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By Swami Harshananda

Sometimes transliterated as: Indrajala, IndrajAla, Indrajaala

Indrajāla literally means ‘the snare or net of Indra’.

It is listed among the 64 kalā-s [1] and represents the special art of producing illusions, especially in a battle field, to confuse and frighten the enemy. These illusions could be in the form of pictures of their future defeats or the appearance of immense storm-clouds.

Indra, the king of gods, and some asura-s[2] were experts in this art. The word ‘Indra’ is also interpreted as ‘dexterity’ and not the king of gods.


  1. sciences and arts
  2. Asura-s are the rākṣasas or demons.
  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore