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What is your conception of GOD? Please post.

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Conception of GOD

The Devatas are conceptions of Rishis/Enlightened people. The sculptural details of Murtis are from Dhyana slokas. The Dyana sloka is written by a person who has attained Mukti through the particular Dhyana. It is the conception of the person who has done the Dhyana.

For example: Ugrapratyangira Devi is the form conceived by Sage Angiras and Prathyangiras. The name is derived from Prathyangiras. The deity is also known as Atharvana Bhadra Kali.

Every individual conceives GOD in his/her own way. You ask a six year old child about how it thinks GOD is like. Most probably it will be a super image of its own mother. It is said “For a small Child Mother is GOD”.

Recently I saw an English movie with a Girl called Mary as the heroine. GOD appears in that. The hero asks him whether he is GOD. GOD replies that "I am Mary's conception of GOD."

Your conception depends on your upbringing, tendencies, notions and what not. Your Vasanas.

Basic Conceptions:

1. Most of us are brought up in an atmosphere where we fear GOD. The term God fearing is used as an adjective. Childen are told உம்மாச்சி கண்ணைக் குத்தும்.

We needed the concept of a punishing GOD when we did not have any formal judicial system. To maintain Law and order. Even today most of the Village deities are perceived this way. We hear how Karuppnnaswami punishes people who have committed crimes. You hear often of சாமி குற்றம்.

More than this many of us believe that GOD is waiting to punish us. We talk about putting the fear of GOD into someone. This is a fallacy. There is a story in the Purana about a thief plucking Bilva leaves on Sivaratri night to keep awake and dropping them in a Sivalinga about which he was not aware. He attains Moksha.

2. GOD is love, compassion, happiness (Daya, Karuna, Ananda) personified. GOD is waiting for an opportunity to reward you for your good actions.

Your basic conception of GOD depends on which one of the basic conceptions you choose. The punishing wrathful GOD or the Kind and Compassionate GOD.

There is also a tendency to categorize Deities as Sattvic, Rajasaic, and Tamasic and again as Soumya and Ugra. But these categorizations according to the Gunas does not apply to the Supreme God as GOD is above the three Gunas. We call MAA as Thrigunathmikai. GOD is omnipotent and omniscient. Other wise GOD is not GOD.

This categorizations depend on our Vasanas. For example Maa Kali is seen by most of the Tamil Brahmins as Ugra whereas in Bengal she is seen as the Universal Mother. Most of the Tamil Brahmins who are in Bengal see her as Karunamoyi, Dayamoyi and Anandamoyi. In Tamil Nadu Maa Kali is worshipped by many communities. In fact the Tamils are the only community in India where a Male is named Kali or Kaliappan. Sri Ramkrishna considered Lalitha as a Ugra Devata.

These classifications are based on our own conceptions/misconceptions and not on facts.

Your conception of God would depend on which of the models you have chosen.

Just to quote some examples.

We all know that Lord Krishna is called Shyam because of his colour. You could call it Mega varna, but still he was not fair in color. But you find many images specially in North India which show him as fair. In most TV serials also he is fair. Why? Because of our deep rooted color prejudice. Again he is always clean shaved. How come the only two kings in India who were clean shaved are Rama and Krishna? Siva is also clean shaved. You call him Smasana Vasa and Jadadhari. Why do we associate a clean shave with Sattva and a moustache with non Sattva? In which case all our seers were not Sattvic.

Again Maa Kali's description in Dhyana Slokas is totally different from what is depicted. In Bengal she is seen as a Beautiful young woman. This is not the description of the Dhyana sloka. Bhadra Kali is considered by many South Indians to be a benign form of Kali. They will be shocked if they read the Dhyana Sloka.

It is of absolutely no consequence how GOD is represented. The question is "Are you able to relate to GOD in this form? Does it fit with your conception?"

Once I had shown the image of MAA from one of the temples in Tamil Nadu dressed in Madisar saree to a friend of my mine who is a Devi Bhakta from Kerala. He immediately remarked that he is not able to relate to her in this dress. Many South Indian visitors to temples in North and Eastern India are not able to relate because of the peculiarity of the images. The Bengalis in Chennai prefer to visit the Kali temple in Mambalam rather than the Kali temple in Annanagar, because the image in Mambalam is Bengali style. The Keralites in Kolkata have a Guruvayurappan temple though there is a Krishna shrine in almost every nook and corner of Kolkata.

Your conception of GOD will again depend on what you think of GOD. As a

1. King

2. Mother

3. Child

4. Lover

These are called Bhavas.

Suppose you are a Sakti worshipper. But which form of Sakti? Kali, Bhuvaneswari, Lalita, Mariamman or any of the other innumerable forms? Lalitha Tripurasundari, Kamakshi, RajaRajeswari, Bhuvaneswari are all forms of Sakthi. Whom do you choose. When you choose Vishnu, is it Rama, Krishna or Narayana and even after choosing Krishna is it Balakrishna (Unnikrishnan), Brindavan Krishna (Radhe Shyam) or Dwarakadhisa (Krishna as a King)? You have a huge variety of choices.

