A deity is thought to be a powerful spirit that controls events and the nature of things. Deities are also called gods. A female god is often called a goddess. The adjective of deity is "divine". This word comes from the Latin deus (female: dea).
Different religions believe in different deities. Since there are many religions in the world there are many different ideas about how many deities there are, what they are, and what they can do. Followers of many ancient religions and some modern religions believe in many deities, which is called polytheism. The two largest religions on earth, Christianity and Islam, believe in only one God, which is called monotheism. Deism is the belief that a deity exists, but that the deity does not very often change or never changes things in the universe. Pantheism is the belief that the universe is the deity, while atheism is the belief that there are no deities.
In most religions, believers think deities are immortal (cannot die), and have powers far beyond human powers.
Some of the deities of different religions are:
- From the Ancient Greek religion: Zeus, Apollo, Athena, Ares, Aphrodite, Poseidon, Hades, Dionysus, Hera, Artemis, Hephaestus, Hermes
- From the Ancient Norse religion: Thor, Odin
- From the Ancient Roman religion: Jupiter, Mars, Venus
- From the Ancient Egyptian religion: Isis, Osiris, Horus, Thoth, Ra, Hathor
- From Ayyavazhi: Ayya Vaikundar,
- From Christianity: Jesus, Yahweh, the Holy Spirit (Considered to Christians as the three parts of one God)
- From Judaism: Hashem
- From Hinduism: Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva, Krishna, Durga, Ganesha
- From Islam: Allah
- From Shinto: Amaterasu the Sun goddess, Inari the Fox god, Izanagi the first human, Ryuujin the Sea god, Susanoo the Storm god.
Images for kids
A 4th-century Roman sarcophagus depicting the creation of man by Prometheus, with major Roman deities Jupiter, Neptune, Mercury, Juno, Apollo, Vulcan watching.
Deity Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.