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Walkeshwar Jain Temple, Mumbai

Padmāvatī is the protecting goddess or śāsanadevī of Pārśvanātha, the twenty-third the Tīrthaṅkara. She enjoys an independent religious life and is very popular amongst Jains. Padmāvatī is the main deity at Humacha, the famous Jain pilgrim centre.

Padmāvatī is distinct from both Ambikā and Lakṣmī. Legend has it that Padmavati and her husband Dharanendra were the king and queen of snakes in a previous birth, where their lives were saved and enlightened by Tirthankara Parshvanatha. Padmavati and Dharanendra were reborn in heaven and serve as the attendant deities of Lord Parshvanatha.

They are believed to have rational perception (Samyak Drshti) and hence their idols are found in some Jain temples. Iconographically, owing to Padmavati's association with Lord Parshvanatha, idols of Padmavati is covered by a snake hood and she is seated on a lotus flower. Often, a small image of the Tirthankara is placed in her crown.

There are many images of Padmāvatī Mātā. One of the most famous is in the Walkeshwar Adinath temple in Mumbai, India.


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