My question may not be easily answerable but I thought I would put it out there. If someone resonates with what the Eastern philosophies teach at their core, but doesn't really feel at home with any particular religion such as Jesus (because of bad experiences in the past) or Krishna, or the gods within the Hindu tradition, can one possibly make his own gods, mantras, imagery, etc., while applying the same core philosophies and practices, with an equal effect? Thanks.
—Bill, North America
This is indeed, an interesting question!
It’s helpful to understand that any images or expressions of the divine, such as Jesus or Krishna, are simply there to support us in our spiritual growth. It’s not so much about “worshipping” these expressions; the point is to tune into the consciousness behind those expressions.
It seems that you, like many others, have been only exposed to the outer layers of those pure expressions. The tendency unfortunately, is to “throw the baby out with the bathwater”. I would recommend that you read Swami Kriyananda’s book, The Hindu Way of Awakening. It will help you cut through a lot of misunderstanding and confusion around this issue.
Ultimately, the most important aspect of our spiritual journey is to align ourselves with a true guru and spiritual path. Through deepening attunement in this way we are able to put into context the various expressions of the divine.
You might also like to explore Paramhansa Yogananda’s teachings on Jesus and Krishna, in these books edited by Swami Kriyananda: Revelations of Christ and The Essence of the Bhagavad Gita. You’ll find in these writings very deep universal teachings that go beyond dogma and theology.
In divine friendship,