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Author Topic: How do I know which god(dess) of which pantheon helped me?  (Read 1703 times)

Jainarayan

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How do I know which god(dess) of which pantheon helped me?
« on: October 17, 2014, 11:34:19 am »
Please bear with me as I try to make my thoughts coherent, and if some of this is repeated from my earlier posts. :p

For several years I practiced Hinduism. The closest I came to a patron deity was Hanuman - strength, loyalty, courage, resourcefulness, among other attributes. Even when I was Christian (birth and growing-up religion) I never denied the existence of the Hindu deities, but I was iffy on the Norse deities. I guess I just didn't pay attention to them, though they fascinated me. Then like a thunderbolt (no pun intended) Thor seems to have grabbed me in a headlock. I always had an affinity for him anyway. So now I have my patron deity and couldn't be happier knowing him. :)

I've since left practicing Hinduism because there are theological and philosophical aspects that just don't resonate with me anymore - maybe they never really did. I still believe in and revere the Hindu deities, but I'm not worshiping them like the Aesir: Thor, Odin, Frigga, Balder, Tyr, Frey and Freyja - my "first string", who give me warm fuzzies thinking about them.

My question, however, is how do I know who from which pantheon helped me? For example, when I've had financial problems, was it Lakshmi, Freya or even Njord (though I didn't know him at the time) who helped me? When something seemed insurmountable and a real obstacle, was it Ganesha or Odin who watched over me and cleared the way? When I took up learning guitar was it Saraswati or Odin who helped me learn?

In a way I feel that if I don't continue to do puja (worship) to those 4 Hindu deities, it's like I'm turning my back on them if they did indeed help me. Could they actually be the ones who help me, and the Aesir say to Lakshmi "sure, go ahead and help him, we'll take care of [whatever else]". So, for those of you who have mixed pantheons, how do you know who helps with something, and whom to thank for it?

Did any of that make sense!? :confused:
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 - Skandopanishad
 

Redfaery

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Re: How do I know which god(dess) of which pantheon helped me?
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2014, 12:27:40 pm »
Quote from: Gunnar Thorbjorn;162595
Please bear with me as I try to make my thoughts coherent, and if some of this is repeated from my earlier posts. :p

 
I get what you're saying.

From earlier posts, I take that you had a hard time "meshing" with both Hinduism and Buddhism. So I don't think you should feel too worried about your former pantheon getting upset that you're looking elsewhere. They are part of a number of pre-existing religious and cultural structures that you simply weren't able to make work for your life. Have you considered that they might have been the ones who nudged you towards heathenry, since their religions didn't work for you?

I also don't think that if you stop regular puja, it would be some sort of slap in anyone's face. The Indian gods are for the most part pretty chill. Even a wrathful deity as awesome and terrifying as Kali is never described as being petty or spiteful to her worshipers. And remember, just because you stop doing it regularly doesn't mean you can't do a ritual once in a while if, say, Hanuman helps you out, or Lakshmi brings you some unexpected cash.
KARMA: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Jainarayan

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Re: How do I know which god(dess) of which pantheon helped me?
« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2014, 12:51:21 pm »
Thanks Redfaery, that's a good perspective since I'm not seeing the forest for the trees.

Quote from: Redfaery;162603
I get what you're saying.


Whew! I was afraid the caffeine had me in overdrive! :p

Quote
From earlier posts, I take that you had a hard time "meshing" with both Hinduism and Buddhism. So I don't think you should feel too worried about your former pantheon getting upset that you're looking elsewhere. They are part of a number of pre-existing religious and cultural structures that you simply weren't able to make work for your life.


You are right, I could not mesh Hinduism and Buddhism, and they are closely related, even with my own upg on the idea of sunyata and anatta.

Quote
Have you considered that they might have been the ones who nudged you towards heathenry, since their religions didn't work for you?


