Hindu Vahanas in Italy and Greece


Picture shows Greek Ear Rings with Artemis on Stag

By Santanam Swaminathan; contact swami_48@yahoo.com or Swaminathan.santanam@gmail.com

Hindu Vahanas (Mounts of Gods) are found in different parts of the world. We have already seen them in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Iran, Egypt, Turkey and other places. Since the Middle Eastern countries were under the Kassites, Hittites and Mitanni from 1800 BC, who followed  Vedic Religions, we see the Vahanas of gods there in sculptures and inscriptions. I have given the proofs in my earlier articles. Now I furnish more details about how the European countries adapted Hindu Gods’ vahanas with new stories.

We have sculptures showing Hindu Vahanas in Rome (Italy) and various parts of Greece or in the countries where Romans and Greeks extended their rule. Most of these sculptures were from First few centuries before Christ.

Times News Paper published a story on 23the February 1994 (see the picture in the paper cutting which I have preserving for 20 years in my file) detailing the symbols of three Roman Gods: “It consists of three seated figures of Minerva, Jupiter and Juno with their sacred animals the owl, eagle and peacock. The image of the goddesses appeared on Roman coins during the reigns of the emperors Trajan and Antonius Pius.” The statues belong to 3rd century BC. It shows that before the spread of Christianity and Islam, people worshipped different forms Gods like the Hindus of today.

In course three thousand long years, all the Gods and Goddesses got mixed up in their forms and interpretations. Any one opening the Encyclopaedias of Gods and Goddesses ( I have four different books on Gods and three different books on Symbols) will get confused when  they say this  god was worshipped as XXXX in this country, this god may be from XXXX country etc. The scholars are more confused than the people who worshipped them!

All the tales of ancient heroes and gods are full of violence, one killing another, cutting the body into many pieces and throwing them into different areas. Most of them may be interpreted as some natural phenomenon or astronomical events. We see it in Rig Veda from the story of Indra slaying Vritra etc. So called scholars with motive interpret them as Aryan-Dravidian fight. We know them as absurd theories because such fights are found in every ancient culture. There is no religious book or ancient literature without such clashes. Only in India the so called scholars deliberately mislead the general public for political gains.


Aphrodite (Greek and Cypriot)

Aphrodite on Hamsa Vahana and Hindu Anna Vahana of Sarsvati

Aphrodite is goddess of sexual love, worshipped from 1300 BC. She is equated with Ishtar (Akkadian), Astarte (Syrian), Astoreth (Phoenician), Dione, Cytherea, Venus (roman). She came from the foam of the ocean. In fact it was a distorted story of Hindu Samudra Marthan (Churning of the ocean) where Goddess Lakshmi, Heavenly nymph Apasaras and Jyeshta come out of the ocean. Aphrodite is shown as riding a swan, like goddess Saraswati. Egyptian Goddess Neith also emerged from the primeval ocean to create the world. She was depicted as the great celestial cow, like Hindu Kamadhenu. Neith is the goddess of weavers. I have already explained Neith–al means ‘weaving’ in Tamil in my earlier posts.

Hindu God Brahma and goddess Saraswati are shown riding swan.


Apollo (Greece and Rome)

Apollo was god of light, music and medicine. He was the son of the Titan Leto and the god Zeus (Latona and Jupiter to Romans) and the twin brother of the goddess Artemis (the Roman Diana). Apollo was often depicted with a lyre riding a swan. Known period of worship is circa 1300 BC. He is drawn as a god of hunters carrying a bow and arrow and associated with a stag. He is also pictured with lions. Apollo is strongly associated with the mystical number seven. Artemis rides a stag like Hindu Goddess Durga.


Hephaistos: Donkey Vahana In Atharva Veda (A.V.)

Picture: Hindu Goddess and Greek God on Donkeys

Hephaistos is an Olympian God in Greece. He rides a donkey. Donkey is Vahana for Hindu Gods and Goddesses as well:

Donkey Vahana for Indra: A.V. 9-6-4

Donkey vahana for Agni: Aitareya Brahmana 4-9-1

Donkey Vahana for other Gods: AV 8-8-22

Jyeshta or Muthevi or Seetala Devi have donkey has her Vahana.


Henrich Zimmer (1890-1943) wrong!

German Scholar, like most foreign Indologists misled the world by mixing the poison of Aryan –Dravidian theory in his interpretation of Vahanas. He said,

“ Animal symbol carrying the human is the duplicate representation of the energy, character of that god. They are the tutelary deities of the Indian household derived from the pre-Aryan aboriginal tradition and playing a considerable role in the Hindu and Early Buddhist lore”. Those who read about Vahanas from 3000 BC in Sumerian culture to 3rd BC in Greek culture can see the absurdity in Zimmer’s theory. If Indian Vahanas are pre Aryan, what about the Vahanas of other cultures? Moreover we see Vahanas as negative forces that is controlled by the Gods, not duplicate as Zimmer described.

Foreign scholars caused a big havoc by poisoning the Indian history with their own invented theories of Aryan-Dravidian divide wherever possible. Tamil Kings Chera ,Choza and Pandyas  fought for 1500 years without any break! They deserve a place in Guinness Book of Records for the longest fight in the world. But nobody saw any Aryan-Dravidian division in those fights. But if there was a fight between a Northern kingdom and Southern Kingdom, immediately they described it as Aryan-Dravidian clashes. If two kings or kingdoms fought during Vedic period, immediately they described it as Aryan-Dravidian!! But we see such clashes in Greece, Rome and Egypt.

Rati and Manmatha on Parrot Vahana

Also read my earlier posts:

1.Iraq: 7 Gods Procession on Vahanas, 2.Deer Chariot: Rig Veda to Santa Claus, 3.Hindu Vahanas around the World,4.Vahanas in Kalidasa and Tamil Literature,5.Who Rides What Vahanas?,6.உலகம் முழுதும் இந்து தெய்வ வாகனங்கள்,7.சங்கத் தமிழ் இலக்கியத்தில் வாகனங்கள், 8.வாகனங்கள் தோன்றியது எங்கே?ஏன்? எப்போது?, 9.எந்தக் கடவுளுக்கு என்ன வாகனங்கள்? 10.Interesting Facts on Vahanas,11.Hindu Vahanas In Italy and Greece