The God of Christianity
The Trinity: a single Godhead
composed of three persons
The term "trinity" implies a grouping of three. In religious usage, "trinity" generally refers to a group of three deities -- or three aspects of a single deity -- who exist in a special relationship with each other.
Three examples are:
A nearly universal belief within Christianity is that the Godhead is simultaneously a unity and a grouping of three persons: God the Father; Jesus Christ, the Son; and the Holy Spirit. As the Athanasian Creed from the late 5th century CE explains, the Trinity is "one God" and "three
persons... and yet they are not three Gods, but one God."
There are a number of Trinities within Hinduism:
- Brahman is viewed as being: Brahma the Creator, Vishnu,
(Krishna) the Preserver, and Shiva the Judge/Destroyer.
Shakti, The feminine power of the universe, shakti, is expressed as Sarasvati, the Goddess of Wisdom; Lakshmi, Goddess of Prosperity; and Kali/Durga, Goddess of Judgment.
The Krishna Trinity is usually conceived as Vishnu, the cosmic body (vishvarupa); the incarnate Krishna; and Krishna as paramatma."
Sarasvati's attributes correspond closely with those of Sophia in the Hebrew Scriptures. Paramatma is very similar to the Holy Spirit in Christianity.
Within Goddess worship, Wicca and some other Neopagan religions, the Goddess is viewed as a Trinity consisting of a Maiden who represents energy and sexuality; a Mother who represents fertility; and Crone who represents wisdom.
Topics covered in this section:
In the future, we hope to convert this essay to a menu that will have links to a series of essays on the Trinity that will discuss:
- How Yeshua of Nazareth (Jesus Christ) was viewed by his immediate followers.
- How he was viewed by the early Jewish Christian movement and by Paul.
- The political battles that led to the adoption and refinement of the Trinity by various 4th century church councils.
- Various attempts to explain the nature of the Trinity in terms that people can understand.
- Various understandings of the Trinity among today's Christian denominations.
This hyperlink may not still be online.
Nick Gier, "The most well known Hindu Trinity...," University of Idaho, undated, at: http://www.class.uidaho.edu/
Copyright 2010 to 2011 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Original posting on this website: 2010-MAR-12
Latest update: 2011-OCT-24