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Lokapala

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Lokapāla, Sanskrit and Pāli for "guardian of the world", has different uses depending on whether it is found in a Hindu or Buddhist context.

In Buddhism

(Pronunciation: "LOH kah pah lah") Guardians of the four directions, or "Four Heavenly Kings," commonly found in Buddhist temple architecture. Chinese: Tien Wang ("TYEN wahng"); Japanese: Shi Tenno ("SHEE ten noh").

Guardians of the Four Directions. As protectors of the Buddhist faith, these guardians are typically represented wearing armor and brandishing weapons. In Buddhist sculptural programs, they are typically placed at the four corners of the altar.

Lokapala; (Chinese: Tien wang; Japanese: Shi tenno)

The eight Lokapalas, the guardians of this world are

    Indra,
    Agni,
    Yama,
    Surya,
    Varuna,
    Pavana,
    Kubera
    and Soma.

The are also called the guardians of directions and each one is associated with a particular cardinal point on the compass.

In Buddhism, lokapāla (Wylie: 'jig rten pa'i srung ma) are one of two broad categories of Dharmapāla (protectors of the Buddhist religion) -the other category being Wisdom Protectors.

In Tibetan Buddhism many of these worldly protector deities are indigenous Tibetan deities, mountain gods, demons, spirits or ghosts that have been subjugated by Padmasambhava or other great adepts and oath bound to protect a monastery, geographic region, particular tradition or as guardians of Buddhism in general.

These worldly protectors are invoked and propitiated to aid the monastery or Buddhist practitioner materially and to remove obstacles to practice. However, since they are considered to be Samsaric beings they are not worshiped or considered as objects of refuge.

According to Tripitaka Master Shramana Hsuan Hua of the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, All of these beings are invoked (hooked and summoned) and exhorted to behave (subdued) and protect the Dharma and its practitioners in the Shurangama Mantra

Classes of Worldly Protectors

Classes of Worldy Protector include:

Source

Wikipedia:Lokapala