Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Hindu Gods & Goddesses : Here are The Dazzling Masterpieces of Awe-Inspiring Hindu Religious Art


It wouldn't be an exaggeration to say, that India is a sacred land of millions of Gods & Goddesses, The One & Only One Formless, All-Pervading God, with 'Millions of Mesmerizing Visible Forms', suiting the taste, likes & dislikes of every individual Soul in 'The Endless Cosmos'. Every corner of this 'Vast, Secular, & Culturally & Spiritually Vibrant Country', is jam-packed with thousands of 'Temples of different Hindu Deities', apart from the Churches for Christians, Mazjids for the Muslims, Gurudwaras for the Sikhs, Monasteries for the Buddhists, Jain Temples, Fire Temples for the Parsis & so on & so forth. 

Here is a small, & yet never-ending, list of the Hindu Temples of India, collected from the Wikipedia page, with our wholehearted  & deep sense of gratitude to 'The Great Wikipedia'.

Article on Hindu Gods & Goddesses underneath the following pictures


Shri Lakshmi : Hindu Goddess of Wealth : Click here for source of image

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Shri Meenakshshi : An Incarnation of Parvathi : Click here for source of image

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Shri Karthikeya : Click here for source of image


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Shri Subrahmanya : Click here for source of image


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Shri Ganesha : Click here for source of image


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Sita, Rama, Lakshmana & Hanuman : Click here for source of image


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Nataraja ( Shiva ) & his consort Parvathi : Click here for source of image


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Shri Karthikeya : Click here for source of image


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Shri Krishna ( Vishwaroopa Darshan ) : Click here for source of image


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Lakshmi, Saraswathi & Ganesha : Click here for source of image


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Bala Murugan : Click here for source of image

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Shri Subrahmanya : Click here for source of image



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Bala Subrahmanya : Shri Subrahmanya : Click here for source of image


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Shri Saraswathi : Shri Subrahmanya : Click here for source of image


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Shri Ganesha : Shri Subrahmanya : Click here for source of image


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Shri Karthikeya : Shri Subrahmanya : Click here for source of image

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Hinduism acknowledges that at the most fundamental level God is the One without a second — the Absolute, Formless, Infinite and the only Reality known as Brahman, the Supreme, Universal Soul. Brahman is the whole Universe, visible invisible, perceptable imperceptable, and everything in it : everything that we can see, smell, hear, taste, touch and feel AND everything that's beyond our limited human senses, all that's Transcendental. Brahman has no form and no limits; It is infinite, without a beginning and without an end. IT is the Ultimate Reality, IT is the UltimateTruth.

Thus Hinduism is a pantheistic religion: It equates the One & Only God with the limitless Universe. Yet Hindu religion is also polytheistic: populated with myriad of gods and goddesses who personify the multifarious aspects of the one true God, one Truth, allowing individuals an infinite number of ways to worship the boundaryless Almighty, based on family traditions, community practices, regional practices, individual taste and other considerations.

Here are just a small glimpse of the millions of  gods and goddesses of Hinduism:

Brahma is the first member of the Hindu Trinity and is “the Creator” because he periodically creates everything in the Universe. (The word periodically here refers to the Hindu belief that time is cyclical; everything in the universe — except for Brahman and certain Hindu scriptures like the knowledge of Vedas — is created, maintained for a certain period of time, and then destroyed in order to be renewed in ideal form again.)

Vishnu is the second member of the Hindu Trinity. He maintains the order and harmony of the Universe, which is periodically created by Brahma and periodically destroyed by Shiva to prepare for the next creation.

Vishnu is worshipped in many forms and in several incarnations. Vishnu is the pervader — the divine essence that pervades the Universe. He is usually worshipped in the form of an Incarnation (see below).

Shiva, the Destroyer of Life & Universe
Shiva is the third member of the Hindu Trinity, and is assigned the task of destroying the Universe in order to prepare for its renewal at the end of each cycle of time. Shiva’s destructive power is regenerative: Destruction is the step that makes renewal possible.

Hindus customarily invoke Shiva before the beginning of any religious or spiritual endeavor; they believe that any bad vibrations in the immediate vicinity of worship are eliminated by the mere utterance of his praise or name.

