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From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Avyaṅga literally ‘that which is not incomplete or defective’.

The images of Surya, the Sun-god, have a waist band called abhyaṅga or avyaṅga.

According to the Bhaviṣya- purāna, during each of the six ṛtus or seasons, one representative from the list mentioned below came to Surya by rotation:

  1. Ṛṣis
  2. Devatā
  3. Nāgas
  4. Gandharvas
  5. Apsaras
  6. Yakṣas
  7. Rākṣasas

In one of those turns Vāsuki, the nāga, presented Surya with a cord called ‘avyaṅga’ produced from his body. This cord was composed of gold and was half red and half white. Iconographical representation of Surya is invariably shown with the avyaṅga. The followers of the Surya cult wear a similar cord round their waists.


  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore

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