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Shin U Pagok (ရှင်ဥပဂုတ္တ, ရှင်ဥပဂုတ်)

Burmese. Name of a Buddhist deity, that is worshipped especially in Myanmar, and who is believed to guard and have authority over water. He is called upon to protect seafaring people, as well as to ask for rain or alternatively, to stop the rain. He is usually portrayed in a seated half lotus position, with his head slightly tilted up, as if looking at the sky, and sometimes with a halo and holding an alms bowl in one hand, while putting the fingers of his other hand into the bowl, a mudra that in Buddhist iconography normally refers to eating from an alms bowl. He is often located in a shrine accompanied by nagas, the guardians of earthly waters (fig.), and built directly over water (fig.). Shrines with his statue can therefore be found built in major water reservoirs, such as Inle Lake (fig.). In some ways, this deity is comparable with Mazu, the Chinese goddess of the sea (fig.). Also transcribed Shin U Pagoke, sometimes referred to as Shin Upagot, Shin Upagote or Shin Upagutta (fig.), and in Thai called Phra Upakhut. See also shin and compare with the nat U Shin Gyi (fig.).