Somanathapura Keshava Temple: Danvantari, the God of Medicine

Sculptural relief of Danvantari, the Hindu God of Medicine, carved on the outer wall of the Somanathapura Keshava Temple, Karnataka, India.

Danvantari, the Hindu God of Medicine

Danvantari is the god of medicine in Hindu mythology. According to the Bhagavad Purana, he is an incarnation of Vishnu, who emerged with a pot of amrita, the nectar of immortality, during the Samundra Manthana (Churning of the Ocean of Milk).

As you can see from the image, Danvantari is carrying a kalasha (pot) with his right hand and a bowl with medicines with his left hand. His two missing hands likely carried shanka and chakra, Vishnu’s signature objects.

This sculpture is mounted on the outer wall surrounding the southern garbhagriha of Somanathapura Keshava Temple in Karnataka, India.

Danvantari is considered a minor avatar of Vishnu, and is not one of the Dashavataras. Check the Dashavatara (Ten incarnations of Vishnu) mural painted on the ceiling of the Virupaksha Temple in Hampi for a a list of Vishnu’s ten standard incarnations.

Related Images
Vishnu’s incarnation Narasimha slaying Hiranyakashipu carved on the outer wall of the Belur Chennakeshava Temple
Narasimhavatara standing inside Cave – 3 of rock-cut caves of Badami
Narasimhavatara, the fourth avatar of Vishnu installed in a devakoshta of the Durga Temple in Aihole, Karnataka.
Dashavatara (Ten Incarnations of Vishnu) painted on the ceiling of Hampi Virupaksha Temple

Related Pages
Hoysala Temples:
Somanathapura Keshava Temple
Belur Chennakeshava Temple – Bracket Figures
Belur Chennakeshava Temple – Navaranga
Belur Chennakeshava Temple – Garbhagriha Outer Wall
Kappe Chennigaraya Shrine
Badami Chalukya Temples:
Badami, Cave – 1, Cave – 2, Cave – 3, Cave – 4
Durga Temple at Aihole
Vijayanagara Temples:
Hampi Virupaksha Temple Murals
Angkor Wat Temples:
Angkor Wat Temple, Angkor Wat Bas-Reliefs, Banteay Srei Temple in Cambodia

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