Encyclopedia for Epics of Ancient India

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Read about the Lokapalas at Wikipedia

LOKAPALAS. [Source: Dowson's Classical Dictionary of Hindu Mythology] Supporters or guardians of the world. The guardian deities who preside over the eight points of the compass, i.e., the four cardinal and four intermediate points of the compass:--(1.) Indra, east; (2.) Agni, southeast; (3.) Yama, south; (4.) Surya, southwest; (5.) Varuna, west; (6.) Vayu, northwest; (7.) Kuvera, north; (8.) Soma, northeast. Nirriti is by some substituted for No. 4, and Prithivi or Siva, expecially in his form Isana, for No. 8. Each of these guardian deities has an elephant who takes part in the defence and protection of the quarter, and these eight elephants are themselves called Lokapalas:--(1.) Indra's elephant at the east is Airavata. He is also called Abhramatanga, 'elephant of the clouds;' Arkasodara, 'brother of the sun;' Nagamalla, 'the fighting elephant;' Sadadana, 'always in rut;' Madambara, 'covered with ichor.' His wife's name is Abhramu. (2.) Agni's elephant at the southeast is Pundarika and his female Kapila. (3.) Yama's at the south is Vamana and his female Pingala. (4.) Surya's at the southwest is Kumuda and his female is Anupama. (5.) Varuna's at the west is Anjana, whose female is Anjanavati. (6.) Vayu's at the northwest is Pushpadanta, whose female is Subhadanti. (7.) Kuvera's at the north is Sarvabhauma; and and (8.) Soma's elephant at the northeast is Supratika. The two other females are Anjana and Tamrakarni, whose spouses are doubtful. Anjanavati is sometimes assigned to Supratika. In the Ramayana (1.) Indra's eastern elephant is called Virupaksha; (2.) Varuna's elephant at the west, Saumanasa; (3.) Yama's at the south is Mahapadma, and (4.) Kuvera's at the north is Himapandara.

Modern Languages MLLL-4993. Indian Epics. Laura Gibbs, Ph.D. The textual material made available at this website is licensed under a Creative Commons License. You must give the original author credit. You may not use this work for commercial purposes. If you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under a license identical to this one. No claims are made regarding the status of images used at this website; if you own the copyright privileges to any of these images and believe your copyright privileges have been violated, please contact the webmaster. Page last updated: October 16, 2007 12:22 PM