Hindus actually believe in both the things (Murty Puja and Universal God). Krishna says in Bhagavad Geeta “If you believe in Monotheism, you will get love of God but it will take time (and requires extreme Concentration or mental ability to believe in things which is not visible to eyes.) but again if you pray Me(Krishna) , you will definitely get me in lesser time (Krishna as God) ( because you are logically convinced that God(Krishna) is in front of you and you have to please him so you have an image of whom you are praying).” This is why we Hindus believe in Idolatry (Murty Puja).
You should proud of it, if you logically pray it.
Relevance Of Murti Puja
Written By: Sadhu Anandswarupdas
The glory and divine power of the Swaminarayan mantra. ,
Murti-worship as distinct from idol-worship
The notion that the term murti is equivalent to the English word "idol" is a misconception. The scholar Steven Rosen notes that early European missionaries were largely responsible for conflating the two terms by informing local Hindus that "idol" was the correct translation for "murti". Furthermore, scholar Diana Eck explains that the term murti is defined in Sanskrit as “anything which has definite shape and limits; a form, body, figure; an embodiment, incarnation, or manifestation.” Thus, the murti is more than a likeness; it is the deity itself taken “form". The uses of the word murti in the Upanishads and the Bhagavad-Gita suggest that the form is its essence." Thus, a murti is considered to be more than a mere likeness of a deity, but rather a manifestation of the deity itself. The Murti is like a way to communicate with the abstract one god (Brahman) which creates, sustains, and dissolves creation.
It is very interesting to note, that in Russian the word "morda" means some entity's face or facial-expression which can hint at that original etymology.
Idolatry is a pejorative term for the worship of an idol, a physical object such as a cult image, as a god, or practices believed to verge on worship, such as giving undue honour and regard to created forms other than God. In all the Abrahamic religions idolatry is strongly forbidden, although views as to what constitutes idolatry may differ within and between them. In other religions the use of cult images is accepted, although the term "idolatry" is unlikely to be used within the religion, being inherently disapproving. Which images, ideas, and objects constitute idolatry is often a matter of considerable contention, and within all the Abrahamic religions the term may be used in a very wide sense, with no implication that the behaviour objected to actually consists of the religious worship of a physical object.
Behaviour considered idolatrous or potentially idolatrous may include the creation of any type of image of the deity, or of other figures of religious significance such as prophets, saints, and clergy, the creation of images of any person or animal at all, and the use of religious symbols, or secular ones. In addition, theologians have extended the concept to include giving undue importance to aspects of religion other than God, or to non-religious aspects of life in general, with no involvement of images specifically. For example, the Catechism of the Catholic Church states: "Idolatry not only refers to false pagan worship. Man commits idolatry whenever he honours and reveres a creature in place of God, whether this be gods, or demons (for example satanism), power, pleasure, race, ancestors, the state, money etc."
The avoidance of the use of images for religious reasons is called aniconism, which has been an aspect of all major religions at times, some much more consistently than others. The destruction of religious images within a culture is called iconoclasm, of which there have been many major episodes in history.
The word idolatry comes (by haplology) from the Greek word εἰδωλολατρία eidololatriapara synthetically from εἰδωλολάτρης from εἴδωλον eidolon, "image" or "figure", and λάτρις latris, "worshipper" or λατρεύειν latreuein, "to worship" from λάτρον latron "payment". Although the Greek appears to be a loan translation of the Hebrew phrase avodat elilim, which is attested in rabbinic literature (e.g., bChul., 13b, Bar.), the Greek term itself is not found in the Septuagint, Philo, Josephus, or in other Hellenistic Jewish writings. It is also not found in (pre-Christian) Greek literature. In the New Testament, the Greek word is found only in the letters of Paul, 1 Peter, 1 John, and Revelation, where it has a derogatory meaning, as one of the vices. It is also found in the Didache and the Apostolic Decree includes a prohibition from the "pollution of idols". Hebrew terms for idolatry include avodah zarah (foreign worship) and avodat kochavim umazalot (worship of planets and constellations).
In current context, however, idolatry is not limited to religious concepts. It can also refer to a social phenomenon where false perceptions are created and worshipped, or even used as a term in the entertainment industry.
