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Sydneyd
11-02-2010, 10:37 PM
Does anyone know of a really great database of Indian demons (not native american)? I have tried Google, but as you know, the list is long. And there may be better keywords for me to input.

I need to be able to know what the demon usually looked like, what it usually did (kidnap babies? or general troublemaking?), and how obscure it may be to an Indian person (so nothing that only a handful of scholars have heard of).

Sorry about my confusing question!

PeterL
11-02-2010, 11:12 PM
You might be interested in the yakshas.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yaksha

Sydneyd
11-03-2010, 12:18 AM
hey thanks PeterL!

PeterL
11-03-2010, 12:40 AM
No problem

Rowan
11-03-2010, 03:04 AM
Does anyone know of a really great database of Indian demons (not native american)? I have tried Google, but as you know, the list is long. And there may be better keywords for me to input.

I need to be able to know what the demon usually looked like, what it usually did (kidnap babies? or general troublemaking?), and how obscure it may be to an Indian person (so nothing that only a handful of scholars have heard of).

Sorry about my confusing question!

This isn't super detailed but might give you a "jumping off" point... :)
Good luck!
http://www.freebsd.nfo.sk/hinduism/demons.htm

Sydneyd
11-03-2010, 03:11 AM
Hey thanks Rowan! I have been bookmarking pages all morning. I have a lot of demon reading ahead of me.

Keyan
11-04-2010, 12:41 PM
Hmm. What do you want the demon to do?

1. The general-purpose demon is a "Rakshasa" (fem: Rakshasi). Pronounced Rahck-shuh-sa. It's basiclly a monster that can take human form, and will eat people given a chance.

2. Even more general purpose is a "bhooth" - which can mean anything from ghost to supernatural scary monster.

3. A "churail" is a female ghost/ monster who can look like a beautful young woman. If her feet point backward, run for your life!

There are many more, but depending on what you need for a story, these are a good starting point.

Anecdotally, more people seem to tell ghost/ monster stories about bhooths or churails than about rakshasas (which are ubiquitous in folk-tales). Many Indians know people who've seen a bhooth or a churail, just as many Americans know people who've seen a ghost.

Sydneyd
11-04-2010, 10:46 PM
I got the idea from someone the other day to look into the gana demons (I think that is what they are called.) any idea about those?

Keyan
11-05-2010, 01:29 AM
I got the idea from someone the other day to look into the gana demons (I think that is what they are called.) any idea about those?

Nope... I'm not sure how the word would be written in Hindi/ Sanskrit, but I can't think of anything that would work. (ETA: In one transliteration, the word "gana" means "group" or members of a group. The reference may be to the bhootha-gana who are ghosts/ demons that follow the god Shiva. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gana )

What do you want to do with the demons? Do they have to be authentic? If not, I guess you could make them up. India's a huge country, with lots of cultures, subcultures and micro-cultures. As long as it's reasonably plausible, you would do fine.

LGwenn
11-05-2010, 01:36 AM
Maybe they meant Naga? They are snake type "demons"

Sydneyd
11-05-2010, 01:39 AM
I found the link http://www.philhine.org.uk/writings/tt_gannas.html

I guess they are supposed to be spirits or goblins that accompany Shiva. So not demons at all.

LGwenn
11-05-2010, 01:44 AM
Yeah, there are a lot of things that in translation look like demons...but aren't. If you are going to do this...spend some time really digging into the culture. Because sharp teeth and too many eyes doesn't a demon make.

PattiTheWicked
11-05-2010, 01:45 AM
When in doubt, hie thee over to Sacred Texts: http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/iml/iml09.htm

Sydneyd
11-05-2010, 05:13 AM
Thanks everyone. I get the feeling I will have a lot of research to do before I cam start revisions after nano

Keyan
11-05-2010, 04:20 PM
When in doubt, hie thee over to Sacred Texts: http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/iml/iml09.htm

Well, yes, but it would probably be better to use Indian sources...

And decide whether you want a religious slant to it, or more of a folktale angle.

Keyan
11-05-2010, 04:28 PM
Yeah, there are a lot of things that in translation look like demons...but aren't. If you are going to do this...spend some time really digging into the culture. Because sharp teeth and too many eyes doesn't a demon make.

So true. Nor do multi-limbs. Or even skulls. Kali, for instance, is a goddess, not a demon.

idempotent1729
11-16-2010, 09:29 PM
I second the recommendation of using a rakshasa. This is the most parallel concept for demon that I know of in Hinduism, and it's usually translated to English as 'demon.' (My inlaws are Hindu, so that's the source of my info).

idempotent1729
11-16-2010, 09:30 PM
I second the recommendation of using a rakshasa. This is the most parallel concept for demon that I know of in Hinduism, and it's usually translated to English as 'demon.' (My inlaws are Hindu, so that's the source of my info).

PS Haha, I just realized that my post could be read to mean that I married into a family of rakshasas. Just to clarify...definitely not the case!

Sydneyd
11-16-2010, 10:48 PM
Thanks, I have a clear direction now of where I need to head with it. Lol I need a vague-ish, kind of scary, sort of well known, and male incarnated demon/ghosty thing. hehe. Very Clear Road.

Axler
11-16-2010, 11:02 PM
Here are some Rakshasa for you.

http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash1/hs278.ash1/20553_1152492707518_1683663722_311880_2866683_n.jp g

Sydneyd
11-16-2010, 11:49 PM
ooooooo those look scary! and kind of male-ish. How is that man expecting to beat them with only a hatchet?

Axler
11-17-2010, 01:00 AM
Well...he didn't know they were in the room before he opened the door. He expected to find rowdy drunks, not rowdy Hindu demons.