Kanglei Mythology
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Kanglei Mythology
The Ancient Flag of Kangleipak, depicting Dragon Lord Pakhangba

Meitei mythology, also known as Kanglei mythology or Manipuri mythology, is the body of narrative myths, originally told by the Meitei people and a genre of Ancient Meetei folklore.[1] Kanglei mythology forms one of the main characteristics of the art and culture of Manipur including Meitei literature.[1][2][3][4]

Source texts

A Meitei manuscript on account of the mythological origin of the human beings

There are sources from both the manuscript as well as oral folklore in the ancient kingdom of Kangleipak (present day Manipur). The so-called manuscripts are known as Puya (Meitei texts), which are the original accounts on the religious themes as well as historical events of the Meitei literature. Wakoklon Heelel Thilen Salai Amailon Pukok Puya, Sanamahi Laihui and Numit Kappa the most prestigious Puya in Kanglei Meitei mythology.


The Kanglei Meitei deities, are always associated with the Meitei religion, which has been in existence since ancient times in the Kanglei World. The traditional culture and folklore is inherited by the Meitei people from their primitive ancestors till present.

The symbol of Sanamahism

The primary deities in the mythology are:

  • Atiya Guru Sidaba: He is the Creator God of the entire universe, and the sole breeder of all living beings.[5]
  • Sanamahi: He is the Guardian God of mankind and the household. He created humans in the figure of the Almighty.[6]
  • Pakhangba: He is the destroyer and the ruler of the universe. He can assume both human as well as serpentine form.[7]
  • Leimarel Sidabi: She is the supreme mother earth goddess and the consort of the creator God.[8]
  • Emoinu: She is the goddess of wealth and prosperity. Legend says she's an exact copy of Leimarel, who takes another divine form.

In addition to these, the mythology also accounts for the vast numbers of deities as well as mythical creatures. The Kanglei Meitei mythical creatures are found in the vast narratives of both the PuYas as well as Meetei folklore.

Creation myths

According to the Meitei Manipuri mythology, it is Lord Pakhangba, the Great Dragon Lord, who gave birth to the seven clans of the Kanglei realm.[7] The seven clans are

Clan names Romanization
? Mangang
? Khuman
? Angom
? Kha Nganpa
? Salai Leishangthem

Moirang Incarnations

The legendary epic tales of the seven incarnations of Lord Nongpok Ningthou and his consort Goddess Panthoibi, in the ancient kingdom of Moirang, are the main features of the Kanglei Meitei mythology, with Khamba Thoibi incarnation, being the last and most significant one. The very incarnations of the Lord and the Lady respectively are as follows:

Male characters Romanization Female characters Romanization
Akongjamba ? Phouoibi Lairembi
Henjunaha ? Lairoulembi
? Khuyol Haoba ? Yaithing Konu
? Thangjahanba ? Tonu Laijinglembi
Khubomba Pidonu
Wanglei Pudingheiba ? ? Satpa Chanu Silheibi
Khamba Thoibi


Here is a list of characters associated with the Kanglei Meitei mythology in alphabetical order:
















See also


  1. ^ a b Goswami, Madhab Chandra (Mar 1, 1980). Eastern Himalayas: A Study on Anthropology and Tribalism. Cosmo. ISBN 9780896842625. Retrieved 2021 – via Google Books.
  2. ^ Barua, Lalit Kumar (Jan 1, 1999). Oral tradition and folk heritage of North East India. Spectrum Publications. ISBN 9788187502029. Retrieved 2021 – via Google Books.
  3. ^ "Damaru, Festival of Traditional Theatre & Theatre Crafts of Eastern India". Council and the Centre. Mar 1, 1989. Retrieved 2021 – via Google Books.
  4. ^ "Journal of the Asiatic Society". Asiatic Society. Mar 1, 1950. Retrieved 2021 – via Google Books.
  5. ^ "The Manipuri Lais". manipuri.itgo.com. Retrieved 2021.
  6. ^ http://manipuri.itgo.com/the_lais.html#sanamahi
  7. ^ a b "The Manipuri Lais". manipuri.itgo.com. Retrieved 2021.
  8. ^ "The Manipuri Lais". manipuri.itgo.com. Retrieved 2021.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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