The Christian view of idolatry may generally be divided into two general categories, the Catholic/Orthodox view (which accepts the use of religious icons and other images) and the Protestant view. Fundamentalist Protestants still often accuse these other Christians of idolatry, iconolatry, and even paganism for failing to "cleanse their faith" of the use of images; in the Protestant Reformation such language was common to all Protestants. Puritan groups adopted a view similar to Judaism (as a result they were accused of Judaizing), denouncing all forms of religious objects, whether in three-dimensional or two-dimensional form, including even a plain cross.
The problem springs from differences in interpretation of theTen Commandments. "You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself a graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them or serve them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments." (RSV Exodus20:3-6).
The Roman Catholic and particularly the Orthodox Churches cite St. John of Damascus' work "On the Divine Image" to defend the use of icons. He wrote in direct response to the Byzantine iconoclasm that began in the 8th century by the Byzantine emperor Leo III and continued by his successor Constantine V. St. John maintains that depicting the invisible God is indeed wrong, but he argues that the incarnation, where "the Word became flesh" (John 1:14), indicates that the invisible God became visible, and as a result it is permissible to depict Jesus Christ. He argues: "When He who is bodiless and without form... existing in the form of God, empties Himself and takes the form of a servant in substance and in stature and is found in a body of flesh, then you draw His image..."
He also observes that in the Old Testament, images and statues were not absolutely condemned in themselves: examples include the images of cherubim over the Ark of the Covenant (Exodus 25:18-22) which God instructed Moses to make, the embroidered figures of cherubim angels which God told Moses to make on the curtain which separated the Holy of Holies in the Tabernacle tent (Exodus 26:31), or the bronze serpent mentioned in the book of Numbers.
He defends external acts of honour towards icons, arguing that there are "different kinds of worship" and that the honour shown to icons differs entirely from the adoration of God. He continues by citing Old Testament examples of forms of "honour": "Jacob bowed to the ground before Esau, his brother, and also before the tip of his son Joseph's staff (Genesis 33:3). He bowed down, but did not adore. Joshua, the Son of Nun, and Daniel bowed in veneration before an angel of God (Joshua 5:14) but they did not adore him. For adoration is one thing, and that which is offered in order to honour something of great excellence is another". He cites St. Basil who asserts, "the honour given to the image is transferred to its prototype". St. John argues therefore that venerating an image of Christ does not terminate at the image itself – the material of the image is not the object of worship – rather it goes beyond the image, to the prototype.
Catholic and Orthodox Christians use religious objects such as statues, Crosses, Icons, incense, the Gospel, Bible, candles and religious vestments. Icons are mainly in two- but rarely in three-dimensional form. These are in dogmatic theory venerated as objects filled with God's grace and power -- (therefore Eastern Orthodoxy declares they are not "hollow forms" or cult images).
Evidence for the use of these is found in the Old Testament and in Early Christian worship. For example, the veneration of the tombs and statues of martyrs was common among early Christian communities. In 397 St. Augustine of Hippo, in his Confessions 6.2.2, tells the story of his mother making offerings for the statues and tombs of martyrs. This is a very early form of Christianity, as the Biblical Canon had only been adopted about 30 years previously at the Council of Laodicea, however see Development of the Christian biblical canon for details.
The offering of veneration in the form of latria (the veneration due God) is doctrinally forbidden by the Orthodox Church; however veneration of religious pictures or Icons in the form of dulia is not only allowed but obligatory. Some outside observers find it difficult to distinguish these two levels of veneration in practice, but the distinction is maintained and taught by believers in many of the hymns and prayers that are sung and prayed throughout the liturgical year.
In Orthodox apologetics for icons, a similarity is asserted between icons and the manufacture by Moses (under God's commandment) of the Bronze Snake, which was, Orthodoxy says, given the grace and power of God to heal those bitten by real snakes. "And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any person, when he beheld the serpent of brass, they lived"(Numbers 21:9). Another similarity is declared with the Ark of the Covenant described as the ritual object above which Yahweh was present (Numbers 10:33-36); or the burning bush which, according to Exodus, God spoke Moses through; or the Ten Commandments which were the Word of God ("Dabar Elohim") in tablet form. These inanimate objects became a medium by which God worked to teach, speak to, encourage and heal the Hebrew faithful.
Veneration of icons through proskynesis was codified in the Seventh Ecumenical Council during theByzantine Iconoclast controversy, in which St. John of Damascus was pivotal. Icon veneration is also practiced in the Catholic Church, which accepts the declarations of the Seventh Ecumenical Council, but it is practiced to a lesser extent, since Latin-rite Catholics today do not usually prostrate and kiss icons, and the Second Vatican Council enjoined moderation in the use of images. Eastern-rite Catholics still use icons in their Divine Liturgy, however.
