Jump to navigation Jump to search

[god] frequently listed as one of the Lokapalas

The behaviour of Varuna cannot be foreseen, he appears a dangerous lord, a despot. He is the owner of the magic power (Maya) through which forms are created. He was described as a Creator god in the oldest hymns and possesses the secrets of creation. He represents the inner reality of things, a higher truth. Varuna is far seeing:

he knows the tracks of the birds in the sky and pushes up the firmament far above the trees of the forest.

It was Varuna who assigned to every planet its path and taught the birds to fly and the winds to blow. The wind is his breath. He is entreated not to steal life away but to prolong it and to spare his devotees.

Two-armed, he stands on the back of a swan. His right hand shows the gesture of removing fear. In his left hand he holds a noose made of a serpent. He carries all the things to be enjoyed. The virgin waters of whom he is the lord should be shown on his left. He is surrounded by serpents, rivers and the oceans.

Sometimes Varuna, god of waters, is depicted as white, riding the Makara, an aquatic monster often sculptured on buildings with its large mouth gaping at the observer. It was originally a fish, later a sea serpent or a crocodile, it may well have been a dolphin, like Poseidon�s �horses�. Varuna�s parasol, formed of the hood of a cobra is called Enjoyment. His emblem is a fish. He is the colour of snow, lotus or the moon. Some of his names are King of Watery Animals, the Knower, the Clairvoyant, the Great Poet, Lord of Rivers.

(description by Lila Durga)