Soma  connotes the Moon as well as a deity in post-Vedic Hindu mythology. In Puranic mythology, Soma is moon deity, but sometimes also used to refer to Vishnu, Shiva (as Somanatha), Yama and Kubera. In some Indian texts, Soma is a name of an Apsara, alternatively it is the name of any medicinal concoction, or rice-water gruel, or heaven and sky, as well as the name of certain places of pilgrimage.

He is synonymous with Chandra, Indu (bright drop), Atrisuta (son of Atri), Sachin (marked by hare), Taradhipa (lord of stars) and Nishakara (the night maker).

The earliest use of Soma to refer to the moon is a subject of scholarly debate, with some scholars suggesting that the reference to moon as Soma is to be found in the Vedas, while other scholars suggest that such usage emerged only in the post-Vedic literature. The Hindu texts state that the moon is lit and nourished by the sun, and that it is moon where the divine nectar of immortality resides.

His iconography varies in Hindu texts. The most common is one where he is a white colored deity, holding a mace in his hand, riding a chariot with three wheels and three or more white horses (up to ten).


You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *