Japanese name of Sarasvati. A Buddhist goddess of music, learning, eloquence, wealth, longevity, and protection from natural disasters.

She is a river goddess whose temples and shrines are located near water.  As such, she is the goddess of everything that flows: words, poetry, speech, eloquence, and music; all which bring prosperity.

Benzaiten appears together with a sea dragon, occasionally surrounded by white serpents, or crowned with a white serpent.

Benzaiten is presented as a plump woman dressed in a flowing gown and holding a four-stringed lute, the biwa.

Benzaiten is  featured in the Sutra of Golden Light and mentioned in the Lotus Sutra.




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