“The Gita has been cited and criticized as a Hindu text that supports varna-dharma and the caste system.” ref

“In his Myth and RealityD.D. Kosambi argued that “practically anything can be read into the Gita by a determined person, without denying the validity of a class system.” ref

“According to the Indologist Paul Hacker, the contextual meaning in the Gita is the “dharma of a particular varna“. In this case, Arjuna is part of the warrior (kshatriya) varna (social class), so Krishna is telling Arjuna to do what warrior social class must do by virtue of his belonging to that class.” ref

Bhagavad-gita is as full of itself as the bible. lol

Verse 9.23 devotees of other gods actually worship only Krsna, but they do it in a wrong way. 🙂

Translation of Bhagavad Gita 9.23

“Those who are devotees of other gods and who worship them with faith actually worship only Me, O son of Kunti, but they do so in a wrong way.” ref

Commentary by Sri A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada of Gaudiya Sampradaya:

Persons who are engaged in the worship of demigods are not very intelligent, although such worship is offered to Me indirectly,” Krishna says. For example, when a man pours water on the leaves and branches of a tree without pouring water on the root, he does so without sufficient knowledge or without observing regulative principles. Similarly, the process of rendering service to different parts of the body is to supply food to the stomach. The demigods are, so to speak, different officers and directors in the government of the Supreme Lord. One has to follow the laws made by the government, not by the officers or directors. Similarly, everyone is to offer his worship to the Supreme Lord only. That will automatically satisfy the different officers and directors of the Lord. The officers and directors are engaged as representatives of the government, and to offer some bribe to the officers and directors is illegal. This is stated here as avidhi-purvakam. In other words, Krishna does not approve the unnecessary worship of the demigods.” ref

Verse 9.23 implies only Krsna, is the supreme personality of the Godhead, and with Krishna worship can they enter the kingdom of heaven.

Translation of Bhagavad Gita 18.55

“One can understand Me as I am, as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, only by devotional service. And when one is in full consciousness of Me by such devotion, he can enter into the kingdom of God.” ref

Commentary by Sri A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada of Gaudiya Sampradaya:

“The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna, and His plenary portions cannot be understood by mental speculation nor by the nondevotees. If anyone wants to understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he has to take to pure devotional service under the guidance of a pure devotee. Otherwise, the truth of the Supreme Personality of Godhead will always be hidden. As already stated in Bhagavad-gita (7.25), naham prakasah sarvasya: He is not revealed to everyone. No one can understand God simply by erudite scholarship or mental speculation. Only one who is actually engaged in Krishna consciousness and devotional service can understand what Krishna is. University degrees are not helpful.” ref

“One who is fully conversant with the Krishna science becomes eligible to enter into the spiritual kingdom, the abode of Krishna. Becoming Brahman does not mean that one loses his identity. Devotional service is there, and as long as devotional service exists, there must be God, the devotee, and the process of devotional service. Such knowledge is never vanquished, even after liberation. Liberation involves getting free from the concept of material life; in spiritual life the same distinction is there, the same individuality is there, but in pure Krishna consciousness. One should not mistakenly think that the word visate, “enters into Me,” supports the monist theory that one becomes homogeneous with the impersonal Brahman.” ref

“No. Visate means that one can enter into the abode of the Supreme Lord in one’s individuality to engage in His association and render service unto Him. For instance, a green bird enters a green tree not to become one with the tree but to enjoy the fruits of the tree. impersonalists generally give the example of a river flowing into the ocean and merging. This may be a source of happiness for the impersonalist, but the personalist keeps his personal individuality like an aquatic in the ocean. We find so many living entities within the ocean, if we go deep. Surface acquaintance with the ocean is not sufficient; one must have complete knowledge of the aquatics living in the ocean depths.” ref

“Because of his pure devotional service, a devotee can understand the transcendental qualities and the opulences of the Supreme Lord in truth. As it is stated in the Eleventh Chapter, only by devotional service can one understand. The same is confirmed here; one can understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead by devotional service and enter into His kingdom. After attainment of the brahma-bhuta stage of freedom from material conceptions, devotional service begins by one’s hearing about the Lord. When one hears about the Supreme Lord, automatically the brahma-bhuta stage develops, and material contamination—greediness and lust for sense enjoyment—disappears. As lust and desires disappear from the heart of a devotee, he becomes more attached to the service of the Lord, and by such attachment he becomes free from material contamination.” ref

“In that state of life he can understand the Supreme Lord. This is the statement of Srimad-Bhagavatam also. After liberation the process of bhakti, or transcendental service, continues. The Vedanta-sutra (4.1.12) confirms this: a-prayanat tatrapi hi drstam. This means that after liberation the process of devotional service continues. In the Srimad-Bhagavatam, real devotional liberation is defined as the reinstatement of the living entity in his own identity, his own constitutional position. The constitutional position is already explained: every living entity is a part-and-parcel fragmental portion of the Supreme Lord. Therefore his constitutional position is to serve. After liberation, this service is never stopped. Actual liberation is getting free from misconceptions of life.” ref

Bhagavad Gita?

“The Gita states that Krishna says “The four-caste (class) division has been created by Me.” V. R. Narla also argues that the Gita states that God created the caste (varna) system. Narla also critiques the Gita for stating that those who are not kshatriyas or Brahmins are “born from sinful wombs.” ref

“The Shrimad Bhagavad Gita ‘The Song by God’; IAST: bhagavadgītā), often referred to as the Gita, is a 700-verse Hindu scripture that is part of the epic Mahabharata (chapters 23–40 of Bhishma Parva), dated to the second half of the first millennium BCE and exemplary for the emerging Hindu synthesis. It is considered to be one of the holy scriptures for Hinduism.” ref

“The Gita is set in a narrative framework of a dialogue between Pandava prince Arjuna and his guide and charioteer Krishna, an avatar of Lord Vishnu. At the start of the Dharma Yuddha (righteous war) between Pandavas and Kauravas, Arjuna is filled with moral dilemma and despair about the violence and death the war will cause in the battle against his own kin. He wonders if he should renounce and seeks Krishna’s counsel, whose answers and discourse constitute the Bhagavad Gita. Krishna counsels Arjuna to “fulfill his Kshatriya (warrior) duty to uphold the Dharma” through “selfless action”. The Krishna–Arjuna dialogues cover a broad range of spiritual topics, touching upon ethical dilemmas and philosophical issues that go far beyond the war Arjuna faces.” ref

“Numerous commentaries have been written on the Bhagavad Gita with widely differing views on the essentials. According to some, Bhagavad Gita is written by the god Ganesha which was told to him by Vyasa. Vedanta commentators read varying relations between Self and Brahman in the text: Advaita Vedanta sees the non-dualism of Atman (soul) and Brahman (universal soul) as its essence, whereas Bhedabheda and Vishishtadvaita see Atman and Brahman as both different and non-different, while Dvaita Vedanta sees dualism of Atman (soul) and Brahman as its essence. The setting of the Gita in a battlefield has been interpreted as an allegory for the ethical and moral struggles of human life.” ref

“The Bhagavad Gita presents a synthesis of Hindu ideas about dharma, theistic bhakti, and the yogic ideals of moksha. The text covers jñāna, bhakti, karma, and rāj yogas (spoken of in the 6th chapter) incorporating ideas from the SamkhyaYoga philosophy.” ref

“The Bhagavad Gita is the best known and most famous of Hindu texts, with a unique pan-Hindu influence. The Gitas call for selfless action inspired many leaders of the Indian independence movement including Bal Gangadhar Tilak and Mahatma Gandhi; the latter referred to it as his “spiritual dictionary”.” ref

“The Gita in the title of the Bhagavad Gita means “song”. Religious leaders and scholars interpret the word Bhagavad in a number of ways. Accordingly, the title has been interpreted as “the word of God” by the theistic schools, “the words of the Lord”, “the Divine Song”, and “Celestial Song” by others. In India, its Sanskrit name is often written as Shrimad Bhagavad Gita, श्रीमद् भगवद् गीता (the latter two words often written as a single word भगवद्गीता), where the Shrimad prefix is used to denote a high degree of respect. This is not to be confused with the Shrimad Bhagavatam, which is a Purana dealing with the life of the Hindu God Krishna and various avatars of Vishnu. The work is also known as the Iswara Gita, the Ananta Gita, the Hari Gita, the Vyasa Gita, or simply the Gita.” ref

“In the Indian tradition, the Bhagavad Gita, as well as the epic Mahabharata of which it is a part, is attributed to the sage Vyasa, whose full name was Krishna Dvaipayana, also called Veda-Vyasa. Another Hindu legend states that Vyasa narrated it while the elephant-headed deity Ganesha broke one of his tusks and wrote down the Mahabharata along with the Bhagavad Gita.” ref

“Scholars consider Vyasa to be a mythical or symbolic author, in part because Vyasa is also the traditional compiler of the Vedas and the Puranas, texts dated to be from different millennia. The word Vyasa literally means “arranger, compiler”, and is a surname in India. According to Kashi Nath Upadhyaya, a Gita scholar, it is possible that a number of different individuals with the same name compiled different texts.” ref