Some Protestant groups avoid the use of images in any context suggestive of veneration. Religious images are common in Catholic, Orthodox churches. The use of some religious images and symbols, for example in printed matter, is now more common among many modern Protestant groups than was the case in the 16th century, but large publicly displayed images, except the cross, are rare. ManyConservative Christians avoid any use of religious images, even for inspiration, as idolatry.
|“||For know you this and understand: That no fornicator or unclean or covetous person (which is a serving of idols) hath inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.|
--Ephesians Chapter 5:5
Hinduism grants equal status to all forms of worship and therefore it neither prescribes nor proscribes worship of images (murti) or idols.
Allegory is a key element of Hindu religion and modern day experts in Communications and Business Communications recognise how superior it is as a concept to represent abstract ideas. Each attribute of the God as imagined by the devotee is depicted in form of a deity such as purity and potency in linga, fierce ruthlessness towards evil indurga, cosmic force in Vishnu, amenable kindness and auspiciousness in Ganesha, extreme and indomitable power and pride in Kumara, 100% victory in Hanuman(Hanuman was the flag symbol of Arjuna and was sitting atop Arjuna's chariot throughout the 18 days of the Kurukshetra war). The multiple heads or limbs of Lord Vishnu or goddess Durga often seen in Hindu art, for example, would be intended to represent divine omniscience and omnipotence, whereas the use of an animal icons for vehicle would seek to allegorically represent particular abstract qualities associated with that animal/bird such as astuteness, agility or power. Gestures (mudra) the hand or the holding of a certain object are also heavily weighted with meaning. Certain tenets such as non-violence and search for God in all beings living and non-living led to depiction of several other forms.
Each individual icon thus becomes to the Hindu worshiper a complex statement of faith and every detail may be a focus of meditation and spiritual insight. To fully equate the divine with its icons ormurtis would be a misinterpretation of the Hindu concept of divine reality. The argument of scholars of Abrahamic faiths is that any attempt to represent Him will only fall short since there is nothing equal to him and that such representations should not be worshipped. Further they opine that it is he that gives a certain creation / creature a certain set of qualities and making gods out of them is insulting the Creator. In the same way, Veda-centric Hindu reformist movements in the 18th–19th centuries such as the Brahmo Samaj and Arya Samaj, were also highly critical of image worship like the Semitic religions and called for a return to the ancient Vedic and Upanishadic teachings.
Modern academic view is that in the Vedic period that preceded this, worship was primarily centred around the open-air fire altar (yajna-kunda) and no physical representations of the divine were used. A text in the Shukla Yajur-veda (32.3) reads, “Of Him there is no likeness (pratima), whose glory is infinite”. The Upanishads, which form the philosophical conclusions (vedanta) of the Vedas, repeatedly stress the formlessness (nirākāra, no material form) and unimaginable nature of God, and advise the aspirant to realise the divine presence inwardly. However by the time of Bhagavata Purana, meditation was recommended along with and worship of pratima (murti) with the understanding that it is not an ordinary material object.
The Hindu sages closed their eyes and meditated silently (forms of Skt. tapasya and Skt. sadhana) - they did not need enclosures/buildings, nor even words or mental images for their meditation. But these sages did not abuse any one's murtis or call its worship a sin. They recognized it as an approach/stage in an individual's sincere spiritual progress guided by the principles of Dharma.
As Swami Vivekananda said, "Would it be right for an old man to say that childhood is sin or youth is sin? .... Just because a few have passed by ignorance and attained knowledge, they cannot ignore that there are innumerable who haven’t tried at all. It is to be noted that in a man's journey of life, he is ever learning, some men are more literate, some are less; so is the case with some communities of our society against others (this dichotomy is common to all countries). The bottom line is: -
|“||“It is not easy for everyone to focus on God as the un-manifested than God with a form, due to human beings having the need to perceive via the senses.human beings having the need to perceive via the senses.||”|
If Vedanta truly epitomizes the state of learnedness, in achieving this spiritual progress "the first stage for a layman is the external/material worship; struggling to rise high, mental prayer is the next stage, but the highest stage is when the divine has been realized" Unity in variety is the scheme of nature, and the Hindu has recognized it and practised ever since the yore through his equanimity to all and universal tolerance". This conscious Hindu recognition and the respect for different approaches to sincere worship proved useful to Jews who migrated to India (for trading or fleeing persecution by other anti-idolatrous Abrahamical religions) and thrived for many hundreds of years before moving back to Israel in 1948. Thus for the common masses,
Now that Vedanta is recognised as the summit of spirituality, one should learn what the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad discusses on the essence of Vedanta. The dialogue between Rishi Yajnavalkya and his wife, Maitreyi, elaborates the essence of Vedanta. The three recognized states to the path of Self-realization are: Sravana, Manana and Nididhyasana. 'Sravana' is the discourse of scriptures from a qualified Guru. 'Manana' means constant reflection upon what has been learnt so that intellectual conviction may be produced in the mind. Finally, 'Nididhyasana' implies meditation that helps to cause a direct realization of the unity of things in God. Knowledge should lead to experience; intellectual conviction should result in perception (pravritti). That is why meditation comes in the last stage of the spiritual journey. Again the scriptures insist that successful completion of the states is neither necessary nor sufficient for Self-realization.
