The Gods and Their Vahanas

- September 20, 2020

By Sanjana Kapur and Aparna Kapur The gods in Indian mythology have vahanas or vehicles on which they ride. These vahanas are their constant companions. They represent the strength and beauty of the deity, and at times, symbolise various human traits, including those that are negative. The negative traits are those that the gods are said to overpower. Among the gods and their companions, the more famous combinations are Vishnu and Garuda, Shiva and Nandi, Brahma and Hamsa, Indra and Airavata, and Ganesha and Moushika. Here is a list of some of the lesser-known vahanas of various divinities. Illustration: Adarsh Achari and Ritoparna Hazra Vayu, the wind god, is depicted riding a deer. Bhairava has a dog as his mount. Varuna’s vahana, Jaladhi, was born from Rudra’s earwax and has the divine power of movement. Agni, the fire god, rides a ram. Illustration: Adarsh Achari and Ritoparna Hazra...

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Prahlad drove his monstrous father to a murderous rage. He insisted on praising Lord Vishnu who was considered a sworn enemy by his father Hiranyakashipu. When he tried to punish his disobedient son, Hiranyakashipu's potent poisons turned to nectar while his lethal weapons fell harmlessly away. In this tale of bloodthirsty revenge, Prahlad's only defence is his devotion which dramatically puts an end to all evil.

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