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Top 10 Avatars of Lord Vishnu

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What are Avatars

a manifestation of a deity or released soul in bodily form on earth; an incarnate divine teacher.  Especially Avatar is a Sanskrit word which means different forms and lives.  If we assume that evolution of life and Avatars of Lord Vishnu are both same, we can have brief study of evolution of life with the reference of Avatars of Lord Vishnu.

Once an American reporter asked, “Why only Indians have Avatars? why don’t have for others?” The answer is Indians didn’t forget all of those Avatars to keep in records and others forgot who had worked in their own land.  Avatar can be a person that help you to get out of our problems but with the time we forget those who helped us.  According to Hindu scripture, Avatar is a symbol of God, yet Avatar does not have any barriers of religion, races, caste.  In the case of Avatars of Lord Vishnu, all of those were born is different eras yet all worked to save human lives, morals and remembrance of God.  We will be going through all of these ten Avatars one by one according to scripture, Purana and Vedas called as Dash-avatar (Dash- 10, Avatar– Forms)

Matsya-avatar (Matsya – Fish)-

King Vaivasvata Manu finds a little fish in the palm of his hands when performing the Tarpana (water-offering). The fish asks Manu if his riches and power was enough to give the fish a nice home. Manu keeps the fish to give it a home, but the fish keeps expanding, which breaks Manu’s pride about his wealth. Eventually, he releases it into the ocean, realizing it is Lord Vishnu himself. Vishnu informs Manu of the coming destruction of the world, by means of fires and floods, and directs Manu to collect “all creatures of the world” and keep them safe on a boat built by the gods. When the deluge (Pralaya) comes, Vishnu appears as a great fish with a horn, to which Manu ties the boat, which leads them into safety.

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Matya-Avatar

 

 Kurma-Avatar (Kurma – Tortoise)

The Giant Tortoise Avatar. When the devas (Gods) and asuras (Devils) were churning the ocean of milk in order to get Amrit, the nectar of immortality, the mount Mandara they were using as the churning staff started to sink and Vishnu took the form of a tortoise to bear the weight of the mountain and save Amrit from Devils.  It would be hard enough to save the Earth from Asuras if it would have found them.  To understand this situation more please look at the image.

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Kurma Avatar

Varaha-Avatar (Varaha- Wild Swine)

He appeared to defeat  Hiranyaksha, a demon who had taken the Earth, or Prithvi, and carried it to the bottom of what is described as the cosmic ocean (much like in ether theory) in the story. The battle between Varaha and Hiranyaksha is believed to have lasted for a thousand years, which the former finally won. Varaha carried the Earth out of the ocean between his tusks and restored it to its place in the universe.

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Varah-Avatar

 Narasimha (Nar- Male, Simha- Lion)

The half-man/half-lion Avatar. Jaya and his brother Vijaya are cursed by the sage sanaka when they stop him from seeing Vishnu, and will be reborn three times as demons to be killed by Vishnu. In their first demonic birth they become Hiranyaksha and Hiranyakashipu. Hiranyakashipu persecuted everyone for their religious beliefs including his son who was a Vishnu follower. he was protected by Brahma, and could by no means be killed. Vishnu descended as an anthropomorphic incarnation, with the body of a man and head and claws of a lion. He disemboweled Hiranyakashipu, and brought an end to the persecution of human beings including his devotee Prahlada.

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Narasimha

 Vamana (Dwarf man Avatar)

The fourth descendant of Vishnu, Bali, with devotion and penance was able to defeat Indra, the god of firmament. This humbled the other deities and extended his authority over the three worlds. The gods appealed to Vishnu for protection and he descended as a boy Vamana. During a yagya of the king, Vamana approached him and Bali promised him for whatever he asked. Vamana asked for three paces of land. Bali agreed, and the dwarf then changed his size to that of a giant Trivikrama form.  With his first stride he covered the earthly realm, with the second he covered the heavenly realm thereby symbolically covering the abode of all living beings. He then took the third stride for the netherworld. Bali realized that Vamana was Vishnu incarnate. In deference, the king offered his head as the third place for Vamana to place his foot. The avatar did so and thus granted Bali immortality and making him ruler of Pathala, the netherworld. This legend appears in hymn 1.154 of the Rugveda and other Vedic as well as Puranic texts.

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Vamana- Avatar

 Parashurama (Man with an Axe)

He is son of  Jamadagni and Renuka and was granted as boon, an axe after a penance to Lord Shiva. He is the first Brahmin-Kshatriya in Hinduism, or warrior-sage, who had to follow the Dharma of both, a Brahmin as well as a Kshatriya. Once, when king Kartvirya Arjuna and his hunting party halted at the ashrama of Jamadagni, the father of Parashurama, and the sage was able to feed them all with the aid of the divine cow Kamdhenu. The king demanded the cow, but Jamadagni refused. Enraged, the king took it by force and destroyed the ashram. Parashurama then killed the king at his palace and destroyed his army. In revenge, the sons of Kartavirya killed Jamadagni. Parashurama took a vow to kill every Kshatriya on earth twenty-one times over, and filled five lakes with their blood. Ultimately, his grandfather, Rishi Rucheeka, appeared before him and made him halt. He is a chiranjeevi (immortal), and believed to be alive today in penance at Mahendragiri. He also credited for creating coastal belt of Karnataka and Kerala throwing his mighty axe as per Hindu mythology. The place the axe landed in sea got its water displaced and the land which emerged thus came to be known as coast of Karnataka and whole of Kerala.