Striving for Moksha (salvation) i.e. one-ness with the universal soul (Brahman) is the ultimate goal of Impersonalism. One should try to understand supreme person through worship (Bhakti yoga) or meditation (Raja Yoga), or by performing one's duties well (Karma Yoga) or pursuing the intellectual path (Jnana Yoga) is the goal of (Devotees) or (Personalist).
A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada translates Lord Krishna's divine words from Bhagavad Gita, "Be steadfast in yoga (yoga-sthaḥ), O Arjuna, perform your duty (kuru karmani) and abandon all attachment (sangam) to success or failure (siddhy-asiddhyoḥ). Such evenness of mind (samatvam) is called yoga."
The Hindus believe with regard to God that he is one, eternal, without beginning and end, acting by free-will, almighty, all-wise, living, giving life, ruling, preserving; one who in his sovereignty is unique, beyond all likeness and unlikeness, and that he does not resemble anything nor does anything resemble.
Although Vedas describe God as a power beyond imagination and that individuals should pursue a path of enlightenment / Vedanta, the truth however is, they do not reject Idol Worship. In Puja Vidhaan/Prakriya, there is a host of procedures such as (1).Suchi i.e. cleanliness, use of silks, (2). Muhurat i.e. Auspicious Timing (3).Guru vandanam(4).Symbols such as wearing preferably silks, donning tilak or decoration of the pooja griha and mandir with lights, flowers & rangoli (5). Solemnising the deity – avaahana (invitation), sthaapan (installation) and puja (worship). (3). Use of 'puja dravya' such as ganga jal, akshata, kumkum, turmeric, panchamrita et., (6).Invocation through mantras or dhyanam i.e. silent meditation (7).'kirtans / bhajans' i.e. transcendental experience (7). Gifts to friends & relatives and Charity to the poor. Inter alia, the idol becomes an interface with the God – although He is formless the devotee can conjure the Lord of his definition in all his grandeur, power and divine attributes like karuna and kripa. That 'He' is formless is known to every Hindu but idol worship is one of the several ingredients of Bhakti to enable mortal beings of different backgrounds and limitations to approach and experience Him the one Supreme Being.
Thus as Christopher John Fuller, Professor of anthropology at London School of Economics notes that an image cannot be equated with a deity and the object of worship is the deity whose power is inside the image, and the image is not the object of worship itself.
The misleading notion that Hinduism is fundamentally idolatrous was addressed in the context ofAbrahamic religions by the 11th-century Muslim scholar Al-Biruni. Al-Biruni rejected the notion and established that Hindus do not necessarily need anthropomorphisms, but the crowd and the members of the single sects use them most extensively. Al-Biruni wrote that the Hindus believe with regard to God that He is one, eternal, without beginning and end, acting by free-will, almighty, all-wise, living, giving life, ruling, preserving; one who in his sovereignty is unique, beyond all likeness and unlikeness, and that he does not resemble anything nor does anything resemble Him.
From a historical perspective, image worship (Murti-PujA) is an ancient tradition as a small part within the overall Hindu tradition, with the oldest extant images of the classical Pauranik deities allegedly dating to Ramayana when Rama worshipped Lord Shiva at Rameswaram. Other early archaeological finds include idols of the Gupta period (c. 3rd to 7th centuries CE).
Although Hinduism is commonly represented by such anthropomorphic religious icons such as murtis,aniconism is equally represented with such abstract symbols of God such as the Shiva linga and thesaligrama Furthermore, Hindus have found it easier to focus on anthropomorphic icons, as Lord Krishna said in the Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 12, Verse 5.