D'oh! I never thought of that! Instead of the Aesir saying "sure, you can help him" maybe the Hindu gods are saying "here, you can have him". I think that's more likely. rofl Seriously, they probably know that I am moving on for several reasons.

Quote
I also don't think that if you stop regular puja, it would be some sort of slap in anyone's face. The Indian gods are for the most part pretty chill. Even a wrathful deity as awesome and terrifying as Kali is never described as being petty or spiteful to her worshipers. And remember, just because you stop doing it regularly doesn't mean you can't do a ritual once in a while if, say, Hanuman helps you out, or Lakshmi brings you some unexpected cash.

 
Right, I don't mean that they'd get angry. For example,  Vishnu is known to give salvation even to those who hate him with a passion (Hiranyakashipu, Ravana). Rather, I'd feel like I was being ungrateful. But it does go back to "moving on", and they being chill. And of course I'd never be disrespectful to any deity of any faith.

Whew! This actually does give me warm fuzzies and allay my worries (darn ocpd and gad :mad:).

;)
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 - Skandopanishad
 

stephyjh

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Re: How do I know which god(dess) of which pantheon helped me?
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2014, 05:00:24 pm »
Quote from: Gunnar Thorbjorn;162605
Thanks Redfaery, that's a good perspective since I'm not seeing the forest for the trees.



Whew! I was afraid the caffeine had me in overdrive! :p



You are right, I could not mesh Hinduism and Buddhism, and they are closely related, even with my own upg on the idea of sunyata and anatta.



D'oh! I never thought of that! Instead of the Aesir saying "sure, you can help him" maybe the Hindu gods are saying "here, you can have him". I think that's more likely. rofl Seriously, they probably know that I am moving on for several reasons.


 
Right, I don't mean that they'd get angry. For example,  Vishnu is known to give salvation even to those who hate him with a passion (Hiranyakashipu, Ravana). Rather, I'd feel like I was being ungrateful. But it does go back to "moving on", and they being chill. And of course I'd never be disrespectful to any deity of any faith.

Whew! This actually does give me warm fuzzies and allay my worries (darn ocpd and gad :mad:).

;)
I moved on from far nastier gods than the Hindu pantheon (cutting ties with Mictecacihuatl was *scary*-- she has a reputation for, there's only one way out of her service). Moving on happens, and as long as you're respectful about it, you should be fine.
A heretic blast has been blown in the west,
That what is no sense must be nonsense.

-Robert Burns

Jainarayan

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Re: How do I know which god(dess) of which pantheon helped me?
« Reply #4 on: October 17, 2014, 08:43:13 pm »
Quote from: stephyjh;162616
I moved on from far nastier gods than the Hindu pantheon (cutting ties with Mictecacihuatl was *scary*-- she has a reputation for, there's only one way out of her service). Moving on happens, and as long as you're respectful about it, you should be fine.

 
Yes, I am being as respectful as I can be. I still have tiny statues of Ganesha and Hanuman on my dashboard; a small Thor's hammer hangs from the mirror. I did a lot or rearranging and packing tonight, but I think I actually made it better. I have the Hindu deities grouped in any area that if I decide to do some little puja, I can. I put away pictures and statues that are essentially duplicates. I mean, how many forms of Vishnu can you have? (well, about 27 actually :D:).
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 - Skandopanishad
 

PrincessKLS

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Re: How do I know which god(dess) of which pantheon helped me?
« Reply #5 on: October 18, 2014, 07:56:23 pm »
Quote from: Gunnar Thorbjorn;162595
Please bear with me as I try to make my thoughts coherent, and if some of this is repeated from my earlier posts. :p

For several years I practiced Hinduism. The closest I came to a patron deity was Hanuman - strength, loyalty, courage, resourcefulness, among other attributes. Even when I was Christian (birth and growing-up religion) I never denied the existence of the Hindu deities, but I was iffy on the Norse deities. I guess I just didn't pay attention to them, though they fascinated me. Then like a thunderbolt (no pun intended) Thor seems to have grabbed me in a headlock. I always had an affinity for him anyway. So now I have my patron deity and couldn't be happier knowing him. :)

I've since left practicing Hinduism because there are theological and philosophical aspects that just don't resonate with me anymore - maybe they never really did. I still believe in and revere the Hindu deities, but I'm not worshiping them like the Aesir: Thor, Odin, Frigga, Balder, Tyr, Frey and Freyja - my "first string", who give me warm fuzzies thinking about them.

