God of the Week: Soma

01/16/2012: Soma

In the Vedic tradition, Soma is a plant, a ritual drink made from the leaves of the plant, and a god. The drink is said to have been the beverage of the gods, as well as the beverage the priests would consume to bring forth the gods.

Soma is personified as a deity and is one of the most important gods of the Vedas. All of the 114 hymns of the ninth book of theṚg Veda are in praise of Soma. There are six more hymns addressed to him in other books of the Ṛg Veda. The whole of theSāma Veda is dedicated to Soma. Soma is represented as an all-powerful god, healer of all diseases, bestower of riches, lord of all the other gods, and is sometimes identified with the Supreme Being.

The Myths and Gods of India, Alain Daniélou

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