In Islam, šhirk (Arabic: شرك) is the major sin of idolatry or polytheism. Islam strongly prohibits all form of idolatry. It refers to the deification of anyone or anything other than the singular God. Shirk is also associating partners with him, giving his characteristics to others beside him, or not believing in his characteristics.
Within Islam, šhirk is an unforgivable crime; God may forgive any sin except for committingšhirk. It is the vice that is opposed to the virtue of tawhid, literally "declaring [that which is] one", often translated into the English term monotheism.
As in the other Abrahamic religions, in practice the term has been greatly extended and may be used very widely within Islam to describe behaviour that is deprecated, including the use of images in a way that is seen as un-Islamic, but does not literally constitute worship.
The word šhirk comes from the Arabic root Š-R-K (ش ر ك), with the general meaning of "to share".In the context of the Qur'an, the particular sense of "sharing as an equal partner" is usually understood, so that polytheism is "attributing a partner to Allah". In the Qur'an, šhirk and the related word (plural Stem IV active participle) mušrikūn (مشركون) "those who commit shirk and plot against Islam" often clearly refers to the enemies of Islam (as in verse 9.1–15) but sometimes it also refers to erring Muslims.
Idolatry as a negative stereotyping process
Yehezkel Kaufman (1960) has suggested that when God gave commandments regarding idolatry he meant it to be understood in its most literal form: according to the Bible, most idolaters really believed that their idols were gods, and Kaufman holds that this is an error in assuming that all idolatry was of this type, when in some cases, idols may have only been representations of gods. Kaufman writes that "We may perhaps say that the Bible sees in paganism only its lowest level, the level of mana-beliefs...the prophets ignore what we know to be authentic paganism (i.e., its elaborate mythology about the origin and exploits of the gods and their ultimate subjection to a meta-divine reservoir of impersonal power representing Fate or Necessity.) Their [the Biblical author's] whole condemnation revolves around the taunt of fetishism."
However, Kaufman holds that in some places idolaters worshipped gods and spirits that existed independently of idols, and not the forms of the idols themselves. For instance, in a passage in 1 Kings 18:27, the Hebrew prophet Elijah challenges the priests of Baal atop of Mount Carmel to persuade their god to perform a miracle, after they had begun to try to persuade the Jews to take up idolatry. The pagan priests beseeched their god without the use of an idol, which in Kaufman's view, indicates that Baal was not an idol, but rather one of the polytheistic gods that merely could be worshipped through the use of an idol.
Orestes Brownson asserts that the pagans in the Hebrew Bible did not literally worship the objects themselves, so that the issue of idolatry is really concerned with whether one is pursuing a "false god" or "the true God". Brownson may have been correct, but some claim Brownson's theory contradicts the understanding of the Ancient Hebrews, whose culture was contemporary with others that practiced "idol worship." The opponents claim that the Book of Daniel, Chapter 14,illustrates the Hebrew understanding of idols, but this chapter is rejected as apocryphal by Protestants and is not included in most contemporary translations of the Bible. In Daniel 14, Cyrus, king of the Persians, worships two deities, a deity named Bel and a dragon. Daniel 14 characterizes the king and some of the Babylonians as believing, literally, that Bel and the dragon are living gods:
- Now the Babylons had an idol, called Bel, and there were spent upon him every day twelve great measures of fine flour, and forty sheep, and six vessels of wine. And the king worshipped it and went daily to adore it: but Daniel worshipped his own God. And the king said unto him, Why dost not thou worship Bel? Who answered and said, Because I may not worship idols made with hands, but the living God, who hath created the heaven and the earth, and hath sovereignty over all flesh. Then said the king unto him, Thinkest thou not that Bel is a living God? seest thou not how much he eateth and drinketh every day?....
The Guru Granth Sahib, the central scripture and Guru of Sikhs, strongly rejects idolatry Idolatry is also rejected by the Dasam Granth a scripture by the tenth Guru, Guru Gobind Singh, and within numerous rehatnamas (documents codifying the code of conduct of the Sikh religion), such as the Sikh Rehat Maryada and the Budha Dal Rehatnama. Sikhism criticises the practice of using idols to represent God and pray to him, and instead puts forward that the shabad, the word of God, is his "true" murti (deific representation), meaning that true prayer and worship of God is through meditation. The rejection of idol worship is demonstrated in Guru Granth Sahib Ji: "Worshipping their idols, the Hindus die; the Muslims die bowing their heads." (Ang 556).