“Swami Vivekananda, the 19th-century Hindu monk and Vedantist, stated that the Bhagavad Gita may be old but it was mostly unknown in the Indian history till early 8th century when Adi Shankara (Shankaracharya) made it famous by writing his much-followed commentary on it. Some infer, states Vivekananda, that “Shankaracharya was the author of Gita, and that it was he who foisted it into the body of the Mahabharata.” This attribution to Adi Shankara is unlikely in part because Shankara himself refers to the earlier commentaries on the Bhagavad Gita, and because other Hindu texts and traditions that compete with the ideas of Shankara refer to much older literature referencing the Bhagavad Gita, though much of this ancient secondary literature has not survived into the modern era.” ref

“According to J. A. B. van Buitenen, an Indologist known for his translations and scholarship on Mahabharata, the Gita is so contextually and philosophically well knit with the Mahabharata that it was not an independent text that “somehow wandered into the epic”. The Gita, states van Buitenen, was conceived and developed by the Mahabharata authors to “bring to a climax and solution the dharmic dilemma of a war”,” ref

“According to Alexus McLeod, a scholar of Philosophy and Asian Studies, it is “impossible to link the Bhagavad Gita to a single author”, and it may be the work of many authors. This view is shared by the Indologist Arthur Basham, who states that there were three or more authors or compilers of Bhagavad Gita. This is evidenced by the discontinuous intermixing of philosophical verses with theistic or passionately theistic verses, according to Basham.” ref

“Theories on the date of the composition of the Gita vary considerably. Some scholars accept dates from the fifth century to the second century BCE as the probable range, the latter likely. The Hinduism scholar Jeaneane Fowler, in her commentary on the Gita, considers the second century BCE to be the probable date of composition. J. A. B. van Buitenen too states that the Gita was likely composed about 200 BCE. According to the Indologist Arvind Sharma, the Gita is generally accepted to be a 2nd-century-BCE text.” ref

“Kashi Nath Upadhyaya, in contrast, dates it a bit earlier. He states that the Gita was always a part of the Mahabharata, and dating the latter suffices in dating the Gita. On the basis of the estimated dates of Mahabharata as evidenced by exact quotes of it in the Buddhist literature by Asvaghosa (c. 100 CE), Upadhyaya states that the Mahabharata, and therefore Gita, must have been well known by then for a Buddhist to be quoting it. This suggests a terminus ante quem (latest date) of the Gita to be sometime prior to the 1st century CE. He cites similar quotes in the Dharmasutra texts, the Brahma sutras, and other literature to conclude that the Bhagavad Gita was composed in the fifth or fourth century BCE.” ref

“According to Arthur Basham, the context of the Bhagavad Gita suggests that it was composed in an era when the ethics of war were being questioned and renunciation to monastic life was becoming popular. Such an era emerged after the rise of Buddhism and Jainism in the 5th century BCE, and particularly after the semi-legendary life of Ashoka in 3rd century BCE. Thus, the first version of the Bhagavad Gita may have been composed in or after the 3rd century BCE.” ref

“Linguistically, the Bhagavad Gita is in classical Sanskrit of the early variety, states the Gita scholar Winthrop Sargeant. The text has occasional pre-classical elements of the Sanskrit language, such as the aorist and the prohibitive  instead of the expected na (not) of classical Sanskrit. This suggests that the text was composed after the Pāṇini era, but before the long compounds of classical Sanskrit became the norm. This would date the text as transmitted by the oral tradition to the later centuries of the 1st-millennium BCE, and the first written version probably to the 2nd or 3rd century CE.” ref

“According to Jeaneane Fowler, “the dating of the Gita varies considerably” and depends in part on whether one accepts it to be a part of the early versions of the Mahabharata, or a text that was inserted into the epic at a later date. The earliest “surviving” components, therefore, are believed to be no older than the earliest “external” references we have to the Mahabharata epic. The Mahabharata – the world’s longest poem – is itself a text that was likely written and compiled over several hundred years, one dated between “400 BCE or little earlier, and 2nd century CE, though some claim a few parts can be put as late as 400 CE”, states Fowler. The dating of the Gita is thus dependent on the uncertain dating of the Mahabharata. The actual dates of composition of the Gita remain unresolved. While the year and century is uncertain, states Richard Davis, the internal evidence in the text dates the origin of the Gita discourse to the Hindu lunar month of Margashirsha (also called Agrahayana, generally December or January of the Gregorian calendar).” ref

“The Bhagavad Gita is the best known, and most influential of Hindu scriptures. While Hinduism is known for its diversity and its synthesis therefrom, the Bhagavad Gita has a unique pan-Hindu influence. Gerald James Larson – an Indologist and classical Hindu Philosophies scholar, states “if there is any one text that comes near to embodying the totality of what it is to be a Hindu, it would be the Bhagavad Gita.” ref

“The Bhagavad Gita is part of the Prasthanatrayi, which also includes the Upanishads and Brahma sutras. These are the three starting points for the Vedanta school of Hindu philosophy. The Brahma sutras constitute the Nyāya prasthāna or the “starting point of reasoning canonical base”, while the principal Upanishads constitute the Sruti prasthāna or the “starting point of heard scriptures”, and the Bhagavad Gita constitutes the Smriti prasthāna or the “starting point of remembered canonical base”. The Bhagavad Gita is a “summation of the Vedanta”, states Sargeant. It is thus one of the key texts for the Vedanta, a school that provides one of the theoretical foundations for Hinduism, and one that has had an enormous influence over time, becoming the central ideology of the Hindu renaissance in the 19th century, according to Gavin Flood – a scholar of Hinduism.” ref

“Some Hindus give it the status of an Upanishad, and some consider it to be a “revealed text”. Others consider the Bhagavad Gita as an important Smriti, or secondary text that exist in alternate versions such as one found in Kashmir though it does not affect the basic message of the text.” ref

“The Bhagavad Gita is the sealing achievement of the Hindu synthesis, incorporating its various religious traditions. The synthesis is at both philosophical and socio-religious levels, states the Gita scholar Keya Maitra. The text refrains from insisting on one right marg (path) to spirituality. It openly synthesizes and inclusively accepts multiple ways of life, harmonizing spiritual pursuits through action (karma), knowledge (gyaana), and devotion (bhakti). According to the Gita translator Radhakrishnan, quoted in a review by Robinson, Krishna’s discourse is a “comprehensive synthesis” that inclusively unifies the competing strands of Hindu thought such as “Vedic ritual, Upanishadic wisdom, devotional theism, and philosophical insight”. Aurobindo described the text as a synthesis of various Yogas. The Indologist Robert Minor, and others, in contrast, state the Gita is “more clearly defined as a synthesis of Vedanta, Yoga, and Samkhya” philosophies of Hinduism.” ref

“The synthesis in Bhagavad Gita addresses the question as to what constitutes the virtuous path and one necessary for the spiritual liberation and a release from the cycles of rebirth (moksha). It discusses whether one should renounce a householder lifestyle for a life as an ascetic, or lead a householder life dedicated to one’s duty and profession, or pursue a householder life devoted to a personalized god in the revealed form of Krishna. Thus Gita discusses and synthesizes the three dominant trends in Hinduism: enlightenment-based renunciation, dharma-based householder life, and devotion-based theism. According to Deutsch and Dalvi, the Bhagavad Gita attempts “to forge a harmony” between these three paths.” ref

“The Bhagavad Gitas synthetic answer recommends that one must resist the “either-or” view, and consider a “both-and” view. It states the dharmic householder can achieve the same goals as the renouncing monk through “inner renunciation”, that is “motiveless action”. One must do the right thing because one has determined that it is right, states Gita, without craving for its fruits, without worrying about the results, loss, or gain. Desires, selfishness, and the craving for fruits can distort one from the dharmic action and spiritual living.” ref 

“The Gita synthesis goes further, according to its interpreters such as Swami Vivekananda, and the text states that there is Living God in every human being and the devoted service to this Living God in everyone – without craving for personal rewards – is a means to spiritual development and liberation. According to Galvin Flood, the teachings in Gita differ from other Indian religions that encouraged extreme austerity and self-torture of various forms (karsayanta). The Gita disapproves of these, stating that not only is it against the tradition but against Krishna himself, because “Krishna dwells within all beings, in torturing the body the ascetic would be torturing him”, states Flood. Even a monk should strive for the “inner renunciation”, rather than external pretensions.” ref

“The Gita synthesizes several paths to spiritual realization based on the premise that people are born with different temperaments and tendencies (guna). According to Winthrop Sargeant, the text acknowledges that some individuals are more reflective and intellectual, some affective and engaged by their emotions, some are action driven, yet others favor experimenting and exploring what works. It then presents different spiritual paths for each personality type respectively: the path of knowledge (jnana yoga), the path of devotion (bhakti yoga), the path of action (karma yoga), and the path of meditation (raja yoga). The guna premise is a synthesis of the ideas from the Samkhya school of Hinduism. According to Upadhyaya, the Gita states that none of these paths to spiritual realization are “intrinsically superior or inferior”, rather they “converge in one and lead to the same goal.” ref

