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In Indian religions, Patala
Patala
(Sanskrit: पाताल, IAST: pātāla, lit. that which is below the feet) denotes the subterranean realms of the universe – which are located under the earth.[1][2][3] Patala
Patala
is often translated as underworld or netherworld. In Hindu cosmology, the universe is divided into the three worlds: Svarga
Svarga
(the upper regions), Prithvi
Prithvi
(earth) and Patala
Patala
(the underworld).[4] Patala
Patala
is composed of seven regions or lokas,[5][6][7] the seventh and lowest of them is also called Patala
Patala
or Naga-loka, the region of the Nagas. The Danavas (demon sons of Danu), Daityas (demon sons of Diti), Yakshas and the snake-people Nagas live in the realms of Patala.[8] Surya Siddhanta, an astronomical text, refers to Southern Hemisphere of the earth as Patala
Patala
whereas the northern hemisphere is referred to as Jambudvipa. In Vajrayana
Vajrayana
Buddhism, caves inhabited by asuras are entrances to Patala; these asuras, particularly female asuras, are often "tamed" (converted to Buddhism) as dharmapala or dakinis by famous Buddhist figures such as Padmasambhava.[9]

Contents

1 Hinduism

1.1 Atala 1.2 Vitala 1.3 Sutala 1.4 Talatala 1.5 Mahatala 1.6 Rasatala 1.7 Patala

2 In Buddhism 3 References 4 Bibliography

Hinduism[edit]

Part of a series on

Hindu mythology

Sources

Itihasa

Ramayana Mahabharata

Puranas

Brahma
Brahma
Purana Brahmanda Purana Bhagavata Purana Garuda
Garuda
Purana Vishnu
Vishnu
Purana Shiva
Shiva
Purana Skanda Purana Markandeya Purana Matsya Purana Padma Purana Vayu Purana

Cosmology

Brahman Hiranyagarbha Svarga Prithvi Patala Naraka

Deities

Trimurti Brahma Vishnu Shiva Saraswati Lakshmi Parvati Ganesha Murugan

Personalities of the Epics

Saptarishis Bhrigu Angira Atri Gautama Kashyapa Vashistha Agastya Pitrs Bharata Krishna Kauravas Pandavas Rama Sita Lakshmana Hanuman

Hinduism
Hinduism
Portal

v t e

The Vishnu
Vishnu
Purana tells of a visit by the divine wandering sage Narada to Patala. Narada
Narada
describes Patala
Patala
as more beautiful than Svarga (heaven). Patala
Patala
is described as filled with splendid jewels, beautiful groves and lakes and lovely demon maidens. Sweet fragrance is in the air and is fused with sweet music. The soil here is white, black, purple, sandy, yellow, stony and also of gold.[8][10] The Bhagavata Purana
Bhagavata Purana
calls the seven lower regions bila-svargas ("subterranean heavens") and they are regarded as planets or planetary systems below the earth. These regions are described as being more opulent than the upper regions of the universe, which include heaven. The life here is of pleasure, wealth and luxury, with no distress. The demon architect Maya has constructed palaces, temples, houses, yards and hotels for foreigners, with jewels. The natural beauty of Patala is said to surpass that of the upper realms. There is no sunlight in the lower realms, but the darkness is dissipated by the shining of the jewels that the residents of Patala
Patala
wear. There is no old age, no sweat, no disease in Patala.[7] The Vishnu
Vishnu
Purana,[8] states the seven realms of Patala, which are located one above the other, are seventy-thousand yojanas (a unit of measurement) below the Earth's surface. Each of them extends ten thousand Yojanas. In Vishnu
Vishnu
Purana, they are named as from the highest to the lowest as: Atala, Vitala, Nitala, Garbhastimat, Mahatala, Sutala and Patala. In the Bhagavata Purana
Bhagavata Purana
and the Padma Purana, they are called Atala, Vitala, Sutala, Talatala, Mahatala, Rasatala and Patala. The Shiva
Shiva
Purana, replaces Mahatala with Tala. The Vayu Purana calls them Rasatala, Sutala, Vitala, Gabhastala, Mahatala, Sritala and Patala.[8] The seven Patalas as well as the earth above them is supported on the head of the tamasic (dark) form of Vishnu, the thousand-headed nāga Shesha.[8][10] Sometimes, Shesha
Shesha
is described to reside in the lowest region of Patala
Patala
instead of below it.[4] Below the regions of Patala
Patala
lies Naraka, the Hindu Hell
Hell
– the realm of death where sinners are punished.[8] Different realms of Patala
Patala
are ruled by different demons and Nagas; usually with the Nagas headed by Vasuki
Vasuki
assigned to the lowest realm.[8] Vayu Purana
Vayu Purana
records each realm of Patala
Patala
has cities in it. The first region has the cities of the daitya Namuchi and Naga Kaliya; in the second Hayagriva
Hayagriva
and Naga Takshaka; in the third, those of Prahlada
Prahlada
and Hemaka; in the fourth of Kalanemi
Kalanemi
and Vainateya; in the fifth of Hiranyaksha
Hiranyaksha
and Kirmira and in the sixth, of Puloman and Vasuki. Bali rules as the sovereign king of Patala.[8] The Bhagavata Purana
Bhagavata Purana
presents a detailed description of the seven lower realms.[10] A similar description of the seven Patalas also appears in the Devi-Bhagavata Purana.[11][11][10] Atala[edit]

