Hindu deities=1 God?

Discussion in 'Hinduism' started by fitd, May 18, 2011.

  1. Aussie Thoughts

    Aussie Thoughts Just my 2 cents

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    Oh I realize that. I was asking about you, yourself. I understand if you'd rather keep that private though. Cheers.
     
  2. Senthil

    Senthil Active Member

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    Very difficult if not impossible to explain eastern mind to western minds. Maybe this will help ....
     
  3. Aussie Thoughts

    Aussie Thoughts Just my 2 cents

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    Ok, but being from the west yourself, do you not have a western mind? Yet, you profess expertise on the east. Seems to me you're making an assumption you yourself have disproven.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2016
  4. Senthil

    Senthil Active Member

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    In a nutshell, it's called reprogramming of the subconscious mind, which is quite possible with discipline, especially once the eastern paradigm regains it's catch on the soul. I have no expectations of anyone understanding this unless you've done it.
     
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  5. StevePame

    StevePame Administrator

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    I don't think he's making a disproven assumption. We're getting off track here though. Let's keep the conversation focused on the faith aspects, not the individuals providing the perspective. That becomes a slippery slope that brings about personal attacks. I'm seeing too much slippage in that regard on a number of threads recently.
     
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  6. Senthil

    Senthil Active Member

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    As to the OP, my basic point is just that Hinduism is vast. Yes, there is monotheism. But we're not exclusively monotheism. One challenge for Hindus is that because of economics and/or geography many Hindus don't actually get around much. It's a natural assumption to think everyone else is like you, just because of the one word - Hindu. But in reality the Hindu from Tamil Nadu has no real clue about what the Hindu of Bengal, Gujarat, Kashmir, New Delhi, Maharashtra, Orissa, is up to. The 'fight' over who is right can get quite petty, like the regional accents of Sanskrit, when both sides claim, 'I'm right, you're wrong'. So it's both a Godsend in the rich diversity, but also a challenge. Still there are commonalities. To top it off, there is certainly no central authority to mediate disputes.
     
  7. Aussie Thoughts

    Aussie Thoughts Just my 2 cents

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    That's not exactly what I said mate. Senthil contends the west can't understand the east. What I said was, being from the west himself tends to disprove that assumption.
    That's exactly my point. Just because someone is from the west and may have a different way of expressing and using eastern philosophy doesn't mean they don't understand it. It's not fair to make assumptions on that basis.
    You're absolutely right and I do apologize.
     
  8. Senthil

    Senthil Active Member

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    Aussie you're still getting western/eastern geography mixed with western/eastern paradigm. Geographically, I am from the west, but paradigm wise at worst neutral as I was born into a Godless home.
     
  9. Aussie Thoughts

    Aussie Thoughts Just my 2 cents

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    Not at all. When I said, "someone from the west" in my reply to Steve, I thought difference of paradigm was implied. Sorry if that didn't come across.
    Your situation may very well be unique, but don't assume paradigm difference prevents west from understanding east. As I've said, it may change the way one expresses or uses Hindu philosophy, but not the ability to understand it or even be authoritative on the subject.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2016
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  10. Senthil

    Senthil Active Member

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    Aussie, from now on, if I indeed remember, I'll use the terms Abrahamic and Dharmic in reference to the paradigms, rather than eastern and western. That will hopefully cease the confusion.

    My father was an agnostic leaning to atheist. In Hinduism, as I've indicated earlier in this thread, atheism is totally acceptable, and within the umbrella of the dharmic paradigm. Note the difference between atheism and anti-theism used here. Anti anything isn't really acceptable, or falls outside of our lens. So my parents and my upbringing, in that sense, certainly were closer to the Dharmic paradigm than the Abrahamic one, although I doubt if I realised it at the time. Still, there was a lot of reprogramming to do, just not the reprogramming that involved wiping the slate clean of Abrahamism, which would have been far harder. I know many who tried and failed that, and did return to Abrahamism after the fad of Dharmic thought wore off. Each case is individual as heck though.
     
