A to Z Challenge

N is for Nagas, Hindu and Buddhist Serpent Gods – A to Z Challenge

My theme for the “A to Z Challenge” is World Mythology.A2Z-BADGE 2016-smaller_zpslstazvib

My A to Z posts will run concurrently with my usual posts. I hope they spark your curiosity. I find it fascinating how so many stories crossed the boundaries of countries and even oceans.


N is for Nagas, Hindu and Buddhist Serpent Gods

“Naga” is the Sanskirt word for a god or entity or being that takes the form of a snake, most often the King Cobra. The myths are found in the Indian religions, mainly Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism.

“Stories involving the nāgas are still very much a part of contemporary cultural traditions in predominantly Hindu regions of Asia (India, Nepal, and the island of Bali). In India, nāgas are considered nature spirits and the protectors of springs, wells and rivers. They bring rain, and thus fertility, but are also thought to bring disasters such as floods and drought.

Nagas are snakes that may take human form. They tend to be very curious. According to traditions nāgas are only malevolent to humans when they have been mistreated. They are susceptible to mankind’s disrespectful actions in relation to the environment. They are also associated with waters—rivers, lakes, seas, and wells—and are generally regarded as guardians of treasure.” (Wikipedia)

NagaPhnomPenh
Cambodian seven-headed naga at the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh (Wikipedia)
216px-Vijayanagar_snakestone
Naga stone worship at Hampi (Wikipedia)

Naga stones are believed to bring fertility and prosperity. There are rituals in their honor. In south India, women gather in Hindu temples to worship nagas carved into stones.

It is believed Nagas can take human form.

There are some regions  In India where people trace their ancestry to nagas.


Resources

Wikipedia

Feature Photo (Wikipedia) – “Hoysala sculpture of a naga couple in Halebidu


Go to my 2016 A to Z Challenge page to see my other posts on world mythology.

 

 

 

 

7 thoughts on “N is for Nagas, Hindu and Buddhist Serpent Gods – A to Z Challenge

    1. Lucky you Susan. It must have been something to visit the sites there.
      Thanks for stopping by and commenting.
      Best Wishes
      Jo-Ann

      Like

  1. J here, of the #atozchallenge Arlee Bird’s A to Z Ambassador Team.
    How has the challenge been going for you so far? Are you meeting your goals of posting and hopping to other blogs? M marked the halfway point!
    My blog’s giveaway is still going! I’m encouraging everyone to visit more stops. Check out the post about how to better use the image alt code — featured on the main A to Z blog as well as my own.
    http://jlennidornerblog.what-are-they.com
    This is absolutely fascinating! I love learning about the cultures and religions of others.

    Like

    1. Hi Jazzfeathers,
      I find it curious that snakes play such an important role in mythology. They are one image that haunts my dreams. Thanks for stopping by and chatting.
      Best Wishes
      Jo-Ann

      Like

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