks after them - this is also one of the ways to understand God and nothing is really wrong about it. Such ideas of God are regional, but the God himself is always the supreme one.

suresh
05 October 2007, 08:20 AM
I don't think it's reasonable to say that we're worshipping the same god, for even within H'ism, the very idea of god varies from one school to another.

In dvaita, god is worshipped as a person with auspicious qualities, not as an abstract principle, a mass of sat, chit, ananda. God is a Person, the Supreme Person. Advaitins, on the other hand, consider God to be nirguna, thus differing from the dvaitins in this respect. And there are still others, who consider both personal and impersonal to be real, such as the Gaudiyas.

As one can see, there are differences with respect to the nature of God, even within H'ism. So while it may be PC to say 'we all worship the same god', it certainly is an absurd proposition.

Suresh

Madhavan
05 October 2007, 09:16 AM
I don't think it's reasonable to say that we're worshipping the same god, for even within H'ism, the very idea of god varies from one school to another.

In dvaita, god is worshipped as a person with auspicious qualities, not as an abstract principle, a mass of sat, chit, ananda. God is a Person, the Supreme Person. Advaitins, on the other hand, consider God to be nirguna, thus differing from the dvaitins in this respect. And there are still others, who consider both personal and impersonal to be real, such as the Gaudiyas.

As one can see, there are differences with respect to the nature of God, even within H'ism. So while it may be PC to say 'we all worship the same god', it certainly is an absurd proposition.

Suresh

Suresh,

I think you got it wrong. Though advaitins consider God to be nirguNa, they do not worship the nirguNa brahman, as NB is not an object of worship. So, the god worshipped by advaitins is the same as dvaita which is a being with all auspicious qualities.

This is not a PC view from the POV of an advaitin, but easy to reconcile since differences are merely perspective oriented. Yes, the dvaitins ( the thousands of type of dvaitins in the world) will stick with their own prototypes of God, each claiming to be in possession of knowledge of the true god. Which one of the zillion gods of dvaitins is the true god? If you can answer this, I will give this to you...:)

suresh
05 October 2007, 09:31 AM
Suresh,

I think you got it wrong. Though advaitins consider God to be nirguNa, they do not worship the nirguNa brahman, as NB is not an object of worship. So, the god worshipped by advaitins is the same as dvaita which is a being with all auspicious qualities.


So you agree that the concept of God is different in both dvaita and advaita. That's all I wanted to stress.


Which one of the zillion gods of dvaitins is the true god? If you can answer this, I will give this to you...

Which means you imply there are zillion different concepts of god even amongst dvaitins. If that be the case, how can anyone claim we're all worshipping the same god?;)

Suresh

Madhavan
05 October 2007, 12:10 PM
So you agree that the concept of God is different in both dvaita and advaita. That's all I wanted to stress.


The fact that the concept of God is different does not establish we are talking of different gods. A person maybe wearing dhoti at home, he maybe dressed in formals at work, and wearing casuals while shopping. Does this change the identity of the person? We cannot say any one of them is wrong either. Advaita is looking at God in his pristine intrinsic nature, which is pure Ananda, and nothing else. Dvaita is viewing at God in his role as the creator of the universe while wearing a number of attributes associated with his creation. These are not different concepts of god, but different angles of looking at the same god.




Which means you imply there are zillion different concepts of god even amongst dvaitins. If that be the case, how can anyone claim we're all worshipping the same god?;)

Suresh

The answer is the same as above. Different concepts of god do not establish different gods. The indescribable God can be described in many ways. Do you notice that even though there are many religions, all these gods are associated with many common attributes like creatorship, omniscience etc? If there are many gods, how can there be multiple creators? If you think there is one supreme god, claiming that only your version god is the supreme is a pure dogma. Otherwise you are a polytheist who beleives in many gods.