“According to Hiltebeitel, Bhakti forms an essential ingredient of this synthesis, and the text incorporates Bhakti into Vedanta. According to Scheepers, The Bhagavad Gita is a Brahmanical text which uses the shramanic and Yogic terminology to spread the Brahmanic idea of living according to one’s duty or dharma, in contrast to the ascetic ideal of liberation by avoiding all karma. According to Galvin Flood and Charles Martin, the Gita rejects the shramanic path of non-action, emphasizing instead “the renunciation of the fruits of action”. The Bhagavad Gita, states Raju, is a great synthesis of the ideas of the impersonal spiritual monism with personal God, of “the yoga of action with the yoga of transcendence of action, and these again with yogas of devotion and knowledge.” ref

Bhagavad Gita Chapters

“Bhagavad Gita comprises 18 chapters (section 23 to 40) in the Bhishma Parva of the epic Mahabharata. Because of differences in recensions, the verses of the Gita may be numbered in the full text of the Mahabharata as chapters 6.25–42 or as chapters 6.23–40. The number of verses in each chapter vary in some manuscripts of the Gita discovered on the Indian subcontinent. However, variant readings are relatively few in contrast to the numerous versions of the Mahabharata it is found embedded in, and the meaning is the same.” ref

“The original Bhagavad Gita has no chapter titles. Some Sanskrit editions that separate the Gita from the epic as an independent text, as well as translators, however, add chapter titles such as each chapter being a particular form of yoga. For example, Swami Chidbhavananda describes each of the eighteen chapters as a separate yoga because each chapter, like yoga, “trains the body and the mind”. He labels the first chapter “Arjuna Vishada Yogam” or the “Yoga of Arjuna’s Dejection”. Sir Edwin Arnold titled this chapter in his 1885 translation as “The Distress of Arjuna.” ref

Chapter 1 (46 verses)

“Some translators have variously titled the first chapter as Arjuna vishada yoga, Prathama Adhyaya, The Distress of Arjuna, The War Within, or Arjuna’s Sorrow. The Bhagavad Gita opens by setting the stage of the Kurukshetra battlefield. Two massive armies representing different loyalties and ideologies face a catastrophic war. With Arjuna is Krishna, not as a participant in the war, but only as his charioteer and counsel. Arjuna requests Krishna to move the chariot between the two armies so he can see those “eager for this war”. He sees family and friends on the enemy side. Arjuna is distressed and in sorrow. The issue is, states Arvind Sharma, “is it morally proper to kill?” This and other moral dilemmas in the first chapter are set in a context where the Hindu epic and Krishna have already extolled ahimsa (non-violence) to be the highest and divine virtue of a human being. The war feels evil to Arjuna and he questions the morality of war. He wonders if it is noble to renounce and leave before the violence starts, or should he fight, and why.” ref

Chapter 2 (72 verses)

“Some translators title the chapter as Sankhya Yoga, The Book of Doctrines, Self-Realization, or The Yoga of Knowledge (and Philosophy). The second chapter begins the philosophical discussions and teachings found in Gita. The warrior Arjuna whose past had focused on learning the skills of his profession now faces a war he has doubts about. Filled with introspection and questions about the meaning and purpose of life, he asks Krishna about the nature of life, soul, death, afterlife, and whether there is a deeper meaning and reality. Krishna answers. The chapter summarizes the Hindu idea of rebirth, samsara, eternal soul in each person (Self), universal soul present in everyone, various types of yoga, divinity within, the nature of Self-knowledge, and other concepts. The ideas and concepts in the second chapter reflect the framework of the Samkhya and Yoga schools of Hindu philosophy. This chapter is an overview for the remaining sixteen chapters of the Bhagavad Gita. Mahatma Gandhi memorized the last 19 verses of the second chapter, considering them as his companion in his non-violent movement for social justice during the colonial rule.” ref

Chapter 3 (43 verses)

“Some translators title the chapter as Karma yoga, Virtue in Work, Selfless Service, or The Yoga of Action. Arjuna, after listening to Krishna’s spiritual teachings in Chapter 2, gets more confounded and returns to the predicament he faces. He wonders if fighting the war is “not so important after all” given Krishna’s overview on the pursuit of spiritual wisdom. Krishna replies that there is no way to avoid action (karma), since abstention from work is also an action. Krishna states that Arjuna has an obligation to understand and perform his duty (dharma), because everything is connected by the law of cause and effect. Every man or woman is bound by activity. Those who act selfishly create the karmic cause and are thereby bound to the effect which may be good or bad. Those who act selflessly for the right cause and strive to do their dharmic duty do God’s work. Those who act without craving for fruits are free from the karmic effects, because the results never motivated them. Whatever the result, it does not affect them. Their happiness comes from within, and the external world does not bother them. According to Flood and Martin, chapter 3 and onwards develops “a theological response to Arjuna’s dilemma.” ref

Chapter 4 (42 verses)

“Some translators title the fourth chapter as Jñāna–Karma-Sanyasa yoga, The Religion of Knowledge, Wisdom in Action, or The Yoga of Renunciation of Action through Knowledge. Krishna reveals that he has taught this yoga to the Vedic sages. Arjuna questions how Krishna could do this, when those sages lived so long ago, and Krishna was born more recently. Krishna reminds him that everyone is in the cycle of rebirths, and while Arjuna does not remember his previous births, he does. Whenever dharma declines and the purpose of life is forgotten by men, says Krishna, he returns to re-establish dharma. Every time he returns, he teaches about inner Self in all beings. The later verses of the chapter return to the discussion of motiveless action and the need to determine the right action, performing it as one’s dharma (duty) while renouncing the results, rewards, fruits. The simultaneous outer action with inner renunciation, states Krishna, is the secret to the life of freedom. Action leads to knowledge, while selfless action leads to spiritual awareness, state the last verses of this chapter. The 4th chapter is the first time where Krishna begins to reveal his divine nature to Arjuna.” ref

Chapter 5 (29 verses)

“Some translators title this chapter as Karma–Sanyasa yoga, Religion by Renouncing Fruits of Works, Renounce and Rejoice, or The Yoga of Renunciation. The chapter starts by presenting the tension in the Indian tradition between the life of sannyasa (monks who have renounced their household and worldly attachments) and the life of grihastha (householder). Arjuna asks Krishna which path is better. Krishna answers that both are paths to the same goal, but the path of “selfless action and service” with inner renunciation is better. The different paths, says Krishna, aim for—and if properly pursued, lead to—Self-knowledge. This knowledge leads to the universal, transcendent Godhead, the divine essence in all beings, to Brahman – the Krishna himself. The final verses of the chapter state that the self-aware who have reached self-realization live without fear, anger, or desire. They are free within, always. Chapter 5 shows signs of interpolations and internal contradictions. For example, states Arthur Basham, verses 5.23–28 state that a sage’s spiritual goal is to realize the impersonal Brahman, yet the next verse 5.29 states that the goal is to realize the personal God who is Krishna.” ref

Chapter 6 (47 verses)

“Some translators title the sixth chapter as Dhyana yoga, Religion by Self-Restraint, The Practice of Meditation, or The Yoga of Meditation. The chapter opens as a continuation of Krishna’s teachings about selfless work and the personality of someone who has renounced the fruits that are found in chapter 5. Krishna says that such self-realized people are impartial to friends and enemies, are beyond good and evil, equally disposed to those who support them or oppose them because they have reached the summit of consciousness. The verses 6.10 and after proceed to summarize the principles of Yoga and meditation in the format similar to but simpler than Patanjali’s Yogasutra. It discusses who is a true yogi, and what it takes to reach the state where one harbors no malice towards anyone.” ref

Chapter 7 (30 verses)

“Some translators title this chapter as Jnana–Vijnana yoga, Religion by Discernment, Wisdom from Realization, or The Yoga of Knowledge and Judgment. The chapter 7 once again opens with Krishna continuing his discourse. He discusses jnana (knowledge) and vijnana (realization, understanding) using the PrakritiPurusha (matter-soul) framework of the Samkhya school of Hindu philosophy, and the MayaBrahman framework of its Vedanta school. The chapter states that evil is the consequence of ignorance and the attachment to the impermanent, delusive Maya. It equates self-knowledge and the union with Purusha (Krishna) as the Self to be the highest goal of any spiritual pursuit.

