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Half-man and half-eagle, Garuda serves in Hinduism as the vehicle of the god Vishnu, and in Tibetan Buddhism as destroyer of the nagas or evil-doers. Devotees of Vishnu use images of Garuda, the enemy of snakes, as their emblem. The ferocity of Garuda as portrayed in Indian and Tibetan art is intended to serve as a warning of retribution for the enemies of the natural order.

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