Vāhana (Skt., ‘vehicle’). The bird or animal on which a Hindu, Jain, or Buddhist deity is conveyed. In post-Vedic Hinduism, the vehicles are associated iconographically with the deities in question and are linked to their attributes, e.g. Agni, a ram; Bhairava, a dog; Brahmā, a swan (haṃsa); Durgā, a tiger (or lion); Gaṇeśa, a rat; Garuḍa, a bird; Indra, an elephant; Kāma, a parrot; Śiva, a bull; Varuna, a fish; Yama, a buffalo.
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