Chapter 8 (28 verses)

“Some translators title the chapter as Aksara–Brahma yoga, Religion by Devotion to the One Supreme God, The Eternal Godhead, or The Yoga of the Imperishable Brahman. The chapter opens with Arjuna asking questions such as what is Brahman and what is the nature of karma. Krishna states that his own highest nature is the imperishable Brahman, and that he lives in every creature as the adhyatman. Every being has an impermanent body and an eternal soul, and that “Krishna as Lord” lives within every creature. The chapter discusses cosmology, the nature of death, and rebirth. This chapter contains eschatology of the Bhagavad Gita. Importance of the last thought before death, differences between material and spiritual worlds, and light and dark paths that a soul takes after death are described.” ref

Chapter 9 (34 verses)

“Some translators title the ninth chapter as Raja–Vidya–Raja–Guhya yoga, Religion by the Kingly Knowledge and the Kingly Mystery, The Royal Path, or The Yoga of Sovereign Science and Sovereign Secret. Chapter 9 opens with Krishna continuing his discourse as Arjuna listens. Krishna states that he is everywhere and in everything in an unmanifested form, yet he is not in any way limited by them. Eons end, everything dissolves and then he recreates another eon subjecting them to the laws of Prakriti (nature). He equates himself to being the father and the mother of the universe, to being the Om, to the three Vedas, to the seed, the goal of life, the refuge and abode of all. The chapter recommends devotional worship of Krishna. According to theologian Christopher Southgate, verses of this chapter of the Gita are panentheistic, while German physicist and philosopher Max Bernhard Weinstein deems the work pandeistic. It may, in fact, be neither of them, and its contents may have no definition with previously-developed Western terms.” ref

Chapter 10 (42 verses)

“Some translators title the chapter as Vibhuti–Vistara–yoga, Religion by the Heavenly Perfections, Divine Splendor, or The Yoga of Divine Manifestations. Krishna reveals his divine being in greater detail, as the ultimate cause of all material and spiritual existence, one who transcends all opposites and who is beyond any duality. Krishna says he is the atman in all beings, Arjuna’s innermost Self, also compassionate Vishnu, the Surya (sun god), Indra, Shiva-Rudra, Ananta, Yama, as well as the Om, Vedic sages, time, Gayatri mantra, and the science of Self-knowledge. Arjuna accepts Krishna as the purushottama (Supreme Being).” ref

Chapter 11 (55 verses)

“Some translators title the chapter as Vishvarupa–Darshana yoga, The Manifesting of the One and Manifold, The Cosmic Vision, or The Yoga of the Vision of the Cosmic Form. On Arjuna’s request, Krishna displays his “universal form” (Viśvarūpa). This is an idea found in the Rigveda and many later Hindu texts, where it is a symbolism for atman (Self) and Brahman (Absolute Reality) eternally pervading all beings and all existence. Chapter 11, states Eknath Eswaran, describes Arjuna entering first into savikalpa samadhi (a particular), and then nirvikalpa samadhi (a universal) as he gets an understanding of Krishna. A part of the verse from this chapter was recited by Robert Oppenheimer as he witnessed the first atomic bomb explosion.” ref

Chapter 12 (20 verses)

“Some translators title the chapter as Bhakti yoga, The Religion of Faith, The Way of Love, or The Yoga of Devotion. In this chapter, Krishna glorifies the path of love and devotion to God. Krishna describes the process of devotional service (Bhakti yoga). This chapter of the Gita, states Easwaran, offers a “vastly easier” path to most human beings to identify and love God in an anthropomorphic representation, in any form. He can be projected as “a merciful father, a divine mother, a wise friend, a passionate beloved, or even a mischievous child”, according to Easwaran. The text states that combining “action with inner renunciation” with the love of Krishna as a personal God leads to peace. In the last eight verses of this chapter, Krishna states that he loves those who have compassion for all living beings, are content with whatever comes their way, who live a detached life that is impartial and selfless, unaffected by fleeting pleasure or pain, neither craving for praise nor depressed by criticism.” ref

Chapter 13 (34 verses)

“Some translators title this chapter as Ksetra–Ksetrajna Vibhaga yoga, Religion by Separation of Matter and Spirit, The Field and the Knower, or The Yoga of Difference between the Field and Field-Knower. The chapter opens with Krishna continuing his discourse from the previous chapter. He describes the difference between transient perishable physical body (kshetra) and the immutable eternal soul (kshetrajna). The presentation explains the difference between ahamkara (ego) and atman (soul), from there between individual consciousness and universal consciousness. The knowledge of one’s true self is linked to the realization of the soul. The 13th chapter of the Gita offers the clearest enunciation of the Samkhya philosophy, states Basham, by explaining the difference between field (material world) and the knower (soul), prakriti and purusha. According to Miller, this is the chapter which “redefines the battlefield as the human body, the material realm in which one struggles to know oneself” where human dilemmas are presented as a “symbolic field of interior warfare.” ref

Chapter 14 (27 verses)

“Some translators title the fourteenth chapter as Gunatraya–Vibhaga yoga, Religion by Separation from the Qualities, The Forces of Evolution, or The Yoga of the Division of Three Gunas. The chapter once again opens with Krishna continuing his discourse from the previous chapter. Krishna explains the difference between purusha and prakriti, by mapping human experiences to three Guṇas (tendencies, qualities). These are listed as sattva, rajas and tamas. All phenomena and individual personalities are a combination of all three gunas in varying and ever-changing proportions. The gunas affect the ego, but not the soul, according to the text. This chapter also relies on the Samkhya theories.” ref

Chapter 15 (20 verses)[edit]

“Some translators title the chapter as Purushottama yoga, Religion by Attaining the Supreme Krishna, The Supreme Self, or The Yoga of the Supreme Purusha. The fifteenth chapter expounds on Krishna theology, in the Vaishnava Bhakti tradition of Hinduism. Krishna discusses the nature of God, according to Easwaran, wherein Krishna not only transcends impermanent body (matter), he also transcends the atman (soul) in every being. According to Franklin Edgerton, the verses in this chapter in association with select verses in other chapters make the metaphysics of the Gita to be dualistic. Its overall thesis is, states Edgerton, more complex however, because other verses teach the Upanishadic doctrines and “thru its God the Gita seems after all to arrive at an ultimate monism; the essential part, the fundamental element, in every thing, is after all One — is God.” ref

Chapter 16 (24 verses)

“Some translators title the chapter as Daivasura–Sampad–Vibhaga yoga, The Separateness of the Divine and Undivine, Two Paths, or The Yoga of the Division between the Divine and the Demonic. According to Easwaran, this is an unusual chapter where two types of human nature are expounded, one leading to happiness and the other to suffering. Krishna identifies these human traits to be divine and demonic respectively. He states that truthfulness, self-restraint, sincerity, love for others, desire to serve others, being detached, avoiding anger, avoiding harm to all living creatures, fairness, compassion, and patience are marks of the divine nature. The opposite of these are demonic, such as cruelty, conceit, hypocrisy, and being inhumane, states Krishna. Some of the verses in Chapter 16 may be polemics directed against competing Indian religions, according to Basham. The competing tradition may be the materialists (Charvaka), states Fowler.” ref

Chapter 17 (28 verses)

“Some translators title the chapter as Shraddhatraya-Vibhaga yoga, Religion by the Threefold Kinds of Faith, The Power of Faith, or The Yoga of the Threefold Faith. Krishna qualifies the three divisions of faith, thoughts, deeds, and even eating habits corresponding to the three modes (gunas).” ref

Chapter 18 (78 verses)

“Some translators title the chapter as Moksha–Sanyasa yoga, Religion by Deliverance and Renunciation, Freedom and Renunciation, or The Yoga of Liberation and Renunciation. In the final and long chapter, the Gita offers a final summary of its teachings in the previous chapters. It covers many topics, states Easwaran. It begins with discussion of spiritual pursuits through sannyasa (renunciation, monastic life) and spiritual pursuits while living in the world as a householder. It re-emphasizes the karma-phala-tyaga teaching, or “act while renouncing the fruits of your action.” ref

Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref

God was once a Woman?

It was women that were the focus of religion, from at least around 35,000 years ago, until the near full oppression of women by about 2,000 years ago, when all the goddess religions were killed off. And monotheism or “Mam-o-theism,” as I call it, took control.

As for “Venus” figurines they largely span that same time too as they kept making them really, until around the time male gods that seem to appear around 7,000 years ago and the new clan violence spread with it as well as things such as symbols of power that become more the focus whether male or female, as religion shifted to group control and being of service to imperial power.

There are goddess beliefs that continued after 2,000 years ago not they are not the main focus they once were across all religions.

“Goddess Durga Hinduism. Jai mata di. Or the Great Hindu Male God Shiva under Goddess kali’s feet.” – South Asian Philosopher

My response, To me, the reason the west sees Hinduism as one thing, is British Imperialism and this is because Hinduism was never one thing, until the British made it (classed it all as the same, Indian religion) one religious people, but it’s actually many different but related religious beliefs called Hinduism.

“The word Hindū is derived from Indo-Aryan/Sanskrit root Sindhu. The Proto-Iranian sound change *s > h occurred between 850 and 600 BCE, according to Asko Parpola. The use of the English term “Hinduism” to describe a collection of practices and beliefs is a fairly recent construction: it was first used by Raja Ram Mohun Roy in 1816–17. The term “Hinduism” was coined in around 1830 by those Indians who opposed British colonialism, and who wanted to distinguish themselves from other religious groups. Before the British began to categorize communities strictly by religion, Indians generally did not define themselves exclusively through their religious beliefs; instead, identities were largely segmented on the basis of locality, language, varṇa, jāti, occupation and sect.” ref 

Damien AtHope actually you are mixing two different sects of Hinduism. In the ”Vaishnava” sect they say Krishna or Vishnu is greatest. Whereas in the shakti sect they say goddess is greatest. Followers of different sects have their different beliefs. Hinduism has no central idea, unlike other religions.” – South Asian Philosopher 

My response, It is the religion of the Indo-European colonists and it relates to the religious beliefs of the area north of the black sea near Ukraine 7,000 years ago. Female goddesses were the first, and animals gods, then came males as gods.

Damien AtHope lol, all brainwashed with that false discriminatory Aryan invasion theory, if that’s the case then why do they find idols of Hindu gods and goddesses in excavation from thousands of years old Indus valley civilization?” – South Asian Philosopher

My response, The Indus valley civilization was also of Iranian DNA. 

