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Vayu

For other uses, see Vayu (disambiguation).
Vayu
the wind[1]
File:Vayu Deva.jpg
Vayu, on his mount, the gazelle symbolizing swiftness
Devanagari वायु
Sanskrit Transliteration Vāyu
Affiliation Deva, Guardians of the directions
Abode Gandhavati
Mantra Om Vayuve namaha
Weapon Flag
Consort Swasti, Bharati,
Mount Deer

Vāyu Deva (Sanskrit: वायु, IAST: Vāyu, Sanskrit pronunciation: [ʋɑːyu]; Malay: Bayu, Thai: พระพาย (Phra Phai)) is a primary Hindu deity, the Lord of the winds, the father of Bhima and the spiritual father of Lord Hanuman. He is also known as Vāta (वात), Pavana (पवन, the Purifier),[2] and sometimes Prāṇa (प्राण, the breath).

Connotations

As the word for air, (Vāyu) or wind (Pavana) is one of the Panchamahābhuta or five great elements. The Sanskrit word 'Vāta' literally means "blown", 'Vāyu' "blower", and 'Prāna' "breathing" (viz. the breath of life, cf. the *an- in 'animate'). Hence, the primary referent of the word is the "deity of Life", who is sometimes for clarity referred to as "Mukhya-Vāyu" (the chief Vāyu) or "Mukhya Prāna" (the chief of Life).

Sometimes the word "vayu," which is more generally used in the sense of the physical air or wind, is used as a synonym for "prāna".[3] There is however a separate set of five deities of Prāna (vital breath), Mukhya-Prāna being chief among them, so that, in Hindi,தமிழ்(Tamil) and other Indian languages, someone's death is stated as "his lives departed" (uske prān nikal gaye) rather than "his life departed." These five Vāyu deities, Prāna, Apāna, Vyāna, Udāna, and Samāna, control life (and the vital breath, circulatory system), the wind (respiratory system), touch/sensation (nervous system), digestion, and excretion.

Vāta, an additional name for Vāyu, is the root of the Sanskrit and Hindi term for "atmosphere", vātāvaran (वातावरण).[4]

Pavan is also a fairly common Hindu name. Pavan had played an important role in Anjana's begetting Hanuman as her child. Hence Hanuman is also called Pavan-Putra (son of Pavana) and Vāyu-Putra.

In the Mahabharata, Bheema was the son of Vāyu and played a major role in the Kurukshetra war. He utilised his huge power and skill with the mace for supporting Dharma.

Hindu texts and philosophy