In practice images of human figures of religious significance, such as the Sikh gurus, are common in modern Sikhism, and the Sikh attitude to non-religious images is generally relaxed.
by Mrs. Pervin Mistry
Mrs. Mistry writes on why idol-worship is wrong in our religion
Being One with Ahura Mazda, just as we do NOT have any statue of
Ahura Mazda, we also do NOT have any statues of Asho Zarathushtra!
In ALL of Ancient Iran, there is NOT a single portrait, statue or
confirmed bas relief of Asho Zarathushtra!
Mrs. Mistry writes:
We believe Ahura Mazda is the Supreme Creator and as such He is Everywhere and in All things, from the tiniest atom to the biggest star. As He is Spirit, He is not seen with our physical eyes and so it is with Asho Zarathushtra as well! Asho Zarathushtra is defined as a Yazad in Yasna 3 and 7 and the Khordad Yasht even defines Him as an Ameshaspand! He is One with Ahura Mazda, united with Him through His Thoughts, Words and Deeds! So say the Gathas too where Ahura mazda Himself refers to Asho Zarathushtra as The Only One Who Has Heard Ahura Mazda Completely, i.e. the Only One who could unite His conscience with Ahura Mazda in order to know His Thoughts, Words and Deeds!
Being One with Ahura Mazda, just as we do NOT have any statue of Ahura Mazda, we also do NOT have any statues of Asho Zarathushtra!
In ALL of Ancient Iran, there is NOT a single portrait, statue or confirmed bas relief of Asho Zarathushtra! The figure on the bas relief at Taq-e Bostan, near Kermanshah, is believed by some to be that of Meher Yazad (Mithra), whereas some believe it to be that of our Prophet. But, we do not know for sure that that is the carved picture of our Prophet!
Hence, even in the Sassanian times, we cannot prove for sure that our forefathers ever kept a portrait of Asho Zarathushtra! Spirit or Spiritual Beings cannot be given a shape as they are beyond confinement! Our aim is to develope our spirituality and spiritual senses and not restrict even sacred and Spiritual Beings in a definitive shape, form and confinement. God is everywhere and so is His Only Direct Messenger! Why should we degrade everything to the physical senses and sense perceptions?
Zarthushtis never were "murti" or idol worshippers. To them, spirituality or communion was between the Divine Spirit and their own urvan. We worship Ahura Mazda not through idols or give him any shape and form but we worship Him through Fire, His Son! Asho Zarathushtra also tells us to worship the Divine Spirit through His Sacred Fire which is His Own Divine Energy that pervades every atom and propells it to spiritual perfection. We do not worship Divine Beings through idols and it follows that we also do not worship or pay homage to our Prophet, a Yazad, through an idol or statue.
- Mrs. Mistry
Idol worship is completely wrong according to vedas and is mere ritual with no moral ethics included! Is that why there is so much corruption in india? Hindus only doing rituals and not looking for morals from religion.
They do the stupidest of things, just coz the books say in poetic exaggeration as Ganga to be a beautiful river, a gift from above but hindus take it literally as descended from heavens! Hindus today Idolise it and put sarees on it as if they were decorating an Idol. How worse can the pollution get?
The reason is simple and it has to do with the fact that God is said to be omnipresent . Not only that but it is also believed that ' you are God, and I am also God' that is to say that God lives in human beings as well as in everything you see around you - cats, dogs, tress etc. So if God is in nature is the worship of same evil? Besides, a school of thought is of the opinion that the founders of the various religions are Gods who have to be worshipped.
At least I know that the christians believe Jesus is God and so do the hindus that Krishna is God. What they forget is that there is only but One God and all others His creation and no one can equate the creation to the Creator. It is like saying that the vice president of a sovereign state is the same as the president because after all they are all presidents.
So for me this issue has to be broadened and not to be focused on a particular group of people or religion. I am of the opinion that anybody who thinks Jesus is God or the virgin Mary is God or even Krishna as God and therefore tends to worship that person is an idol worshipper.
The reason being that notwithstanding their holiness they are all mortal human beings like you and I and made up of the five elements - fire, water, ether, earth and air. This means to worship anyone of them he be Jesus or whatever (an embodied being) is akin to worshiping an idol. So why worry your head about the hindus and their so called idol worship. If you believe in the cross of Jesus or any other cultural identity linked to any of the religions and tend to worship it then be sure that you are an idol worshiper.
