Hinduism And The God Shiva Essay

1310 words - 5 pages

Hinduism is a religious tradition compromising of the beliefs and practices of Hindus. The majority of Hindus choose a personal deity who they feel a personal connection with. One can show devotion of a deity in many ways including prayer, ceremonial worship, chanting and even visiting a site sacred to that deity. For my art project I wanted to choose a deity that I could personally connect with, I chose the Hindu deity Shiva. Some of Shiva's characteristics are devotion, self-confidence as a motivating force, selfless service, and achieving balance on all levels. These are all characteristics and values that I find important. I would especially like to work on the ability to balance the mind, body and spirit, which is where my interest in Shiva began.

This god is very interesting and complicated. I found that within an explanation of Shiva there is story upon story telling of why something came about and who was involved. The Hindu God Shiva has many representations and is depicted in several different forms. Shiva is responsible for change in both the form of death, destruction and the positive sense of shedding old habits, that is just to name a fraction of what he is responsible for. Shiva is one of the three main gods and is one the most worshiped. Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva are the three gods that make up the Hindu Trinity, which corresponds to the three stages of the cycle of the universe. Brahma is the creator of the universe, Vishnu preserves it in its state and Shiva represents the ability to destroy the universe which at this point the universe is then reborn.

There are several rituals that can be practiced to attain certain aspects of the deity Shiva. There are seven charkas in the body which offer a way to balance ones desires and lead a more happy spiritual life. One can use ayurvedic cooking which is eating certain foods that correspond to your body's personal needs, if this type of eating habit is maintained one can regulate the three gunas. Essence, Activity and Inertia, is the trident of gunas which are Shiva's main attributes: one can regulate these through ayurvedic cooking. Shiva is also the God of Yogis, a practice of mind, body and consciousness; where life force is regulated by breath, and breath energy is controlled by the mind. These are all different ways one can show devotion to Shiva and provide a path to religious understanding.

Shiva is easy, light and graceful, he is self controlled and celibate. At the same time he is lover of Shakti, goddess of destroying demonic forces and restoring the balance. He was lover to his two previous wives, Sati and Kali. Shiva's first wife was his beloved Sati. He was married to her against her father's wishes. Shiva fell in love with her giving nature, her patience and radiant personality. Meanwhile, her father organized a gathering and invited everyone except Shiva; Sati went uninvited, and her father humiliated her by insulting her lord. Sati then...

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