My Sculpture Saturday post this week features the Garuda, a fearsome-looking, divine bird-like creature that appears in Hindu, Buddhist and Jain religious texts. Garuda is the mount of the Hindu god Vishnu, a protector of universal truth in Buddhism, and the Yaksha (benevolent spirit) of the Jain Tirthankara Shantinatha.
Garudas are the national symbols of Thailand and Indonesia and also appear in the national symbols of other countries throughout Asia. Garuda Indonesia is the Indonesian national airline. A Garuda serves as the insignia for several units in the Indian military and even for an electronic attack squadron (VAQ-134) of the U.S. Navy.
This statue pictured above sits at the base of the Phuket Big Buddha statue on Nakkerd or Nāga Hill. I appreciated the Garuda in this location because Garudas are generally a protector with the power to swiftly go anywhere, ever watchful and an enemy of the serpent. Nāga Hill means serpent hill. The Garuda was doing its job because I saw no snakes.
Sculpture Saturday is a challenge hosted by No Fixed Plans.