THE ANGELS IN DEFERENT RELIGIONS
The image of angels as we understand them in Western Christian society had probebly some of their origins in the ancient Persian religion ofZoroastrianism recognizes various classes of spiritual beings besides the Supreme Being (Ahura Mazda): The Amesha Spentas, Yazatas, and Fravashis. In practice (cf. Sad Dar, chapter 26), Zoroastrians pick a patron angel for their protection, and throughout their lives are careful to observe prayers dedicated to that angel.
Literally, "Beneficent Immortals", these are the highest spiritual beings created by Ahura Mazda (thier name for say God). Their names are:
· Vohu Mano (Phl. Vohuman): lit. Good Mind. Presides over cattle.
· Asha Vahishta (Phl. Ardwahisht): lit. Highest Asha, the Amahraspand presiding over Asha and fire.
· Khshathra Vairya (Phl. Shahrewar): lit. 'Desirable Dominion', the Amahraspand presiding over metals.
· Spenta Armaiti (Phl. Spandarmad): lit. 'Holy Devotion', the Amahraspand presiding over the earth
· Haurvatat (Phl. Hordad): lit. 'Perfection or Health'. Presides over water.
· Ameretat (Phl. Amurdad): lit. 'Immortality', the Amahraspand presiding over the Earth.
Also known as Arda Fravash ("Holy Guardian Angels"). Each person is accompanied by a guardian angel (Y26.4, 55.1), which acts as a guide throughout life. They originally patrolled the boundaries of the ramparts of heaven (Bd6.3, Zs5.2), but volunteer to descend to earth to stand by individuals to the end of their days. Ahura Mazda advises Zarathushtra to invoke them for help whenever he finds himself in danger (Yt13.19-20). If not for their guardianship, animals and people could not have continued to exist, because the wicked Druj would have destroyed them all (Yt13.12-13).
The Fravashi also serves as an ideal which the soul has to strive for and emulate, and ultimately becomes one with after death (Y16.7, 26.7, 26.11, 71.23, Yt22.39) (See Dhalla, History of Zoroastrianism, pg 232-243, 375-378)
They manifest the energy of God, and preserve order in the creation. They are said to fly like winged birds, and are represented by a winged disk, often with a person superimposed (as in the above representation). Yazatas (Phl. Yazads) ("Angels"):
Lit 'adorable ones', a created spiritual being, worthy of being honored or praised. Like the Amesha Spentas they personify abstract ideas and virtues, or concrete objects of nature. The Yazatas are ever trying to help people, and protect us from evil (cf. Dk3, ch. 66). See below for some specifics of the more important Yazatas.
The Buddhist equivalent of angels is devas, or celestial beings. Some schools of Buddhism also refer to dharmapalas or dharma protectors. In Tibetan Buddhism, for instance, devas are sometimes considered to be emanations of bodhisattvas or enlightened beings. Different schools of Buddhism have different important devas, as they are often derived from pre-Buddhist cultures and religions and not from Buddhist philosophy.
Devas are spiritual beings by nature--their form is usually described as bodies or emanations of light or energy. They are, however, often depicted in physical form, and there are many images of devas or dharmapalas, particularly in Tibetan Buddhist iconography.
Devas normally do not interfere in human affairs, but as Buddhist teacher Lama Surya Das notes, they have been known to rejoice, applaud, and rain down flowers for good deeds performed in the world. In Thailand, it is believed that devas approve of people meditating and will harass people of whose behavior they don't approve.
The bodhisattva of compassion, known as Kwan Yin in Chinese and Chenrezig in Tibetan, is widely viewed as a sort of Buddhist angel. The bodhisattva's original Sanskrit name, Avolokiteshvara, means "hearer of the 10,000 cries"--that is, he or she (the bodhisattva is male in the original Buddhist texts, but is represented as female in many Buddhist schools) perceives the suffering of all sentient beings. In some sects, reciting her name is believed to summon her aid.
While not specifically referred to as angels, Hinduism does have many different types of spirit beings who act in a similar capacity. One example is the minor gods, or devas, literally "shining ones," who inhabit the higher astral plane. Gods, devas, planets like Sani (Saturn), gurus (teachers), and ancestors can all play a protective role for humans. Also present in Hinduism are asuras, evil spirits or demons. They are fallen devas who inhabit the lower astral plane, the mental plane of existence. If asuras do good, they can be reincarnated into devas and do not have to remain eternally in the lower plane. Hinduism also includes apsaras, who are heavenly nymphs, angiris, who preside over sacrifices, and lipika, who regulate karma.