yajvan
05 October 2007, 05:47 PM
Hari Om
~~~~~

So you agree that the concept of God is different in both dvaita and advaita. That's all I wanted to stress.
Suresh

Namste Suresh,
I hope it is Okay to join this conversation? If you are too far along on this matter let me know and I will set on the sidelines. That said, IMHO your assessment is correct.. the concept of God is different. That is why there are ~4,300 different faith groups on this planet.

Now the question is, what makes sense to you? what resonates with you?

There is a tendency for folks to say, my way is the best, my God is the True God. This is small-small thinking. This is why, I believe Sanatana Dharma is so robust. It has solid roots, and is very tolerant of other views.

Yet if you pushed me, I would be hard pressed to say Sanatana Dharma is 'religion' as people talk of it today... but is Arsa Dharma, the way of the rishis. Even this can then be bifurcated to view as Pravritti Dharma and Nivrtti Dharma. The former as performance and religious merit the lead to worldly happiness and heaven, and the later to Moksha.
Yet in the final analysis , for me, this term religion in its most pure state is a beautiful word and not that of dogma:

Religion is from latin, ligare to 'bind, connect' and re (again) + ligare.To again bind and connect. But to what? to the Source. And it is the conversation of this Source that gets many people's underwear into a bind!
- God is me
- God is separate then me
- I am his servant, therefore there must be two, the Adored and the adorer
- I dissolve into HIM and become ALL
- There is no God, there is no me , all this is the Absolute
- God is love
- God is consciousness
- God IS
- etc.

It is by our discrimination (viveka) that we work though all this information. And for that, there have been people smarter then us ( well, at least me) that have thought about this matter. We are blessed to view the 6 systems of Indian Philosophy to help us get a POV. This helps. What compliments this work is the Upanishads, shastras, and agamas.

Yet with all this, they [ book knowledge, even the vedas] are of no more use than is a small well in a place flooded with water on every side - Bhagavad Gita 2.46.

So what am i saying? It is the experience and stabilization of the Divine in us that is of most use; that is the binding back to the Source. This consciousness, this state of Being, one then knows the Truth and is realized for oneself. This Jivanmuki then knows the true meaning of God as s/he experiences it every second of every day.

All we can say on this HDF is our best efforts of what we know, of what we learned, and experienced. We are still in need of that person on HDF that can humbly stand and let us know He/She knows this Brahman.

We then will have one established in Ritam. Until then we do the best we can and try to ferret-out the truth with the facilities we have at our disposal. We have many that are sastri-knowledgable, some by their in-depth reading, for others they are fortunate to have guru's or pandits, for some a direct experience of this samvid. Together we make some good headway in this HDF satsang.


pranams,

Eastern Mind
05 October 2007, 09:59 PM
Whatever your personal point of view is, is just that. The fact of the matter is, all who worship God or a God are worshipping. If you want to see from the intellect, (or from inner knowledge) that there is more than one God, or a single force, then that's fine. As long as you're worshipping, and see something higher than you, then in my opinion you are on the path, and headed upward in the chakras, and consciousness. Even most atheists and agnostics would see that there is something that is wiser than them, some sort of intelligence. There have been many analogies put forth in this discussion to prove or disprove another's point of view. That's all fine too. It's between the individual and God. To me, God is all. I know its tough to see divinity in Hitler, (certainly a tad easier to see God in a swami, or a murthi) but many great saints from the east have said "Worship thy enemy" in one form or another. That's crucial I think in Sanatana Dharma" We don't believe in "an eye for an eye". As Gandhi said, (I don't remember the quote exactly) we'd all be blind. The five men and the elephant poem is another analogy. In Sanatana dharma, God can be 'this' or 'that' or 'not this', 'not that'. That's the beauty of our religion. There is plenty of room for many different takes. And we're all correct. That's kind of cool too. To attempt to pinpoint some specific definition of God is futile. It's just a whole lot of things for a whole lot of people. (Six billion and counting) Aum Namasivaya

suresh
09 October 2007, 01:16 AM
These are not different concepts of god, but different angles of looking at the same god.


Makes no sense, whatsoever. A chair, for instance, is a known object, so one may claim to 'look' at it from diff. angles. God is not within the field of sensory perception, so where's the q of looking at it from diff. angles?


The indescribable God can be described in many ways

That's a self-contradictory statement.

Bottom line, if we say we're worshipping the same god, we have to know exactly what that 'same god' is, otherwise the assertion itself has little significance. If you claim to know exactly what that 'same god' is, well, then, you've got to prove it!

Suresh

SHIVAJI
09 October 2007, 01:30 AM
Ekam Sat Vipra Bahuda Vadanti -- (Truth is one; sages call it by various names.)

-- Rig Veda

Arjuna
09 October 2007, 07:15 AM
Ekam Sat Vipra Bahuda Vadanti -- (Truth is one; sages call it by various names.)
-- Rig Veda

God is One for sure. And any one worshipping God worships Him\Her only.
But this doesn't imply that any object of any worship is God (though God is present in everything).

Basically this is a common misconception that "all paths lead to same goal". Not only they may lead to different goals but they in fact clearly DECLARE they do so ;).

sm78
09 October 2007, 08:25 AM
Basically this is a common misconception that "all paths lead to same goal". Not only they may lead to different goals but they in fact clearly DECLARE they do so ;).

Correct, and the misconception arises because most people have stopped following their sampradaya to embrace the universal.

Also the misconception is quite modern and a peculiarity among a section of Hindus and Western New Ageists.

Kaos
09 October 2007, 08:55 AM
I agree, with both Arjuna and sm.