God, with all His powers, has no body of His own. He only takes one on loan in an ordinary body in order for Him to have possession of the five senses and talk to His children in this dirty old world.
For anybody to claim he is God, he or she must have two basic requirements - no birth and no death- not even per second and rise up the next second and claim to have gained victory over death.
How can God the Creator of heaven and earth die and buried or to be born by an ordinary human being and have father and a mother? So anybody who worships anything besides the Heavenly God the Father is an idol worshipper.
God did not create human beings solely for them to come on earth and worship Him. Do children have to worship their earthly fathers or parents because it is they who 'created' them? God is not to be worshipped. He wants us to know Him as accurately as He is. Perhaps, I have to take this opportunity to give a wee bit of God's introduction of Who and What He is as well as His place of abode.
God has a name, a place of abode and a form of identity. God is a Soul (bodiless) - the Supreme Father of all Souls. Also called Heavenly God the Father because it is He who created heaven ( the land of immortality), He has the form of a Star or better still a tiny point and lives in the far - away land far far beyond the sun called the Land of Peace or the Soul World with we His children as souls from where we came on this earth to play our various roles in the unlimited drama.However, our coming on this earth is numberwise according to the effort you make in this body to know Him accurately. Now, as the founders of the various religions come on earth to play their part in the unlimited drama and establish their various religions their followers also follow them with each playing his part in the unlimited drama which repeats itself every 5000 years.
Worship in itself is foolish, whether of idol or book or stone or statue or the infinite imaginary god.
It's same as not doing any work and watching cartoon channels in TV.
No doubt it is prohibited in all holy books like Vedas, Upanishads, Talmudh, Bible and The Quran.
It is unfortunate that except The Holy Quran no book remains in its original form and original words.
The Holy Quran itself says that God has sent many messengers to show the right path to the humanity whenever it went astray. He has also revealed books to few of his messengers. Whenever people deviated form the Guidance sent by God and went astray and whenever people changed the books sent by God and deviated from the original script, God sent messengers to remind them the forgotten guidance and recall them back to the God's worship.
Quran says that all the previous books have been changed by its followers and they deleted certain rules which were against the human desires or interest and added what they liked.That's whyGod says that The Holy Quran is the last Book from God and it has been preserved till the universe ends. Hence it has been memorised by millions of muslims.
Regarding the Holy Quran it has been proved that there is no difference in any of the trillions scripwhere everver it is being printed on earth.
Why the idol worship is very foolish?
If there was any power to the idol worship, India would not have gone to the hands of Mugals and British from Hindu Kings. If there was any power to the idols, Brahmins will not go for higher studies and becomes Doctors and Engineers instead of doing rituals. If there is power to the idols, Jnanis like Buddha might have considered it. Vasishta will never advise Rama in Vasishtam like this:
"Kaalam yajna tapo dhana theertha devaarchana bhrmai
Chiram aadhi shatopetaa kshapayanti mrigaa iva"
People doing rituals like yaga, tapas, theertadana, pooja, etc. are wasting their life like animals.
मूर्ति पूजा का विरोध करते हुए बाबा साहब अम्बेडकर जी ने बहुजन समाज को
22 प्रतिज्ञाओं को मानने के लिए कहा था।
बाबा साहब से पहले संत कबीर दास, संत रविदास आदि महान संतों ने भी मूर्ति पूजा का पुरजोर विरोथ किया था लेकिन बहुजन समाज ने महान पुरुषों की बातों को आज तक अपने तर्क के बल पर समझने की कोशिश नही की,जो पूर्णतया दूर्भाग्य की बात है।
मूर्ति पूजा एक पाखण्ड हो सकता है लेकिन जननांगों को पूजने से बढी मूर्खता कोई नही हो सकती।
शिवतेरस के दिन महिलायें बढ़े चाव से पार्वती की यौन तथा शंकर के लिंग रुपी काले पत्थर( शिवलिंग) की पूजा करती दिखाई देती है।
जब वो कहतीं है कि उन्होंने बीए./बीएससी/एम.ए./एमएससी/
पीएचडी/एम.फिल/बीएड/बीटैक/ एमटैक की शिक्षा प्राप्त की है तो बहुत खुशी होती है कि हमारे देश की शिक्षा दुनिया की शिक्षा से कितनी बेहतर है।,,,दुनियां के अन्य देशों में लोग शिक्षा के माध्यम से पाखण्ड व रुडियों को समाप्त करने का कार्य करते है लेकिन भारत में और भी अधिका बढ़ावा देने का।
मन्दिर के बाहर गरीब व्यक्ति भूँखा वैठा रहता है लेकिन मन्दिर में रखे उस लिंग और योनि रुपी पत्थर पर दूध/मिठाई/ सेव/संतार/केला/बेर आदि फलों का चड़ावा करते है।
हम जिस सभ्यता की दुहाई देते नही थकते क्या कभी सोचा है कि वह सभ्यता नही वल्कि सबसे बढी मूर्खा है।
एक महिला को पराए मर्द से हाथ लगाने पर भी तमाम आलोचनाओं का सामना करना पडता है साथ ही यदि कोई व्यक्ति धोखे से भी स्पर्ष हो जाता है तो उस व्यक्ति को सिंर गंजा होने की संभावना बनी रहती है। लेकिन यह क्या?यहां तो महिलाओं और पुरुष लिंग और यौन पर हाथों से दूध बहाते है।
युवतियां अच्छे वर की प्राप्ति के लिए शिवलिंग की पूजा करती है,क्या भारत के अतिरिक्त अन्य देशों में जहां,लिग और यौन पूजा नही होती है वहाँ की महिलाओं को अच्छे पति नही मिलते?