Atala is ruled by Bala – a son of Maya – who possesses mystical powers. By one yawn, Bala created three types of women – svairiṇīs ("self-willed"), who like to marry men from their own group; kāmiṇīs ("lustful"), who marry men from any group, and the punshchalīs ("those who wholly give themselves up"), who keep changing their partners. When a man enters Atala, these women enchant him and serve him an intoxicating cannabis drink that induces sexual energy in the man. Then, these women enjoy sexual play with the traveller, who feels to be stronger than ten thousand elephants and forgets impending death.[11][10]

Vitala[edit]

Vitala is ruled by the god Hara-Bhava – a form of Shiva, who dwells with attendant ganas including ghosts and goblins as the master of gold mines. Here he enjoys sexual union with his consort Bhavani
Bhavani
and their sexual fluids flow as river Hataki here. When fire – fanned by wind – drinks from this river, it spits the water out as a type of gold called Hataka. The residents of this realm are adorned with gold from this region.[11][10]

Sutala[edit]

Sutala constructed by Viswakarman, is the kingdom of the pious demon king Bali. The dwarf Avatar
Avatar
of Vishnu, Vamana
Vamana
tricked Bali – who had conquered the three worlds – by begging for three paces of land and acquired the three worlds in his three paces. Vamana
Vamana
pushed Bali to Sutala, but when Bali surrendered to Vishnu
Vishnu
and gave away all his belongings to him, Vishnu
Vishnu
in return made Bali, richer than Indra, the god-king of heaven. Bali still prays to Vishnu
Vishnu
in this realm. Highly impressed by the devotion of Bali, Vishnu
Vishnu
gave him a boon that He Himself would perpetually stand as the watchman to Bali's palace.[11][10]

Talatala[edit]

Talātala is the realm of the demon-architect Maya, who is well-versed in sorcery. Shiva, as Tripurantaka, destroyed the three cities of Maya, but was later pleased with Maya and gave him this realm and promised to protect him.[11][10]

Mahatala[edit]

Mahātala is the abode of many-hooded Nagas (serpents) – the sons of Kadru, headed by the Krodhavasha (Irascible) band of Kuhaka, Taksshaka, Kaliya
Kaliya
and Sushena. They live here with their families in peace but always fear garuda.[11][10]

Rasatala[edit]

Rasātala at the sole of the feet of the universe form of Vishnu
Vishnu
is the home of the demons – Danavas and Daityas, who are mighty but cruel. They are the eternal foes of Devas (the gods). They live in holes like serpents.[11][10]

Patala[edit]

Patala
Patala
or Nagaloka, is the lowest realm and the region of the Nagas, ruled by Vasuki. Here live several Nagas with many hoods. Each of their hood is decorated by a jewel, the light of which illuminates this realm.[11][10]

In Buddhism[edit] As in the Puranas
Puranas
of Hinduism, in early Vajrayana, Patala
Patala
(Tibetan: ས་འོག་ "the Underground") is understood as underground paradises inhabited by nāgas and asuras above the Naraka realm.[12] While the story of the establishment of Patala
Patala
as an asura realm is attributed to the defeat of the asuras on Mount Meru, in Buddhist scriptures this is due to their defeat by Śakra using a mantra of Mañjuśrī instead of by their defeat by Vishnu; this is the explanation given for the appearance of Śakra wielding the banner of Mañjuśrī in iconic imagery.[13] Patala
Patala
is associated with the Kriyātantras, which are associated with the kīla, the phenomenon of the tertön and terma and water magic[9] and with the attainment of vidyādhara (Chinese: 仙, 仚; pinyin: xiān) status.[14] These practices have been largely ignored after the early period of Tibetan Buddhism
Buddhism
and Tangmi
Tangmi
but originally were popular.[9] The importance of Patala
Patala
to esoteric Buddhism
Buddhism
lay in its role as the source of alchemy and magical science or vidyā, immortality and enjoyment, particularly the opportunity for the (male) vidyādhara to have intercourse with female non-humans.[15] It was also viewed as a source of flowing waters.[16] References[edit]