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Parashurama

Lord Sri Rama 

The Avatar of Morality and Rules, The Prince and King of Ayodhya. He is a commonly worshipped avatar in Hinduism, and is thought of as the ideal model of a common prince without super powers, despite being an incarnation. His story is recounted in one of the most widely read scriptures of Hinduism, the Ramayana. While in exile from his own kingdom with his brother Lakshman and the God Hanuman, his wife Sita was abducted by the demon king of Lanka, Ravana. He travelled to Lanka, killed the demon king and saved Sita. Rama and Sita returned home and were crowned. The day of the return of Prince Rama to the kingdom of Ayodhya is celebrated in the form of Gudhi Padwa (Hindi New Year) all over India.

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Sri Rama

 

 Lord Sri Krishna – 

Krishna was the eighth son of Devaki and Vasudeva and the foster-son of Yashoda and Nanda.  A frequently worshipped deity in Hinduism, he is the hero of various legends, particularly the Kansa-vadha and Mahabharata and embodies several qualities such as love, duty, compassion, and playfulness. Krishna’s birthday is celebrated every year by Hindus on Krishna Janmashtami according to the lunisolar Hindu calendar, which falls in late August or early September of the Gregorian calendar. Krishna is usually depicted with a flute in his hand. Krishna is also a central character in Mahabharat, Bhagavat Purana, and the Shri Madbhahavadgeeta.

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Shri Krishna showing Vishwarup Darshan to Arjuna

  Gautam Buddha

He is the founder of Buddhism, is commonly included as an avatar of Vishnu in Hinduism. Buddha is sometimes depicted in Hindu scriptures as a preacher who deludes and leads demons and heretics away from the path of the Vedic Scripture, but another view praises him a compassionate teacher who preached the path of Ahimsa(non-violence).  As earlier mentioned that there is no barriers of religion is satisfied in this avatar.

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Gautam Buddha

 Kalki Avatar

Kalki is described as the final incarnation of Vishnu, who appears at the end of each Kali Yuga. He will be atop a white horse and his sword will be drawn, blazing like a comet. He appears when only chaos, evil and persecution prevails, Dharma has vanished, and he ends the Kali Yuga to restart Satya yuga and another cycle of existence.

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Kalki Avatar

 

Evolutionary Interpretation – 

  • Matsya- fish (Paleozoic era)
  • Kurma- amphibious tortoise (Mesozoic era)
  • Varaha – boar (Cenozoic era)
  • Narsimha- man-lion, the last animal and semi-human avatar (Cenozoic era)
  • Vamana- growing dwarf and first step towards the human form
  • Parashurama- a hero, but imperfect human form
  • Shri Rama – another hero, physically perfect, befriends a speaking Vanara deity Hanuman
  • Lord Krishna- son of Devaki
  • Gautam Buddha- the Buddhism founder
  • Kalki- yet to happen and the savior, and is like Christian Advent, which Madame Blavatsky believed Christians “undoubtedly copied from the Hindus.

The Puranas speak of the different manifestations or incarnations of the Deity in different epochs of the world history.  The Hindu Avatar rises from the lowest scale of life through the fish, the tortoise, and the hog up to the perfection of humanity. Indian Avatarism is, indeed, a crude representation of the ascending scale of Divine creation. Such precisely is the modern theory of evolution.

 

*Here are numbering of Avatar are in incorrect manner, they are given from 10 to 1 but they are starting from 1 to 10.

 

I am undergraduate pharmacy student yet I am preparing for IELTS so I have fluency and writing practices in English. I would definitely complete my task to achieve something more.

Religion

Top 10 Festivals in Maharashtra

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Top 10 Festivals in Maharashtra

Marathi people celebrate the festivals all the year, all are enthusiastic and have a special target to have the festivals.  Each festival has separate food item that includes too much fun, especially for kids.  In all festivals, blessings are important from your parents, teachers, and elder once.  Some are related to parents, some are related to siblings, some are related to a spouse, some are related to their families as well.  This is the way to show gratitude for the people you adore.  This brings more perfect bonds among all the relations.  We will be going through the top 10 festivals in detail.

