Friday, January 22, 2010

Day LIII - Makara

Fishy elephant,
Aquatic mount of deities,
Hindu love symbol.

A symbol of fertility and water (the source of all life), the Makara is a marvellous creature in Hindu mythology understood to be an aquatic hybrid. Said to have a fish's body and the head of either a dolphin, a crocodile or an elephant, the Makara serves as the mount of such gods as Ganga (divine personification of the River Ganges) and Varuna (highly-powerful and prominent deity of Sky, Waters, the Celestial Ocean, the Underworld and Law) acting as their vahana (symbolic associative animal). All-in-all, the creature acts as a powerful emblem in Asian religion adorning Hindu sites and occasionally appearing in Buddhist imagery. As far as fertility icons go, an inspirational elephant with a fishy tail is unique and has a certain appeal; as does the idea that the love-dispensing deities of India ride the waves on the back of the marvellous aqueous entity. Here's to the Makara, the majestic manifestation of life, water and love in Hindu folklore.


  1. Hey James, thanks for your comment on my blog. It reminded me that I'd been meaning to say how much I've been enjoying your work - a triple whammy of great drawings, poetic verse and interesting topics. Lovely stuff.

  2. Thanks for the compliments! It means a lot to hear that people are enjoying the creatures and cack-handed attempts at poetry and doodling. There's a whole lot of happy haiku-crafting going on here...