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Author Topic: How many deities is too many?  (Read 1577 times)

ehbowen

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Re: How many deities is too many?
« Reply #15 on: January 23, 2018, 12:37:13 am »
I dunno. If they can't all dance on the head of a pin together, there might be an issue. Or not.

I've sometimes thought of putting a pin inside one of those glass boxes and labeling it, "Angel Dance Hall."

I've also thought about putting a slide rule inside one with the logo, "In Case Of Emergency, Break Glass!"
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Where's the KABOOM? There was supposed to have been an Earth-shattering KABOOM!

EnderDragonFire

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Re: How many deities is too many?
« Reply #16 on: January 23, 2018, 01:25:34 am »
I think this is an issue of the differences in lore between Hinduism and Buddhism. I distinctly remember reading that in Buddhist folklore she is said to not get along with Lakshmi, though this may simply be meant as a metaphor regarding the tension between earthly/mundane goals and spiritual ones.

Who knows... In Hinduism and Buddhism, how much is metaphor and how much is literal is anyone's guess. I do recall hearing something similar myself, however. Most Shakta's wouldn't worship them together, at the same time, but rather would worship both of them separately, as aspects of the same cosmic female force.

Regardless, I understand that there are cultural differences between Japan and India, and that these differences change the way the various Gods and Goddesses behave, to a greater or lesser extent.
"The worshippers of the gods go to them; to the manes go the ancestor-worshippers; to the Deities who preside over the elements go their worshippers; My devotees come to Me." ... "Whichever devotee desires to adore whatever such Deity with faith, in all such votaries I make that particular faith unshakable. Endowed with that faith, a votary performs the worship of that particular deity and obtains the fruits thereof, these being granted by Me alone." - Sri Krishna

Jainarayan

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Re: How many deities is too many?
« Reply #17 on: January 23, 2018, 12:06:44 pm »
I think this is an issue of the differences in lore between Hinduism and Buddhism. I distinctly remember reading that in Buddhist folklore she is said to not get along with Lakshmi, though this may simply be meant as a metaphor regarding the tension between earthly/mundane goals and spiritual ones.

Sent from my SM-T350 using Tapatalk

That is indeed the case. One can let their physical and material well-being go to hell in the pursuit of knowledge; or one can make wealth and materialism their primary focus and lose sight of wisdom.

Quote
Lakshmi and Saraswati are held to be rivals because the idea is that pursuit of knowledge alone leads well being to suffer and the pursuit of wealth and comfort alone leads to mental agony. This might not be the view everywhere nor does it require you to subscribe to it. Lakshmi and Saraswati are both seen as wives of Narayana in various puranas and tradition
- from a Hinduism subreddit post.

The Agni Purāṇa that places Lakshmi and Sarasvati (aka Pushti here) as wives of Vishnu.
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
 

Darkhawk

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Re: How many deities is too many?
« Reply #18 on: January 23, 2018, 01:05:04 pm »
I think this is an issue of the differences in lore between Hinduism and Buddhism. I distinctly remember reading that in Buddhist folklore she is said to not get along with Lakshmi, though this may simply be meant as a metaphor regarding the tension between earthly/mundane goals and spiritual ones.

That is indeed the case. One can let their physical and material well-being go to hell in the pursuit of knowledge; or one can make wealth and materialism their primary focus and lose sight of wisdom.
 - from a Hinduism subreddit post.

The Agni Purāṇa that places Lakshmi and Sarasvati (aka Pushti here) as wives of Vishnu.

I'm of the school of thought that holds that all of the relationships between deities - their relations, their partnerships, their rivalries - are at least demi-metaphorical.  One can learn a lot about someone by who they hang with, what their family's like, and so on.

(Though that's another thread, or a blog post and a thread, so I'll just leave the comment here and see if I can make it go.)
as the water grinds the stone
we rise and fall
as our ashes turn to dust
we shine like stars    - Covenant, "Bullet"

Jainarayan

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Re: How many deities is too many?
« Reply #19 on: January 23, 2018, 01:12:08 pm »

I'm of the school of thought that holds that all of the relationships between deities - their relations, their partnerships, their rivalries - are at least demi-metaphorical.  One can learn a lot about someone by who they hang with, what their family's like, and so on.


Branching off would be a good idea. There is a lot of material to go into. Suffice to say, you are right about learning lessons. Most of the puranas of Hinduism are very colorful stories that teach lessons. One has to dig deep to find the lesson(s), but they are there. Sometimes several at once.
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
 

Sefiru

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Re: How many deities is too many?
« Reply #20 on: January 23, 2018, 07:00:53 pm »
I dunno. If they can't all dance on the head of a pin together, there might be an issue. Or not.

That would depend on the pin, wouldn't it?

I honor three deities, and there's not any significance to it that I'm aware of, it just kind of turned out that way. And somehow I still have more deities than (IRL) friends. I'm not very social in general so it's about right for me.

Cinder

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Re: How many deities is too many?
« Reply #21 on: January 24, 2018, 05:55:03 pm »
When it comes to being dedicated to deities, how many is too many? I'm dedicated to one and kinda dedicated to another (long story), and was thinking of dedicating myself to a third I've been working with for a while now. But then a fourth popped up and I'm worried that I don't really have the time for them all lol. Is there a rule or guideline about this? I mean, I enjoy the benefits that come with dedication, but I don't want to commit if I can't follow through. What's your personal practice regarding this?

Depends on you, your gods, and your tradition. I'd also add that not every deity, even from the same pantheon, will want the same things from the same person. (For example, one good might want you to exercise as a form of devotion for them x times a week and one might just want a food offering once a month).

I work with about nine deities at the moment, some with much more frequency than others.

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