भारत में वो लोग जो लिंग और यौन पूजा नही करते क्या उनको एक अच्छा जीवनसाथी नही मिलता?
या जो लिंग और यौन पूजा करते है क्या उन्है एक अच्छा जीवनसाथी मिल ही जाता है?
वास्तव में कभी-कभी लगता है कि भारत से पाखण्ड को समाप्त करना,गधे पर सींग उघाने के समान लगता है। क्यों कि जो अशिक्षित है उनका यह दोष है कि वो शिक्षित नही है लेकिन जो शिक्षित है उनका क्या किया जाए।
— with Bamcef Net,
Idol Worship in Hinduism
The Snake Goddess
Manasa, the Snake Goddess
Ma Manasa Devi, the snake goddess, is worshipped by Hindus, mainly for the prevention and cure of snakebites and infectious diseases like smallpox and chicken pox as well as for prosperity and fertility. She stands for both 'destruction' and 'regeneration', almost akin to a snake shedding its skin and being reborn.
A Graceful Goddess
The idol of the goddess is depicted as a graceful lady with her body, adorned with snakes and sitting on a lotus or standing on a snake, under a hooded canopy of seven cobras. She is often seen as 'the one-eyed goddess', and sometimes portrayed with her son Astika on her lap.
Mythological Lineage of Manasa
Also known as 'Nagini,' the female serpentine avatar or 'Vishahara,' the goddess who annihilates poison, Manasa, in the Hindu mythology, is believed to be the daughter of sage Kasyapa and Kadru, the sister of the serpent-king Sesha. She is the sister of Vasuki, king of Nagas and wife of sage Jagatkaru. A simplified version of the myth regards Manasa as the daughter of Lord Shiva. Legends have it that she was rejected by her father Shiva and husband Jagatk?ru, and hated by her stepmother, Chandi, who scooped out one of Manasa's eyes. So, she appears to be foul-tempered, and benevolent only towards her devotees.
Manasa, a Powerful Demigoddess
Manasa, due to her mixed parentage, is denied full godhead. Ancient Hindu legends in the Puranas, narrate the story of the birth of this powerful serpentine goddess. Sage Kashyapa created goddess Manasa from his 'mana,' or mind, so she could control the reptiles that were creating havoc on earth and Lord Brahma made her the presiding deity of snakes. It is believed that Lord Krishna granted her divine status and she established herself in the pantheon of gods.
Manasa Puja, Worship of the Serpentine Goddess
During the monsoon season, Goddess Manasa is worshiped, mainly in the eastern Indian states of Bengal, Assam, Jharkand, and Orissa, throughout the months of June, July and August (Ashar - Shravan), a time when the snakes leave their nesting ground and come out into the open and become active. In Bangladesh, the Manasa and Ashtanaag Puja is a month-long affair spanning July and August. Devotees pay obeisance to goddess Manasa and perform various 'pujas' or rituals to appease her. Special 'murtis' or statues of the goddess are sculpted, various sacrifices made, and prayers chanted. In some places, worshippers are seen to pierce their bodies, poisonous snakes are displayed on the altar, and live shows depicting the life and legends of Manasa Devi are performed.
Worship by HINDU