Symbolic manifestation of devta’s vehicles, weapons, portfolio

Symbolic manifestation of devta’s vehicles, weapons, portfolio

 

Symbolism plays a significant role in the Hindu religion. All Hindu gods and goddesses carry weapons; possess vehicle; they all have their own virtue and area of expertise. The following paragraphs discuss about the meaning and symbolic representation of the weapons of various Hindu gods and goddesses. It also discusses about special characteristics, virtues and attributes of each god and goddess.

Symbolic Manifestation of Vehicles    

Each Hindu god and goddess has at least one vehicle or mount (also called sawari, vahana). Most of the deities are depicted as sitting on their vehicle while many others are either ornamented or flanked by it.

Direct Significance – Each vahana symbolizes or signifies something subliminal. It directly addresses or speaks of the deep spiritual connotation.

Message for human beings and other creations – Every living being on earth is entitled to resources, livelihood means, journey and success.

Symbolic Manifestation of Weapons

Every Hindu god and goddess is depicted with at least one weapon in hand.

Direct Significance – A god or goddess holding a weapon in his/her hand depicts that every one of us should also always be equipped with the strength and power for self-protection.

 

 

 

 

 

Message for human beings and other creations – One should always be well equipped with a weapon for self protection. In times of emergency, this weapon can be used to kill or fight against the evil forces or enemies.

Symbolic Manifestation of Portfolio   

A particular department/assignment/portfolio has been allocated to each god and goddess for all creations and living beings.

Direct Significance – It says that it is not possible for an individual to focus on all the functions and that each being should focus on acquiring expertise in one single job or activity.

Message for human beings and other creations – it is always better if every member of the house performs his own role or duty. Beneath a single organizational umbrella, there is a system of delegation of authority where different groups or members are give separate tasks to perform based on their skills and qualification.

Deities with their Vehicles, Weapons and Portfolio

Agni  

Virtues and Attributes – Lord of Fire – young, vibrant and energetic – Lord of Sacrifices & Guardian of Law – dispels darkness in the world and inside one’s mind

Associated Mount or Vehicle – The Ram or Male Goat

The Ram symbolizes strength, power, vibrancy, and vitality.

Weapon in Hand – Double Edge Spear

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Fire or Sacrifice

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ayyappan

Virtues and Attributes – Direct towards the path of austerity – promotes and observes tapas as a way of life, daily prayers, participating in pujas and satsang – doing community service – visiting temple and reading scriptures – spreading love and compassion – promotes man’s transformation for good, better and the best – spreads universal principle of brotherhood – teaches that in times of need one should also act like a warrior

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Tiger or sometimes Horse as well

Tiger signifies inherent divine nature of the God to defeat Asuras.

Weapon in Hand – Bow and Arrow, Not depicted with any weapon however as per legend he used it once.

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Austerity

Bhairava, or Dattatreya (in western and northern India)

Virtues and Attributes – An incarnation of Shiva – Strong and powerful – considered as the care taker and punisher – the guardian of travellers

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Dog (depicted in the background)

Dog is the most loyal amongst all the animals. He is the best protector and guard.

Weapon in Hand – Khadga Sword, Trident and Noose

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Punishment

Brahma  

Virtues and Attributes – The Creator of the entire universe – brings forth the creation – presents the creative principles of the Supreme Divine – dispenses justice to all living beings – holds the Vedas on one hand and a water-pot, sceptre, and a rosary made up of rudraksha beads on the other

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Swan (Hamsa or goose Or swan)

Swan is blessed with Neera-Ksheera Vivek and it can separate water from the milk. It guides to sift the good from the evil so that one can accept all the virtues thus advancing towards spiritual growth.

Weapon in Hand – Brahmastra and kamandalu (water pot used as an article)

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Creation, Generation and Source of Universe

Durga ( incarnation of  Parvati)

Virtues and Attributes – An incarnation of goddess Parvati – goddess of power, transformation and destruction – the Supreme warrior goddess – the mother of the whole universe – embodiment of Shakti – Shakti is a creative cosmic energy – extremely radiant and beautiful – filled with strikingly brilliant aura

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Tiger

Weapon in Hand – Trident, Thunderbolt, Discus, Gada (Mace) Also kamandalu (water pot used as an article)

The animal Tiger represents the goddess’s aggression and ferocity during battle with devils (asuras).

