Kamadeva – Hindu God of Love

Kamadeva – Hindu God of Love

Kamadeva, whose name kama (desire, libido) and deva (God) translates as the “God of Desire“. It was earliest referred to in Rig Veda as a colorful person. “This Kama or desire, not of sexual enjoyment, but of good in general, is celebrated in a curious hymn of the Atharvaveda,” which exalts the Kama into a supreme God and Creator.

Kamadev is often depicted as a beautiful winged youth with greenish skin, he is seated on a parrot and carrying a bow made of sugarcane stalk and strung by a line of bees and accompanied by his wife Rati (sexual desire), Vasant (spring personified) and a gentle breeze. When he shoots an arrow tipped with fragrant flowers will make the target fall in love. Indian Kamadeva is regarded as Roman cupid or the Greek God Eros and is related to love and libido.

‘Kamadeva’ is considered to be the incarnation of Pradyumna, the son of the Hindu goddess Sri and the son of Krishna. He is also known as Ragvrant, Anang, Kandarp, Manmath, Mansija, Madan, Ratikant, ‘Pushpavan’ and ‘Pushpadham’. He was married to a goddess named Rati, who is considered a goddess of love and charm. While Kamdev is the epitome of manliness and handsomeness, Rati is the epitome of female beauty and charm. Even Lord Shiva was not able to resist the love emotions created in him by Kamdev and Rati.

Kamdev arrows to make you fall in love

The weapon of ‘Kamadeva’ is the bow and arrow, because the bow is the only weapon that has both stability and versatility and also has the same quality in form. Each of the five arrows is tipped with fragrant flowers and causes the target to swoon under the effect of love. Not only humans but also deities cannot escape the arrow of Kamadeva.

A legend of how Shiva fell in love with Parvati.

Having lost his wife Sati, Shiva had gone into deep meditation. Taking advantage of the situation, the Demon Tarakasura sought Brahma’s boon, with the clause that only a son of Shiva could overpower him. Meanwhile, Parvati (Sati reborn) had been trying to get Shiva’s attention, but with little success. That’s when the Gods (led by Indra) summoned Kamadeva, the Indian Cupid. Kamadeva accepted this dangerous mission and set off!

Shiva was meditating when Kamdeva shoots its arrow disturbing Shiva while meditating. Shiva was so angry that he reduced Kamadeva to ashes. Kamdev’s consort Rati was understandably aghast at the situation and inconsolable. So Shiva attempted to resurrect Kamdev, but only in a non-body form. And since then, LOVE has existed as a feeling. However, the arrow did its part and Shiva married Parvati. Kamadeva is specially worshiped for the attainment of love and beauty on Vasant Panchami day as Spring is considered to be the season of love.

Five Arrows of Kamadeva

Kamadeva’s five arrows are associated with five effects that desire has on one afflicted by it. The five arrows are said to be fascination, disturbance, burning, desiccation, and destruction which are named Lambini, Tapini, Dravini, Marini, and Bodhini. The flowers on his arrows are Aravinda(White Lotus), Ashoka, Cuta (Mango Flower), Navamalika (Jasmine), and Nilotpala (Blue Lotus). Also known as Unmada, Tapana, Shoshana, Stambhana, and Sammohana.

  • The first arrow is aimed at the heart, it causes initial excitement and a youthful cheerfulness.

  • The second arrow is aimed at the lips, it causes one to cry out of this excitement.

  • The third arrow is aimed at the head/brain, it makes one lose their mind / go crazy with love.

  • The fourth arrow is aimed at the eyes, it makes you see things (hallucinate even).

  • The fifth arrow is basically designed to hit you anywhere causes the ‘target’ to simply be absorbed with love.

Not only Kamadev’s arrows but also his “Kleem” Mantra is able to lure fairer sex into his spell. If mythology is to be believed then chanting this mantra will keep your partner physically attracted to you. Regular chanting of the mantras and praying to Lord Kamadeva helps in achieving greater sensitivity. It also helps in the awareness of others’ emotional needs and appreciation of one’s partner.

Kamdev Mantra lyrics

Om Kamadevaya Vidmahe Pushpa Baanaya Dhimahi Tanno Ananga Prachodayath.”

Meaning: “Om, Let me meditate on the God of love, Oh, God who is the forest of flowers, give me higher intellect, and let the God of love illuminate my mind. ”.

This mantra is used to attract a love relationship, a marriage partner, or love into your life. The mantra is very powerful and effective when chanted 108 times.

Suggested Read: Hindu Gods and their Vahanas

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Simmi Kamboj

Simmi Kamboj is the Founder and Administrator of Ritiriwaz, your one-stop guide to Indian Culture and Tradition. She had a passion for writing about India's lifestyle, culture, tradition, travel, and is trying to cover all Indian Cultural aspects of Daily Life.