Brahma for Kids - a Hindu god

Brahma

Brahma
Brahma (Mus´┐Że Guimet, Paris,
from Madhya Pradesh, about 1100 AD)

Brahma was, along with Vishnu and Shiva, one of the three main gods of Hinduism. Vishnu came first, according to Hindu stories, and then Brahma was born out of Vishnu's belly-button. In Hindu thought, Brahma was the creator god, while Vishnu preserved the universe and Shiva was the destroyer.

In the beginning of time, Brahma wanted to create the world. So he divided himself into a girl half, called Gayatri, and a boy half, and together they made the world. Gayatri didn't want to have anything to do with her father/brother Brahma, and ran away from him, but Brahma made himself have heads looking in every direction so she couldn't get away - that's why you see him here with four heads. People said that the Rig Veda and other sacred Hindu texts came out of Brahma's heads. (Compare the story of Brahma and Gayatri to the relationship between the Greek gods Zeus and his sister Hera, or the Egyptian gods Isis and Osiris.)

Brahma, as a creator god, had a lot of children; among his many sons were Dharma and Karma.

Vishnu
Shiva
Krishna
Main Hinduism page
Main India page



by Professor K.E. Carr, Portland State University
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