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Battle

Ganesha  

Virtues and Attributes – The Master of wisdom and intellect – gives prosperity and good luck – removes all kinds of hurdles – in his name ‘Ga’ stands for Buddhi (intellect) and ‘Na’ for Vijnana (wisdom) – crushes negativity – showers grace

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Mouse (named Mooshika)

Just like mice or mooshika multiply at night and create hurdles and destruction; negativity in our thoughts and mindset multiply when left uncontrolled. Thus Ganesha is depicted riding on a mouse symbolically controlling darkness and ignorance.

Weapon in Hand – Noose (Pasa), Goad (Ankusa) or Trishul (trident)like object.

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Fortune

Indra

Virtues and Attributes – King of the Devas or Gods – God of War and Weather – depicted as aggressive and heroic – enjoys the Soma – holds Vajra (thunderbolt), net, hook and bow – maintains all elements such as Varuna, Agni and Surya – kills the demons (asuras) – establishes dharma in all the three worlds

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Elephant (named Airavata)

With its trunk an Elephant reaches down to the netherworld and sprays water across the all the worlds. This act is similar to that of Indra’s.

Weapon in Hand – Vajra (Thunderbolt), Hook & Bow

Portfolio – Allocated Department is War and Weather

Kali (an incarnation of Parvati)

Virtues and Attributes – Possesses destructive power and harmful energy – associated with death, destruction and darkness

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Donkey

A Donkey’s loud screaming is linked to Kali’s war cry in the battlefield

Weapon in Hand – Sword

Portfolio – Allocated Department is destruction of evil forces

Krishna  

Virtues and Attributes – The 8th incarnation of Lord Vishnu – famous for his pastoral childhood – youth as a heroic warrior – also famous as a guide/preacher

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Brahmi Eagle (Garuda); Krishna is also depicted with Cow as Saviour

An Eagle or Garuda is full of power and energy. He is gigantic enough to block Sun God. It is blessed with immensely powerful wisdom, strength and intelligence. He can change to and from human form at will.

Weapon in Hand – Sudarshana Chakra (Discus)

Portfolio – Allocated Department -Protection of Truth

Kubera

Virtues and Attributes – Kubera is known as the god of Wealth.

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Man, Sometime Horse

Man is symbolic of hard work, and this vahana symbolizes that if the effort is put in the right direction any amount of wealth can be achieved.

Weapon in Hand – Gada (Mace)

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Wealth

Lakshmi  

Virtues and Attributes – Goddess of wealth – symbolic of prosperity and happiness – embodies riches, purity, beauty, good grace, charm, lustre, fortune, and splendour – the goddess of plenty – wears heavy jewellery indicating herself as the goddess of wealth – the Mother of the universe – consort of Lord Vishnu

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Owl, by her side, the Elephant

Swan has grace, wisdom, and beauty. The other vahana of Lakshmi is Owl. An Owl sleeps in the daytime and remains awake during the night. It also remains unwavering irrespective of any situation. It speaks about isolation, warns against distrust and selfishness

Weapon in Hand – Lakshmi is the only exception who carries Jhanpi, a kind of a spherical casket used as weapon when needed.

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Prosperity

Muruga (Skanda/Kartikeya/Subramaynan/Shanmuga)

Virtues and Attributes – The protector of Good – narrated the significance of ‘Aum’ to mankind.

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Peacock (named Parvani)

Peacock is known for majesty and splendour.

Weapon in Hand – Vadivel (spear/lance, similar to a trident)

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Majesty, War Commander

Parshuram

Virtues and Attributes – Saved the world from the atrocities of the Kshatriya rulers who followed adharma – symbolises implicit obedience and perfect faith – promotes Satvik Brahmin values

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Brahmi Eagle (Garuda) as an avatar of Lord Vishnu

An Eagle or Garuda is full of power and energy. It is gigantic enough to block Sun God. It is blessed with immensely powerful wisdom, strength and intelligence. He can change to and from human form at will.