Devas and apsaras are spiritual beings, but they are often depicted in physical form. Apsaras are seductively beautiful and the devas often look like royalty, stately and handsome.
Devas and asuras can inspire or bring down aspirants, helping or hindering people's spiritual journey.
According to traditional Indian Hinduism medicine, Chakra is a concept referring to wheel-like vortices which, are believed to exist in the surface of our body. The Chakras are said to be force centers or whorls of energy permeating, from a point on the physical body, the layers of the subtle bodies in an ever-increasing fan-shaped formation (the fans make the shape of a love heart). Rotating vortices of subtle matter, they are considered the focal points for the reception and transmission of spiritual energies. Seven major chakras or energy centers, also understood as wheels of lights ( angels ), are generally believed to exist, located within the subtle body. Practitioners of Hinduism believe the chakras interact with the body's ductless endocrine glands and lymphatic system by feeding in good bio-energies and disposing of unwanted bio-energies.
Much of the original information on Chakras comes from the Upanishads, which are difficult to date because they are believed to have been passed down orally for approximately a thousand years before being written down for the first time between 1200-900 BCE
In Hinduism, the concept of chakras is part of a complex of ideas related to esoteric anatomy. These ideas occur most often in the class of texts that are called Agamas or Tantras . This is a large body of scriptures. There are many variations on these concepts in the Sanskrit source texts. In earlier texts there are various systems of chakras and nadis , with varying connections between them. Various traditional sources list 5, 6, 7, or 8 chakras. Over time, one system of 6 or 7 chakras along the body's axis became the dominant model, adopted by most schools of yoga . This particular system may have originated in about the 11th century AD, and rapidly became widely popular.It is in this model where Kundalini is said to "rise" upward, piercing the various centers until reaching the crown of the head, resulting in union with the Divine
Here is a description of the seven primary chakras and how its connected to the kabalistic and Christian angelic system
Vishuddha: Throat Chakra (throat and neck area) serve for communicate with the "Dominions" from the Chesed Sphira - Mercy/ Grace/ Love of (intention to emulate) God and for communicate with the "Virtues" from the "Gevurah" Sphira - Judgment/ strength/ determination
Ajna: Brow or Third Eye Chakra (pineal gland or third eye) serve for communication with the Cherubim from "Chokmah" Sphira the Divine Reality/revelation and also for communicate with the "Thrones" in the dimension of "Binah" - Understanding/ repentance/ reason
Belief in angels is one of the six pillars of the Islam belief or faith without which there is no faith. Whoever does not believe in any of these pillars is not a believer (mu'min). These pillars are belief in: Allaah, His angels, His Books, His Messengers, the Last Day, and that predestination, both good and bad, comes from Allaah.
Angels are a part of the world of the Unseen which we cannot comprehend. Allah has told us about them in many places in the Qur'aan and via His Prophet Muhammad. There follows a number of proven reports concerning the angels, which hopefully will make you realize the greatness of the Creator and the greatness of this religion which has told us so much about them:
Of what are they created?
They are created from light, as 'Aa'ishah reported: "The Messenger of Allah said: 'The angels are created from light, just as the jinn are created from smokeless fire and mankind is created from what you have been told about.'" (Reported by Muslim, no. 2996).
They have wings.
Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): "Praise be to Allaah, Who created (out of nothing) the heavens and the earth, Who made the angels messengers with wings - two, or three, or four (pairs) adds to Creation as He pleases: for Allah has power over all things." [Faatir 35:1]
Their differences in size and status.
The angels are not all of one size or status; there are differences between them just as there are differences in virtue. The best of them are those that were present at the battle of Badr, as is stated in the hadeeth narrated by Mu'aadh ibn Rifaa'ah al-Zuraaqi from his father, who had been one of the people present at Badr. He said: "Jibreel came to the Prophet and asked, 'How do you rate the people among you who were present at Badr?' He said: 'They are the best of the Muslims,' or something similar. [Jibreel] said: 'So it is with the angels who were present at Badr.'" (Reported by al-Bukhaari, no. 3992).
They do not eat or drink.
