There is a common misunderstanding about Gods and their number in Sanaatana Dharma. The Vedas declare “ek sat viprah vahudhaa vadanti” meaning God is one, but is spoken of as many by the knowledgeable due to functional requirements. For example, even though electricity is used for heating, cooling, blowing air, driving cars and so on, it require a heater, a fridge, a fan or a car to get the benefits. Without these gadgets, electricity cannot be used. Supreme God is like electricity and the lesser Gods are like gadgets, which cannot run without electricity. Then there is a difference between Brahmaa or Prajaapati, Deva, Devataa and Devapatni. Brahmaa or Prajaapati is only one for any universe. The Deva are only 33 in number, which is a highly scientific description and whose interpretation needs knowledge of frontier physics. In fact there are two divisions of 33 based on permittivity (somapaa) and permeability (asomapaa), which are akin to shear modulus of elasticity and bulk modulus of elasticity respectively. They are created by (derivatives of) Brahmaa or Prajaapati, the first manifested being (Brahmaa devaanaam prathama sambhuva vishwasya kartaa bhuvanasya goptaa). Devapatni belongs to one class (vaak), but has a different and highly scientific connotation. It covers the entire material universe that is expressed through speech form. The 3.3 million Devataa are different expressions of these 33 (33 x 1000 x 100). They refer to the total number of radiation groups in Yajur Veda (amshunaam jaati nirnaye). The 33 crore Devataas are a misinterpretation of the term "koti". It actually means "class" or "group" and not crore. Yet, it is not entirely base-less.
The scriptures have expressed the same truth differently depending upon the learning ability of the target population (Adhikaari vibhaagena shastraanyuktanasheshatah). If understood in the proper context, everything in the scriptures are correct. However, it can be understood properly only in the traditional way and not in any other way, as the basic interpretations follow lots of technical terms that are often misunderstood. For example, Sun is a star, Earth is a Planet and Moon is a Satellite. This classification is based on the principle of who rotates around whom and which is a gaseous/plasma structure central to the system. But the scriptures describe all as graha. If graha is interpreted as planet, then the description of the scriptures are wrong. But if it is interpreted in the proper sense (grahanaat graha), that which contains or holds others with its gravitational force, the scriptures are right. Further, the terms have universal application and are not subjected to manipulation. Ignorance of this knowledge has led to misinterpretation of the scriptures as imaginary fictions or mythology (Ashakyam tad padam gantum tato nindaam prakurvate). However, since the scriptures are universal, all interpretations fit in to some extent.
The so called God-men are really ignorant bigots who occupy their positions by virtue of manipulation, fraud or cheating. Thus, we have some self-proclaimed God-man with a salutation repeating itself, which is grammatically not correct, as repetition is treated as a fault. We find lots of contradictions in his speech and writings. His operations appear to be more commercial and advertisement based than spiritual. Another God-man is teaching pranaayaama indiscriminately without yama, niyama (purification of the body and the mind) and Aasana-shiddhi (prayatna shaithilya - effortless posturing and ananta samaapatti – sublimating oneself with the universal), which are pre-conditions before pranaayaama. This exposes the followers to the dangers of baatadhikya – arthritis and rheumatism. It is true that he advises his followers to follow the right procedure. But here the emphasis is missing. Pranaayaama is a powerful weapon. Doing it improperly will lead to a sound heart in a poor body. It is like a car with a powerful engine but a weak body. Such people will be bed ridden, but will not die soon. Yet another God-man calls himself the Supreme Court of the Hindus (there is no such term as Hindu in Vedas or allied scriptures and according to Mahaabhaashya of Patanjali, use of such deformed words are prohibited). The sensual misdeeds of many more so-called God-men are well-known. We call the so-called God-men ignorant purposely and challenge them for a public debate with us to prove our statement and expose them.
But such phenomenon is not unique to the so-called Hinduism. Often we come across the misdemeanor by Priests in the Houses of God or the anecdotes relating to someone who poses as a Pir Baba. Even though Islam does not believe in other than the one God and His only Prophet, simple people in problem flock to these fake God-men for relief. Thus, taking advantage of the simplicity of the general public to further one’s own interests is a universal phenomenon across all religions.
The question is why is it occurring and from which source it gets its sustenance? The common people have become highly distraught and finding themselves in mid ocean without any hope for survival. Hence they clutch at even a straw knowing fully well that it cannot save them, yet hoping for a miracle in the absence of any alternative. Our helplessness gives these fraud Babas’ their sustenance. Our politicians, who are the epitome of immorality, also contribute to the problem due to their selfish interests and insensitivity to the sufferings of the common person.
What is the way out? Suffer silently. The direction is inviolable. Only we can try to harmonize our position and behavior to minimize the sufferings for another less than 4900 years. By that time the life form would have changed beyond recognition and the present life form would not survive. Thereafter God will take-over - yadaa yadaa hi dharmasya glaanirbhavati Bhaaratah. Abhyutthaanamadharmasya tadaatmaanam srjaamyaham.