The Ten Avatars of Lord Vishnu - Sri Vishnu Das Avatars

Dec 14 2023 Tags: Dasavtara, Vishnu

Lord Vishnu is considered the second god in the Hindu trinity, alongside Brahma (the creator) and Shiva (the destroyer). The Srimad Bhagavatam, also known as the Bhagavata Purana, is one of the 18 major texts of Hinduism. In the Srimad Bhagavatam, Lord Vishnu is said to have 24 avatars, which include the 10 avatars, the Dashavatara. The additional 14 avatars are not as widely recognized as the Dashavatara.

Lord Vishnu incarnated in different forms to preserve the universe and restore "peace and dharma" in the four yugas (era or cycle) namely Satya yuga (Matsya, Kurma, Varaha, Narasimha), Treta yuga (Vamana, Parasuram, Sri Rama), Dwapara yuga (Sri krishna) and Kali yuga (Buddha and yet to come kalki avatar). 

Vishnu das avatara

The Ten Avatars of Lord Vishnu   

Matsya Avatar - The first avatar of Lord Vishnu as a saviour in the form of fish who saves the first man in creation named Manu from flood, and is represented with the upper torso of a human, and lower body with a fish tail. 

Kurma Avatar - The Mandara Mountain & the snake Vasuki is used as the churning stick & rope during the churning of the milky ocean. Once the churning starts, the mountain starts drowning in the ocean. At that time, Lord Vishnu took the Kurma Avatar (form of tortoise) to support the base of the mountain to keep it afloat. Lord Vishnu had taken this avatar to help the Gods to win the ‘Amirtham’ over the demons during the churning of the ocean. 

Varaha Avatar -  According to Hinduism, Varaha, the boar is the third avatar of Lord Vishnu who also appeared on the Earth during the Satya Yuga. It is said that Lord Vishnu appeared as Varaha to defeat the demon Hiranyaksha who had taken the earth to the bottom of the Cosmic Ocean. After that, a huge battle took place between Hiranyaksha and Varaha that lasted for 1000 years and finally Varaha raised the earth from the water with his tusks. You can see the portrait of Varaha as boar head appeared on a human body.  

Narasimha Avatar - The invincibility turn the asura king Hiranyakashipu into a tyrant and he assumed he was the supreme power of the universe. His son, Prahalad was a devotee of Vishnu. Vishnu appeared on earth as Narasimha, with the body of a man and the head and claws of a lion. He arrived at dusk, a time which is neither day nor night; he appeared in the courtyard, thus it was neither indoors nor outdoors, and tore the asura apart with his bare nails. 

Vamana Avatar - The fourth descendant of Hiranyakashyap, King Bali, with devotion and penance was able to defeat Indra, the king of Devas. This humbled the other deities and extended his authority over the three worlds. The gods appealed to Vishnu for protection and he descended as the dwarf Vamana. During a yajna 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. Vamana then revealed his true identity and enlarged into gigantic proportions to stride over the three worlds. He stepped from heaven to earth with the first step and from earth to the netherworld with the second step. King Bali was unable to fulfill his promise, offered his head for the third. Vamana then placed his foot and gave the king immortality for his humility. 

Parashurama Avatar - In Parashurama Avatar, Lord Vishnu incarnates himself as a brahmana (priest) in this world. He was brought in this world to avenge all kshatriyas who had become arrogant and were suppressing the brahmans in the world. He was born to Jamadagni and Renuka, and belonged to the Brighu clan. Bhagwan Parashurama was always carrying an axe presented to him by Lord Shiva of whom he was an ardent devotee. Kartavirya a powerful king, once went to Jamadagni's home when he was out, and after a meal, stole the Kamadhenu cow, which was supposed to give endless quantity of milk. Jamadagni was enraged and he went and killed the king and brought Kamadhenu back. On hearing this, the son of the king came back and killed Jamadagni. Parashurama was enraged at this and went and avenged the death of his father by killing all kshatriyas in 21 battles.

Rama Avatar - Lord Rama is one of the most significant and powerful deities of Hindu dharma and the lead character of the epic Ramayana. He kills the evil king Ravana to end his terrorizing rule and to free his wife Sita, whom Ravana had kidnapped.

Krishna Avatar - Lord Krishna is another great manifestation of Lord Vishnu. In Mahabharata, he is remembered for ending the reign of his despotic maternal uncle Kansa and serving as the Pandavas' advisor as well as Arjuna's charioteer and guide. He taught the lesson of Dharma to world. 

Buddha Avatar - Lord Buddha who established Buddhism and preached the message of peace and love is considered to be the 9th avatar of the Dashavatara of Vishnu. Buddha was born Prince Siddharth. However, he was disillusioned with material wealth, seeing the suffering of people, and death. The Prince quietly left his palace, one day, in search of truth and to find the true meaning of life. Prince Siddharth gained enlightenment underneath a Bodhi tree in Bodh Gaya and from that day came to be known as Buddha. He spread his message of peace and love far and wide before he attained Mahaparinirvana in Kushinagar.

Kalki Avatar - The last incarnation of Lord Vishnu, and it is believed that Lord Kalki will appear on a white horse with a blazing sword in the present Yuga or the Kali Yuga to destroy all unrighteousness and evil existing in mankind.

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