Weapon in Hand – Parashu (Axe), Hala

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Destruction of Ego

Parvati

Virtues and Attributes – The consort of Lord Shiva – the mother of Ganesha and Kartikeya.

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Lion

Lion is known for Majesty and Energy

Weapon in Hand – No weapon when depicted in the normal form as the wife of Lord Shiva

Portfolio – Allocated Department is the Mother of creation and Energy

Rama

Virtues and Attributes – The seventh incarnation of Lord Vishnu

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Brahmi Eagle (Garuda) as an avatar of Lord Vishnu, Chariot with horses

An Eagle or Garuda is full of power and energy. He is gigantic enough to block Sun God. It is blessed with immensely powerful wisdom, strength and intelligence. He can change to and from human form at will.

Weapon in Hand – Bow & Arrow

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Ideal Administration & Governance

Saraswati  

Virtues and Attributes – Goddess of learning and knowledge – embodiment of art, music, poetry, purity, creativity, literature – goddess of thoughts / truth – goddess of forgiveness – springs up as river and flows naturally from her being – symbolizes fertility, prosperity and virtue – consort of Lord Brahma

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Swan (Hamsa or goose Or swan), flanked by Peacock in the background

The Swan depicts Saraswati’s own purity and realization of truth and knowledge of the Brahman. Other vahana is a Peacock that signifies arrogance over one’s splendour and beauty. Saraswati is depicted as mounted on a peacock. It is symbolic of the fact that one should learn to let go of the thoughts of external appearance and concentrate instead, on finding out the eternal truth.

Weapon in Hand – Veena, a musical instrument which can be used as a weapon if need arises.

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Knowledge

Shani

Virtues and Attributes – A much-feared god – creates difficulties in the path of the seeker – these hurdles indeed take the person towards the path of enlightenment, spirituality and devotion – embodies endeavour, endurance and patience

Associated Mount or Vehicle – A Vulture or A Crow

A vulture or crow has stealing habits and it depicts its fearful appearance. Shani’s benevolent influence transforms the wicked into hopeful and practicable.

Weapon in Hand – Sword

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Justice

Shiva

Virtues and Attributes – The Destroyer of the Universe – uses his 3rd eye’s power – represents the universal principle of destruction and recreation.

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Bull (called as Nandi)

Bull symbolises virility and strength. It is also most significantly used for dairy farming.

Weapon in Hand – Trishul or Trident

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Transformation, Destruction and Creation

Surya

Virtues and Attributes –  God of energy – god of life – the main solar deity – the main source of light – represents the soul –  stands for health, vitality, willpower, fame, valour, authority, royalty, and majesty

Associated Mount or Vehicle – The Seven Horses (chariot pulled by seven horses or a seven-headed horse)

Horses portray speed, arrogance and power. Lord Sun’s seven horses symbolize the seven sins and his super control over them. This teaches us how we shall control our base emotions to climb the spiritual realms of life. The seven horses also stand for the seven chakras (spiritual centres) in our subtle body. The unfolding and blossoming of these chakras lead to the rising of Kundalini power (serpentine energy) residing within us.

Weapon in Hand – Sword

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Energy

Vishnu  

Virtues and Attributes –   Maintains the Universe – preserver, indwelling-life, operator of this universe – instructs about the eternal principle of preservation

Associated Mount or Vehicle – Garuda

An Eagle or Garuda is full of power and energy. It is gigantic enough to block Sun God. It is blessed with immensely powerful wisdom, strength and intelligence. It can change to and from human form at will.

Weapon in Hand – Sudarshana Chakra (Discus)

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Preservation/Indwelling -Life/ Operation

Yama

Virtues and Attributes – God of death – scary and grisly appearance – reflects suffering, pain and diseases affecting living beings all around – shown with red or green skin, red attire – rides a water buffalo –  reports to Vishnu (the maintainer of this universe) and Shiva (the destroyer of this universe).

Associated Mount or Vehicle – The Water Buffalo

The water buffalo is believed to have too much strength and it can carry two fully armoured gods on its back. It signifies strength and commitment for upholding dharma and righteousness

Weapon in Hand – Gada (Mace) in right hand and Noose

Portfolio – Allocated Department is Suffering

Published On: 22-09-2014

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