The Christian God doesn't even want his followers to have other gods before him. Certain Eastern religions, traditions and schools of thought are polytheist.

Buddhists even reject the idea of a creator god.

Therefore, how can we be worshiping the same God?

SHIVAJI
09 October 2007, 12:07 PM
God is One for sure. And any one worshipping God worships Him\Her only.
But this doesn't imply that any object of any worship is God (though God is present in everything).

Basically this is a common misconception that "all paths lead to same goal". Not only they may lead to different goals but they in fact clearly DECLARE they do so ;).

This is what happens when one is concerned with pedantry and loses sight of the essence or substance of religion.

Sri Ramakrishna himself , practicing the various sects of Hinduism and then christianity, islam found through his own experience that all paths or religions, when practiced in earnest and true love, leads to the same goal.

This has been stated by the other masters as well.

Arjuna
09 October 2007, 05:06 PM
Yahweh, the god of the Christians and Jews, was just one of the many minor desert deities of the Semites. Others were Baal, Dagon, Moloch and so on.

Yahweh of Judaism and Christianity is NOT minor deity (though in some past that was the case for common people) but the Godhead Himself.

Vishnu in Vedas for example was a minor deity, servant of Indra. But Vishnu of Pancharatra is the Supreme God. Varuna was Supreme in early Vedic texts but in Puranas he became dikpAla. Etc.

What matters is not chosen name of God but how he/she is understood.

satay
09 October 2007, 11:41 PM
Namaskar Arjuna,




Vishnu in Vedas for example was a minor deity, servant of Indra.

Would you be so kind to provide a reference of this so that those of us who haven't studied the vedas can look this up to verify?

On a side note, let's suppose for a second that vishnu disappears from the theology of hinduism and doesn't exist any more for the Hindus...would that be the death of Hinduism?

Would we have the same answer from a christian if churchianity's god (major or minor) disappeared from their mythology?

Just something to ponder...I have no time to enter into a long discussion.

satay
09 October 2007, 11:53 PM
Sri Ramakrishna himself , practicing the various sects of Hinduism and then christianity, islam found through his own experience that all paths or religions, when practiced in earnest and true love, leads to the same goal.

This has been stated by the other masters as well.

Namaskar,

But different religions promise different 'goals' e.g. for a true christian his or her goal is to 'be with God for eternity' a christian spends his life in hopes that after his death on the judgement day that he will be accepted in heaven because he accepted jesus as his only saviour and rejected the false religions and false gods e.g. especially the false gods of hinduism.

For a muslim, the goal is to be with 72 virgins in the heaven...

For a buddhist, the goal is to reach the state of nirvana and escape from the wheel of rebirth.

Goals are different. All paths lead to the same goal if goal were same but they are not...isn't?

Kaos
10 October 2007, 07:24 AM
Goals are different. All paths lead to the same goal if goal were same but they are not...isn't?




Namaste satay and all,

I think, the answer to that, is the case of an illusion reflecting another illusion, creating further illusion, thereby leading to continued bondage.

atanu
10 October 2007, 02:22 PM
God is One for sure. And any one worshipping God worships Him\Her only.
But this doesn't imply that any object of any worship is God (though God is present in everything).

Basically this is a common misconception that "all paths lead to same goal". Not only they may lead to different goals but they in fact clearly DECLARE they do so ;).

Namaskar Arjuna,

In what you and most others say there is an assumption that the particular emphasis of a guru or a sect is more powerful than God's will.

I do not think it is so.


SIVA-MAHIMNAH STOTRAM

Different paths (to realisation) are enjoined by the three Vedas, by Sankhya, Yoga, Pashupata (Shaiva) doctrine and Vaishnava Shastras. People follow different paths, straight or crooked. according to their temperament, depending on which they consider best, or most appropriate—and reach You alone just as rivers enter the ocean.

--------------------------

The differences in emphasis and language and different application by different cultures cannot obliterate the commonality, as thousand dvaitic vedic assertions cannot invalidate even a single advaitic shruti.

Because one without a second God is the beginning and the end (and the middle).

Assuming a permanent difference of goals and results, as you say is the truth, is actually speaking like a christian.

Om

Islam and Christianity, at present, glorify the roles of the creator and the preserver gods respectively. But I do no think that the transformation aspect is totally absent in these religions.


Om

atanu
10 October 2007, 02:49 PM
Namaskar Arjuna,

Would you be so kind to provide a reference of this so that those of us who haven't studied the vedas can look this up to verify?
----.

Namaste Satay,

Only a few.

RV 8. HYMN XV. Indra.

8 O Indra, Heaven and Earth augment thy manly power and thy renown;
The waters and thy mountains stir and urge thee on.
9 Visnu the lofty ruling Power, Varuna, Mitra sing thy praise:
In thee the Maruts company have great delight.

RV 10. HYMN CXIII. Indra.

1. THE Heavens and the Earth accordant with all Gods encouraged graciously that vigorous might of his.
When he came showing forth his majesty and power, he drank of Soma juice and waxed exceeding strong.
2 This majesty of his Visnu extols and lauds, -------


8. HYMN LXVI. Indra.
----
10 All these things Visnu brought, the Lord of ample stride whom thou hadst sent -- A hundred buffaloes, a brew of rice and milk: and Indra, slew the ravening boar


--------------------------------

To me the puranas seem to be the potent veiling power of Lord in action. Vishnu is the Thou that is That.


Om

Mahakaal
10 October 2007, 08:06 PM
there is only one God whos name is truth who is the creator who is without fear who is without any mortal enemy who is beyond time and beyond birth and death only with the grace of the guru is God realised. Sayeth Nanak God was true in the beginning God is true throughout the ages, God is true now and God will remain true ever more.

