In Indian mythology, dvīpa (Devnagari: द्वीप "peninsula, island"; also mahadvipa "great island") is the term for the major divisions of the terrestrial sphere, sometimes translated as "continents". There are 7 dvipas. The list of seven (sapta-dvipa) is (e.g. Mahabharata 6.604 ):
- Jambu ("Blackberry tree")
- Plaksha ("ficus relegiosa tree")
- Shalmali (Bombax tree)
- Kusha ("grass")
- Kraunca ("Mountain")
- Shaka ("Pine tree")
- Pushkara ("Maple tree")
According to a recent article which is based on the book : Devi Bhagavatam by the illustrious sage, Bhagavan Veda Vyasa, the description of seven islands(dvipas) is as follows :
1) Plaksha Dvipa - Indo China
Description - This name is dervied afer the plaksa tree which is Ficus religiosa and it is found in this region even today
2) Shalmali Dvipa : Indonesia, Philippines and Papua New Guinea
Description - Derived after the shalmali tree which is Bombax and it is native to south east Asian countries and northern Australia.
3) Kusha Dvipa : Australia and Newzealand
Description - Dervied after the various types of Grasses found in this region.
4) Kraunch Dvipa : Antarctica
Description - Derived after the Mountain ranges, the transantarctic mountains.
5) Saka Dvipa : South America
Description - Derived after the saka tree which is the Pine tree.
6) Pushkara Dvipa : North America
Description - Derived after the pushkara tree or the Maple tree. This tree is described to have golden coloured leaves and the tree sheds crores and crores of leaves.
7) Jambu Dvipa : Asia, Europe and Africa
Description - Derived after the jambu tree which is blackberry tree. It is also described as narrow in the north and south and far and wide in the middle.
Original article : http://sharavega.com/lounge/item/7-the-seven-islands