Other Indian Gods to Horus

Multiple Indian Gods resembling Horus, Thoth and Bes

V. Krishnakumar

A) Horus

Horus as Shiva

  1. There is some confusion in Hindu mythology regarding the identity of Shiva and Murugan, therefore, Horus can be viewed as Shiva.
  2. The child Horus holding noxious animals including snakes is shown in the pictures on p.129 in [4] and p.132 in [5]. This can be compared to Shiva with the serpents Rahu and Ketu in his hands in Mahakaleshwarar temple in Kanchipuram, India.
  3. The Egyptian word Chippi might have evolved into the word Shiva as shown below:


Also it should be noted that the Egyptian hieroglyphs lack vowels [24].

Horus as Vishnu

Horus resembles Lord Vishnu in several respects:

  1. Horus is a celestial falcon whose eyes are the sun and the moon [5]. Vishnu’s two eyes represent sun and moon.
  2. Horus was worshipped as a solar god [5]. Vishnu is viewed as Sun god in Hindu mythology.
  3. The reigning king in Egypt was revered as an incarnation of Horus [5]. The Nepal king was viewed as an incarnation of Lord Vishnu.
  4. Horus has two scepters in hand: the sceptre of authority and consecration and the lotus sceptre, lotus is symbolic of rebirth [67]. Vishnu has a mace and lotus in his two hands.

B) Thoth 

Thoth as Dakshinamurthy

Thoth resembles Dakshinamurthy or Lord Shiva in some respects:

  1. Thoth was the god of writing and knowledge; he would preside over scribes and scholars. Thoth was lord of all areas of knowledge. He was the lord of the ‘house of life’, which were libraries attached to the temples [5]. Dakshinamurthy is the god of learning and is generally found as the teacher or guru of these scribes.
  2. In the picture of page 215, [5] Thoth holds a bundle of scriptures, as does Dakshinamurthy.
  3. Sometimes Thoth is depicted with the lunar disc and crescent on his head symbolizing his role as lunar deity or as patron of scribes [5]. Dakshinamurthy is a patron of scribes and has a crescent moon on his head.
  4. Thoth keeps record of the living; in the “book of the dead” he stands before the scales and weighs the heart of the deceased and records the verdict [5]. Shiva is also the god of the netherworld.

Thoth as the Hindu moon god

Thoth resembles the Hindu moon god in some respects:

  1. Thoth, also called Djehuty, was a moon god [5]. The name Yayati of Hindu mythology sounds similar to Djehuty and Yayati is from the lunar dynasty.
  2. Thoth has the epithet ‘silver Aten’ [5]. We make the crescent moon on Karthikeya’s and Shiva’s head with silver.

Thoth as Garuda

Thoth resembles Garuda in some respects:

  1. Thoth was the god associated with writing and knowledge and is said to preside over scribes and scholars  [5]. Garuda is viewed as lord of knowledge [58].
  2. Thoth along with Re crosses the sky. Re travels on the wings of Thoth represented as an Ibis, along the winding river of the heavens [5]. The Thoth and Re being companions matches the Vishnu-Garuda pair in which Lord Vishnu traverses the sky on the wings of Garuda.

Thoth as Yama and Chitragupta

Thoth resembles Yama and Chitragupta in some respects:

  1. Thoth keeps record of the living; in the “book of the dead” he stands before the scales and weighs the heart of the deceased and records the verdict [5]. Here, he resembles Chitragupta, Yama’s associate, who takes account of man’s deeds in his life and presents them before Yama at the time of judgment in the Netherworld.
  2. The above role of Thoth gave him a reputation for truth and integrity: thus the common assertion that a person had conducted his life in a manner ‘straight and true like Thoth’ [5]. Yama and his son Dharmaraya are viewed as manifestation of truth itself.
  3. In the pictures of pages 215 and 216 [5], Thoth with a pen in the right hand and scriptures/leaflets in the left hand resembles Chitragupta.
  4. Thoth was said to serve and protect Osiris [5]. Chitragupta serves Yama who is compared to Osiris in [7].
  5. Thoth is son of Re, the Sun god [5]. Yama is son of Surya, the sun god.
  6. As ‘lord of time’ and ‘reckoning of years’ Thoth recorded the passing of time and assigned long reigns to kings [5]. Yama is called ‘Kala’ meaning time, and hence is ‘lord of time’. He is said to decide the life span of people.