“The Iranian-related ancestry in the Indus Valley Civilization derives from a lineage leading to early Iranian farmers, herders, and hunter-gatherers before their ancestors separated, contradicting the hypothesis that the shared ancestry between early Iranians and South Asians reflects a large-scale spread of western Iranian farmers east. Instead, sampled ancient genomes from the Iranian plateau and Indus Valley Civilization descends from different groups of hunter-gatherers who began farming without being connected by substantial movement of people.” https://www.cell.com/cell/fulltext/S0092-8674(19)30967-5

“A 2017 study by Mondal et al. finds that the Riang lineage of D1a3 (a Tibeto-Burmese population) and the Andamanese D1a3 have their nearest related lineages in East Asia. The Jarawa and Onge shared this D1a3 lineage with each other within the last ~7000 years, but had diverged from the Japanese D1a2 lineage ~53000 years ago”. They further suggest that: “This strongly suggests that haplogroup D does not indicate a separate ancestry for Andamanese populations. Rather, haplogroup D was part of the standing variation carried by the OOA expansion, and later lost from most of the populations except in Andaman and partially in Japan and Tibet.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andamanese_peoples

My response, Ancient Iranian DNA came twice to India, once at 9,000-7,000 years ago then later.

“Ancient DNA study, associated with typical Indus Valley Civilization shows the same mix of Iranian DNA and that of certain Southeast Asian hunter-gatherer societies, according to Harvard Medical School geneticist David Reich. The Indus Valley Civilization’s DNA lacked a genetic relationship with the Steppe pastoralists, the later migrants, whose genes are frequently present in modern South Asians, as well as among Europeans and other groups. This suggests that the entry of the Steppe genes into the South Asian gene pool occurred after the fall of the Indus Valley Civilization.” https://www.thevintagenews.com/2019/09/16/ancient-culture-dna/

“Another major innovation, that most likely emerged later than agriculture, was the domestication of animals, which is thought to have led to dramatic population expansions in Eurasia. Starting about 5000 years ago, pastoral nomadism developed in the grasslands of Central Asia, as well as in southeastern Europe, opening up the possibility of rapid movements of large population groups. The spread of these new technologies has been associated with the dispersal of Dravidian and Indo-European languages in southern Asia. It is hypothesized that the proto-Elamo-Dravidian language, most likely originated in the Elam province in southwestern Iran, spread eastwards with the movement of farmers to the Indus Valley and the Indian sub-continent. Between the third and second millennia BCE the Iranian Plateau became exposed to incursions of pastoral nomads from the Central Asian steppes, who brought the Indo-Iranian language of the Indo-European family, which eventually replaced Dravidian languages, perhaps by an elite-dominance model.” https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0080673

“It was determined that its haplogroup was U2b2, which is absent in whole mitochondrial genomes sequences available from about 400 ancient Central Asians; today, this specific haplogroup is nearly exclusive to South Asia.”
=this first quote is from the link above=

“The U2 subclades are: U2a, U2b, U2c, U2d, and U2e. With the India-specific subclades U2a, U2b, and U2c collectively referred to as U2i, the Eurasian haplogroup U2d appears to be a sister clade with the Indian haplogroup U2c, while U2e is considered a European-specific subclade but also found in South India. Haplogroup U2 has been found in the remains of a 37,000 and 30,000-year-old hunter-gatherer from the Kostyonki, Voronezh Oblast in Central-South European (west Russia). In 4800 to 4000-year-old human remains from a Beaker culture site of the Late Neolithic in Kromsdorf Germany, and in 2,000-year-old human remains from Bøgebjerggård in Southern Denmark. However, haplogroup U2 is rare in present-day Scandinavians. The remains of a 2,000-year-old West Eurasian male of haplogroup U2e1 was found in the Xiongnu Cemetery of Northeast Mongolia.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haplogroup_U_(mtDNA)

Damien AtHope The same Hinduism, one sect of which calls a male god supreme and the other calls a female goddess as supreme, also gives some of the oldest and yet critical arguments against the Existence of God. Yes, the same Hinduism with so many gods. Here you go: the following arguments were given by Samkhya philosophers against the idea of an eternal, self-caused, creator God: “If the existence of karma is assumed, the proposition of God as a moral governor of the universe is unnecessary. For, if God enforces the consequences of actions then he can do so without karma. If however, he is assumed to be within the law of karma, then karma itself would be the giver of consequences and there would be no need of a God. Even if karma is denied, God still cannot be the enforcer of consequences. Because the motives of an enforcer God would be either egoistic or altruistic. Now, God’s motives cannot be assumed to be altruistic because an altruistic God would not create a world so full of suffering. If his motives are assumed to be egoistic, then God must be thought to have desire, as agency or authority cannot be established in the absence of desire. However, assuming that God has desire would contradict God’s eternal freedom which necessitates no compulsion in actions. Moreover, desire, according to Samkhya, is an attribute of prakṛti and cannot be thought to grow in God. The testimony of the Vedas, according to Samkhya, also confirms this notion. Despite arguments to the contrary, if God is still assumed to contain unfulfilled desires, this would cause him to suffer pain and other similar human experiences. Such a worldly God would be no better than Samkhya’s notion of higher self. Furthermore, there is no proof of the existence of God. He is not the object of perception, there exists no general proposition that can prove him by inference and the testimony of the Vedas speak of prakṛti as the origin of the world, not God. Therefore, Samkhya maintained that the various cosmological, ontological, and teleological arguments could not prove God. – From Samkhya Philosophy Hinduism” – South Asian Philosopher 

Hinduism is a group of branches from one of the most spread religions the 7,000 years old religions all the major religions of the world connected with in some way. As they were in China 5,000 years ago affecting all Aisa religions as well. But 7,000 years ago people from Siberia and northern China spread their ideas first to Europe and the Middle East 7,000 to 6,000 years ago, then America by 6,000 to 5,000 years ago. China to India 5,000 to 4,000 years ago. As well as after there are a few who bring religions to India and all this adds changes in different ways to do Hinduism. It also evolved in India so now it is more Indian and less like the religion that it started. Although the goddess Idea started in Turkey at the early boom of farming spreading to China by around 10,000-9,000 years ago starting their goddess craze that lasted a while being added to new things then heading back from China to the rest of the world.

Hinduism, to me, is not a goddess religion, rather, it is a largely male-centric religion in general, with women added as a lesser, no matter, what few positions of power some goddesses get, they are lesser to the main male god and there is versus saying the only real god is the one male-only god and all other goddess or gods are but lesser avatars such as that of Hindu god Vishnu. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avatar

Hinduism is not a goddess religion, rather, in the goddess-based traditions of Hinduism, like Shaktism, they focus on female deities. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shaktism

However, I understand there is no one Hinduism so it depends on what kind of Hinduism you are talking about: 

“Hinduism includes a diversity of ideas on spirituality and traditions, but has no ecclesiastical order, no unquestionable religious authorities, no governing body, no prophet(s) nor any binding holy book; Hindus can choose to be polytheistic, pantheistic, panentheistic, pandeistic, henotheistic, monotheistic, monistic, agnostic, atheistic or humanist. According to Doniger, “ideas about all the major issues of faith and lifestyle – vegetarianism, nonviolence, belief in rebirth, even caste – are subjects of debate, not dogma. Therefore, Hindu beliefs are vast and diverse, and thus Hinduism is often referred to as a family of religions rather than a single religion.” ref

“Mahatma Gandhi, the famous nonviolent Hindu reformer, explained that Hinduism is not an exclusive religion. Gandhi said, “If a man reaches the heart of his own religion, he has reached the heart of the others too. There is only one God, and there are many paths to him.” Although some ideas unify Hinduism, it is an extremely tolerant religion that allows its followers full freedom to choose their own belief system and way of life.” ref 

“Although it is not easy to define Hinduism, we can say that it is rooted in India, most Hindus revere a body of texts as sacred scripture known as the Veda, and most Hindus draw on a common system of values known as dharma. Hinduism originated around the Indus Valley near the River Indus in modern-day Pakistan. About 80% of the Indian population regard themselves as Hindu. Most Hindus believe in a Supreme God, whose qualities and forms are represented by the multitude of deities that emanate from him.” ref 

“Hinduism is the religion of India and has many varied manifestations, tolerating a wide range of beliefs and practices. There is an underlying monotheism, with lesser divinities as aspects of one G-d. This infinite principle is truly the sole reality and the ultimate cause and goal. There is a religiously sanctioned caste system, said to be in some decline. Religious worship is carried out in a shrine in the home, usually by women. Transmigration of souls and reincarnation are important aspects of Hindu belief. The ultimate goal is infinity (G-d), and the attainment of this goal is prevented by karma (rebirth); following death and a sojourn in heaven or hell, the soul is reborn into a physical form determined by actions in the previous incarnation. This process of rebirth (samsara) is seen as potentially endless, and not progressive in any way. Misfortunes are an aspect of karma, and can be escaped by marga  emancipation – of which the main types are duty, knowledge, and devotion.” ref 

“Currently, the four largest denominations of Hinduism are, (1) Vaishnavism supporting 1 supreme godhead,  (2) Shaivism supporting 1 supreme godhead, (3) Shaktism, supporting 1 supreme godhead Goddess and the Shakti/Energy of the god Vishnu and god Shiva, and (4) Smartism supporting 4 gods 1 goddess as equal supreme godheads. ref 