My question, however, is how do I know who from which pantheon helped me? For example, when I've had financial problems, was it Lakshmi, Freya or even Njord (though I didn't know him at the time) who helped me? When something seemed insurmountable and a real obstacle, was it Ganesha or Odin who watched over me and cleared the way? When I took up learning guitar was it Saraswati or Odin who helped me learn?

In a way I feel that if I don't continue to do puja (worship) to those 4 Hindu deities, it's like I'm turning my back on them if they did indeed help me. Could they actually be the ones who help me, and the Aesir say to Lakshmi "sure, go ahead and help him, we'll take care of [whatever else]". So, for those of you who have mixed pantheons, how do you know who helps with something, and whom to thank for it?

Did any of that make sense!? :confused:

 

I've actually questioned before with my pantheon about rather or not some of the divine help came from Jesus or Mary. Who knows maybe I have other Jewish/Christian deities, saints, etc around me. I once asked a question with the Doreen Virtue Goddess cards and the card picked was Mary (Mother of Jesus). In fact I wonder if I'm being guided by non-dietistic spirit guides more than actual prophets or deities. I've also been drawn to Venus, Aphrodite, and lately I'm thinking of switching to Freyja. But I have not prayed to her. I haven't spoken to Venus or Aphrodite in a long time. So as far as knowing who is actually helping me, I don't know how to find out.
PrincessKLS

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Re: How do I know which god(dess) of which pantheon helped me?
« Reply #6 on: October 18, 2014, 07:58:50 pm »
Quote from: stephyjh;162616
I moved on from far nastier gods than the Hindu pantheon (cutting ties with Mictecacihuatl was *scary*-- she has a reputation for, there's only one way out of her service). Moving on happens, and as long as you're respectful about it, you should be fine.

 

One of the ways that I've cut ties to the Judeo-Christian God is that I've seperated Yaweh from Jesus, I don't believe in the holy trinity and I just can't really give respect to Yaweh, he seems really nasty the more I look into him.
PrincessKLS

Jainarayan

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Re: How do I know which god(dess) of which pantheon helped me?
« Reply #7 on: October 19, 2014, 12:27:33 pm »
Quote from: Gunnar Thorbjorn;162595
...

My question, however, is how do I know who from which pantheon helped me? For example, when I've had financial problems, was it Lakshmi, Freya or even Njord (though I didn't know him at the time) who helped me? When something seemed insurmountable and a real obstacle, was it Ganesha or Odin who watched over me and cleared the way? When I took up learning guitar was it Saraswati or Odin who helped me learn?

In a way I feel that if I don't continue to do puja (worship) to those 4 Hindu deities, it's like I'm turning my back on them if they did indeed help me. ...

 
First, let me say thanks to everyone for the great answers. It's definitely a learning experience. I like hearing about other people's experiences and practices. Especially when so much of it is upg. Part of that upg for me - "upg for me" is redundant - is that in a way I believe the deities are real beings we just can't see, and at the same time they represent powers that are part of us - within ourselves - as well as powers of the world, the universe, existence, what-have-you.

