Divinity

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All-Pervasive Divinity

He is the God of forms infinite in whose glory all things are--smaller than the smallest atom, and yet the Creator of all, ever living in the mystery of His creation. In the vision of this God of love there is everlasting peace. He is the Lord of all who, hidden in the heart of things, watches over the world of time. Krishna Yajur Veda, Shvetashvatara Upanishad 4.14-15

As a family of faiths, Hinduism upholds a wide array of perspectives on the Divine, yet all worship the one, all-pervasive Supreme Being hailed in the Upanishads. As Absolute Reality, God is unmanifest, unchanging and transcendent, the Self God, timeless, formless and spaceless. As Pure Consciousness, God is the manifest primal substance, pure love and light flowing through all form, existing everywhere in time and space as infinite intelligence and power. As Primal Soul, God is our personal Lord, source of all three worlds, our Father-Mother God who protects, nurtures and guides us. We beseech God's grace in our lives while also knowing that He/She is the essence of our soul, the life of our life. Each denomination also venerates its own pantheon of Divinities, Mahadevas, or "great angels," who were created by the Supreme Lord and who serve and adore Him.

A unique and all-encompassing characteristic of Hinduism is that one devotee may be worshipping Ganesha while a friend worships Siva or Vishnu or Kali, yet both honor the other's choice and feel no sense of conflict. The Hindu religion brings us the gift of tolerance that allows for different stages of worship, different and personal expressions of devotion and even different Gods to guide our life on this earth.

Hinduism is a family of four main denominations - Saivism, Shaktism, Vaishnavism, Smartism - under a divine hierarchy of Mahadevas. These intelligent beings have evolved through eons of time and are able to help mankind without themselves having to live in a physical body. These great Mahadevas, with their multitudes of angelic devas, live and work constantly and tirelessly for the people of our religion, protecting and guiding them, opening new doors and closing unused ones.

In the Vedas, God is called Brahman, the Supreme Being who simultaneously exists as the absolute transcendent Parabrahman, as omniscient consciousness or shakti power and as the personal prime Deity. The word Brahman comes from the Sanskrit root Brh which means to grow, manifest, expand, referring to the Brahman Mind of pure consciousness that underlies, emanates and resonates as all existence. Brahman is simultaneously Purusha, the Primal Soul. He is perfection of being, the original soul who creates/emanates innumerable individual souls - including the Gods. Some Gods, such as Lord Ganesha, did not undergo evolution as we know it, but were emanated as mature Mahadevas whose minds simultaneously govern and interpenetrate specific orders of space and time. They are so close to Brahman that they fulfill their cosmic functions in perfect accord with God's wisdom, intent and action.