Chandra (moon) In Hindu mythology, moon god, source of fertility, often identified with the magic drink of the gods, Amrita or Soma. Chandra was the ancestor of the Chandra-vansa, the lunar race, which was divided into two branches, the Yadavas and the Pauravas. Krishna (an incarnation of the god Vishnu) was descended from the Yadavas. Wilkie Collins, the English writer, in his novel The Moonstone, tells of the Chandrakanta (the moonstone), an enormous diamond placed in the head of a statue of Chandra. The moonstone is guarded by three priests who are killed by an Englishman, John Herncastle. The novel then traces the life of the gem and the evil it brings on each person who comes into contact with it.
Another magic gem in Hindu lore, the Chinta-mani (the wish gem) grants the owner all he or she desires. It belongs to the god Brahma, who is sometimes called by its name. Other traditions ascribe it to Indra as part of his crown, or say it is the third eye of a snake god.


Encyclopedia of World Mythology and Legend, Third Edition – Written by Anthony S. Mercatante & James R. Dow-Copyright © 2009 by Anthony S. Mercatante


Chandra, Lord of the Moon, married twenty-seven sisters, daughters of Daksha, known as the Star Maidens, but he really loved only one, Rohini. He spent all his time with her, ignoring the other sister-wives. The other sisters complained to their father, who ordered Chandra to fulfill his marital obligations. Chandra ignored him and so Daksha cursed him with a wasting ailment. Chandra waned away, almost to nothingness. Shiva came to his rescue, permitting Chandra to rest his head at the end of every lunar cycle, in order to preserve his vitality and rejuvenate. Shiva also brokered a truce: Chandra visits each wife once a month. He waxes joyful as he approaches Rohini (identified with the star Aldebaran), then wanes when he is forced to leave her.

The twenty-seven sisters are identified with the mansions of the moon in Vedic astrology. Chandra is the ruler: he may be invoked for assistance by astrologers and those seeking to learn the art. He rules the astrological sign Cancer. He is a spirit of fertility: his moonbeams possess the magical power to stimulate pregnancy.


Chandra is described as a youthful, fair, very handsome man.


Club, lotus


His primary consorts are Rohini and Tara, but he also wed all the Star Sisters.


Antelope, rabbit


Chandra rides an antelope or drives a chariot pulled by ten white horses.


  • Khonsu
  • Shiva


Encyclopedia of Spirits: The Ultimate Guide to the Magic of Fairies, Genies, Demons, Ghosts, Gods & Goddesses– Written by Judika Illes Copyright © 2009 by Judika Illes.

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