Arvind Sivaraman
19 November 2007, 03:09 AM
Are we worshiping the same God ?

Do you think Christianity is rooted from Judaism ?

How is Judaism came out ?

Do you believe the God of Christianity is the same as the God of Judaism or the God of Hinduism ?

What are the evidences ?

Om Shirdi Sai Ram.
Namaste Vrindavan.
If you take the instances of self-realised souls, one thing is common.
ie;ALL GOD IS ONE.
Take the instances of Shri Shirdi Sai Baba , Sri Ramakrishna Parahamsa and other elevated souls like Moinudeen Chisti Baba.
In all these shrines wherein the Holy Body of the great souls rests, people from all walks of life can come and offer their prayers irrespective of creed and caste.
If you are feeling thirsty, you may ask for water by any name in any language.It is going to quench your thirst.Similarly call GOD by any name mentioned in different scriptures,the essence is the same.ALL GOD IS ONE.

If you want instances one needs to be a self-realised soul.

Haridas
19 November 2007, 02:43 PM
No, we are not worshipping the same God.

Although it is popular to say, "same God, different names", there are imposter Gods.

Yahweh, the god of the Christians and Jews, was just one of the many minor desert deities of the Semites. Others were Baal, Dagon, Moloch and so on.

The Bible itself does not deny the existence of other gods; the commandment "Thou shalt have no other gods before me" implies that there are other gods.

For some reason, the deity Yahweh was able to convince Moses that it was the only god worthy of worship.

This god is vengeful (Romans 12:19-21) and jealous (Deuteronomy 5:6). It savors violence and blood (too many references to mention; Google "dark bible").

Allah, the god of the Muslims, is well known as a lunar deity of southern Arabia. Hence the crescent in Islamic motifs.

No, we do not worship the same God.

As a mundane example, both George W. Bush and Al Gore both claimed to be the sole President of the United States in the election of 2000. To say that "George Bush and Al Gore are the same President, different names", is, of course, ridiculous.

There are many who claim to be the Supreme God.

I agree 100%

Haridas
19 November 2007, 03:21 PM
Namaste Satay,

Only a few.

RV 8. HYMN XV. Indra.

8 O Indra, Heaven and Earth augment thy manly power and thy renown;
The waters and thy mountains stir and urge thee on.
9 Visnu the lofty ruling Power, Varuna, Mitra sing thy praise:
In thee the Maruts company have great delight.

RV 10. HYMN CXIII. Indra.

1. THE Heavens and the Earth accordant with all Gods encouraged graciously that vigorous might of his.
When he came showing forth his majesty and power, he drank of Soma juice and waxed exceeding strong.
2 This majesty of his Visnu extols and lauds, -------


8. HYMN LXVI. Indra.
----
10 All these things Visnu brought, the Lord of ample stride whom thou hadst sent -- A hundred buffaloes, a brew of rice and milk: and Indra, slew the ravening boar


--------------------------------

To me the puranas seem to be the potent veiling power of Lord in action. Vishnu is the Thou that is That.


Om

Vishnu is also only an Aditya in the Vedas. Shiva was only a Rudra in the Vedas, also.

However, I'm talking about the preserving and destroying gods. Saivas are quick to say that the Shiva they're talking about is Brahman and not just that one form who destroys (whom they properly call "Rudra"). Vaishnavas aren't as quick to say the same thing about their god, but it is obvious that that is the case.

Znanna
19 November 2007, 06:38 PM
Namaste,

It seems to me that the act of worshiping itself defines "God" :)

Therefore none of us worship the "same God" as our acts of worship define.

That said, personally, what I "worship as Godz" is the awesome brightness which defies perception, much less definition!

There are others, which also are Godz from my point of view, which are perceptable ... and hey, I worship them, too.

Yes Ma'am.


ZN
/southern :D

caleb
22 May 2008, 03:03 AM
Also one can look to the fruits of various branches. Christianity and Islam have, without some fresh infusion from the East, produced refined mystics, then decended into darkness, then came back again. How could people always be worshiping different gods when they had the same human nature? And Allah was not just a moon god, he was also Rahman and several others.

What is the origin of LLah or La? In Sankrit? that is the root of Allah and i am sure that would shed some light. i have always wondered because Muslims and Christians only seem to trace words back to their own favorite sacred language

Explorer
22 March 2010, 11:09 PM
The fact that the concept of God is different does not establish we are talking of different gods. A person maybe wearing dhoti at home, he maybe dressed in formals at work, and wearing casuals while shopping. Does this change the identity of the person? We cannot say any one of them is wrong either. Advaita is looking at God in his pristine intrinsic nature, which is pure Ananda, and nothing else. Dvaita is viewing at God in his role as the creator of the universe while wearing a number of attributes associated with his creation. These are not different concepts of god, but different angles of looking at the same god.

I agree with this, Imagine that God is a crystal, and each of us sees only one, or a few sides of it. Our descriptions of what we see will be different, as indeed we are presented with different perspectives. It does make sense, at least to me, that one thing can be perceived in radically different ways, by different people at different times.

Let's not forget that Sentient beings must exist outside of our planet in this vast material universe, and also outside of the material plane as well. God will be understood in various ways by all these beings, and as they are different among each other, so will their perceptions of God be very different.

We can certainly argue that someone's perception is more distorted and ours more correct, but let us not forget that we are all talking of things MUCH beyond our capacity to fully comprehend, so as long as we are human we will all be far from holding the complete 100% truth.


Makes no sense, whatsoever. A chair, for instance, is a known object, so one may claim to 'look' at it from diff. angles. God is not within the field of sensory perception, so where's the q of looking at it from diff. angles?
