God: the meaning of the word and the definition of the term
In our vocabulary there are enough words that we use absolutely thoughtlessly, out of habit, without too much delving into their meaning. One such concept is "God." The meaning of the word implies both literal and figurative interpretation, and in many respects it depends on the degree of faith of the one who speaks. This concept has deeply penetrated literally into all spheres of life, therefore it is almost impossible to get rid of it or at least to abstract it. The paradoxical presence of the "god" even in an absolutely materialistic consciousness leads to a logical conclusion: it is necessary to understand the origin of this word, meaning, definition. This will allow you to consciously form the vocabulary and more flexible to accept generally accepted language.
"God": meaning of the word and definition according to the dictionaries
All explanatory dictionaries converge in the main: God is a kind of mythical supreme being endowed with absolute power, power and virtues, which governs all things in accordance with their divine design. It can be a single God, as in Christianity or in Islam, or a kind of divine community, more or less related by related ties, as in more ancient polytheistic beliefs.
In all religions of the world, one way or another, there is God. The meaning of the word in this case coincides with the main parameters. Most often this is a certain higher spiritual personality, a demiurge, that is, a creator. In monotheistic religions, God simply arranges the order of things, but in the polytheistic, each of the Gods is personally engaged in such routine matters as the sending of rain or drought, the production of thunder and lightning, as well as the patronage of all sorts of sciences and crafts.
Origin and pronunciation of the word in Russian
Not all linguists share the belief that the word "god" came into Russian from Sanskrit or the Iranian language. However, it should be noted that common roots are traced here, therefore, this version has the right to life. If we consider this as a derivative of the word "wealth" in the material sense, then it is precisely the part of the root "God" that stands out clearly - the meaning of the word in this case is regarded as the "giver of goods", "well-being". Logically, the creator of everything must do this and distribute it among the suffering, it turns out that God at his own discretion distributes the benefits.
The pronunciation of "bosh", with the muted last consonant, is considered obsolete, although it is permissible in common speech. However, it should be noted that deliberately sonorous "g" is clearly heard only when the noun is declined: "god", "god." The unclear allocation of the latter consonant is characteristic of the Odessa dialect and practically does not occur in other regions.
Using the word "god" in different meanings
This word can be heard so often that the listener begins to suspect in the rare piety of literally all those around. What do people mean when they say "god"? The meaning of the word in this case depends on the context. For example, when they say "and God knows", the speaker most likely has in mind that no one knows.
Is such a formulation evidence of atheistic sentiments? In fact, this is a stable expression, which is pronounced almost automatically, without religious overtones.
How did a person come to the concept of "god"?
It is believed that a person turns to a supernatural only if he can not explain what is happening logically. For example, if someone throws a stone fairly accurately, the victim falls, and if it is a big stone and a strong throw, it is possible that it is dead. Why did this happen? A person will be able to answer and explain, because the whole logical chain of reflection is quite obvious, it is literally before the eyes. And why, during a thunderstorm, the sky is struck by lightning - this can not be explained by visual facts, nor is it connected with thunder. Not otherwise than someone mighty threw a lightning, like a hunter shoots an arrow.
It is unlikely that in ancient times people asked themselves the question: "What is God?" - the meaning of the word was explained to the children rather blurry. Gods are all-powerful, they see everything, hear everything, and if you doubt, they will punish. This postulate that unbelievers are being punished, runs through all human beliefs.
The First Human Gods
Researchers believe that even the rudiments of shamanism and all sorts of magical practices have already been associated with certain divine personalities. Perhaps the meaning of the word "gods" among primitive people was strongly associated with natural natural phenomena, it is possible that the line between "spirits" and "gods" was smeared. A good example is the Slav bear, who was avoided calling it a real name - ber.
Of course, the bear was not a god, but already clearly demonstrated supernatural talents, at least the ability to know who, when and to what extent disrespectfully pronounced his real name. The logic of the ancient people was quite simple: if the bear is a mystical being, but obeys the change of the seasons and falls into a hibernation, then someone manages it. Who! Most likely, some kind of god or a powerful spirit. Nature was deified not in vain, it gave people the opportunity not to be tormented by uncertainty, developing the first rules of survival.
The Pantheon of the Gods
In polytheistic beliefs, there is a whole community of different divine essences. If, as an example, the Greek pantheon is considered, such a division becomes logically understandable: each of the gods patronizes various occupations and lifestyle. For example, Athena was considered the goddess of wisdom, she was worshiped by anyone who wished to sharpen her own mind - philosophers, scientists. Hephaestus was a blacksmith, a patron of artisans. Aphrodite was asked for help in love, and Poseidon enjoyed the immense respect of seafarers as the lord of the seas.
