Candi Prambanan Lokapala

Lokapāla at the Shiva temple in Prambanan

The Lokapāla (Guardians of the Worlds) are the devas who rule the specific directions of space.

• As a group of 8 deities, they are also called Asta-Dikpāla (‘Guardians of the Eight Directions’).

• Two devas can be added for the 10 directions (the extra directions being zenith and nadir) – they are then known as the Daśa-dikpāla.

Javanese and Balinese Hinduism also recognize the Nava-Dikpāla (‘Guardians of the Nine Directions’) that consist of 8 directions with one in the center. This group of 9 guardian deities is called the Dewata Nawa Sanga. The diagram of these guardian gods of directions is featured within the famous national symbol of the Surya Majapahit:

Surya-Majapahit Nava-Dikpāla

Indra (East), Agni (South-East), Yama (South), Nirṛti ( South-West), Varuṇa (West), Vayu (North-West), Kubera (North), Īśāna (North-East)


Lokapāla in Candi Lara Jonggrang, Prambanan Temple Complex

 Surya Dewata-Nawa-Sanga

Dewata Nawa Sanga