Thoth as Brahma

Thoth resembles Lord Brahma in some respects:

  1. The goddess Seshat is depicted as Thoth’s wife or daughter [5]. Seshat resembles Saraswathi; Saraswathi is the goddess of knowledge and writing, who is the wife and daughter of Brahma.
  2. Thoth may be ‘Dhaata’ as the Egyptian hieroglyphs lack vowels [24], and Dhaata is one of the grand sons of Brahma [149].

C) Bes 

Bes resembles several gods in the Hindu mythology, especially when we compare his pictures. Following are the significant ones:

  1. Bes was equated with Horus in ancient Egyptian religion [4]. We have shown earlier that Horus resembles Lord Murugan.
  2. Bes was viewed as a controller of beasts that are evil and unrighteousness [4]. Pashupati as ‘lord of the animals’ resembles Bes. The picture of Pashupathi in a seal from Mohenjo-daro shown in [61] looks very similar in description to Horus-Bes on page 129 of [4]. Ashby has compared Pashupathi of the Indus seal to Horus [4], of course the themes compared are different.
  3. Bes has a mask like beard, large staring eyes and protruding tongue. He is often depicted with a lion’s mane and a lion’s tail [5]. This description matches Narasimha in Hindu mythology. Bes is also known to protect from nightmares, another feature of Lord Narasimha [87].
  4. Bes protects children [5]; Lord Narasimha has similar attributes, he protected Prahlada.
  5. Bes protects pregnant women and those giving birth to child. He is often depicted alongside Tawaret in this role. Bes is often given a large belly and protruding breasts, because he is a patron and protector of pregnant women [5]. Varahi has similar description. We have compared Tawaret to Varahi elsewhere. She is the female counterpart of Varaha, the boar incarnation of Vishnu in Hindu mythology.
  6. Ten separate gods-Aha, Amam, Bes, Hayet, Ihty, Mefdjet, Menew, Segeb, Sopdu and Tetetenu share similar characteristics making Bes a complex figure [5]. In Hindu mythology there are eight ‘Vasus’ called ‘Ashta Vasus’. The word Bes resembles Vasu.
  7. Bes was represented as a dwarf with a large head and small legs from New Kingdom times [5]. This resembles the description of Vamana incarnation of Vishnu.
  8. Bes was depicted as a four armed winged deity, with multiple heads and the tail of a falcon and the attributes of many other deities with whom he was combined from the third intermediate period, see the picture on the right in p.130 of [4]. This matches ‘Vishwaroopa Darshana’ of Lord Krishna, see picture in [148].


[1] J.G. Frazer, The Golden Bough, A study in Magic and Religion, 3rd Edition, Macmillan and Co. London, 1914

[4] Muata Ashby, The African origins of Civilization, Religion, Yoga Mysticism, and Ethics Philosophy, 2nd Edition, ISBN 1-884564-50-X, 2005

[5] Richard H Wilkinson, The Complete gods and goddesses of ancient Egypt, Thames and Hudson, London, 2003

[7] David Frawley, Gods, sages and Kings, Vedic secrets of ancient civilization, MLBD, New Delhi, 1993

[24] Egyptian Writing Systems and Grammar, Shawn C. Knight, Spring 2009

[61] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Shiva_Pashupati.jpg

[67] http://www.maat.sofiatopia.org/osiris.htm

[87] http://henadology.wordpress.com/theology/netjeru/

[148] http://rampuri.com/wp-content/uploads/Vishwarup1.jpg

[149] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhrigu


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5 Responses to Other Indian Gods to Horus

  1. Narasimha says:

    I like this

  2. Yahmeesh says:

    Good read.

    The Ancient Egyptian Buddha: The Ancient Egyptian Origins of Buddhism
    Muata Ashby (1)

    Peace be upon you

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