underwater hell or otherworld

JKirkpatrick jkirk at SPRO.NET
Thu Dec 10 21:12:49 UTC 2009

The same can be said of the Naga world under a lake in the Story of Prince Sudhana
(Tatelman, _Heavenly Exploits--from the Divyavadana_), where a young Naga Prince, Janmachitra, resides, who's responsible for the crop fertility/wealth of the Good King's kingdom. Like good Nagas, be causes rain to fall.  The Naga Prince figures out that a snake charmer hired by the Evil King will capture him by magic spells, and arranges with a hunter to kill the snake charmer, etc. See, pp.225 ff. for the whole story. Subsequently the hunter is invited to the underlake Naga kingdom palace and given plentiful riches (Nagas also control wealth, especially jewels, as I recall), on more than one occasion.
The underwater lake and river kingdoms of Nagas, not just in oceans, figure in a lot of Indian folklore. 

Best wishes
Joanna Kirkpatrick

 On Behalf Of james mallinson
Sent: Thursday, December 10, 2009 2:50 AM

Dear Jonathan,

To add to Adheesh's note: Bṛhatkathāślokasaṃgraha 5.115-137 tells the story of Udayana's visit to the underwater city of Bhogavatī, which is populated by Nāgas from whom he obtains Ghoṣavatī, a magical vīṇā. Bhogavatī is a paradise, not a hell.

Yours, with best wishes,


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