Friday, 8 May 2015

Divine Canines: Sarama

This is the second of a series of posts about divine canines, gods and goddesses who are dogs, spirits in dog form and other magical canines. Years ago I did a few posts about wolf goddesses but found in my research too many male canine gods and beasts, or non-wolf canid goddesses that I couldn't include. So I promised to do something on the wider subject of myth and canid species linked to ancient legends, spirits, deities and folklore.

Sarama is a divine she-dog in Vedic mythology and Hinduism. She's also called Deva-shuni. She has aided gods and helped to track demons and wild animals. Described as Mother of all the dogs, she's the mother of two very unusual dogs who each have many eyes flashing in different colours. These two dogs belong to Yama the god of death. They guard entrances to the afterlife. Dogs generally are worshipped and respected in India, as they have a significant role on the physical world and spiritual realms.

Dogs are celebrated on Kukur Tihar in Nepal, the"woship of dogs", once a year during the Hindu five day festival of Tihar "festival of lights". The holiday season is very similar to Diwali. Dogs are treated with jewels, garlands of flowers, spiced and sweetened luxury foods, cushions, decourations, music and hugs. Overall dogs are cherished and they always love the attention. People believe that dogs guard humans, the home and the afterlife.


Nepal dog worship

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