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Surya and Chandra are the Vedic gods of the Sun and the Moon respectively, part of the Navagraha, or "nine celestial bodies of universe".

Chandra, the Moon, is also known as Soma.  Other names include Indu (bright drop), Atrisuta (son of Atri), Sachin (marked by hare), Tārādhipa (lord of stars) and Nishakara (the night maker).

Surya and Chandra are often represented inside a celestial disc, and associated with the scene of the Churning of the Ocean of Milk.  Victim of a deception at the end of the Churning, the demon Rahu became their enemy for eternity.  In the most famous of these representations, at Angkor Wat Temple, however, they are missing.

Surya and Chandra do appear at Angkor Wat Temple though, on a magnificent bas-relief in the North West corner pavilion of the galleries, showing them riding chariots drawn by several horses.  Surya is often depicted riding a chariot harnessed by seven horses, representing the seven colours of visible light, and seven days in a week.



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