Lecture 4

Lecture 4 - January 14 2010. Lecture 4 Brahman, Isvara,...

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January 14 2010. Lecture 4 – Brahman, Isvara, Devi, Trimurti Review: BRAHMAN 1) Nirguna 2) Saguna Under Saguna, 1) Isvara 2) Devi Under Isvara 1) Brahma 2) Visnu 3) Siva These three gods ‘Trimurti’ Purhanas have things written about Brahma o Rig ht now, there are only about 4 or 5 temples where Brahma is the deity (one is in Rajasthan) o In Mahabarata, the text says one who has read this has earned the same amount of respect as one who has gone to the temple (in Rajasthan) -Sarasvati – the goddess of learning, often depicted as sitting on the lotus. On some accounts, it is depicted that Brahma is her father -Brahma does not compose the Vedas but simply recites them, remember that Vedas and all the texts are ‘beginningless’ -Story of Purhana takes daughter-father relationship literally, Brahma is often depicted with four faces – one face each for each Veda. (or 4 the 4 cardinal directions) -The story goes that Sarasvati was so beautiful that Brahma started oogling at her, so Sarasvati “rose up to the sky” -At that point, Brahma spouted a fifth head to see Sarasvati go up… And the gods thought this was very undivinely, so Siva chopped off the 5 th head, however Siva got in trouble - He gets rid of the head finally in Banares -For this story is why Brahma is not really worshipped in temples anymore VISHNU: -Most important thing about Visnu is that he takes incarnations, he reincarnates himself into the world -There are several lists of Visnu’s incarnations in the world – important 10 incarnations -Famous verse in Bhagavad Gita, “whenever there’s an eclipse of virtue in the world, and wise begins to prevail, then I bring myself forth, for the sake of protecting the good and punishing the evil. I bring myself age after age. -This reincarnation of God is different from our “reincarnation” that we are subjected to
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This note was uploaded on 05/29/2011 for the course RELG 348 taught by Professor Sharma during the Winter '10 term at McGill.

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Lecture 4 - January 14 2010. Lecture 4 Brahman, Isvara,...

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