By Swami Harshananda
Sometimes transliterated as: Svetadvipa, Zvetadvipa, shvetadvipa
Śvetadvipa literally means ‘the white island’.
The Śvetadvipa is a mythical island mentioned in the Mahābhārata. It is said to have been formed by the solidification of the foam of the Kṣīrasamudra and lies in its middle. It is situated 32000 yojanas. above the Meru mountain.
It is inhabited by the great devotees of Viṣṇu. They are absolutely white in complexion and an extraordinarily strong constitution. They are extremely handsome. They always worship and meditate upon Viṣṇu. Once Rāvaṇa is said to have gone there. But, the women of the place manhandled him and drove him out.
- Śāntiparva Chapter 335
- Kṣīrasamudra means ocean of milk.
- One yojana is 15 kms. or 9 miles.
- The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore