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  1. #11
    Newbie EnderDragonFire is on a distinguished road EnderDragonFire's Avatar
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    Re: Roman Gods in Germanic Tribes

    Quote Originally Posted by Hildeburh View Post
    Mythologies often contain contradictory accounts that is the nature of mythology.
    I suppose they do. I personally try to make personal decisions about which version I think makes the most sense. For example, I would believe that either Odin was the king of the Aesir (if I was a Norse pagan), and approach him as such, or believe that he was not. I would not treat him as if he was sometimes, maybe, occasionally king of the Gods and sometimes Thor was. The is nothing wrong with doing that, mind you, but it simply does not fit with my rather literal and personal interpretation of deities.

    Something that always annoys me in my own belief system, is that Kali is alternatively said to be an independent Goddess, an incarnation of Shiva, an incarnation of Durga, or an incarnation of Parvati. Since I see gods as "real," extant beings with definite personalities, I cannot accept all four as true. I have to pick one, and stick with it. If that is not how you approach mythology, I imagine that makes inconsistencies easier to deal with.
    Last edited by EnderDragonFire; 21 Mar 2017 at 11:11 PM. Reason: math error

  2. #12
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    Re: Roman Gods in Germanic Tribes

    Quote Originally Posted by EnderDragonFire View Post
    Interesting. How do you address the seeming disparity in level of power of those deities within their respective pantheons? How can Thor be subservient to Odin, while Perun and Indra* were rulers of their Pantheons?

    *(In Vedic times. Modern Hindus have varying and often contradictory views of Indra)
    Well, I don't have it completely fleshed out. I've tried, but drove myself to the mead too often over it. I think at different times, on different planes and in (as someone calls them) Otherworlds they switch roles. After all, Tyr at one time was the sky god. I tend to think that time lines overlap. We may see part of one where something is happening, that seemingly contradicts something we glimpse from another time line.

    Indra got pissed and threatened to flood the countryside of Govardhan when Krishna told the country folk not to perform Vedic sacrifices. When Indra sent the rains, Krishna simply lifted up Govardhan Hill and held it over the people and animals like an umbrella. Indra threw his tantrum, but soon realized Krishna's powers. That's a story that explains something like this. There may be stories and happenings we just don't know about.

    Moreover, the Vedic gods took a backseat to Shiva and his forms and manifestations, Vishnu and his avatars, Devi and her forms and manifestations over time. Yet the Vedas still exist, and people still worship the Vedic gods as primary, as your footnote above points out. Although, Indra still is the king of the devas and Heaven. There are a number of classes of celestial beings. The Govardhana Hill incident deflated his ego a bit.

    Just my take on it. I could be completely wrong.
    śivāya vishnu rūpaya śivaḥ rūpaya vishnave
    śivasya hridayam viṣṇur viṣṇoscha hridayam śivaḥ
    Vishnu's appearance is Shiva; Shiva's appearance is Vishnu
    Vishnu is the heart of Shiva; Shiva is the heart of Vishnu - The Yajurveda

    "Anyone can pray to the Gods in whatever manner he likes." - Sveinbjörn Beinteinsson

  3. #13
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    Re: Roman Gods in Germanic Tribes

    Quote Originally Posted by EnderDragonFire View Post
    Something that always annoys me in my own belief system, is that Kali is alternatively said to be an independent Goddess, an incarnation of Shiva, an incarnation of Durga, or an incarnation of Parvati.
    OK, that one's easy. The widely held view among Hindus is that Parvati, Durga and Kali are one and the same. Different forms, manifestations, personality facets of Parvati. Parvati, previously incarnated as Uma/Sati (we get the word suttee because Sati threw herself onto a sacrificial fire out of embarrassment). She rebirthed as Parvati. The Hindu Gods do that sort of thing.

    During a fierce battle with the buffalo demon Mahishasura, he was gaining the upper hand over the gods. The gods went to Parvati and asked for help. She took on the warrior form of Durga. As the battle heated, Durga was becoming more and more pissed at Mahishasura's brazenness. She them manifested as Kali and went on a rampage destroying him and his henchmen. Kali became so enraged and drunken on blood lust she was (unintentionally) threatening all of creation.

    The gods implored Shiva to stop his wife, but even he was at a loss. So he threw himself down on the ground like a corpse. As Kali was going about in a frenzy she stepped on his corpse and came to her senses. Another story (which I like better, though the first story is her usual iconography) says he turned himself into a baby or toddler on the battlefield. When Kali saw the child crying in fear, she stopped her rampage, picked him up and nursed him as any mother would do. Of course, once manifested, you can't unmanifest, which is why Kali and Durga are worshiped today as aspects of the Divine and Universal Mother.

    I'm not making this up, really. It's in several of the Puranas. Hindu puranic stories are nothing if not colorful... and "colorful" is a gross understatement.
    śivāya vishnu rūpaya śivaḥ rūpaya vishnave
    śivasya hridayam viṣṇur viṣṇoscha hridayam śivaḥ
    Vishnu's appearance is Shiva; Shiva's appearance is Vishnu
    Vishnu is the heart of Shiva; Shiva is the heart of Vishnu - The Yajurveda

    "Anyone can pray to the Gods in whatever manner he likes." - Sveinbjörn Beinteinsson

  4. #14
    Newbie EnderDragonFire is on a distinguished road EnderDragonFire's Avatar
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    Re: Roman Gods in Germanic Tribes

    Quote Originally Posted by Jainarayan View Post
    The widely held view among Hindus is that Parvati, Durga and Kali are one and the same. Different forms, manifestations, personality facets of Parvati.
    Well, that is what you typically hear from Vaishnavas. Shaktas tend to treat them as forms of Mahadevi, or to treat one form as the supreme from thereof. Some Shaivists treat Kali as the feminine form of Shiva. Smritas see ALL gods as equal manifestations of the supreme Brahman (Somewhat true for all Hindus, but more direct with Smartism).