A chair is not a known object, first of all your idea of a chair and my idea of a chair will always be different, and also, in Buddhist fashion, at which point does a carved piece of wood become a 'chair' ? In essence there is only some wood there, our minds create the idea of chair. And our minds work differently. Your chair can be my 'anything else', or if I've never seen a chair, I can miss its purpose or existence completely.

God might be outside of our sensory perception, but we all take our ideas and understanding about God, from sensory perceptions. And as those differ between us, so do the conclusions that we get. The circumstances we are in, and also who we are inside, define the position from which we will see God, and which facets will be presented to us.




Quote:
"The indescribable God can be described in many ways"

That's a self-contradictory statement.

Not necessarily. Personally I understand it in the way that the totality of God cannot be described, but perceptions, or certain elements of Him, can. In the crystal example above, it could be said that we cannot grasp the immense / infinite crystal that is God, but we can describe and talk about a few facets that we perceived.



Bottom line, if we say we're worshipping the same god, we have to know exactly what that 'same god' is, otherwise the assertion itself has little significance. If you claim to know exactly what that 'same god' is, well, then, you've got to prove it!

SureshThe idea is great, and I agree with you, we should know as much about our view of God as we possibly can, but (and this again, is my personal view) we should also keep in mind that we are FAR below the level he is on, and as such, we CANNOT understand the totality of His shape, functions or existence (at least as long as we are humans, and in normal waking state).

To use another example, imagine we are all some ants next to, on, and even inside a Jet Fighter, trying to understand what's going on. To some of us, near the engine, it will appear loud, hot and made of fire. To others, inside the cockpit, it will appear quiet, comfortable and transparent, and yet to others, down near the wheel, it will appear to spin and be made of flexible rubber.

If we try to discuss among ourselves and assume that we alone have the only truth, we will get nowhere, because we each see only a small part of reality, and most of the time we also see different parts of it, not the same one.

My practice of meditation is severely lacking, most things I know about the other realms come from brief visions using psychoactive plants, but if I took anything out of those experiences, it was the humbling sensation that the reality out there is so vast and complex, so far beyond our wildest human dreams or understanding, that assuming to hold the complete knowledge, have the only right truth and so on, is THE expression of ignorance.

I genuinely pity the Christians that look for answers only in the Bible, and same for Muslims that read mainly the Qu'ran. The vast reality out there could not be contained in all the human writings of all time put together, let alone in a few hundred pages from centuries ago.

I do however, salute the open minds on this forum, it's the only way to advance :)

NayaSurya
22 March 2010, 11:43 PM
I like to think our relationship with God is one that resembles a large school.

God is our teacher/s.

We start off with a simple teacher who teaches us basics. We do not make fun of the child that is a beginer and his simple teacher. We can not devaluate that situation at all, as we all have come from this humble begining. All of us share equally in the learning.

As we advance along in our lifetimes we are able to reach God by a higher name. A higher teacher...and we connect on a higher level. All the teachers, they teach...but they are not all the same, but ultimately all are important for our growth.

So maybe then you could say that as long as we are advancing forward toward that higher place..we are reaching the same God. Even if it is a more basic form of that divine and may not look divine at all to someone more advanced...it has a very important place.

Are we worshiping same God? I would say, for each person that question holds it's own individual answer. For me, in my heart I say yes to those upward reaching souls, there is no delineation.<3

Please pardon my silly simple ways of thinking. But I live amongst the Christian whom attempt to indoctrinate myself and my children on a daily basis. I could not live in peace and harmony with my neighbors if it were not that I thought of them as children who were not fully aware of how hurtful they were often times.

I see us as all as equal humble seekers. Some just a little older, and further along our path than others.

Om Namah Sivaya<3 Priya Tamah Sivaya<3

Riverwolf
14 June 2010, 02:07 PM
Not the same "God."

The same Reality, which is Unchanging, through different "Gods," which, in my opinion, were created through our minds and tendencies.

hrdayananda
15 December 2010, 12:54 PM
The Aztecs used to perform human sacrifice. Does God demand human sacrifice? What page is that on? After all, all religions are the same, right?

The Kapalikas used to perform human sacrifices too, but they still worshipped Shiva, right? So I think what you're saying about the aztecs is irrelevant.

Eastern Mind
15 December 2010, 01:25 PM
Vannakkam hrdayananda: Just as a point for your information in future - the member yopu qoted made that post on Sept. 29, 2007, and his last visit (sign in, there's no way to tell if he comes and looks) was Jan. 4, 2008.

Just thought I'd let you know. Having said that, I have no problem with people resurrecting old threads. Just don't expect a reply, especially from long gone members.

Aum Namasivaya

Eric11235
28 February 2011, 12:21 PM
Vannakam

A small but significant point relating to this thread. In the Gita, I cannot remember the exact phrasing, but Krishna does say that anyone who worships any god is actually worshipping himself (vishnu). So basically, even if you pray to multiple gods, if you pray to a god referred to as Yahweh (which means 'he is') or moloch, you are actually praying to the one supreme who is in the gita referred to as Vishnu.

Just a small point I'd like to make.

Sahasranama
28 February 2011, 03:18 PM
He also says you reach/become what you worship, those who worship ghosts go to the ghosts, those who worship ancestors go to their ancestors and those who worship jewish zombies on sticks... :(

