Definition - What does Kamadeva mean?

Kamadeva is the Hindu god of love and desire who is sometimes called the Indian or Vedic Cupid. His name comes from the Sanskrit, kama, meaning “sensual desire,” and deva, meaning “divine being.” One of the most popular of the Hindu deities, Kamadeva is believed to awaken human carnal desires among those he shoots with his arrows.

Kamadeva is often depicted with green (or sometimes reddish) skin with a bow made of sugarcane and arrows made of flowers. He rides a parrot and may be accompanied by the god of spring, hummingbirds and his consort, Rati, among others.

Yogapedia explains Kamadeva

Hindu mythology offers several different versions of Kamadeva's origins. He is commonly believed to be the son of Vishnu and Lakshmi or the son of the creator god, Brahma.

According to legend, Shiva incinerated Kamadeva in anger and thereby removed love from the world, but the god of love was reincarnated in a bodiless demi-god form, sometimes referred to by the name Ananga (“one without a body”), and love was restored to the world.

Other names for Kamadeva are: Manmatha, Atanu, Ragavrinta, Kandarpa, Madana, Manasija, Ratikanta, Pushpavan, Kusumashara, Abhipura and Kama.

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