    That is just getting into the MAIN sects of Hinduism. There are hundreds of smaller sects with different views on everything form the Trimurti to the Devas to the Asura, etc. To say nothing how Buddhists and Sikhs interpret Hindu deities.

  5. #15
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    Re: Roman Gods in Germanic Tribes

    Quote Originally Posted by EnderDragonFire View Post
    I suppose they do. I personally try to make personal decisions about which version I think makes the most sense. For example, I would believe that either Odin was the king of the Aesir (if I was a Norse pagan), and approach him as such, or believe that he was not. I would not treat him as if he was sometimes, maybe, occasionally king of the Gods and sometimes Thor was. The is nothing wrong with doing that, mind you, but it simply does not fit with my rather literal and personal interpretation of deities.

    Something that always annoys me in my own belief system, is that Kali is alternatively said to be an independent Goddess, an incarnation of Shiva, an incarnation of Durga, or an incarnation of Parvati. Since I see gods as "real," extant beings with definite personalities, I cannot accept all four as true. I have to pick one, and stick with it. If that is not how you approach mythology, I imagine that makes inconsistencies easier to deal with.
    I dont think these issues mattered to pre-Christian pagans, they were not dogmatic.

  6. #16
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    Re: Roman Gods in Germanic Tribes

    Quote Originally Posted by Hildeburh View Post
    I dont think these issues mattered to pre-Christian pagans, they were not dogmatic.
    Why not? Christians didn't invent dogmatism.
    KARMA: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

  7. #17
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    Re: Roman Gods in Germanic Tribes

    Quote Originally Posted by EnderDragonFire View Post
    Well, that is what you typically hear from Vaishnavas. Shaktas tend to treat them as forms of Mahadevi, or to treat one form as the supreme from thereof. ...
    Yes, there is that too. Gaudiya Vaishnavas, which includes ISKCON tend towards that. For example, I'm nominally Vaishnava because I run to Vishnu first, primarily as Krishna (whom I do puja for) and secondarily Narasimha, and Lakshmi, but I see only one God with the "masculine" and "feminine" aspects. And each of those aspects manifests as Harihara: Vishnu and Shiva being one and the same, flip sides of the same coin, as my avatar and sig, indicate; and Tridevi: Parvati/Durga (aka Mahadevi aka Devi aka Shakti), Lakshmi and Saraswati.

    Granted that is not a majority view (but it's not as obscure as one might think - it's quite an ancient view), but my temple is south Indian style, greatly influenced by the Smarta tradition, which also influences me. When the priests do an abishekham for Kanyaka Parameshwari, who is Adiparashakthi, they chant the Sri Suktam, a hymn specifically to Lakshmi. Shaiva and Vaishnava priests alternate and assist in most abishekham-s, as well as devotees of Shiva, Vishnu, Devi, attending any and all pujas. There is a regularly scheduled abishekham in which Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswati are worshiped as one.

    My point being that in real life, what you find is a devotee who typically believes in only one God and will worship any and/or all, but focuses on a form of God/dess that resonates with them: jaki rahi bhavana jaisi prabhu murat dekhi tin taisi (one gets the vision of God according to one’s feeling, or everyone sees God in their own meaningful way).

    So it is very true and correct to say that anything said about Hinduism, which is really only an umbrella term, and its beliefs and practices is very general. However, some reason sectarianism is given much prominence in writings and on the 'net. I don;t know why that is, because you generally won't find it in temples or talking to the "every day" Hindu.
    śivāya vishnu rūpaya śivaḥ rūpaya vishnave
    śivasya hridayam viṣṇur viṣṇoscha hridayam śivaḥ
    Vishnu's appearance is Shiva; Shiva's appearance is Vishnu
    Vishnu is the heart of Shiva; Shiva is the heart of Vishnu - The Yajurveda

    "Anyone can pray to the Gods in whatever manner he likes." - Sveinbjörn Beinteinsson

  8. #18
    Newbie EnderDragonFire is on a distinguished road EnderDragonFire's Avatar
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    Re: Roman Gods in Germanic Tribes

    Quote Originally Posted by Jainarayan View Post
    sectarianism is given much prominence in writings and on the 'net. I don;t know why that is, because you generally won't find it in temples or talking to the "every day" Hindu.
    Totally accurate. I don't know where people get that idea from. The Hare Krishna monk who was my teacher encouraged me to study all schools of Dharma, even Buddhism. I have never seen any animosity between worshipers of Shiva, Vishnu, or the Devi.
    Last edited by Jenett; Yesterday at 07:00 PM. Reason: Fixing a missing quote bracket.

  9. #19
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    Re: Roman Gods in Germanic Tribes

    Quote Originally Posted by Redfaery View Post
    Why not? Christians didn't invent dogmatism.
    With respect to pre literate pagan societies, such as Celtic and Germanic, myths were orally transmitted so variations occurred from place to place and through time.

    In literate pagan societies where myths were recorded they contain contradictions, precisely because pre Christian pagans were not dogmatic, there was never one perceived truth.

    Paganism is orthopraxic not orthodoxic.

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