Movie Review: 330 Million Gods
Within the documentary 330 million gods, the narrator Robert Thurman, explores India in search of understanding how Hinduism has so many gods any why they are so sacred. At the beginning of the film his guru had to help understand the overall meaning of Brahman and why it’s so important. Hindi have a lot of statues, figurines, and sacred places that all can be considered a god or goddess. One that stuck out to me the most was the Ganges River. This river is said to be so sacred and pure that no microorganisms can survive in the waters, so Hindi go to this river and bathe and wash their clothes and hair in this river in hopes of being cleansed and becoming pure. Over 7 thousand people gather at this river at a time, bathing in this river is the equivalent of worship this goddess. Which in contrast to western culture we view worshipping as a way of doing, either singing songs praising a holy name, or by just simply praying. Another interesting thing, was when the guru was explaining how the clay figurines were a symbol of god even though they have millions of them. When he made the reference that the clay figurines are just symbols not necessarily god himself, I began to compare how Catholics view the pope. The pope is essentially the embodiment of Christ in human form so to speak. So just as Catholics respect and honor the pope as if he was Christ himself, Hindi do the same with the clay figurines.
The fact that the Hindi view so many things as sacred shows the true belief of Brahman, everything is God and God is everything. Having different symbols to help identify the different gods such as Ganesha, Saraswati, and Ganges, I believe helps Hindi bring them to reality. They are putting some type of name or symbol to the specific god/goddess in order to distinguish the many gods and their abilities to protect the world.