Saturday, June 8, 2013

The Symbolism of Vishnu in World Religions


In Hinduism, Lord Vishnu is widely regarded as the Supreme Creator. In religious iconography he is shown reclining on the coils of a gigantic, seven-hooded serpent called Ananta-Sesha, in the middle of the cosmic milky ocean.

Both Vishnu and Ananta-Sesha and are eternally present through the periodic cosmic cycles of creation and destruction. The Vishnu Purana states that at the end of a “Day of Brahma”, when the entire creation has been dissolved, and the world has been converted into one vast ocean, “the Supreme reposes upon his mighty serpent couch amidst the deep: he awakes after a season, and again, as Brahma, becomes the author of creation.”[i]