God Vaishnavism

“Vaishnavism is one of the major Hindu denominations along with Shaivism, Shaktism, and Smartism. According to a 2010 estimate by Johnson and Grim, the Vaishnava tradition is the largest group within Hinduism constituting about 641 million or 67.6% of Hindus. It is also called Vishnuism since it considers Vishnu as the Supreme Being. Its followers are called Vaishnavas or Vaishnavites (derived from IAST: Vaiṣṇava), and it also includes some other sub-traditions like Krishnaism and Ramaism, which consider Krishna and Rama as the Supreme Being respectively.” ref

“The ancient emergence of Vaishnavism is unclear, and broadly hypothesized as a fusion of Vedic deities with various regional non-Vedic religions. It has 1st millennium BCE Vedic roots in the Vedic deity Bhaga, who gave rise to Bhagavatism, and in the Vedic water deity Nara c.q. Narayana. Non-Vedic roots are found in a merger of several popular non-Vedic theistic traditions such as the cult of VāsudevaKrishna and Gopala-Krishna., which developed in the 7th to 4th century BCE. In the early centuries CE, the tradition was finalized as Vaishnavism, when it developed the avatar doctrine, wherein the aligned deities are revered as distinct incarnations of supreme Vedic God Vishnu. Rama, Krishna, Narayana, Kalki, Hari, Vithoba, Venkateswara, Shrinathji, and Jagannath are among the names of popular avatars all seen as different aspects of the same supreme being. Vaishnavites claim that the tradition’s origin is from the vedic literature, where Lord Narayana is mentioned as the Supreme Being, both explicitly and impliedly.” ref 

God Shaivism

“Shaivism is one of the major Hindu traditions that worships Shiva, also called Rudra, as the Supreme Being. It is considered to be the oldest living religion in the world. One of the largest Hindu denominations, It incorporates many sub-traditions ranging from devotional dualistic theism such as Shaiva Siddhanta to yoga-oriented monistic non-theism such as Kashmiri Shaivism. It considers both the Vedas and the Agama texts as important sources of theology.” ref

“Shaivism developed as an amalgam of pre-Vedic religions and traditions derived from the southern Tamil Dravidian Shaiva Siddhanta traditions and philosophies, which were assimilated in the non-Vedic Shiva-tradition. In the process of Sanskritization and formation of Hinduism, starting in the last centuries BCE these pre-Vedic traditions became aligned with the Vedic deity Rudra and other Vedic deities, incorporating the non-Vedic Shiva-traditions into the Vedic-Brahmanical fold. Both devotional and monistic Shaivism became popular in the 1st millennium CE, rapidly becoming the dominant religious tradition of many Hindu kingdoms. It arrived in Southeast Asia shortly thereafter, leading to the construction of thousands of Shaiva temples on the islands of Indonesia as well as Cambodia and Vietnam, co-evolving with Buddhism in these regions.” ref

“Shaivite theology ranges from Shiva being the creator, preserver, and destroyer to being the same as the Atman (self, soul) within oneself and every living being. It is closely related to Shaktism, and some Shaivas worship in both Shiva and Shakti temples. It is the Hindu tradition that most accepts ascetic life and emphasizes yoga, and like other Hindu traditions encourages an individual to discover and be one with Shiva within. The followers of Shaivism are called “Shaivites” or “Saivas.” ref 

Goddess Shaktism

“Shaktism, “doctrine of energy, power, the eternal goddess” is one of several major Hindu denominations, wherein the metaphysical reality is considered metaphorically a woman and Shakti (Mahadevi) is regarded as the supreme godhead. It includes many goddesses, all considered aspects of the same supreme goddess. Shaktism has different sub-traditions, ranging from those focused on gracious Parvati to that of fierce Kali.” ref 

“The Sruti and Smriti texts of Hinduism are an important historical framework of the Shaktism tradition. In addition, it reveres the texts Devi Mahatmya, the Devi-Bhagavata Purana, Kalika Purana, and Shakta Upanishads such as the Devi Upanishad. The Devi Mahatmya, in particular, is considered in Shaktism to be as important as the Bhagavad Gita. Shaktism is known for its various sub-traditions of Tantra, as well as a galaxy of goddesses with respective systems. It consists of the Vidyapitha and Kulamārga.” ref 

“The pantheon of goddesses in Shaktism grew after the decline of Buddhism in India, wherein Hindu and Buddhist goddesses were combined to form the Mahavidya, a list of ten goddesses. The most common aspects of Devi found in Shaktism include Durga, Kali, Saraswati, Lakshmi, Parvati, and Tripurasundari. The Goddess-focused tradition is very popular in Northeastern India particularly West Bengal, Odisha, Bihar, Jharkhand, Tripura, and Assam, which it celebrates festivals such as the Durga puja, which is popular in West Bengal and Odisha.” ref

“Shaktism also emphasizes that intense love of deity is more important than simple obedience, thus showing the influence of Vaishnava idea where a passionate relationship between Radha and Krishna is also the ideal relationship. These older ideas still influence modern Shaktism. Similarly, Shaktism’s ideas have also influenced Vaishnavism and Shaivism traditions. In Shaktism, the Goddess is considered as the Shakti/Energy of Vishnu and Shiva respectively, and revered prominently in numerous Hindu temples and festivals.” ref

“Mahadevi, also referred to as Devi, Shakti, Adi Parashakti, and Adi-Shakti, is the primordial Goddess or Divine Mother in Hinduism. Shaktas believe her as the Supreme Being, manifested as the triple goddesses Saraswati, Lakshmi, and Parvati. The Shaivas consider Parvati to be her primary form, while Vaishnavas consider it to be Lakshmi.” ref 

Smarta tradition, all equal –God Shiva, God Vishnu, God Surya, God Ganesha, and Goddess Shakti

“Smārta tradition is a major Hindu denomination that developed during its classical period around the beginning of the Common Era. It reflects a Hindu synthesis of four philosophical strands: Mimamsa, Advaita, Yoga, and theism. The Smarta tradition rejects theistic sectarianism, and it is notable for the domestic worship of five shrines with five deities, all treated as equal – Shiva, Vishnu, Surya, Ganesha, and Shakti. The Smarta tradition contrasted with the older Shrauta tradition, which was based on elaborate rituals and rites. There has been considerable overlap in the ideas and practices of the Smarta tradition with other significant historic movements within Hinduism, namely Shaivism, Brahmanism, Vaishnavism, and Shaktism.” ref 

Sacred Menstrual cloth? Inanna’s knot, Isis knot, and maybe Ma’at’s feather?

“Sky Burial” and its possible origins at least 12,000 years ago to likely 30,000 years ago or older.

Baltic Reindeer Hunters: Swiderian, Lyngby, Ahrensburgian, and Krasnosillya cultures 12,020 to 11,020 years ago are evidence of powerful migratory waves during the last 13,000 years and a genetic link to Saami and the Finno-Ugric peoples.

Sami and the Northern Indigenous Peoples Landscape, Language, and its Connection to Religion

Alcohol, where Agriculture and Religion Become one? Such as Gobekli Tepe’s Ritualistic use of Grain as Food and Ritual Drink

New Rituals and Violence with the appearance of Pottery and People?

Neolithic Ritual Sites with T-Pillars and other Cultic Pillars

Evolution of human skin color, white-skin is really under 10,000 years old?

Neolithic Jewelry and the Spread of Farming in Europe Emerging out of West Turkey

Early European Farmer ancestry, Kelif el Boroud people with the Cardial Ware culture, and the Bell Beaker culture Paganists too, spread into North Africa, then to the Canary Islands off West Africa

Around 8,000-year-old Shared Idea of the Mistress of Animals, “Ritual” Motif

7,020 to 6,020-year-old Proto-Indo-European Homeland of Urheimat or proposed home of their Language and Religion

Between 7,000-5,000 Years ago, rise of unequal hierarchy elite, leading to a “birth of the State” or worship of power, strong new sexism, oppression of non-elites, and the fall of Women’s equal status

Hell and Underworld mythologies starting maybe as far back as 7,000 to 5,000 years ago with the Proto-Indo-Europeans?

White Bigotry and Sexism started 7,000 years ago?

The exchange of people, ideas, and material-culture including, to me, the new god (Sky Father) and goddess (Earth Mother) religion between the Cucuteni-Trypillians and others which is then spread far and wide

Low Gods (Earth/ Tutelary deity), High Gods (Sky/Supreme deity), and Moralistic Gods (Deity enforcement/divine order)

Sumerian Word for “Sky” or “Heaven” and “Goddess” or “God” May Connect to the Ghassulian Culture “Star”

To understand the spread of shared ideas across the world, don’t just think of the Middle East, look to China too.

Agriculture religion (Paganism) with farming reached Britain between about 7,000 to 6,500 or so years ago and seemingly expressed in things like Western Europe’s Long Barrows

Around 7,000-year-old Shared Idea of the Divine Bird (Tutelary and/or Trickster spirit/deity), “Ritual” Motif

Nekhbet an Ancient Egyptian Vulture Goddess and Tutelary Deity

6,720 to 4,920 years old Ritualistic Hongshan Culture of Inner Mongolia with 5,000-year-old Pyramid Mounds and Temples

KING OF BEASTS: Master of Animals “Ritual” Motif, around 6,000 years old or older…

Religious/Ritual Ideas, including goddesses and gods as well as ritual mounds or pyramids from Northeastern Asia at least 6,000 years old, seemingly filtering to Iran, Iraq, the Mediterranean, Europe, Egypt, and the Americas?