Please think about this and post about your conception of GOD. Which form? And if possible Why? This is Sathsang. Make you think of GOD. It would also help us understand the basics of devotion and different Hindu practices.

No conception is wrong. No conception is superior to others. Hinduism allows everyone to have his/her own conception of GOD.

Please do post.

Thank you.
Damn good and i think very true also. This article will set everyone to think and give convincing replies to the questions raised by the young children
Please tell children that god is formless, omnipotent, omnipresent and omniscient. All the good things that happen in this world are god's work. Ask them to read, study and understand our scriptures, puranaas and teachings, to know god and themselves. Please try to be frank with children and do not mislead them. Let me repeat a piece of wit I did quote elsewhere: In a small fish tank in a house, two fish were talking to themselves. One fish asked the other, "do you believe in god?" "Of course, I do. Then who else is changing the water for us." said the other.
Conception of GOD
GOD is love, compassion, happiness (Daya, Karuna, Ananda) personified. GOD is waiting for an opportunity to reward you for your good actions.

Shri nacchinarkiniyan,

The above assumption can be true only if it is granted that god is not omnipotent and omniscient; otherwise god cannot escape the blame for all the tragedies and sufferings in this world, including one animal preying upon another for its living. If this is attributed to karma and nature respectively, then karma and nature become superior to the god concept.
Thank you Ma Sashikala and Iyyarroran.

Sri. Sangom.

This thread was started as a Sathsangh. Basically based on Bhakthi Yoga. What I have stated is not an assumption but a Belief. Belief is something which can not be proved. Especially Religious Beliefs. This is my conception of GOD. May be your conception is different.

No conception is wrong. No conception is superior to others. Hinduism allows everyone to have his/her own conception of GOD.

I have requested the members to post their conception of GOD. That would enable us to understand the different conceptions which vary from Individual to Individual.

Peace be with you.
dear nacchi,

i think of my God as someone without form, and to whom i ascribe all the mysteries, unknowns, fears and good things.

i do not think my God as someone with whom i can bargain, beg for favours or avoid bad things. i think these are mysteries of life and beyond my understanding. just leave it at that. i am very comfortable attributing the unknowns to the 'mysteries of the faith', which to me, is my hindu heritage.

one of my biggest areas of concern is, 'why bad things happen to good people?'.

although i have conducted enough rituals for a lifetime, i basically do not believe in it any more.

thank you.
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Thank you Ma Sashikala and Iyyarroran.

Sri. Sangom.

This thread was started as a Sathsangh. Basically based on Bhakthi Yoga. What I have stated is not an assumption but a Belief. Belief is something which can not be proved. Especially Religious Beliefs. This is my conception of GOD. May be your conception is different.

No conception is wrong. No conception is superior to others. Hinduism allows everyone to have his/her own conception of GOD.

I have requested the members to post their conception of GOD. That would enable us to understand the different conceptions which vary from Individual to Individual.

Peace be with you.

Shri Nacchinarkiniyan,

I thought you would like to view comments also. Anyway sorry that I did not understand your intention.

My concept about God is that it is the thing which manifests as life - from the lowliest to the highest forms. It is mysterious in the sense it is not comprehended by the human mind or brain; and I feel it will ever remain so, because the "knower cannot be known".

The life force withdraws from a body once it becomes unfit for functioning, like a machine beyond repair. Where it goes back and from where it comes can best be explained by imagining a universal life force field (just like the gravitational field) which pervades everything, everywhere and perhaps eternally too - we can't say. Wherever conditions conducive to the manifestation of a life form arises (for example when milk has some curd added to it, there is a favourable condition for production of lacto-bacilli, good for human consumption and, accordingly, millions of them get produced; but if milk is just left like that, a different kind of lacto-bacilli get produced because the conditions are different.)

when an organism "dies" the life energy or principle withdraws from it that is all. There is no soul, individually and no rebirth of a packet soul as another organism.

Karma (both good and bad) pollute this universal life force field which may be compared to the "nirguna parabrahman" of advaita; good karma results in the polluted life energy giving good or favourable results and vice versa. Hence the prime need to follow the path of virtue - not necessarily what religion says as virtuous.

In this context of the last point stated above viz., vedapramanyam, there is a sloka in "Brahmana Varttikam". I shall find it out and post if I am able to get.
Dear Nacchinarkiniyan Sir,

For me, God is just "energy", that which can create, alter / modify, sustain, destroy, etc.

This 'energy' can be translatable into anything that is 'living' or has a 'life-force'. Such a 'life-force' can be an 'inanimate' thing also, like water, air, etc.

Man can become a 'part of' this energy and can personify the energy but he cannot become the energy himself (owing to the conditioned state of the human body (with its limitations) that he posseses).

