Hindu Gods and Goddesses


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ODS

- INDU ODDESSES

,
,





Swami Harshananda


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Street, 10200
,015-4180127

�RI QAMAKQI&tINA MATtI
MYLAPORE, MADRAS 600 004


,
Published by Adhyaksha Sri Ramakrishna Math Mylapore, Chennai-4
© Sri Ramakrishna Math, Chennai
All rights reserved
,
Total number of copies printed before 78,300
-
. . b:oG moarHtO T t ." • XX-3M 3C-1-2010
ISBN 81-7120-110-5

Printed in India at Sri Ramakrishna Math Printing Press
Mylapore, Chennai-4

sarvadevasvarapasya sarvadevIsvarupi�al) arpita ramalq��asya 1q1:il) srIcara�ambuje
Dedicated at the holy lotus feet
,
of Bhagavan SrI Ramalq��a who is the embodiment of all
gods and goddesses



• •

Contents

Page

List of Illustrations

vu• •

Key to Transliteration


IX

Bibliography

X

Foreword


Xl

Preface to the Second Edition

XV

Preface


XVI

1 . Introduction

1

2. The Concept of God in Hinduism

2

3. A General Note on the Gods of Hinduism

4

4. The Vedic Gods

5

5. The Trinity

19

Brahma

20

6. The Trinity (Continued)

25

Visnu

25

• •

Avataras of Visnu

29

• •

Caturvylihas

42

Minor Incarnations

45

Other Aspects of Vi�Qu commonly worshipped 52

Minor Deities associated with Visnu

55

• •

7. The Trinity (Continued)

57

,

Siva

57

,

S ivalinga

65

,

Aspects of Lord Siva

67

,

Minor Deities associated with Siva

73



,


VI

8. Sakti or the Divine Power as the Goddess 77

SarasvatI

78

LaksmI

82



Samudramathana (Churning of the Ocean)

86

Aspects of Lak�ml

89

Eight Saktis of Vi�I)u

90

AlaksmI

90



ParvatI

91

Aspects of ParvatI Saptamatrkas

95

Dasamahavidyas

1 03

Durga

1 04

KalI

1 13

Lalita

1 17

Other Aspects of ParvatI

1 22

9. Minor Deities

1 24

GaI)apati

1 24

Icons of GaI)apati

1 36

SubrahmaI)ya

138

,

Sasta

1 43

Navagrahas

1 46

A�!adikpalakas

1 57

Other Deities

158

1 0. From Gods to Godhead

1 59




,

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

The illustrations are based on the images and sculp­

tures obtaining in well-known temples and archaeological

monuments. Wherever the description given in the text and

the drawing do not match, it should be presumed that

variations in form are allowed by the iconographical works.

Description

Page No.

A�i

9

AindrI

1 00

Ardhanansvara

74

Balaramavatara

40

B rahma

21

BrahmI

99

Budha (Navagrahas)

1 50

Buddhavatara

42

Camunda

98

• •

Daksinamurti

72





Durga

1 05

Gat:Iapati

1 26

Guru (Navagrahas)

151

Haryarddhamurti

73

Hayagrlva

47

Indra

11

KalI .

1 13

Kalki Avatara

43

KaumarI

97



,

•• •
, Vlll
,

Ketu (Navagrahas)

Krsnavatara • • •

Kurmavatara

L aksmI •

Lalita

Mangala (Navagrahas)

Mahesvan

Matsyavatara

Nara-Narayat;la

N arasirhhavatara

Nataraj a

Parasuramavatara

Parvati

Rahu (Navagrahas)
,
Sani (Navagrahas)

Saptamatrkas-Vai�Qavi

S arasvatl

S, asta

or

-
Arya

,
Siva

Soma (Navagrahas)
,
SrI Ramavatara

Subrahmat;lya
,
Sukra (Navagrahas)

Surya

Surya (Navagrahas)

Vamanavatara

Varahavatara

Varahi

Varuna •

Visnu • •

1 55

41

32

83

1 18

1 49

101

31

50

34

70

37

92

1 54

153

96

79

1 44

58

148



38

1 39

1 52

14

1 47



35

33

1 02

15

26



,

,


KEY TO TRANSLITERATION

Roman

DevaniigarI

a

a -

3tT

,

I



I -

f

u

u -

;J;

r

'Il



e



at•

tt

0

31'T

au

m

rh (anusvlira)


T

� (visarga)

T:

k'

'fi

kh



g

gh



n •



c

ch

J •

jh

n -

01'

t





Roman
th
,
d , dh
,
n ,
'1 th d dh
n
p ph b bh m
Y
r

I
v
,
s
s

s
h
In' -

DevanagarI
({ II
q
q
or ):f
li
1i

,

� .

BIBLIOGRAPHY
1. CHIDBHAVANANDA, Swami: Facets of Brahman or Hindu Gods (Tirupparaitturai, Sri Ramakrishna Tapovanam, 1974)
2. DANIELOU, Alain: Hindu Polytheism (New York, Bollingen Foundation, 1964)
3 . GOPINATHA RAO, T.A.: Elements of Hindu Iconogra­ phy, Vol. I-II Edn. 2 (Delhi, Motilal Banarsidass, 1968)
4. GUPTE, R.S.: Iconography of Hindus, Buddhists and Jains (Bombay, D.B. Taraporevala Sons & Co. 1972)
5. HARIDAS MITRA: Ganapati (Santiniketan, Calcutta, Visva-Bharati, (Reprint of Visva Bharati, Annals, Vol. VIII)
6. "INDU" INDERJIT: Science of Symbols: Deeper view of Indian Deities (New Delhi, Geetanjali Pulications, 1977)
7. KRISHNA SASTRI, H,: South Indian Images of Gods and Goddesses (Delhi, Bharatiya Publishing House, 1974)
8. RAMRAO, B enegal and SUNDARA SASTRY, Panyam: Purananama Chudamani (in Kannada) (Mysore, Prasaranga, Mysore University, 1977)
9. SRIDHARA MURTHY, M: Ganapati (in Kannada) (Bangalore, Rashtrotthana Sahitya, 1971.)
10. STUTLEY, Margaret and James: A Dictionary of Hinduism: Its Mythology, Folklore and Development 1500 B.C.-A.D. 1500 (Bombay, Allied Publishers, 1977)

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