It’s been a minute since I’ve written about mythical creatures, so I thought I’d continue my alphabetical voyage, which takes us to Laos. Laos is home to tales of the mighty and fierce Nāga.
Nāgas are usually depicted as half human, half serpent beings, though the word Nāga means snake in in Sanskrit, which may explain why Bing’s AI art generator produced the above image. Nāgas are said to be protectors, and in Laos mythology they are even said to be multi-headed beings, who love the water, and who will ferociously defend their lands and people. Equally feared and respected, Nāgas receive offerings from any who embark across the waters where they live, to appease them, and to receive their protection.
Nāgas have roots in Hinduism, and in Buddhism. It is said that Nāgas once stood over Buddha during a storm, and that they desire to be with him once more. Their imagery adorns a great many temples across Laos, and it is believed they shoot pinkish fireballs into the sky every year, on Buddhist Lent, as they call Buddha back to them. This is often coincides with a beautiful October Full Moon, and is said to be an amazing spectacle. Nāgas strike me as being noble beings, as is befitting to any being that would fiercely defend their people.