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God in Hindu Dharma and Representation in Temples

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Goddess in Hindu Dharma

Saraswati Lakshmi
Parvati/Durga Gauri
Akhilandesh- wari Annapoorne -shwari
Ganga Gayatri
Kali Kamakshi
Meenakshi Padmavati
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Hindu Universe > God, Sages and Gurus > God in Hindu Dharma and Representation in Temples > Goddess Worship in Hindu Dharma : Forms of Goddesses

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"If God is our- father, why cannot God be our Mother! If we are the children of our heavenly Father, why cannot we be the children of our heavenly Mother!." This rhetorical question is the basis of why Hindus recognize and accept both male and female aspects of Nature and worship the Supreme Reality in the form of Mother, Father, Friend, Master, Guru, and Savior. Thus Lord Krishna declares in the Bhagawad Gita:

"I am the Father- of this Universe. I am the Mother of this universe, and the Creator- of all. I am the Highest to be known, the Purifier, the holy OM, and the three Vedas." (BG 9.17)

The worship of God in the form of Mother- is a unique Feature of Hinduism. Through the ages, the doctrine of the Motherhood of God has established a firm root in Hinduism. Today Hindus worship the Divine Mother in many popular forms such as Durga, Kali, Lakshrni, Saraswati, Ambika, and Uma.

By worshipping God as the Divine Mother, a Hindu can more easily attribute Mothe rly traits to the Lord, such as tenderness and forgivingness. The natural love between a Mother- and her- child is the best expression of the Lord's unconditio nal love for- us as children of God. In the most representative Hindu view, the universe is the manifestation of the creative power (shakti) of Brahman, whose essence is absolute existence, consciousness, and bliss (or in Sanskrit, sat-chi t-ananda). Since all created forms proceed from the womb of the mother, the cr eative power shakti) of God is recognized by Hindus as the female principle or t he motherly aspect of nature. In this sense we are all children of the Divine Mo ther. We are contained by Her before our - manifestation and nourished by Her th roughout our existence.

To a Hindu, the motherly aspect of God in nature is full of beauty, gentleness, kindness, and tenderness. When we look upon all the glorious and beautiful things ill nature and experience a feeling of tenderness within us, we feel the motherly instinct of God. The worship of God in the form of Mother is a unique contribution of the Hindu child. When a devotee worships God as Divine Mother, he or- she appeals to Her tenderness and unconditional love. Such love unites the de votee with God, like a child with its mother. Just as a child feels safe and secure in the lap of its mother, a devotee feels safe and secure in the presence of the Divine Mother-. Pararnaharnsa Sri Ramakrishna, one of the greatest Indian s ages of modern times, worshipped the Divine Mother Kali during his entire life. He established a personal relationship with Her and was always conscious of Her presence by his side.

In Hinduism, Divine Mother is the first manifestation of Divine Energy. Thus with the name of Divine Mother comes the idea of energy, omnipotence, omnipresence, love, intelligence, and wisdom. Just as a child believes its mother to be all-powerful, and capable of doing anything for the child, a devotee believes the Divine Mother to be all merciful, all-powerful and eternally guiding and protecting him with her invisible arms.

The worship of God as Mother- has had a significant impact on Hinduism. The position of women in the Hindu religion is dignified because each woman is considered a manifestation of the Divine Mother. Hindus view man and woman as the two wings of the same bird. Thus, a man is considered incomplete without a woman, since "it is not possible for- a bird to fly on only one wing"---Swami Vivekananda. Through the worship of God in the form of Mother, Hinduism offers a unique rev erence to womanhood.

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saraswati.jpg (10073 bytes)
hand.gif (968 bytes) Goddesses in Hindu Dharma
Goddess Saraswati
Goddess Lakshmi
Goddess Parvati or Durga
Goddess Gauri
Shree Akhilandeshwari
Shree Annapoorneshwari
Ganga
Gayatri
Shree Kali Mata
Shree Kamakshi
Shree Meenakshi
Shree Padmavati
Santoshi Mata


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