Gudi Padwa –

The year starts on the first day of Chaitra known as Gudi Padwa] which falls around March or April of the Western calendar. A gudi or victory pole is erected outside the house on this day. The special dish on the day includes Shreekhand. Neem leaves are eaten on this day to ward off illness during the new year. Gudi Padwa, like Diwali Padwa and Dasara, is considered one of the three and a half auspicious days of the Marathi calendar. Astrological charts need not be consulted for conducting important ceremonies, such as weddings, on these days. During Chaitra, women also hold a Haladi-Tunku celebration. Chaitra is, however, considered inauspicious for weddings.

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Gudhi Padwa

Makar Sankranti –

This mostly falls on January 14 when the Sun enters Capricorn. In Maharashtra, the day is celebrated by giving and receiving sweets made of jaggery and sesame seeds called tilgool and halwa. During the exchanging of the sweets, people say to each other in Marathi “Til-gool Ghya aani God Bola” (rough translation Please accept my til-gool & be friendly to me or Take sweet, talk sweet”). Special chappati with jaggery (gool poli) is the dish of the day.

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Sankranti

Mangala Gaur – 

Pahili Mangala Gaur (first Mangala Gaur) celebration is one of the most important celebrations for the new brides. On the Tuesday of the month of Shravan after her marriage, the new bride performs Shivling puja for the well-being of her husband and new family. It is also a get-together for all women folks. It includes chatting, playing games, Ukhane (married women take their husband’s name woven in 2/4 rhyming liners), and great food. They typically play Jhimma, Fugadi, Bhendya till the wee hours of the next morning

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Mangala Gaur

Ram Navmi –

Ram Navami and Hanuman Jayanti, the birthdays of Shree Ramchandra and Hanuman respectively are also celebrated in the month of Chaitra. Sunthawada/dinkawada, a snack usually eaten by new mothers is the snack of the day for Ram Navami.

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Ram Navami

Kojagiri Purnima –

In autumn Full Moon night is celebrated with sweetened milk. The firstborn in the family is also honored on this night.

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Kojagiri Purnima

Champa Shashti –

A six-day festival, from the first to sixth lunar day of the bright fortnight of the Hindu month of Margashirsh, in honor of Khandoba is celebrated by many deshastha families. Ghatasthapana, similar to Navaratri, also takes place in Deshastha households during this festival. The sixth day is called Champa Sashthi.

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Champa Shasti At Jejuri

Maha Shivratri –

Worship day of Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva is pleased with austerities, so no sweets are prepared. A chutney made the fruit of the Kawath tree (curd fruit, elephant apple, monkey fruit, or wood apple) is the specialty of this day.

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Mahashivratri

Navaratri –

This festival starts on the first day of the Hindu month of Ashvin. The nine-day festival of Durga culminates in Vijayadashami (Dasara). This is one of the three auspicious days of the year. Traditionally, stars need not be consulted for starting a new project on this day. People also exchange leaves of Apti tree as a symbol of gold. During Navaratri women and girls hold bhondla, a singing party in honor of the Goddess. Some families also observe Navaratri in the spring season in addition to the Navaratri observed in winter.

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Devi Durga, Navaratri

Ganesh Utsav –

Festival of Lord Ganesh. Through, Lokamanya Tilak’s efforts Ganeshotsav became a public celebration a century ago. However, families install their own clay (called shadu in Marathi) Ganpati in their house on Ganesh Chaturthi for family observation of the festival. The private celebration can go on for 1½ days to full 10 days according to each family’s tradition. A Modak (steamed rice dumpling usually with a jaggery/coconut filling) is a sweet prepared for this occasion and is considered the favorite of Lord Ganesh. Ganeshotsav also incorporates the Gauri festival. people install statues of the Gauri. some people on the other hand use special rocks as symbols of Gauri. In some families, Gauri is also known as Mahalakshmi Puja. It is celebrated for three days; on the first day, Mahalakshmi’s arrival is observed. The ladies in the family will bring statues of Mahalakshmi from the door to the place where they will be worshipped. They are settled at a certain location (very near the Devaghar), adorned with clothes and ornaments. On the second day, the family members get together and prepare a meal of Puran poli. This day is the puja day of Mahalakshmi and the meal is offered to Mahalakshmi and her blessings sought. On the third day, Mahalakshmi goes to her husband’s home. Before the departure, ladies in the family will invite the neighborhood ladies for an exchange of Haldi-kumkum. It is customary for the whole family to get together during the three days of Mahalakshmi puja. Most families consider Mahalakshmi as their daughter who is living with her husband’s family all the year but visits her parents’ (Maher) during the three days.

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Ganesh Utsav

Diwali –

The festival of lights is celebrated over five days by the people of Maharashtra. Families celebrate this by waking up early in the morning and having an oil bath. People light their houses with lamps and burst firecrackers over the course of the festival. Special sweets and savories like anarse, karanji, Chakli, chivda, Ladoo are prepared for the festival. Vibrant Rangoli is made in front of the house. Kids make a replica fort in memory of  Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, the great Maratha leader.

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Diwali or Dipawali

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