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By Swami Harshananda

Diggajas literally means ‘the elephants that are supporting the directions’.

As per the Rāmāyana, Earth is carried by eight elephants situated in the eight directions. Hence they are called ‘aṣta-diggajas’ or ‘diggajas’. Each of the diks or directions has a protector or dikpāla (or dikpālaka) and these protectors have elephants under them. These elephants have their female consorts like Abhramu, Kapilā, Piṅgalā.

The Rāmāyana[1] mentions only four diggajas which are as follows:

  1. Virṅpākṣa - East
  2. Mahāpadma - South
  3. Sumanā - West
  4. Bhadra - North


  1. Rāmāyana 1.40
  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore