Narasimha Avatar Story: The 4th Incarnation of Lord Vishnu

Are Narasimha avatar and Lord Vishnu the same? According to the Bhagavata Purana, the Kumaras, sons of Lord Brahma, visited Vaikunth Loka to meet Lord Vishnu.

Jaya and Vijaya, the gatekeepers of Vaikuntha, stopped them and said Sri Hari was resting. They thought they were keeping their Lord protected and undisturbed by any means.

This event angered the four Kumaras. They cursed both the gatekeepers to be born as mortals on Earth and to bear the pain of ignorance. As a result, they were born to Diti and Sage Kashyap in Satya Yuga.

Hiranyakashipu and Hiranyaksha were together called the Hiranyas. Soon, both the twin brothers grew up, and Hiranyakashipu went to the Himalayas and started to perform penance for several years.

The demon king asked for a boon that made him immortal, but Brahma refused to give the boon. He asked that no man, beast, god, or devil could kill him. The king would not be killed day or night by any metal, indoors or outdoors, or earth or in the sky.

These wishes waffled Brahma for a few seconds, but then he granted the boon.

“Tathastu,” Brahma said, and he disappeared. 

On the other hand, Hiranyaksha, the younger brother, started to cause chaos and terror throughout the entire world. He troubled humans, devas, and innocent people. The 33 Koti gods prayed to the Supreme Lord Vishnu for help. Vishnu incarnated as Lord Varaha to get rid of his dharma and restore the balance of life on earth. The boar avatar of Lord Vishnu and Hiranyaksha had an intense fight for about 1000 years. Varaha avatar knocked out Hiranyaksha and placed the earth on its axis.

Let’s unfold the Narasimha Avatar in a Vedic Story and understand the purpose of the incarnation:

Indra Attacked Hiranyakshipu’s Kingdom

While Hiranyakashipu was performing severe penance to get the boon from Lord Brahma, Indra, seeing the opportunity, attacked his kingdom and destroyed his home. He even tried to abduct his wife, Queen Kayadhu. Kayadhu was pregnant with a child.

At this moment, Sage Narada came and interrupted Indra’s plan to give protection to Kayadhu and her child.

Kayadhu was a great devotee of Lord Vishnu. After the destruction of her home, she requested to live under Sage Narada’s protection and guidance.

Prahlada was affected by the regular stories of Lord Vishnu narrated by Narada to Kayadhu. He developed transcendental love for the Lord at such a tender age.

Hiranyakashipu Swore Revenge on Sri Vishnu | Narasimha Avatar: 4th Incarnation of Lord Vishnu

The happiness of the gods was for a shorter time. Hiranyakashipu knew that his brother had been killed by Lord Varaha. The Demon King swore to take revenge on the Supreme Lord Vishnu.

Hiranyakashipu became so egoistic and dominating that he ordered that he should worship God in his palace. He started to spread terror in the Trilokas, Earth, Heaven, and Netherland (Pathala), and soon he conquered the Trilokas.

Prahlad: The Greatest Devotee of Lord Vishnu

After returning to his kingdom, Hiranyakashipu brought his wife, Kayadhu, and son, Prahlad, from Narada Muni’s home. He wished to spend quality time with his son, but while talking to Prahlad, he found that his son was praising the Lord.

The furious Hiranyakashipu punished his teacher.

He got angry due to the devotion he showed to Lord Vishnu. Hiranyakashipu considered Lord Vishnu his enemy. Therefore, he finally decided to murder his son.

Prahlad was not praising his father as the Lord. The Demon King asked his army to use illusionary powers on his son and kill him, but nothing worked.

Thereafter, Hiranyakshipu tried to influence Prahlad to be an enemy of Sri Hari but failed. He ordered the demons to crush his son under an elephant. Prahlad again survived. They threw him under the rock, but as he worshipped Lord Vishnu and the Supreme Lord himself resided in his heart, he came out without any dent. They tried poison, starvation, burning, enchantments, throwing into a well, and other things, but they failed.

Holika: A Demoness Sister of Hiranyakashipu

Hrinaykashipu tried everything, and as a last hope to kill the devotee of his enemy, he called his sister, Holika, for help.

Holika had the power to stay alive and harm-free on fire. Hiranyakshipu asked her to sit on fire with Prahlad in her lap to burn him into ashes.

Prahlad was fearless of death and began chanting in the name of Lord Vishnu. The fire grew stronger, but Prahlad remained unharmed, and Holika caught fire and burned to death.

Since then, a day before the Holi festival, Holika Dahan has been celebrated from an ancient myth to today.

Narasimha Incarnation: Avatar of Lord Vishnu as Half-Man-Half-Lion

After this event, Prahlad refused to acknowledge Hiranyakashipu as his father. He asked Prahlad if his Lord Vishnu was present nearby. Prahlad said the Lord was omnipresent everywhere.

Hiranyakashipu was furious and pointed out a pillar in his palace and asked Prahlad, “Is your Lord Vishnu present here?

Prahlad replied, “Yes, my Lord is here.” Hiranyakashipu stood from his throne, walked with his mace, and hit.

The pillar cracked with a thousand light bolts and a thundering sound. Lord Vishnu appeared in an avatar of Lord Narasimha, a man-half-lion.

He looked ferocious, with matted hair, a large mustache, and terrible teeth. His paws had sharp, blade-like nails, ready to tear the demon into two parts.

Narasimha, an avatar of Lord Vishnu, roared angrily.

The gods from heaven witnessed. Hiranyakashipu tried his best to escape the palace to save his life from Narasimha, but could not.

Lord Narasimha caught hold of him and dragged him towards the entrance, the threshold. He put him on his thighs—neither earth nor sky—and tore his belly with his sharp, terrifying nails.

Prahlad Pacified the Avatar of Lord Narasimha

After killing the demon, the Lord was not calm. Even Lord Brahma and Shiva tried to calm Narasimha’s fury but couldn’t.

Goddess Lakshmi came, but she was unable to calm him.

Thereafter, at the request of Brahma, Prahlad was presented to Lord Narasimha. Narasimha was pacified when Prahlad touched his feet and asked for some boons.

Prahlad said, “You are my Lord. I have everything. If you wish to grant me a boon, kindly bless me with no desire for anything.

Then, the avatar of Lord Narasimha, the 4th incarnation of Lord Vishnu, made Prahlad the king and instructed him to run his kingdom and responsibilities with the utmost devotion and do his duties with righteousness.

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