God is your MOTHER.Regardless of how Good or Bad one is, it is the only soul who would say My son or daughter is great.
You need not go to a temple to see God.It is enough if u take her Blessings by touching her feet all ur wishes will be done(if she is alive. if not pray to her foto, think of her ,or have her image in ur purse see miracles happen. It's my personal experience.she is An ADORABLE GOD. A Compassionate GOD. A Loving GOD. A Radiant GOD. A Gracious GOD. The only Supreme GOD.
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god is someone that guide ours through difculties
and makes mind calm without worries by giving good attitude
in ours
God is the KING who rules the Universe.

God is the MOTHER with infinite love and compassion to all her children.

God is the FATHER who knows everything that needs to be known.

GOD is the Innocent CHILD in every one's heart.

God is the doting LOVER to everyone of us.

What more can we ask for? :pray2:
god someone we can feel in our mind
although we cant see in eye
This is a post I saw in another forum.

Bhakthi Yoga consists of three stages.

1. Worship of different Gods/Goddesses.

2. Worship of one exclusive God/Goddess who is called Ishta Devata. This helps
in concentration.

3. When you have reached an advanced stage, you go back to worship of other
Gods/Goddesses, though your main worship is still your Ishta Devata.

It is a well known fact that when you are in the Second stage you see your Ishta
Devata everywhere.

I used to Vigneswara temple and pray to MAA. Call him MAA. It comes

A real life instance is the story of Melpathur Narayana Bhattathiri of Kerala a
devotee-poet who composed Narayaniyam a medieval Sanskrit text, comprising a
summary study in poetic form of the Bhagavata Purana. This is mainly devoted to
the worship of Krishna.

Once when he went to the Chottanikara Bhagavathy (Kali) temple he started
singing "Amme narayana, Bhadre Narayana (mother Narayana)" because he saw
Krishna in Kali.

And again his text Narayaniyam starts with an invocation to Lord Siva of Vaikom
in Kerala.

That reminded of an incident. A middle aged Tamil Brahmin who is the wife of one of the top people in a Sankara Matam and one who is close to the Sankaracharya, asked my wife whether it is necessary to have a Ishta Devata. She was telling that in the Matam they pray to different Gods/Goddessses throughout the year depending on festivals and other occasions. She felt the it may help her better if she concentrated on one God/Goddess.

The concept of Ishta Devata is considered Tantrik by Tamil Brahmins. Tamil Brahmins have some peculiar ideas about Tantras. They consider tantra to be Non-Vedic. They also consider Agamas to be Non-Vedic. This kind of belief is prevalent among other Brahmins also.

The belief in the caste (Varna) system is considered to be the central point of the Vedas. In fact some people do believe that Varnashrama system is Hinduism. Since the Tantras and Agamas are against the Varna system they are considered non-Vedic. Even Bhakthi is suspect viewed from that angle.

Even many Upanishads which speak against the Varna system is dismissed as of no consequence.

Of course this is changing albeit slowly.

I was writing about the Philosophy of the Siddhars. I am quoting an article by a English man who was a Natha. He considered Tantras and upanishads to be Non-Vedic. I thought I shoudl write an explanation. But suddenly I remembered that this is also the belief system of the Tamil Brahmins.

I was thinking of reproducing an old article I had written about Ishta Devata. I do not know how it will be received in a Brahmin's forum.

I have posted this here because the response to this thread clearly shows that Bhakthi Yoga in the sense represented by the post I quoted i. e based on Ishta Devata is not common among the Tamil Brahmins.

I am not saying that this particular belief system of the Tamil Brahmins is wrong. Though I may at times rile against some of the beliefs I do not think I am qualified to pass judgement.
My conception of god is two fold.
if we look at the world as it is knowing what maya is, knoiwng what real is and what is not real, but considering the complete manifestation of universe , the idea of god that emerges to me is the divine purusha or narayana of the vaishnavas. when the knowing becomes crystallized one has a never ending vision of the full manifestation of purusha as he. This purusha is the complete manifestation of this universe , yet he is not the material ingredients in it. he is the source behind every thought but he is not the thought itself yet his adorned by thought. even though he is not the materials or their energy they adorn him or reside by his side serving him(the concept of lakshmi).that is purusha is viewed not as just as a paramatman without attributes but who is bedecked by ornaments , holds the sudarshan chakra,the gada etc. In such a form he has manifested himself in different avatars and different gods.
The second concept is if I ignore the unreal, eliminate its existence because anything unreal even if it is a concept does not have existence,just like i ignore the ingredients of a dream state when I wake up,then I end up with the brahman of advaita.
I believe that the both these ideas of gods are simultaneously real. It is only that according to one's state of mind one can grasp either this form of god or the formless god. Both views are indeed real and I believe that final state one can reach this state of awareness that there is no contradiction in the two
good in ourself
to makes our positive mind
to guide ours the right way
without stress
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