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Title: Chhatra  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: Dhvaja, Vaiśravaṇa, Buddhist symbolism, Ushnisha, Simulacrum
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia



Chhatra (Sanskrit: छत्र "parasol") or chhatraratna (Sanskrit: छत्ररत्न "jewelled/precious parasol"; Tibetan: རིནཆེན་གདུགསWylie: rin chen gdugs[1]) is an auspicious symbol in Hinduism and Buddhism.

According to Hindu mythology, it is the emblem of Varuna, also considered an embodiment of kingship. Chhatra is also a deity, yidam and ishta-devata. In various Dharmic traditions it is an accoutrement of chakravartin. A number of deities are depicted with chatra, and they include Revanta, Surya, and Vishnu (in his Vamana avatar). The chhatra is cordoned amongst the symbols that approach universality within the numerous octavalent suites or sets of Ashtamangala, e.g., in the Digambar Jain tradition, and the Vajrayana tradition.

In Dharmic tradition iconography, traditional Tibetan medicine thangkas and Ayurvedic diagrams, the chhatra is uniformly represented as the Sahasrara.

In Vajrayana Buddhism, the umbrella or parasol is included in the 'Eight Auspicious Signs' or Ashtamangala.

The chhatra shares a similar symbolic value to the baldachin, refer image of Vishvakarman.


See also


  1. ^ Sarat Chandra Das (1902). Tibetan-English Dictionary with Sanskrit Synonyms. Calcutta, India: Bengal Secretariat Book Depot, p.69


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