Hinduism 101: Many Faces of the Divine

February 24, 2007


Source: The Dallas Morning News


Popular misconception No. 1: Hinduism is a polytheistic religion.

Not so, said Dr. Hasmukh Shah, a Plano heart surgeon who teaches young members of the DFW Hindu Temple.

Non-Hindus see the statues of elephants, monkeys and multiarmed men and assume that Hinduism has a pantheon like that of ancient Greece, Dr. Shah said, but the images are in fact considered to represent incarnations of one supreme being.

Dr. Shah uses a human comparison to explain: "I'm a grandfather to my grandchildren, father to my children, husband to my wife - but I'm the same person."

It's a vastly complex religion, he said, but those who attend "Understanding Hinduism" on Sunday should get a grasp on the basics and clear up such misconceptions.