In actuality, everyone is worshipping the same ultimate, even an atheist/materialist, but the results are not the same, because they do not worship according the Gita: tattvena, with correct understanding.

Adhvagat
28 February 2011, 04:16 PM
C'mon Sahasranama, you know there's symbolism behind what you call "zombie on a stick", I'm sure any Christian can ignore facts and insult Hinduism the same way. What do we say to that when we make the same mistake ourselves?

I just disagree with this bashing that isn't even philosophical, it's just childish name-calling.


He also says you reach/become what you worship, those who worship ghosts go to the ghosts, those who worship ancestors go to their ancestors [...]

In actuality, everyone is worshipping the same ultimate, even an atheist/materialist, but the results are not the same, because they do not worship according the Gita: tattvena, with correct understanding.

But well put anyway.

Eastern Mind
28 February 2011, 04:41 PM
Vannakkam:

I often wonder how many questioning and wondering people within Hinduism, or just plain sincere seekers come here and don't last very long due to some of the comments directed at other faiths. Just last week or so, Satay addressed it, and many of us agreed. Yet it continues.

These verbal attacks on Islam, Christianity, Universalism, and sometimes even other sects or points of view within our own faith are not helping people come here to understand Hinduism. I think the approach should be kind, gentle, intelligent, and welcoming. Eventually, it it is obvious a person is here to belittle us, then our moderator bans them.

What does the newcomer think of us? When I go look on another forum, and I see this kind of thing, I just leave. I don't argue, I just leave.

I can imagine at a temple, if a newcomer just interested in having a look came by and in a discussion after the puja, it came out that the newcomer was a Christian feeling lost, and someone used the same words as above directed at him. It makes us all look bad. That includes me, and I'm saddened.

Aum Namasivaya

Sahasranama
28 February 2011, 05:20 PM
I went to church today to do yoga, thank those Christians for making room available for yoga teachers. :)

I was dead serious about my last post. Someone who worships Jesus, especially at the last moment of life, may end up achieving Sarupya of exactly that.

So what is Jesus other than a Roman fantasy, maybe his worshippers achieve the ghostly realm, maybe those of the ancestors, a rare one with a lot of good karma may even reach svarga, but never the highest abode from where you don't come back after you have reached it.

sanjaya
28 February 2011, 07:38 PM
Vannakkam:

I often wonder how many questioning and wondering people within Hinduism, or just plain sincere seekers come here and don't last very long due to some of the comments directed at other faiths. Just last week or so, Satay addressed it, and many of us agreed. Yet it continues.

These verbal attacks on Islam, Christianity, Universalism, and sometimes even other sects or points of view within our own faith are not helping people come here to understand Hinduism. I think the approach should be kind, gentle, intelligent, and welcoming. Eventually, it it is obvious a person is here to belittle us, then our moderator bans them.

What does the newcomer think of us? When I go look on another forum, and I see this kind of thing, I just leave. I don't argue, I just leave.

I can imagine at a temple, if a newcomer just interested in having a look came by and in a discussion after the puja, it came out that the newcomer was a Christian feeling lost, and someone used the same words as above directed at him. It makes us all look bad. That includes me, and I'm saddened.

Aum Namasivaya

EM, you bring up a good point. I am perhaps most guilty of this behavior. The reason for my frequent and negative comments about Christianity is that I very often encounter Christians who attack Hinduism and try to convert Hindus. And then I read about missionaries in India. Normally I would like to discuss this with other Hindus face-to-face. Problem is, most Hindus I know, whether in my family or at the temples I visit, are of a universalist bent and don't really see the problem that I do. Then I come to HDF and find like-minded Hindus who are as concerned about Christianity as I am, and of course I want to discuss the issues that are on my mind.

Not that this is a particularly good justification for the sort of behavior I engage in, just an explanation. I'll work on tempering my words.

sanjaya
28 February 2011, 07:48 PM
To respond to the issue at hand, I've always thought that the idea of worshiping a "false god" doesn't make much sense in a Hindu context. After all, there's only one God. Not that I subscribe to any sort of universalism. Rather I feel that you can either understand God properly, or misportray him. The latter, I think, is what has happened in the case of Christianity. There's an interesting verse in the Gita:


Those miscreants who are grossly foolish, who are lowest among mankind, whose knowledge is stolen by illusion, and who partake of the atheistic nature of demons do not surrender unto Me (7.15)
I wonder if the term "atheistic" is actually in the original Sanskrit. If it is, this would suggest that people such as Christians, who worship such a grossly misrepresented portrayal of God, are effectively the same as atheists, rather than worshipers of false gods.

And when I think about it, I do find Christianity to be a fairly atheistic religion. I've always wondered why Christians have such little of a focus on worship of God. They go to church once a week, and that's it. Even when they're at church, all they do is listen to rock music. It's more like a rave than a religious ritual. Hindus, on the other hand, have home altars or puja rooms, and often perform daily worship. Puja, i.e. adoration of God, is fundamental to Hinduism. Thus we have a theistic bent, and Christians a relatively atheistic one. So perhaps Christianity is more a form of atheism than a worship of false gods.

Rationalist
28 February 2011, 08:17 PM
A "god" is defined by the characteristics you ascribe to the concept. Christians worship and angry, jealous, irrational, and evil god. Hindus worship the benevolent Divine. It is as simple as that.

Eastern Mind
28 February 2011, 08:17 PM
