In Christianity Jesus is God and in Islam Allah is God. But when it comes to Hinduism, everyone has their own God. Starting from 33 main Gods to 330 Million Gods for various occasions or purposes. 330 Million Gods may sound ridiculous but there is a theory behind this.
Based on the occasion or purpose there are different Gods to pray. Ganesha for removing hurdles, Goddess Saraswathi for education, Goddess Lakshmi for Wealth. There are 3 main gods called Trimurti, the trinity of gods. Brahma for creation, Vishnu (form of Krishna) for maintenance and Shiva for destruction.
In reply to one of the disciples question Buddha once said, we all assume everything by the way we see it. Because of our incomplete knowledge and ignorance each one of us have different opinions on different things. As Swami Vivekananda said, no two individuals are exactly same, that’s why Indians have the liberty to chose their own deity called Ishta Devatha. Below are few prominent sayings from Vedas.
Aham Brahmasmi – I am Brahman (God).
Ayam Atma Brahma – This Soul (self) is God.
Tat Tvam Asi – Thou art That.
All the above sayings tell one thing, everything is god and god is everywhere. This 330 million gods concept was inherited from ancient Upanishads where it is mentioned as Trayatrimsa Koti or Trayatrimsati Deva. Here Trayatrimsa means 33, some people understand Koti as crore hence 33 crore gods but some say Koti means supreme thus 33 supreme gods. Even though the exact count is unknown, Hindus worship millions of gods in various forms like Kula Devata (Family God) and Ishta Devata (one’s favorite god).
All the religions say one thing, there is only one God and is in everyone of us and everywhere in the universe. In the end, regardless of religion, race and location, we are all Global citizens and we are all one 🙂