Japanese name of Vaiśravaṇa (the son of the Indian sage Vishrava) the Buddhist form of the earlier Hindu deity Kubera, god of darkness, treasures, and wealth, who guards the north which is the source of challenges.
Bishamonten pledges to protect those who embrace the Lotus Sutra. He is introduced in the Goldern Light Sutra.
Bishamonten is identified by the miniature stupa a symbol of the Buddhist Law and a special treasure granted him by the Buddha that he holds in his right hand. Alternatively, it is also described as a treasure house. He also carries a trident which signifies the “Three Jewels,” which are the Buddha, the Dharma (Buddhist law), and the Sangha (community of Buddhist believers).
Part of his name means One Who Hears Much. This name was given to him for having listened eagerly to the Buddha’s sermons.
Bishamonten is accompanied by a centipede, a creature capable of sniffing out gold mines in mountain deposits.