^ Search for "patala" in: " Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Dictionary Search". Retrieved 7 January 2018.  gives results: "1. one of the 7 regions under the earth and the abode of the nAgas or serpents and demons" ^ Wilson, Horace Hayman (1865). "Chapter V". The Vishnu
Vishnu
Purana (Translation). II. London: Trubner & co. pp. 209–213.  ^ Mani, Vettam (1975). Puranic Encyclopaedia: A Comprehensive Dictionary With Special
Special
Reference to the Epic and Puranic Literature. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass. pp. 580–1. ISBN 0-8426-0822-2.  ^ a b Parmeshwaranand 2001, p. 762-3. ^ Dimmitt, Cornelia; Buitenen, Johannes Adrianus Bernardus (1978). Classical Hindu mythology: a reader in the Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Purāṇas. Temple University Press. pp. 348–350.  ^ Dimmitt, Cornelia; Buitenen, Johannes Adrianus Bernardus (1978). Classical Hindu mythology: a reader in the Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Purāṇas. Temple University Press. pp. 48–49.  ^ a b Prabhupada. " Bhagavata Purana
Bhagavata Purana
5.24". The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International, Inc. Archived from the original on 4 January 2010. Retrieved 1 July 2010.  ^ a b c d e f g h Wilson 1865, p. 209–213. ^ a b c Mayer 2007, p. 1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Dimmitt 2012, p. 348-350. ^ a b c d e f g h i Māṇi 1998, pp. 580–1. ^ Mayer 2007, p. 3. ^ Mayer 2007, p. 7. ^ Mayer 2007, p. 2. ^ Mayer 2007, p. 10. ^ Mayer 2007, p. 11-12.

Bibliography[edit]

Dimmitt, Cornelia (2012). Classical Hindu Mythology: A Reader in the Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Puranas. Temple University Press. ISBN 978-1-4399-0464-0.  Māṇi, Veṭṭaṃ (1998). Purāṇic Encyclopaedia: A Comprehensive Dictionary with Special
Special
Reference to the Epic and Purāṇic Literature. Motilal Banarsidass. ISBN 978-81-208-0597-2.  Mayer, Robert (2007). "The Importance of the Underworlds: Asuras' Caves in Buddhism, and Some Other Themes in Early Buddhist Tantras Reminiscent of the Later Padmasambhava
Padmasambhava
Legends". Journal of the International Association of Tibetan Studies (JIATS). 3.  Parmeshwaranand (2001). Encyclopaedic Dictionary of Puranas. Sarup & Sons. ISBN 978-81-7625-226-3.  Wilson, Horace Hayman (1865). Works... 

v t e

Underworlds

Aztec mythology

Mictlan

Buddhism

Naraka

Chinese mythology

Diyu

Persian mythology

Duzakh

Christianity

Lake of fire Outer darkness Purgatory Limbo Hades Hell Christian views on Hell

Ancient Egyptian religion

Duat

Germanic and Norse paganism

Hel(heim) Náströnd Niflheim Niflhel

Greek and Roman mythology

Asphodel Meadows Elysium Erebus Fortunate Isles Hades Orcus Tartarus

Hinduism

Naraka Patala

Islam

Barzakh Jahannam

Irish mythology

Tech Duinn Tír na nÓg

Jainism

Naraka

Judaism

Abaddon Azazel Dudael Gehenna Sheol Tehom Tophet Tzoah Rotachat

Maya mythology

Xibalba

Mesopotamian mythology

Irkalla

Slavic mythology

Nav

Shinto

Yomi

Sumerian mythology

Kur

Turkic-Mongolian

Erlik

Welsh mythology

Annwn

v t e

Hindu cosmology

Brahmanda Purana  Nasadiya Sukta Samudra manthan Loka Patala

Time

Kalpa (day or night of Brahma) Pralaya Manvantara
Manvantara
(age of a Manu) Mahayuga
Mahayuga
or Yuga
Yuga
(4'320'000 years) Satya Yuga
Yuga
(1,728,000 years) Treta Yuga
Yuga
(1,296,000 years) Dvapara Yuga
Yuga
(864,000 years) Kali Yuga
Yuga
(432,000 years) Manvantara
Manvantara
(life of Manu )= 71 * by 4,320,000 years Vaivas

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