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Encyclopedia of Hindu Gods


Image from Moor.

Basic Description:  Sun god. Some accounts place Surya as one of the Adityas, since in the AdityasVishnu is associated with the sun.  One of the Nine Planets.

Alternate Names:  Treyitenu, Ravi, Surya

History/Practices:  Surya is one of the earliest Hindu gods.  The RigVeda has several hymns dedicated to him, both as Surya and as Savitri (wifeof the moon.)  The first Hindu Triadincluded Surya, but was displaced by the present Hindu Triad including Brahma,Vishnu, and Shiva.  Worshippers of Suryaare called Surapats, they offer him burnt offerings of Arka (a shrub.)  The Hindu word for the day Sunday, Ravivara,is named after him.

Iconography:  In art, Surya is represented as dark-red, withthree eyes and four arms.


Riding Animal:  Surya rides in a chariot drawn by sevenhorses.  His charioteer is Arun, thebrother of Garuda.

Consort:  Sanjana, who tired of her husbandís brillianceand replaced herself with her handmaiden Chhaya for a while.  Another consort of Surya is Ushas, goddess ofthe Dawn.

Other References on the Karma-to-Grace website:  


Moor, Edward.  The Hindu Pantheon.  Los Angeles: Philosophical research society, 1976.

Thomas, P.  Epics, Myths and Legends of India.  Bombay, India: D. B. Taraporevala Sons & Co. Private Ltd, 1961.

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