Viswanath R Swamy

The Hindu belief in God

The Hindu belief in God

Technically speaking, a Hindu can be

Polytheistic (believes in more than one god)

Monotheistic (believes in one god )

Pantheistic (believes that god and the universe are one )

Agnostic (doubts the existence of god )

Atheistic ( believes that there is no god )

Hinduism is the only religion which accommodates a wide range of believes. It is one of the major religions of the world. There are nearly 800 million Hindus today.Hinduism is several thousand years old and holds the distinction of being the most ancient of the worlds living religions.

one of the central beliefs of the Hinduism is that there are many paths to seek the truth and god. Hindus believe in the existence of Brahman, one God, or a supreme universal spirit from which the manifestations of various deities developed including the Holy Trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Maheswara. Brahma represents the Hindu principle of origin or creation. Vishnu is the principle of preservation or nurturing and Maheswara represents the principle of dissolution or destruction.Brahman is present in every thing in this universe -- people, animals, trees, plants and even stones.

THE FOUNDATION of Hindu ethics is the Vedic teaching that God (Brahman) and the indwelling Self of man are one and the same. Behind the psychophysical man is the Self, which is Divine. Ayam atma Brahma --"This Self is Brahman". is a fundamental teaching of the Hindu scriptures.

The Self forms the very core of man's being. It is different from his body, vital energy, senses and mind. man's ego is not this self. The ego or I - ness is an idea only ; it is purely mental. Being the mental, it cannot be the self. This self of man is called Atman in Sanskrit.

If Brahman is compared to an infinite ocean, then Atman is a wave in it. The ocean is never different from its waves; and the waves are never different from the ocean. They are one and the same.Thus Brahman and Atman are one and the same. It is Atman which has become the manifold universe. If I hurt any one, I actually hurt myself.Therefore, I must not hurt anyone. This realization is the basis of Hindu ethics. The Isha Upanishad says very beautifully, " He who sees all beings in the self , and the self in all beings , hates no one." It is possible for us to hate others only when that awareness of unity is not there. Our awareness of the presence of the Self in all makes every one dear to us. The spiritual goal of Hinduism is to experience this Divine Self within and without.