EM, you bring up a good point. I am perhaps most guilty of this behavior. The reason for my frequent and negative comments about Christianity is that I very often encounter Christians who attack Hinduism and try to convert Hindus. And then I read about missionaries in India. Normally I would like to discuss this with other Hindus face-to-face. Problem is, most Hindus I know, whether in my family or at the temples I visit, are of a universalist bent and don't really see the problem that I do. Then I come to HDF and find like-minded Hindus who are as concerned about Christianity as I am, and of course I want to discuss the issues that are on my mind.

Not that this is a particularly good justification for the sort of behavior I engage in, just an explanation. I'll work on tempering my words.

Vannakkam Sanjaya et al: I too have been guilty in the past, but an vowing to change. Maybe that's one of the things I have learned here. I don't at all object to reducing other faiths philosophically, like you're so capable of doing. In fact, I have said time and again I don't even believe Christ existed. I think various religions operate at different levels, and fear governs some. I just think that a newcomer to these forums may react and not come back when they read the language that exists here. In teaching, I couldn't get away with telling a parent, "Look, your kid is a stupid little arsehole! He needs a 2 by 4 applied to his stupid head!" I had to have more tact, or face losing my job. So I could say, "I believe there are days when his behaviour is detrimental to his learning, and his focus needs to be more directed. Perhaps it would help if you had a chat with him."

That's all I'm saying. Language and tact go a long way.

Aum Namasivaya

sm78
02 March 2011, 12:17 AM
In actuality, everyone is worshipping the same ultimate, even an atheist/materialist, but the results are not the same, because they do not worship according the Gita: tattvena, with correct understanding.

Just expanding on what you said. Correct understanding is not a fixed intellectual grasp, but an experiential evolving knowledge (verified by shastra) which should not be restricted or denied. Thus problem is not worshipping God in differnt ways and forms, but in denying greater possibilities.

You can worship an insect as God, but soon you should realize that he is much beyond an insect. When one deny's and limits the limitless possibilities of Isvara, the asura takes his birth, restricting God to an insect, physically and intellectually - you end up becoming an insect mind.

Same with this Chisto ghost worshippers. They deny any possibility beyond the Chirsto ghost - and should end up in the Ghost realm.

If worshipping Jesus you realize the greater possibilities (which first of means, you need to trash the Church and evangelism) , there is no problem. You may not be Hindu, but you are still on the correct path, Imo.

TatTvamAsi
02 March 2011, 03:14 AM
My thought on this matter is that the need to worship, wonder, and inquire about something that is transcendent is inherent in all humans; the jIvA trying to find out its true nature.

Those who are of low birth (non-Hindus), are at a much earlier stage in the evolution and thus their descriptions, ideas, and 'religions' are childish and centered around the little-self (ego) and individual; all Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Christianity, Islam) are more soteriological than ontological in nature.

The question to ask any Abrahamic is, "Would you worship your "God" if you were NOT being 'saved' by Him?" I would wager they would dump Jesus quicker than their spouses! ;)

In fact, this fundamental reason is why even Dvaita is philosophically superior and more profound than the Abrahamic religions because the adherents of Dvaita focus on the glories of the Divine, usually ViSnU, as opposed to commandments and being "saved".

So, the real answer, IMO, is that adherents of different religions are NOT worshiping the same God(s)/Goddesses, however the impulse/reason/innate curiosity to worship and inquire about the Divine is indeed the same.

In that sense, the purpose of all religions may be/is the same, yet the object of worship, method(s) of worship, and even philosophies that impel the adherents to worship are indeed different.

Adhvagat
02 March 2011, 03:27 AM
My thought on this matter is that the need to worship, wonder, and inquire about something that is transcendent is inherent in all humans; the jIvA trying to find out its true nature.

Those who are of low birth (non-Hindus), are at a much earlier stage in the evolution and thus their descriptions, ideas, and 'religions' are childish and centered around the little-self (ego) and individual; all Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Christianity, Islam) are more soteriological than ontological in nature.

The question to ask any Abrahamic is, "Would you worship your "God" if you were NOT being 'saved' by Him?" I would wager they would dump Jesus quicker than their spouses! ;)

In fact, this fundamental reason is why even Dvaita is philosophically superior and more profound than the Abrahamic religions because the adherents of Dvaita focus on the glories of the Divine, usually ViSnU, as opposed to commandments and being "saved".

So, the real answer, IMO, is that adherents of different religions are NOT worshiping the same God(s)/Goddesses, however the impulse/reason/innate curiosity to worship and inquire about the Divine is indeed the same.

In that sense, the purpose of all religions may be/is the same, yet the object of worship, method(s) of worship, and even philosophies that impel the adherents to worship are indeed different.

:goodpost:

Rationalist
06 March 2011, 03:28 PM
My thought on this matter is that the need to worship, wonder, and inquire about something that is transcendent is inherent in all humans; the jIvA trying to find out its true nature.

Those who are of low birth (non-Hindus), are at a much earlier stage in the evolution and thus their descriptions, ideas, and 'religions' are childish and centered around the little-self (ego) and individual; all Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Christianity, Islam) are more soteriological than ontological in nature.

The question to ask any Abrahamic is, "Would you worship your "God" if you were NOT being 'saved' by Him?" I would wager they would dump Jesus quicker than their spouses! ;)