This is indicated by the conversation between Ibraaheem, the "friend" of Allaah and the angels who visited him. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): "Then he turned quickly to his household, brought out a fatted calf, and placed it before them. He said, 'Will you not eat?' (When they did not eat), he conceived a fear of them. They said: 'Fear not,' and they gave him glad tidings of a son endowed with knowledge." [al-Dhaariyaat 51:26-28]
The angels are many, and their number is known only to Allah. The Prophet said, described the Much-Frequented House (al-Bayt al-Ma'moor) in the seventh heaven: "Then I was taken up to the Much-Frequented House: every day seventy thousand angels visit it and leave, never returning to it again, another [group] coming after them." (Reported by al-Bukhaari, Fath, no. 3207).
The angels have names, but we know only the names of a few of them. We have to believe in the names reported in the Qur'aan and Sunnah texts, as a part of general belief in the angels. Among the names of angels that are known to us are:
In Islam four angels are well known: Jibril(Gabriel), the angel of revelation; Mikal (Michael), the angel of nature; Izrail (Azrael), the angel of death, and Israfil, the angel who places the soul in the body and sounds the last judgement.
More about the engels in the islam in this page: Al-Malaa'ikah (Angels) from the Islam
Angels were embraced by
Christianity like no religion before it, Throughout the Bible we find
it repeatedly implied that each individual soul has its tutelary angel.
Thus Abraham, when sending his steward to seek a wife for Isaac, says:
"He will send His angel before thee" (Genesis 24:7). The words of the
ninetieth Psalm which the devil quoted to our Lord (Matt., iv, 6) are
well known, and Judith accounts for her heroic deed by saying: "As the
Lord liveth, His angel hath been my keeper" (xiii, 20). These passages
and many like them (Gen., xvi, 6-32; Osee, xii, 4; III K., xix, 5;
Acts, xii, 7; Ps., xxxiii, 8), though they will not of themselves
demonstrate the doctrine that every individual has his appointed
guardian angel, receive their complement in our Saviour's words: "See
that you despise not on of these little ones; for I say to you that
their angels in Heaven always see the face of My Father Who is in
Heaven" (Matt, xviii, 10), words which illustrate the remark of St.
Augustine: "What lies hidden in the Old Testament, is made manifest in
the New". Indeed, the book of Tobias seems intended to teach this truth
more than any other, and St. Jerome in his commentary on the above
words of our Lord says: "The dignity of a soul is so great, that each
has a guardian angel from its birth." The general doctrine that the
angels are our appointed guardians is considered to be a point of
faith, but that each individual member of the human race has his own
individual guardian angel is not of faith (de fide); the view has,
however, such strong support from the Doctors of the Church that it
would be rash to deny it (cf. St. Jerome, supra). Peter the Lombard
(Sentences, lib. II, dist. xi) was inclined to think that one angel had
charge of several individual human beings. St. Bernard's beautiful
homilies (11-14) on the ninetieth Psalm breathe the spirit of the
Church without however deciding the question. The Bible represents the
angels not only as our guardians, but also as actually interceding for
us. "The angel Raphael (Tob., xii, 12) says: "I offered thy prayer to
the Lord" (cf. Job, v, 1 (Septuagint), and 33:23 (Vulgate); Apocalypse
8:4). The Catholic cult of the angels is thus thoroughly scriptural.
Perhaps the earliest explicit declaration of it is to be found in St.
Ambrose's words: "We should pray to the angels who are given to us as
guardians" (De Viduis, ix); (cf. St. Aug., Contra Faustum, xx, 21). An
undue cult of angels was reprobated by St. Paul (Col., ii, 18), and
that such a tendency long remained in the same district is evidenced by
Canon 35 of the Synod of Laodicea.
The love of angels came from the people and not the church fathers. In the middle Ages, there was an "Angel mania" with countless sightings of angels and saints. At this time there was a great acceptance of the idea of “visions”, especially in
Today in the Christian countries of the West, people are again becoming more conscious of angels. They are exploring their spirituality and questioning beliefs they were raised with. They are turning to a more loving and accepting concept of religion and the thought of a "Higher Being" or "Light" that watches over us all, regardless of religion or beliefs.
Nine Celestial Orders of Angels
First order: Closest in order to God
Keter - Crown Divine Plan/ Creator
The guardians before God's throne, referred to as "the fiery spirits", they are usually pictured with six wings and flames. They constantly sing God's praise and regulate heaven. They are colored a flaming red and gold to symbolize fire. God's grace flows through the seraphim to the angels below, dispelling darkness and purifying the universe. It was from this order that Satan emerged. Before his fall from Grace, he was considered the angel who outshone all others. Seraphim's are the highest order of angels.
