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Volume 4 Issue 4 ISSN# 1708-3265
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The Myths and Gods of India
Allain Danielou
ISBN#: 0-89281-354-7

I ordered this book because the subject has always intrigued me, and so I went on a quest for knowledge. I asked for it… I got it. This is an extensive work by Alain Danielou: 384 pages of material, and nearly another 60 pages of index and bibliography. I was looking for a book with a quick explanation and overview of various beliefs and gods of India, and if that's the kind of book you're looking for, this book isn't for you. That's not to say I don't love the book, I do. But it's the kind of book I'd need if I were doing an essay on the subject or perhaps writing a smaller book haha. I kept a dictionary near this one for my reading because there are a lot of big words in this sucker.

I found it really interesting to read about the different Hindu views and beliefs regarding creation, reincarnation and why we're here; and the content regarding the gods and deities of India is very informative. To be honest, it was just too much book for me. But I must say it wasn't a boring read. I expected the content to be dry but it is truthfully a well written, informative book.

One thing I loved about this book was the introduction to the laid back approach of the Hindu religion. Hinduism is a Polytheistic religion, Hinduism acknowledges that other religions and cultures pray to different gods, and they're cool with that. I love it! I've had many conversations with people about religion and "God" and sometimes when I mention another religion or God I'm met with, "Well that's wrong… there is only one god, the god I pray to." I personally don't think there is room for closed-mindedness in religion, and was happy to find that people of the Hindu religion agree. I found a cute quote in my reading which I wanted to include on this topic, now I can't find it. But it was something like, "In America they're calling Vishnu 'Jesus'". I thought that was great. Really, no matter what god you're praying to, you're praying to the God-There-Is. It's not like prayers are addressed, and if the god we believe in doesn't exist prayers come back "Return to Sender". God hears our prayers no matter what god you pray to.

In conclusion, if you're looking to learn about Myths and Gods of India, I do recommend this book, so long as you have the time to go through it. The great thing about this book is the amount of information you'll get from the read. And it has inspired me to decorate my bathroom with pictures of different Indian Gods; so, when people ask, "Who's the Blue dude above the toilet?" I can answer "Vishnu!" with certainty and even have some knowledge and stories of the god. Not relevant? Oh.

Reviewed by
Amanda Bugeaud

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