Henotheism is the belief that many gods exist, yet the worship of only one of these gods is appropriate. A henotheist would admit that many gods may exist and are able to be worshipped. However the henotheist chooses to worship only one of these gods. This sets the henotheist apart from the polytheist who worships many gods.
According to the American Heritage Dictionary, henotheism is the belief in one god without denying the existence of others. Hinduism is a classic example of this belief in practice. Hindus generally worship one god, yet acknowledge that there are many other gods that can be worshiped as well. The religion of the ancient Greeks and their worship of the Olympians is another well-known example, with Zeus being the supreme ruler of eleven other gods. All twelve were worshiped, each individually by a different sect or temple.
- What Is Henotheism?, by Don Stewart