  11. Aussie Thoughts

    Aussie Thoughts Just my 2 cents

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    Maybe as long as paradigm difference is not viewed as an insurmountable obstacle and a difference of opinion is not being mistaken for confusion.
    I've heard there are atheistic Hindus, but in all my time in India, I never ran across one. My father-in-law's Gujarati, but my wife was razed Christian. She didn't meet her biological father until she was of age. She's still Christian, but gets rather Hindu-like at times. Especially around Diwali or when I need chastised.;) I'm Christian as well. but thanks to my exposure to Australian Aboriginal culture, I lean more towards the spiritual side of things rather than traditional Christian worship.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2016
  12. Senthil

    Senthil Active Member

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    As far as you know, you never ran across one. Religion isn't really on the forefront of everyone's chatter. Cricket, movies, and politics are all right up there. To be fair, there are those within Hinduism who don't figure atheists belong either. Fact is there are some atheist schools. It's not all that clear, like Buddhism. Some consider Buddhism very atheistic, while others not so much. I know several atheist Hindus, but some are only atheist to the Abrahamic concept of God. They beleive in Brahman, but don't call it God, whereas I do call Brahman God.
     
  13. Aussie Thoughts

    Aussie Thoughts Just my 2 cents

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    True enough, except an overview of Hinduism was part of the documentary we were shooting. The interviewers actually asked. We'd hear some Hindus are atheist, but no one interviewed was. The same with the idea all Hindu deities come from one God. We'd hear many believe otherwise, but no one interviewed did. Mind, though we logged several thousand kilometers during our stay, we did not visit every region and it's possible not everyone was completely honest. Especially in the south.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2016
  14. Senthil

    Senthil Active Member

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    Indian people have a notoriously and decent sense of saying what you want to hear though. If they knew at all that you're a Christian, they'd say something so as not to insult you. The drivers, waiters, etc. will change their religion 6 times a day to get a better tip. Given their average wage, I don't blame them. It's easy ... you ask your driver what religion they are, and you just say , "Me too!" with a happy smile.

    The one thing about religion in India that is very rare is 'no religion'. That concept is very foreign, and I've explained it to many, in conversations about why I became a Hindu. Yesterday to a Keralite in fact.

    India is one large country as you know.
     
  15. wil

    wil UNeyeR1

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    I think I've stated this before... but riding with a Hindu Priest one night I had this discussion. His claim, his belief was monotheism... He explained it like this... to my mother I am a son.... to my daughter I am a father.... to my sister I am a brother....to my uncle I am a nephew...to my friends I am a friend...and to the attendees of the temple I am a priest....but in all cases I am me....they see me from various perspectives, see me assisting and acting in various roles. Our lesser gods are the same... but they are all one.

    He went on to talk about how and when folks call on the god...like a parent telling a child to say the mantra, say the prayers, to call on the god of education...and when the child does...the parent says...well you've called the god to help...don't you think you should study harder and go to bed early so you can do better on the test?

    Strikingly similar to my Catholic friends who say a prayer to the saint of lost things....while they are looking for the lost thing...
     
  16. Senthil

    Senthil Active Member

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    One priest, one take,
    A hundred priests, a hundred takes,
     
  17. wil

    wil UNeyeR1

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    exactly....your mileage may vary
     
  18. Senthil

    Senthil Active Member

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    Thanks ... wasn't sure there for a minute. Very difficult to explain the vastness of Hinduism some days, really hard with Hindus themselves. Even arguably the most monotheistic school within Hinduism, the Gaudiya Vaishnavas (Krishna is all) go on about demi-gods sometimes. Sounds contradictory to me, but I'm sure they have a great explanation that suits them.
     
  19. Thomas

    Thomas Super Moderator Staff Member

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    LOL, same with us! Roman or Orthodox Catholicism is strictly monotheist, the doctrines, dogmas, etc., are, the Catechism is ... but some of the popular devotions to the saints look 'suspicious' and Marian devotions even mores ... it's a popular accusation!

    And as Karl Rahner, the famous 20th century Catholic theologian once said, interrogate people about their understandings of the Trinity and you'll find tritheism!

    It's no problem really ... the faithful are not expected to be theologians.
     
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  20. Senthil

    Senthil Active Member

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    That rings incredibly true. We have this little group of scholarly types in academia that go on and on in debate, write books, discuss, give lectures, but a are basically ignored by the masses, who are too busy worshiping God(s) to listen to some boring lecture. There's a bit of 'delusions of grandeur' going on there too. And as you say, its all good.
     

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