The Concept of God: Jagnath:
Lord of the Universe
figure of Jagnath, which is celebrated as the Lord of the
Universe, is really an epitome of the theology, which is
essentially the theology of Eastern Churches and that of the
Hebrew Kabala. It developed in India soon after the advent
of Thomas. The description of the figure can be summarized
The Jagnath symbol is an excellent representation of the
the beginning, God alone existed. We cannot attribute any
quality to God, because qualities are relative. Without the
existence of another, we cannot define qualities. This God
– the beginning - is referred to as Nirguna Brahman (God
without Qualities). This is represented as the darkness.
God who resides in darkness symbolized the God who cannot be
known. “Jehovah hath said that he would dwell in the thick
darkness” (1 King 8:12) “Jehovah spake unto all your
assembly in the mount out of the midst of the fire, of the
cloud, and of the thick
a great voice” (Deu. 5:22)
the fact remains that we have a creation and movement.
Therefore, this Nirguna Brahman put on a variation within
himself. It is as though he differentiated himself to parts
thus creating a God with Properties and Qualities. This God
is known as Saguna Brahman (God with Properties). God is a
person not a force. This is because creation needs a
purposeful act. The two open eyes represent this waking up
process. This God has expressed himself and hence can be
known through creation and in intimacy. Out of the mouth of
this Jagnath proceeds the AUM – the Word.
Aum is a person as its vibrations takes the form of a man -
a person and rises to create. It is this person Om that
created the universe with all its variations – material and
immaterial. The whole creation is in a way Word becoming
flesh. The whole cosmos forms the body of God. “For in him
we live, and move, and have our being”. This concept
explains the immanence and transcendence of God. Church as
the body of Christ is just an extension of this Jagnath
also present the trinity in almost exact manner.
When the unknowable God came to be knowable, they appeared
as Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Early Thomas Christian trinity in contrast to the later
competing trinity can be seen represented in the above
figure of “The Early Trinity” in Hinduism. The serpent
Anantha Naga represents the timelessness. Anantha means
without end. The coiled serpent represents the infinities.
Once movement and change occur, time comes into existence
because time is simply a measure of change. It started as
in Gen 1: “I n the beginning God created the heavens and the
earth. And the earth was waste and void; and darkness was
upon the face of the deep: and the Spirit of God moved upon
the face of the waters. And God said”
The Early Trinity
is interesting is the representation of Trinity. The bottom
base is the dark face – a God who cannot be seen - Father.
On the top the white face – a God who can be seen – Son –
the incarnate God. And the female figure commonly called in
Hinduism as Sakthi – the Power – the Life giving spirit.
Energy is represented as Red. In order to show the aspect
of life giving, the Holy Spirit is represented as a female.
In Aramaic, in the language Jesus spoke, the Holy Spirit was
indeed Feminine Gender. It is a true Hebrew concept. Thus
in the book of Proverbs, we have wisdom - represented as a
female - who cooperated in the creation with God from the
beginning. The second birth also comes from the Mother
Spirit as we had the first birth from our Earthly Mother.
iconographic representations of this Trinity (in contrast to
later Hindu Trinity) can be found all over India.
The Lords of the Cosmos (Jagnath)
not the essence of God that creates out of nothing, But it
is the energies that cause the matter and its vibrations
that forms the cosmos. Since it is within God, the created
cosmos is indeed the body of God. Since it is part of the
God, though not His essence, it is his body indeed. The
body is flesh.