Around 6000-year-old Shared Idea of the Solid Wheel & the Spoked Wheel-Shaped Ritual Motif

HISTORY OF CHINA relates to the History of Europe?

The Center of the World “Axis Mundi” and/or “Sacred Mountains” Mythology Could Relate to the Altai Mountains, Heart of the Steppe

Maykop (5,720–5,020 years ago) Caucasus region Bronze Age culture-related to Copper Age farmers from the south, influenced by the Ubaid period and Leyla-Tepe culture, as well as influencing the Kura-Araxes culture

Low Gods (Earth/ Tutelary deity), High Gods (Sky/Supreme deity), and Moralistic Gods (Deity enforcement/divine order)

Hunter-Gatherer/Indigenous Peoples Religiosity, Beliefs, and Practices

Minoan/Cretan (Keftiu) Civilization and Religion around 5,520 to 3,120 years ago

Kura-Araxes Cultural 5,520 to 4,470 years old DNA traces to the Canaanites, Arabs, and Jews

Complex rituals for elite, seen from China to Egypt, at least by 5,000 years ago

Around 5,000-year-old Shared Idea of the “Tree of Life” Ritual Motif

Around 5,000 years ago: “Birth of the State” where Religion gets Military Power and Influence

Did a 4,520–4,420-year-old Volcano In Turkey Inspire the Bible God?

4,320-3,820 years old “Shimao” (North China) site with Totemistic-Shamanistic Paganism and a Stepped Pyramid

Single God Religions (Monotheism) = “Man-o-theism” started around 4,000 years ago with the Great Sky Spirit/God Tiān (天)?

Bronze Age “Ritual” connections of the Bell Beaker culture with the Corded Ware/Single Grave culture, which were related to the Yamnaya culture and Proto-Indo-European Languages/Religions

Bronze Age Exotic Trade Routes Spread Quite Far as well as Spread Religious Ideas with Them

Sacred Snakes or Dragons and Rivers, Lakes, and Seas?

Less Imperialism Worship in Prehistory/History, PLEASE

Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

People don’t commonly teach religious history, even that of their own claimed religion. No, rather they teach a limited “pro their religion” history of their religion from a religious perspective favorable to the religion of choice. 

We are like believing machines we vacuum up ideas, like Velcro sticks to almost everything. We accumulate beliefs that we allow to negatively influence our lives, often without realizing it. Our willingness must be to alter skewed beliefs that impend our balance or reason, which allows us to achieve new positive thinking and accurate outcomes.

My thoughts on Religion Evolution with external links for more info:

“Religion is an Evolved Product” and Yes, Religion is Like Fear Given Wings…

Atheists talk about gods and religions for the same reason doctors talk about cancer, they are looking for a cure, or a firefighter talks about fires because they burn people and they care to stop them. We atheists too often feel a need to help the victims of mental slavery, held in the bondage that is the false beliefs of gods and the conspiracy theories of reality found in religions.

“Understanding Religion Evolution: Animism, Totemism, Shamanism, Paganism & Progressed organized religion”

Understanding Religion Evolution:

“An Archaeological/Anthropological Understanding of Religion Evolution”

It seems ancient peoples had to survived amazing threats in a “dangerous universe (by superstition perceived as good and evil),” and human “immorality or imperfection of the soul” which was thought to affect the still living, leading to ancestor worship. This ancestor worship presumably led to the belief in supernatural beings, and then some of these were turned into the belief in gods. This feeble myth called gods were just a human conceived “made from nothing into something over and over, changing, again and again, taking on more as they evolve, all the while they are thought to be special,” but it is just supernatural animistic spirit-belief perceived as sacred.


Quick Evolution of Religion?

Pre-Animism (at least 300,000 years ago) pre-religion is a beginning that evolves into later Animism. So, Religion as we think of it, to me, all starts in a general way with Animism (Africa: 100,000 years ago) (theoretical belief in supernatural powers/spirits), then this is physically expressed in or with Totemism (Europe: 50,000 years ago) (theoretical belief in mythical relationship with powers/spirits through a totem item), which then enlists a full-time specific person to do this worship and believed interacting Shamanism (Siberia/Russia: 30,000 years ago) (theoretical belief in access and influence with spirits through ritual), and then there is the further employment of myths and gods added to all the above giving you Paganism (Turkey: 12,000 years ago) (often a lot more nature-based than most current top world religions, thus hinting to their close link to more ancient religious thinking it stems from). My hypothesis is expressed with an explanation of the building of a theatrical house (modern religions development). Progressed organized religion (Egypt: 5,000 years ago)  with CURRENT “World” RELIGIONS (after 4,000 years ago).

Historically, in large city-state societies (such as Egypt or Iraq) starting around 5,000 years ago culminated to make religion something kind of new, a sociocultural-governmental-religious monarchy, where all or at least many of the people of such large city-state societies seem familiar with and committed to the existence of “religion” as the integrated life identity package of control dynamics with a fixed closed magical doctrine, but this juggernaut integrated religion identity package of Dogmatic-Propaganda certainly did not exist or if developed to an extent it was highly limited in most smaller prehistoric societies as they seem to lack most of the strong control dynamics with a fixed closed magical doctrine (magical beliefs could be at times be added or removed). Many people just want to see developed religious dynamics everywhere even if it is not. Instead, all that is found is largely fragments until the domestication of religion.

Religions, as we think of them today, are a new fad, even if they go back to around 6,000 years in the timeline of human existence, this amounts to almost nothing when seen in the long slow evolution of religion at least around 70,000 years ago with one of the oldest ritual worship. Stone Snake of South Africa: “first human worship” 70,000 years ago. This message of how religion and gods among them are clearly a man-made thing that was developed slowly as it was invented and then implemented peace by peace discrediting them all. Which seems to be a simple point some are just not grasping how devastating to any claims of truth when we can see the lie clearly in the archeological sites.

I wish people fought as hard for the actual values as they fight for the group/clan names political or otherwise they think support values. Every amount spent on war is theft to children in need of food or the homeless kept from shelter.

Here are several of my blog posts on history:

I am not an academic. I am a revolutionary that teaches in public, in places like social media, and in the streets. I am not a leader by some title given but from my commanding leadership style of simply to start teaching everywhere to everyone, all manner of positive education. 

Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

To me, Animism starts in Southern Africa, then to West Europe, and becomes Totemism. Another split goes near the Russia and Siberia border becoming Shamanism, which heads into Central Europe meeting up with Totemism, which also had moved there, mixing the two which then heads to Lake Baikal in Siberia. From there this Shamanism-Totemism heads to Turkey where it becomes Paganism.

Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

Do you truly think “Religious Belief” is only a matter of some personal choice?

Do you not see how coercive one’s world of choice is limited to the obvious hereditary belief, in most religious choices available to the child of religious parents or caregivers? Religion is more commonly like a family, culture, society, etc. available belief that limits the belief choices of the child and that is when “Religious Belief” is not only a matter of some personal choice and when it becomes hereditary faith, not because of the quality of its alleged facts or proposed truths but because everyone else important to the child believes similarly so they do as well simply mimicking authority beliefs handed to them. Because children are raised in religion rather than being presented all possible choices but rather one limited dogmatic brand of “Religious Belief” where children only have a choice of following the belief as instructed, and then personally claim the faith hereditary belief seen in the confirming to the belief they have held themselves all their lives. This is obvious in statements asked and answered by children claiming a faith they barely understand but they do understand that their family believes “this or that” faith, so they feel obligated to believe it too. While I do agree that “Religious Belief” should only be a matter of some personal choice, it rarely is… End Hereditary Religion!

Opposition to Imposed Hereditary Religion

“Theists, there has to be a god, as something can not come from nothing.”

Well, thus something (unknown) happened and then there was something. This does not tell us what the something that may have been involved with something coming from nothing. A supposed first cause, thus something (unknown) happened and then there was something is not an open invitation to claim it as known, neither is it justified to call or label such an unknown as anything, especially an unsubstantiated magical thinking belief born of mythology and religious storytelling.

Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

While hallucinogens are associated with shamanism, it is alcohol that is associated with paganism.

The Atheist-Humanist-Leftist Revolutionaries Shows in the prehistory series:

Show one: Prehistory: related to “Anarchism and Socialism” the division of labor, power, rights, and recourses.

Show two: Pre-animism 300,000 years old and animism 100,000 years old: related to “Anarchism and Socialism”

Show tree: Totemism 50,000 years old: related to “Anarchism and Socialism”

Show four: Shamanism 30,000 years old: related to “Anarchism and Socialism”

Show five: Paganism 12,000 years old: related to “Anarchism and Socialism”

Show six: Emergence of hierarchy, sexism, slavery, and the new male god dominance: Paganism 7,000-5,000 years old: related to “Anarchism and Socialism” (Capitalism) (World War 0) Elite and their slaves!

