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Lokapala

From Academic Kids

In Hinduism and Buddhism, the lokapala (Skt. "world protector") were the Guardians of the four directions and were usually placed in pairs at the entrance to tombs. As Guardians they could call upon the spirits of the next world to help them protect the tomb if necessary.

In Hinduism, the four are:

  • Indra, the guardian of the east
  • Yama, the guardian of the south
  • Varuna, the guardian of the west
  • Kubera, the guardian of the north

In Buddhism, the names of the four in Sanskrit (and Tibetan) are:

  • Dhrtarastra (Yukhorkhyong), the guardian of the east
  • Virudhaka (Phakyepo), the guardian of the south
  • Virupaksa (Chenmizang), the guardian of the west
  • Vaisravana (Namtose), the guardian of the north

In Japan, the lokapala are known as the Four Guardian Gods.

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