Heracles Another Name

Submitted by Jeff on Fri, 20/04/2012 – 08:29

People tend to underestimate the extent to which cults “travel”. In Glorantha, the god Orlanth can be found from Prax to the outskirts of Loskalm, and even on the southern continent of Pamaltela. In the forthcoming Guide to Glorantha, the cult is referred as that of “Orlanth” even if the locals call it something entirely different.

But rather than talk about Gloranthan cults, I’d like to just show the movement of one god we probably all know as he traveled from Greece to Japan.

Heracles was perhaps the most popular hero god of the Greeks. In the Greek colonies in Bactria and India, the club wielding lion killer, Heracles became Vajrapani a protector of Buddha. Still recognizable as a bearded Greek with a weird club-thingee (which became the diamond thunderbolt).

From there he traveled a bit further. In Tibet he took on a few more features:

But Heracles’ journeys weren’t over! He kept going east, into China where he became the patron of the Shaolin monastery(!):

And Heracles’ journeys kept going until he reached Japan, where he split into two muscular guardians of the Buddha known as Kongōrikishi and Nio. You can still find Heracles today guarding the Buddha in Japan.


Submitted by Rungard on Mon, 23/04/2012 – 17:20.What are your sources for this? Sounds interesting.

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