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God in Hindu Dharma and Representation in Temples

Concept of God in Hindu Dharma
Summary Concept and Deities
Hindu Trinity
Forms of God
Forms of Goddess
Avatars of Lord Vishnu
Planet Deities
Animal Deities
Animal Deities
Airavat Garuda
Kama- dhenu Shesh Nag
Hindu Universe > God, Sages and Gurus > God in Hindu Dharma and Representation in Temples > Animal Deities > Airavat

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Airavat, the king-god of elephants, is the mount of God Indra.

This elephant emerged out of the waters when ocean was churned by the Gods. That is why the name is derived from Iravat, (one produced by water).

Elephant is the mount of each one of the eight guardian deities who preside over the eight points of the compass. The deities presiding over the four cardinal and four intermediate points of the compass are :
  • East : Indra
  • South-East : Agni
  • South : Yama
  • South West : Surya
  • West : Varuna
  • North West : Vayu
  • North : Kuver
  • North-East : Soma

Each of this deities has an elephant who takes part in the defense and protection of the allocated quarter. The chief amongst them is Airavat of Indra. He is also called Ardh-Matana (elephant of the clouds), Arkasodara (brother of the sun), Naga-Malla (the fighting elephant). His wife is Abharamu. Airavat has four tusks, and is white in color.

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Animal Deities
hand.gif (968 bytes) Airavat
Shesh Nag