Gods record keepers and guardians of God's glory. Over the years Cherubims have undergone radical transformations from the Assyrian leonine-monster guardian to the winged creature of the Old Testament to a chubby baby with blue wings which appeared in the 1600s. Originally, Cherubims were depicted with multi-eyed peacock's feathers to symbolize their all-knowing character. The first angels mentioned in the bible, God placed the Cherubim at the east of the Garden of Eden to guard the way to the Tree of Life. They are the charioteers of God and bearers of his throne.
Binah - Understanding/ repentance/ reason
Referred to as "the many eyed ones", portrayed as winged wheels within wheels, whose rims were covered in eyes. They support the Throne of God and consider how God's decisions should be manifested. Their mission is to bring judgment for individual karma and society as a whole.
Second order: Priest-Princes of the court of heaven
Chesed - Mercy/ Grace/ Love of (intention to emulate) God
These are the Angels who bring you the teachings of intuition. Through them the majesty of God is manifested. They carry scepter and sword to symbolize the given power over all creation and decide what needs to be done to accomplish God's needs and regulate the duties of angels to ensure the universe keeps working as it should. They appear in human shape, wearing a triple crown to signify their position over the physical form. They can be seen carrying a scepter, holding a cross and/or a sword to symbolize the balance between the active and passive forces.
Gevurah - Judgment/ strength/ determination
Drawing on God's force to work miracles on earth, the "brilliant" or "shining ones" are the angels of miracles, encouragement and blessings. Virtues are the ones who become involved whenever people are struggling with their faith. They have four blue feathered wings and war sparkling armor. They can often be seen with a scepter, axe spear, sword and/or a shield for protection. But each of these "tools" are decorated with instruments of passion. They work hand-in-hand with the Thrones to bestow grace and rewards on those who have overcome deeds in their physical lives.
Tipheret - Symmetry/ balance/ compassion
First order of angels created by God, it is the job of the Powers to prevent the fallen angels from taking over the world and keep the universe in balance. They also bring the power of intellect in such matters as math, geometry, astronomy and so on, making them the professors and educators.
Third order: The Ministering Angels
Netzach - Contemplation/ Initiative/ persistence
The protectors of religions, guardian angels of cities, nations, rulers. They keep watch over nations and attempt to inspire their leaders to make wise decisions. Often depicted wearing soldier's garb and sandals, they are seen in human form. They provide strength to the tribes of Earth to pursue and endure their faith.
Hod - Surrender/ sincerity/ steadfastness
The "chief-angels", they carry God's messages to humans and command God's armies of angels in constant battle with the "Sons of Darkness". They look after the affairs of humankind and act as guardian angels to leaders of world movements. These are the Angels who stand around God's throne, ready to carry out the divine and most important decrees to humans. According to the book of Revelation, there are seven archangels who stand in the presence of God, but only four are mentioned in the Old Testament, Michael, Gabriel, Raphael and Uriel. The identity of the other three is subject to debate. The three recognized in the Judeo-Christian belief are Raguel, Jophiel and Chamuel. Other possible candidates are Ariel, Azrael, Camael, Haniel, Jeremiel, Metetron, Raziel, Sandalphon and Zadkiel.
Yesod - Foundation/ wholly remembering/ coherent knowledge
Celestial beings closest to humans, Angels are the intermediaries between God and mortals. Assigned by God to every human being at the time of his or her birth, they assist every aspect of life in the universe. They deal with the aspects of everyday life and act as the direct gateway for information, knowledge and communications between human kind and the God force. These angels are seen with human bodies, wings and clothed in various garments depending on the traditions and visual acceptance of the human they have "been assigned to". In reality, Angels do not have human bodies, wings or clothing, they are made up of energy and love. The only thing Angels do not help humans do is destroy themselves, the planet and other human beings, they are always a force for all that is positive, good and true.
The Bible uses various terms for angels, including:
* "MALACHIM" - GOD Messengers
* heavenly hosts or the hosts of heaven
* the armies of heaven
* fallen angels are also called demons
Differently from other religious forms, the Jews are forbidden to create any image of god/s, there for the Jews are using the Hebrew letters from the bible, for presenting God.
From the description in the bible of how to build the Ark is in Exodus 25:10-22,
"And make two cherubim out of hammered gold at the ends of the cover. Make one cherub on one end and the second cherub on the other; make the cherubim of one piece with the cover, at the two ends. The cherubim are to have their wings spread upward, overshadowing the cover with them. The cherubim are to face each other. Looking toward the cover."
We can imagine how the Cherubim on the ark looked like
The Ark Of Covenant
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