Show seven: Paganism 5,000 years old: progressed organized religion and the state: related to “Anarchism and Socialism” (Kings and the Rise of the State)

Show eight: Paganism 4,000 years old: Moralistic gods after the rise of Statism and often support Statism/Kings: related to “Anarchism and Socialism” (First Moralistic gods, then the Origin time of Monotheism)

Prehistory: related to “Anarchism and Socialism” the division of labor, power, rights, and recourses: VIDEO

Pre-animism 300,000 years old and animism 100,000 years old: related to “Anarchism and Socialism”: VIDEO

Totemism 50,000 years old: related to “Anarchism and Socialism”: VIDEO

Shamanism 30,000 years old: related to “Anarchism and Socialism”: VIDEO

Paganism 12,000 years old: related to “Anarchism and Socialism” (Pre-Capitalism): VIDEO

Paganism 7,000-5,000 years old: related to “Anarchism and Socialism” (Capitalism) (World War 0) Elite and their slaves: VIEDO

Paganism 5,000 years old: progressed organized religion and the state: related to “Anarchism and Socialism” (Kings and the Rise of the State): VIEDO

Paganism 4,000 years old: related to “Anarchism and Socialism” (First Moralistic gods, then the Origin time of Monotheism): VIEDO

I do not hate simply because I challenge and expose myths or lies any more than others being thought of as loving simply because of the protection and hiding from challenge their favored myths or lies.

The truth is best championed in the sunlight of challenge.

An archaeologist once said to me “Damien religion and culture are very different”

My response, So are you saying that was always that way, such as would you say Native Americans’ cultures are separate from their religions? And do you think it always was the way you believe?

I had said that religion was a cultural product. That is still how I see it and there are other archaeologists that think close to me as well. Gods too are the myths of cultures that did not understand science or the world around them, seeing magic/supernatural everywhere.

I personally think there is a goddess and not enough evidence to support a male god at Çatalhöyük but if there was both a male and female god and goddess then I know the kind of gods they were like Proto-Indo-European mythology.

This series idea was addressed in, Anarchist Teaching as Free Public Education or Free Education in the Public: VIDEO

Our 12 video series: Organized Oppression: Mesopotamian State Force and the Politics of power (9,000-4,000 years ago), is adapted from: The Complete and Concise History of the Sumerians and Early Bronze Age Mesopotamia (7000-2000 BC): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=szFjxmY7jQA by “History with Cy

Show #1: Mesopotamian State Force and the Politics of Power (Samarra, Halaf, Ubaid)

Show #2: Mesopotamian State Force and the Politics of Power (Eridu: First City of Power)

Show #3: Mesopotamian State Force and the Politics of Power (Uruk and the First Cities)

Show #4: Mesopotamian State Force and the Politics of Power (First Kings)

Show #5: Mesopotamian State Force and the Politics of Power (Early Dynastic Period)

Show #6: Mesopotamian State Force and the Politics of Power (King Lugalzagesi and the First Empire)

Show #7: Mesopotamian State Force and the Politics of Power (Sargon and Akkadian Rule)

Show #8: Mesopotamian State Force and the Politics of Power (Naram-Sin, Post-Akkadian Rule, and the Gutians)

Show #9: Mesopotamian State Force and the Politics of Power (Gudea of Lagash and Utu-hegal)

Show #10: Mesopotamian State Force and the Politics of Power (Third Dynasty of Ur / Neo-Sumerian Empire)

Show #11: Mesopotamian State Force and the Politics of Power (Amorites, Elamites, and the End of an Era)

Show #12: Mesopotamian State Force and the Politics of Power (Aftermath and Legacy of Sumer)

Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

The “Atheist-Humanist-Leftist Revolutionaries”

Cory Johnston ☭ Ⓐ Atheist Leftist @Skepticallefty & I (Damien Marie AtHope) @AthopeMarie (my YouTube & related blog) are working jointly in atheist, antitheist, antireligionist, antifascist, anarchist, socialist, and humanist endeavors in our videos together, generally, every other Saturday.

Why Does Power Bring Responsibility?

Think, how often is it the powerless that start wars, oppress others, or commit genocide? So, I guess the question is to us all, to ask, how can power not carry responsibility in a humanity concept? I know I see the deep ethical responsibility that if there is power their must be a humanistic responsibility of ethical and empathic stewardship of that power. Will I be brave enough to be kind? Will I possess enough courage to be compassionate? Will my valor reach its height of empathy? I as everyone, earns our justified respect by our actions, that are good, ethical, just, protecting, and kind. Do I have enough self-respect to put my love for humanity’s flushing, over being brought down by some of its bad actors? May we all be the ones doing good actions in the world, to help human flourishing.

I create the world I want to live in, striving for flourishing. Which is not a place but a positive potential involvement and promotion; a life of humanist goal precision. To master oneself, also means mastering positive prosocial behaviors needed for human flourishing. I may have lost a god myth as an atheist, but I am happy to tell you, my friend, it is exactly because of that, leaving the mental terrorizer, god belief, that I truly regained my connected ethical as well as kind humanity.

Cory and I will talk about prehistory and theism, addressing the relevance to atheism, anarchism, and socialism.

At the same time as the rise of the male god, 7,000 years ago, there was also the very time there was the rise of violence, war, and clans to kingdoms, then empires, then states. It is all connected back to 7,000 years ago, and it moved across the world.

Cory Johnston: https://damienmarieathope.com/2021/04/cory-johnston-mind-of-a-skeptical-leftist/?v=32aec8db952d  

The Mind of a Skeptical Leftist (YouTube)

Cory Johnston: Mind of a Skeptical Leftist @Skepticallefty

The Mind of a Skeptical Leftist By Cory Johnston: “Promoting critical thinking, social justice, and left-wing politics by covering current events and talking to a variety of people. Cory Johnston has been thoughtfully talking to people and attempting to promote critical thinking, social justice, and left-wing politics.” http://anchor.fm/skepticalleft

Cory needs our support. We rise by helping each other.

Cory Johnston ☭ Ⓐ @Skepticallefty Evidence-based atheist leftist (he/him) Producer, host, and co-host of 4 podcasts @skeptarchy @skpoliticspod and @AthopeMarie

Damien Marie AtHope (“At Hope”) Axiological Atheist, Anti-theist, Anti-religionist, Secular Humanist. Rationalist, Writer, Artist, Poet, Philosopher, Advocate, Activist, Psychology, and Armchair Archaeology/Anthropology/Historian.

Damien is interested in: Freedom, Liberty, Justice, Equality, Ethics, Humanism, Science, Atheism, Antiteism, Antireligionism, Ignosticism, Left-Libertarianism, Anarchism, Socialism, Mutualism, Axiology, Metaphysics, LGBTQI, Philosophy, Advocacy, Activism, Mental Health, Psychology, Archaeology, Social Work, Sexual Rights, Marriage Rights, Woman’s Rights, Gender Rights, Child Rights, Secular Rights, Race Equality, Ageism/Disability Equality, Etc. And a far-leftist, “Anarcho-Humanist.”

I am not a good fit in the atheist movement that is mostly pro-capitalist, I am anti-capitalist. Mostly pro-skeptic, I am a rationalist not valuing skepticism. Mostly pro-agnostic, I am anti-agnostic. Mostly limited to anti-Abrahamic religions, I am an anti-religionist.

To me, the “male god” seems to have either emerged or become prominent around 7,000 years ago, whereas the now favored monotheism “male god” is more like 4,000 years ago or so. To me, the “female goddess” seems to have either emerged or become prominent around 11,000-10,000 years ago or so, losing the majority of its once prominence around 2,000 years ago due largely to the now favored monotheism “male god” that grow in prominence after 4,000 years ago or so.

My Thought on the Evolution of Gods?

Animal protector deities from old totems/spirit animal beliefs come first to me, 13,000/12,000 years ago, then women as deities 11,000/10,000 years ago, then male gods around 7,000/8,000 years ago. Moralistic gods around 5,000/4,000 years ago, and monotheistic gods around 4,000/3,000 years ago. 

To me, animal gods were likely first related to totemism animals around 13,000 to 12,000 years ago or older. Female as goddesses was next to me, 11,000 to 10,000 years ago or so with the emergence of agriculture. Then male gods come about 8,000 to 7,000 years ago with clan wars. Many monotheism-themed religions started in henotheism, emerging out of polytheism/paganism.

“Animism” is needed to begin supernatural thinking.
“Totemism” is needed for supernatural thinking connecting human actions & related to clan/tribe.
“Shamanism” is needed for supernatural thinking to be controllable/changeable by special persons.
Together = Gods/paganism

Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

Damien Marie AtHope (Said as “At” “Hope”)/(Autodidact Polymath but not good at math):

Axiological Atheist, Anti-theist, Anti-religionist, Secular Humanist, Rationalist, Writer, Artist, Jeweler, Poet, “autodidact” Philosopher, schooled in Psychology, and “autodidact” Armchair Archaeology/Anthropology/Pre-Historian (Knowledgeable in the range of: 1 million to 5,000/4,000 years ago). I am an anarchist socialist politically. Reasons for or Types of Atheism

My Website, My Blog, & Short-writing or QuotesMy YouTube, Twitter: @AthopeMarie, and My Email: damien.marie.athope@gmail.com

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