Be that as it may, I don't have the creepy feeling I thought I'd have if I "supplanted" the Hindu deities with the Aesir. To that end, I've removed some of the pictures I had hanging up, and put them away. I feel none the worse for it. I think it's because I am moving further away from Hinduism, which was not as relevant to me as I used to think, and more towards the Aesir. After all, if I believe that the powers and attributes of deities in both pantheons overlap to a certain degree, why should I feel creepy about worshiping a deity in a form I can relate to more? For some westerners who adopt/convert to Hinduism they can adopt it lock, stock and barrel... culture and all. But I'm not Indian, and don't plan on becoming Indian (culturally, that is). I know someone who did, he even legally changed his name to an Indian name. I may be of Norse descent, so I feel justified in using the name Gunnar Thorbjorn. :p
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 - Skandopanishad
 

Hematite

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Re: How do I know which god(dess) of which pantheon helped me?
« Reply #8 on: October 22, 2014, 12:26:33 pm »
Quote from: Gunnar Thorbjorn;162822
First, let me say thanks to everyone for the great answers. It's definitely a learning experience. I like hearing about other people's experiences and practices. Especially when so much of it is upg. Part of that upg for me - "upg for me" is redundant - is that in a way I believe the deities are real beings we just can't see, and at the same time they represent powers that are part of us - within ourselves - as well as powers of the world, the universe, existence, what-have-you.

Be that as it may, I don't have the creepy feeling I thought I'd have if I "supplanted" the Hindu deities with the Aesir. To that end, I've removed some of the pictures I had hanging up, and put them away. I feel none the worse for it. I think it's because I am moving further away from Hinduism, which was not as relevant to me as I used to think, and more towards the Aesir. After all, if I believe that the powers and attributes of deities in both pantheons overlap to a certain degree, why should I feel creepy about worshiping a deity in a form I can relate to more? For some westerners who adopt/convert to Hinduism they can adopt it lock, stock and barrel... culture and all. But I'm not Indian, and don't plan on becoming Indian (culturally, that is). I know someone who did, he even legally changed his name to an Indian name. I may be of Norse descent, so I feel justified in using the name Gunnar Thorbjorn. :p

 
I don't know if this helps any, but I held off on a pantheon for a very long time for some of these concerns. What if I made the wrong choice and my calling was with someone else? Would I offend by following a new path? If I didn't really understand the pantheon, would I offend on accident? Was I sure I knew what I invited into my life?

Now though, I find myself after years of research and a friend with surprising insight to be not only eclectic, but that I recognize who I'm getting. It turns out they had been helping me all along, I just didn't have a name to put with the instance. Not only that, I have come to place more importance working in a modern era with intent than tradition. The pieces of my puzzle are finally falling into place, and instead of being worried I may do something wrong, I feel like I am welcoming friends into my home.

Jainarayan

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Re: How do I know which god(dess) of which pantheon helped me?
« Reply #9 on: October 22, 2014, 12:54:26 pm »
Quote from: Hematite;163255
I don't know if this helps any, but I held off on a pantheon for a very long time for some of these concerns. What if I made the wrong choice and my calling was with someone else? Would I offend by following a new path? If I didn't really understand the pantheon, would I offend on accident? Was I sure I knew what I invited into my life?

Now though, I find myself after years of research and a friend with surprising insight to be not only eclectic, but that I recognize who I'm getting. It turns out they had been helping me all along, I just didn't have a name to put with the instance. Not only that, I have come to place more importance working in a modern era with intent than tradition. The pieces of my puzzle are finally falling into place, and instead of being worried I may do something wrong, I feel like I am welcoming friends into my home.

 
That's a great story. :)

I had a thought this morning about this (again :whis:)... I'm coming to feel that the deities of Hinduism do not represent who I am, but the Aesir do. I don't know if it's a return to what I always was and have believed. It may be that I tried to force a square peg into a round hole, to use a cliché, by working with the Hindu deities and practicing Hinduism. As I'm learning more and more about the Aesir, and feeling them more, perhaps they were always there, but I wasn't ready for them. The Hindu deities represented something to me that I was at the time, or tried to be. I think they're letting me go (not as in "being fired" though :D:).
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 - Skandopanishad
 

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