Here it is worth noting an interesting moment from the Bible, because Christianity is a monotheistic religion. The words "I am your Lord, a jealous God, are ascribed to the Creator. Let there be no other gods before you before my face. " Many make this a simple conclusion: a Christian god is not the only one, he is jealous and will not tolerate the worship of other gods. Theologians deny the existence of other gods and interpret this as just an urgent recommendation not to look at another faith.
In another section of the Bible, there is a place that has a certain name - "a host of gods", its meaning does not at all mean that it is some collection of other divine essences. The interpreters of the Bible explain this by translation errors. In the original it is a strictly defined place, which had a name, later translated as "a host of gods".
It has always been common for people to identify themselves with gods. Perhaps, that is why the divine pantheons had clear signs of nepotism. The same gods of Olympus were in one way or another connected by family ties, their relationship was seething with passions: betrayals, disputes, murders, forgiveness and punishments-everything as on earth. From this formed a mythological epic. The gods seemed to have played an endless chess game, while the figures were people. To shift responsibility for events to divine providence - this technique occurs literally in all religions of the world.
In the polytheistic religion, the meaning of the word "gods" often came down to the phrase "divine family". This is characteristic of the most famous cults of the past: Egyptian mythology, Greek and later Roman. The distinct signs of familiality are also observed in the Hindu religion.
The most popular pantheons of the gods in modern culture
Ancient mythology is now experiencing a second peak in popularity, especially in the cinema. When the writers were fed up with small supernatural beings, and art was oversaturated with vampires and elves, they boldly moved to a higher category. Thanks to this, a lot of curious interpretations appeared.
For example, the fantastic film "Star Gate" and the series that followed the full-length picture presented the pantheon of Egyptian gods as an alien race of mighty guauds, a highly developed civilization that once visited our planet. The external surroundings are underlined by Egyptian, the names of the rulers corresponded to the names of the gods: Osiris, Seth, Anubis and others.
It is interesting that even with this approach, the meaning of the word "gods" is almost entirely preserved-powerful beings possessing forces beyond the control of the human mind.
Monotheism as a counterbalance to ancient beliefs
Of course, it would be wrong to consider monotheism a relatively young category of religion. On the contrary, the first monotheistic religion is considered to be one of the oldest - Zoroastrianism just refers to the typical representatives of monotheism and is even considered the ancestor of all Abrahamic beliefs.
The youngest of the world's monotheistic religions is Islam. Allah, that is, the god (the meaning of the word and the concept differ little from the Christian one) is the creator and ruler of everything.
Can one consider atheism to be faith?
In common speech, atheism is considered to be a lack of faith, although this is not quite a correct definition. If we consider faith in a broader sense, it is the convinced atheists who are the bearers of faith in the absence of divine providence. If you ask an atheist: "Explain the meaning of the word gods," then the answer will include such concepts as prejudice, folklore, delusions.
At the same time militant atheists remember the god almost more often than the church people who remember the Creator's wish not to remember his name in vain. If we consider as the main sign of faith the desire to turn all around to it, to bring them light of truth and, regrettably, aggressively suppress the manifestations of any other faith, militant atheists fit into this category perfectly. It is much easier for agnostics who admit that there is some kind of power from above, but they do not fixate themselves on dogmas and any one direction of faith.
Using the word "god" in isolation from religion
In Russian traditionally, the mention of God to the place and out of place. It is unlikely that this seriously aggravates the position of the believer, if we remember that "God" is not a name, but ... a post. The phrase "God for Help" literally calls for supernatural forces to help, but in practice has a rather common sense of the desire for success in the labor process.
If we consider the meaning of the word "gods" briefly, then it is a mighty invisible force, omnipresent and omniscient. Perhaps that is why the expressive exclamation "Oh, gods!" Or "Oh, God!" Has nothing to do with prayer. This is rather the shortest expression of emotional heat, transmitted in the most acceptable form.
Daily and slang usage
Thousands of years of humanity relied on the gods, so there is nothing surprising in the constant use of this concept, even in those areas of life where nothing divine can by definition. However, it should be noted that the use of this concept in everyday speech makes it possible to express emotions more expressively, to emphasize their semitones.
In philological works, there is often an attempt to explain the meaning "God has not given his son for ages" - this is a quote from Marshak's poem "Dictionary." This is a vivid example of the use of the word "god" in artistic creation. And although the poem and stanza were not dedicated to religion, but to the "age" in the sense of time, this phraseology is often used as a sad illustration of the transience of human life.
It is worth noting that in the slang phrases the word "god" is not so common, but it is typical for the Russian language. If we consider American English , then it is there that slang is rich in references to divinity in conjunction with completely unexpected phrases that emphasize the ultimate expression expression.