Ashta Dikpalas – Guardians of the Eight Directions
The image shows a part of the murals painted on the ceiling of the Ranga Mantapa of the Virupaksha Temple located in Hampi, Karnataka, India. Check the Hampi Virupaksha Temple Murals for the images and a detailed explanations of the murals.
Painted on each of the eight frames is a dikpala (guardian of a direction). Here is the list from left to right:
1. Ishana – Guardian of Eshanya (Northeast), riding Vrishaba (a bull)
2. Nirrti – Guardian of Nairutya (Southwest), riding a horse and carrying a sword
3. Vayu – Guardian of Vayuvya (Northwest), riding a gazelle
4. Varuna – Guardian of Paschima (West), riding Makara (a crocodile-like mythical creature)
5. Kubera – Guardian of Uttara (North), riding Nara (a man) and carrying a gada (mace)
6. Yama – Guardian of Dakshina (South), riding a male buffalo
7. Agni – Guardian of Agneya (Southeast), riding a ram
8. Indra – Guardian of Purva (East), riding Airavata (a white elephant) and wielding his signature weapon Vajrayuda (Thunderbolt)
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