Hinduism: Is it monotheistic or polytheistic?

· Hinduism
Hadhrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad writes in his book Revelation, Rationality, Knowledge & Truth, in the chapter on Hinduism:

Hinduism is a class in itself in the comity of religions. To find in Hindu literature evidence of revelation as understood in traditional Divine religions is a difficult task. This is so, mainly because on the one hand the concept of revelation is wholly confined to the Vedic teachings, while on the other, God is mentioned to have manifested Himself in human form to instruct mankind.Though in Christianity too, Jesusas is described in a manner somewhat similar to that of Krishnaas, the similarity however is superficial. In the personification of Jesus Christ, God the father remains in command of the universe, and a manifestation of His sonship somehow displays itself in the human image of Jesus. Again in the case of Christianity, there is a third person entitled the Holy Ghost who is neither Christ, nor God the father, but is an integral part of the Trinity in its own right.Hinduism however, is not clear concerning the manifestation of Brahmâ in the person of Krishna. Did he rule the heavens and the earth from his heavenly seat even when Krishna remained on earth, or was it Krishna who as God personified governed the universe during his human phase? Or was Krishna merely an apparition or icon while God remained in command in the heavens like He ever was? Questions such as these remain unanswered.

For details go to:


Krishna (left), the eighth incarnation (avatar) of Vishnu or svayam bhagavan, with his consort Radha, worshiped as Radha Krishna across a number of traditions – traditional painting from the 1700s.  Borrowed from Wikipedia

Our behavior and relationship with the world around us is a reflection of the nature we believe God to possess. All teachings are intertwined with and emerge from a religion’s concept of God. It is reflected in the way its adherents pray, in their sacrifices, rituals and all that ultimately can be described as the ‘texture’ of a religion.
Of all major world religions, Hinduism as it is practiced today is arguably the most challenging to define in terms of this concept in that it ranges from one extreme to the other – that is, from absolute monotheism
to belief in an infinite number of gods.  To read an article by Bilal Rana go to:


According to Encyclopedia Britannica:

“It evolved from the Vedic religion of ancient India. The major branches of Hinduism are Vaishnavism and Shaivism, each of which includes many different sects. Though the various sects each rely on their own set of scriptures, they all revere the ancient Vedas, which were likely composed about the mid-2nd millennium bce. The philosophical Vedic texts called the Upanishads explored the search for knowledge that would allow humankind to escape the cycle of reincarnation. Fundamental to Hinduism is the belief in a cosmic principle of ultimate reality called brahman and its identity with the individual soul, or atman. All creatures go through a cycle of rebirth, or samsara, which can be broken only by spiritual self-realization, after which liberation, or moksha, is attained. The principle of karma determines a being’s status within the cycle of rebirth. The Hindu deities having the widest following are Vishnu and Shiva, who are worshipped in various avatars, or incarnations. The goddess Durga also has a wide following. The major sources of classical stories about the gods are the Mahabharata (which includes the Bhagavadgita, one of the most important religious texts of Hinduism), the Ramayana, and the Puranas. Historically, the hierarchical social structure of the caste system was also important in Hinduism. In the 20th century Hinduism blended with Indian nationalism to become a powerful political force in Indian politics. In the early 21st century there were more than 850 million Hindus worldwide.”[1]

File:Kailash Tibet.jpg

Sacred Mount Kailash in Tibet is regarded as the spiritual abode of Shiva.  From Wikipedia


There are different festivals in Hinduism, one of them is Divali.

File:Diwali Diya.jpg

Diwali, the festival of lights, is a prime festival of Hinduism. Shown here are traditional Diyas that are often lit during Diwali




  1. “Hinduism.” Encyclopædia Britannica. 2010. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 20 Apr. 2010 ca.com/EBchecked/topic/266312/Hinduism>.
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