Encyclopedia for Epics of Ancient India

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PATALA. [Source: Dowson's Classical Dictionary of Hindu Mythology] The infernal regions, inhabited by Nagas (serpents), Daityas, Danavas, Yakshas, and others. They are seven in number, and their names, according to the Vishna Purana, are Atala, Vitala, Nitala, Gabhastimat, Mahatala, Sutala, and Patala, but these name vary in different authorities. The Padma Purana gives the names of the seven regions and their respective rulers as follow: -- (1.) Atala, subject to Mahamaya; (2.) Vitala, ruled by a form of Siva called Hatakeswara; (3.) Sutala, ruled by Bali ; (4.) Talatala, ruled by Maya; (5.) Mahatala, where reside the great serpents; (6.) Rasatala, where the Daityas and Danavas dwell; (7.) Patala, the lowermost, in which Vasuki reigns over the chief Nagas or snake-gods. In the Siva Purana there are eight: Patala, Tala, Atala, Vitala, Tala, Vidhipatala, Sarkarabhumi, and Vijaya. The sage Narada paid a visit to these regions, and on his return to the skies gave a glowing account of them, declaring them to be far more delightful than Indra's heaven, and abounding with every kind of luxury and sensual gratification.

Modern Languages MLLL-4993. Indian Epics. Laura Gibbs, Ph.D. The textual material made available at this website is licensed under a Creative Commons License. You must give the original author credit. You may not use this work for commercial purposes. If you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under a license identical to this one. No claims are made regarding the status of images used at this website; if you own the copyright privileges to any of these images and believe your copyright privileges have been violated, please contact the webmaster. Page last updated: October 16, 2007 12:22 PM