In fact, this fundamental reason is why even Dvaita is philosophically superior and more profound than the Abrahamic religions because the adherents of Dvaita focus on the glories of the Divine, usually ViSnU, as opposed to commandments and being "saved".

So, the real answer, IMO, is that adherents of different religions are NOT worshiping the same God(s)/Goddesses, however the impulse/reason/innate curiosity to worship and inquire about the Divine is indeed the same.

In that sense, the purpose of all religions may be/is the same, yet the object of worship, method(s) of worship, and even philosophies that impel the adherents to worship are indeed different.

even to the point of being blatantly wrong. :grouphug:

upasaka
06 March 2011, 06:24 PM
And when I think about it, I do find Christianity to be a fairly atheistic religion. I've always wondered why Christians have such little of a focus on worship of God. They go to church once a week, and that's it. Even when they're at church, all they do is listen to rock music. It's more like a rave than a religious ritual. Hindus, on the other hand, have home altars or puja rooms, and often perform daily worship. Puja, i.e. adoration of God, is fundamental to Hinduism. Thus we have a theistic bent, and Christians a relatively atheistic one. So perhaps Christianity is more a form of atheism than a worship of false gods.

Well, many Christians take their god and religion a lot more seriously than that. Many will pray and read from the bible everyday. Church services are not limited to one day either, at least in most churches. There is a great variety of practice within the Christian community. For instance, there is a wide divergence in opinion on what type of music, if any, is appropriate for inside the church.

TheOne
06 March 2011, 09:16 PM
The only people in Christianity" that in my opinion are "on par" with certain aspects of Dharma are the early Desert ascetics, Gnostics, and the far east Christians.

All of which were declared heretics and were purged from the Church.

Believer
07 March 2011, 01:21 PM
The only people in Christianity" that in my opinion are "on par" with certain aspects of Dharma are the early Desert ascetics, Gnostics, and the far east Christians.

All of which were declared heretics and were purged from the Church.
Hmmm... never thought like that, but makes sense!

sanjaya
08 March 2011, 10:17 AM
Well, many Christians take their god and religion a lot more seriously than that. Many will pray and read from the bible everyday. Church services are not limited to one day either, at least in most churches. There is a great variety of practice within the Christian community. For instance, there is a wide divergence in opinion on what type of music, if any, is appropriate for inside the church.

I'm sure there are Christians who read the Bible every day. I know a few, and they also go to the churches with the rock music. Sorry, but I really can't take anyone seriously who worships to rock music.

As far as church worship at multiple times in the week, I know that Catholic churches technically have a mass every day of the week. But as far as I know, most evangelicals usually only visit their church once per week. Granted, there are Saturday and Sunday services, but the ones I know relegate worship (to rock music) to one day out of their week.

Eastern Mind
08 March 2011, 10:56 AM
I'm sure there are Christians who read the Bible every day. I know a few, and they also go to the churches with the rock music. Sorry, but I really can't take anyone seriously who worships to rock music.

As far as church worship at multiple times in the week, I know that Catholic churches technically have a mass every day of the week. But as far as I know, most evangelicals usually only visit their church once per week. Granted, there are Saturday and Sunday services, but the ones I know relegate worship (to rock music) to one day out of their week.

Vannakkam: Personally, I learn a lot more from and about other people when they aren't worshipping than when they are, or how much they do. A Christian can read the bible two hours a day, a Hindu can study scripture two hours a day.etc. But what really says something is watching a simple reaction or response to a simple situation. How does a room feel when they enter it? When they say "How are you?" , is it real or just some vague way of saying hello. Do they have the ability to make others smile? If a small child comes crying, how do they respond? is it, "Shut up with the crying already!" or is it a gentle, "What happened, Dear?" Of course, then its, "what happens when I enter a room?" and all such questions are reflected back on oneself.

I remember attending a Christian Christmas Eve service with my future wife, and future son (reality of reincarnation). All three of us had extreme difficulty with the hypocrisy because there among the worshippers were the adulterers, the drunks, the bullies, the racists etc. I chalk it up to the advantages (some may see disadvantages) of growing up in a small town. After the service we HAD to go and visit and provide some cheer to some lonely people on the other side of the tracks, just to relieve our sadness from the situation.

Aum Namasivaya

Sahasranama
08 March 2011, 12:21 PM
Buddhists teach not to judge. What do the Hindu scriptures say about judging? I have not come across anything.

Harinama
04 May 2011, 11:11 AM
Yes... we all worship the same God. ;)

Divine Kala
04 May 2011, 06:26 PM
Buddhists teach not to judge. What do the Hindu scriptures say about judging? I have not come across anything.

So do Christian scriptures but you don't see them following the teachings of the New Testament, do you? Pull the beam from thine own eye before critising another for the splinter in his eye. And 'let he who is without sin cast the first stone'. I don't see very many Christians following their own teachings.

NayaSurya
05 May 2011, 01:06 PM
Buddhists teach not to judge. What do the Hindu scriptures say about judging? I have not come across anything.


You have no idea how long your question has sat upon this machine to process. It is a very good question which I think I can help answer....but in another place.<3

upsydownyupsy mv ss
08 May 2011, 10:51 AM
Its a 'yes' and a 'no'. Yes, because, we (devotees) are all in love with that same person. No, because, we don't know what god is, many of us have multiple ideas, about god, most of which may be false, since our definitions, vary, I gave a no, the second time.

Peace! Harooooooo hara.