Ganapati, the Remover of Obstacles

Ganapati, also known as Ganesha, is Shiva’s first son. Lord Ganapati, who has the head of an elephant, occupies a very special place in the hearts of Hindus because they consider him the Remover of Obstacles. Most Hindu households have a picture or statue of this godhead, and it’s not uncommon to see small replicas of Ganapati hanging from rearview mirrors of cars and trucks in India.


The literal meaning of the word avatar is “descent,” and it’s usually understood to mean divine descent. Avatars are savior forms of a god that descend to earth to intervene whenever help is needed to restore dharma (moral order) and peace. Two of Vishnu’s ten avatars are Rama and Krishna.


Rama is one of the most beloved Hindu gods and is the hero of the Hindu epic called the Ramayana. He is portrayed as an ideal son, brother, husband, and king and as a strict adherent to dharma. Millions of Hindus derive satisfaction from reading and recalling Rama’s trials and tribulations as a young prince who was exiled from his kingdom for 14 years.

If one Hindu god’s name is known and recognized throughout the world, it is Krishna. Hindus identify Krishna as the teacher of the sacred scripture called the Bhagavad Gita and as the friend and mentor of prince Arjuna in the epic the Mahabharata.

For his devotees, Krishna is a delight, full of playful pranks. But most of all, Lord Krishna’s promise to humanity that he will manifest himself and descend to earth whenever dharma declines has sustained Hindu belief in the Supreme Being over thousands of years.

Saraswati is the consort of Brahma the Creator of this Universe. She is worshipped as the goddess of learning, wisdom, speech, creativity, music and finearts.

Hindus offer prayer to Saraswati before beginning any intellectual pursuit, and Hindu students are encouraged to offer prayers to her during the school/college term and especially before and during examinations.

Lakshmi is the goddess of good fortune, prosperity, wealth, joy, peace and well-being. As the consort of Vishnu, she plays a role in every incarnation. (She is Sita, wife of Rama; Rukmini, wife of Krishna; and Dharani, wife of Parashu Rama, another avatar of Vishnu.)

Durga Devi is a powerful, terrorising goddess who fights fiercely in order to restore dharma (moral order). Yet, while Durga is terrifying to her adversaries, she is full of compassion and love for her devotees.

Parvati is the Hindu Goddess of fertility, love, beauty, marriage, children, and devotion; as well as of divine strength and power. Known by many other names, she is the gentle and nurturing aspect of the Hindu Goddess Adi Parashakti and one of the central deities of the Goddess-oriented Shakta sect of India. She is the Mother goddess in Hinduism, and has many attributes and aspects. Each of her aspects is expressed with a different name, giving her over several names in regional Hindu stories of India. Along with Lakshmi and Saraswati, she forms the trinity of Hindu Goddesses.

Parvati is the wife of the Hindu god Shiva – the protector, the destroyer (of evil) and regenerator of the universe and all life. She is the daughter of the mountain king Himavan and queen Mena. Parvati is the mother of Hindu deities Ganesha and Shanmukha.

With Shiva, Parvati is a central deity in the Shaiva sect of Hinduism. In Hindu belief, she is the recreative energy and power of Shiva.


Shri Karthikeya / Subrahmanya

Kartikeya also known as Murugan, Skanda, Kumara, and Subrahmanya, is the Hindu god of war. He is the son of Parvati and Shiva, brother of Ganesha, and a god whose life story has many versions in Hinduism. An important deity found all over the Indian subcontinent in India's history, Kartikeya is particularly popular in South India, such as among the Tamil people.

Devi Maha Kali

 
Kali is the Goddess of Destruction and Dissolution in Hinduism, and she is one of the most popular goddesses in India. Kali is known for destroying ignorance, Ego & all kinds of negativity in man, and she immensely helps those who strive for knowledge of God. Her name Kali in Sanskrit means "The Black One"
 


Indra wields a thunderbolt and is a protector and provider of rain.


Surya (or Soorya) is a golden warrior travelling around the cosmos on a chariot pulled by seven white horses.


Agni holds a special place in Hindu fire ritual to this day as the sacrificer (the priest who performs the ceremony); the sacrifice (the ritual fire and the offerings made into it); and the witness to all rites.


Hanuman is featured in the great Hindu epic the Ramayana. He earned his path to deification by performing feats of strength, devotion, and courage while helping Rama (an avatar of Vishnu) in countless exciting incidents.


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