Does Hinduism Believe in a Creator God?

Hinduism is one of the world's oldest religions.

Hinduism, the religion of India and one of the world’s most prominent belief systems, is steeped in rich culture, long-lasting values and devout worship. Although religion is often categorized as monotheistic (worship of one god) or polytheistic (worship of many gods), Hinduism cannot be described quite so simply. Hinduism is a complex combination of beliefs and philosophies.

In Hinduism, three gods are considered especially powerful: Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. Brahma is worshipped as the creator of all life, Vishnu acts as the protector of all life, while Shiva is responsible for destroying life in order to re-create it. Together, these three gods are viewed as a potent trinity of forces.

Hinduism is based in part on the many stories and beliefs in the Vedas, the oldest Hindu texts. There are three stories about Brahma’s creation. The first describes Brahma as having been born in a lotus flower that sprang from Vishnu’s navel. Two other stories describe Brahma as having been self-created from a golden egg. Brahma then went on to create additional gods, the world, the sky and more.

Brahma is depicted as having four heads and four arms. Each head represents one of Hinduism’s four sacred texts. Possessing four heads, and therefore containing all the wisdom within Hindu scriptures, Brahma holds within him the knowledge behind all creation. Brahma is also depicted with four arms and a white beard.

Although Brahma is considered the Hindu god of creation, there are very few temples dedicated to him. One explanation as to why there are so few temples dedicated to Brahma is that the creation of the universe — Brahma’s duty — has already been completed, whereas the roles other gods perform are still relevant to daily life. Similarly, although there are more than a dozen major festivals honoring various Hindu deities, none of India’s most widely celebrated festivals center around Brahma. However, Brahma is said to be honored in less obvious ways, such as through chanting.

BBC: Brahma Lord Brahma – The Creator
Sacred Texts: Brahma
The Heart of Hinduism: Important Festivals
The Heart of Hinduism: The Trimurti
BBC: Brahma
Anitra Lahiri is a seasoned English teacher and writer. She has been teaching English since graduating with her Bachelor of Science degree from NYU in 1996. She is also a registered yoga teacher who holds a Master of Science in Natural Health. Her passion is writing about health and spirituality.

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Source: Opposing Views