Home India Know why Godd...

Know why Goddess Parvati asked Lord Shiva’s sister Devi Asavari to leave Kailasha!

Hindu Mythology is full of incidents and stories that one can relate to their own life even today

2
Lord Shiva. Image source: Wikimedia Commons

September 2, 2016: India is a multi-diversity country and despite people belonging to different castes, classes, traditions, ideas, values, and religions, they leave in harmony. Hindu Mythology is full of incidents and stories that one can relate to their own life even today. This shows how modern Hindu faith is. Amid all the stories, there is one about Lord Shiva and her unnamed sister, who he later named as Devi Asavari and that she was created by Shiva on his wife’s insistence.

India is a land where various legends and myths existed since, the very beginning. The same is applied for the Hindu Mythologies as people believed that these tales were only stories and they have no real life significance attached to it. What most of us missed is that apart from teach us the art of living, these texts also exposed the harsh realities of the dominant Patriarchal society, where people were exploited and discriminated on the basis of caste or gender. Here are few stories that will explain this better-

Lord Rama was not the first child born in the Kingdom of Ayodhya. In reality, he had an elder sister named Shanta who was abandoned and left by her father as she was a girl and not a boy. Thus, gender discrimination existed in the Indian civilisation from the beginning. – Ramayana

As according to Shiv Puranas, Lord Shiva had a sister too. Devi Asavari was created by Shiva on his wife’s insistence. As she used to miss her family madly when they were settled in Kailasha. Therefore, she requested her husband to give her a sister-like companion with whom she could share her feelings and emotions when she was lonely. She demanded this, as she was the only woman in the entire clan in Kailasha which was filled with men. Hence, Lord Shiva followed his wife’s plea on one condition that she would take care of her ‘sister -in -law’ very happily. To which, Parvati agreed.

Follow NewsGram on Twitter

Soon, he created a woman similar to him with all his knowledge and power. According to various books, Devi Asavari was a very plump woman with long hair. She had cracked feet and thus, she used to wear nothing except animal skin.

After some time, Lord Shiva took his wife to his sister Devi Asavari and Parvati was overwhelmed with emotions to meet her for the first time. Devi Asavari used to eat a lot due to which the entire food storage of Kailasha was getting affected. Hence, Parvati became totally helpless and depressed as she could not meet the needs of Devi Asavari.

Devi Asavari was hard to control and very soon, Parvati got fed up with the increasing demands and rudeness of Asavari that she decided to break her promise of taking care of her sister-in-law forever. She asked forgiveness for the same from her husband.

Follow NewsGram on Facebook

Therefore, Lord Shiva decided to instill his sister with some good etiquettes and then, marry her off. To which Parvati said, she has no problem with Asavari if she would behave properly with her. But, this time, her husband dismissed her suggestion saying that ” If you cannot have someone at their worst then, you must not have them at their best.” This shows that Lord Shiva was an epitome of righteousness since, he believed in giving a chance to his sister to change herself to have a better future, unlike his wife who desperately wanted a companion but, could not handle the difficult situations courageously.

– by Namra Zahid of NewsGram 

Next Story

Know About “The Dashavatara”~ 10 Avatars of Lord Vishnu in Hinduism

In Hinduism, Lord Vishnu is considered as the preserver of this world

0
Lord Vishnu, Hinduism
As the preserver, Lord Vishnu has declared, "Whenever evil will prevail in this world, I will take up an avatara in this world to cast-off all the evil and sufferings".

By Kashish Rai

In Hinduism, the meaning of this shok in sankskrit confines to Lord Vishnu:

शान्ताकारं भुजगशयनं पद्मनाभं सुरेशं

विश्वाधारं गगनसदृशं मेघवर्णं शुभाङ्गम् ।

लक्ष्मीकान्तं कमलनयनं योगिभिर्ध्यानगम्यं

वन्दे विष्णुं भवभयहरं सर्वलोकैकनाथम् ॥

It means that:

I bow before God Vishnu..

Who is personification of peace,

Who sleeps on his folded arms,

Who has a lotus on his belly,

Who is the God of gods,

Who is the basis of earth,

Who is similar to the sky,

Who is of the colour of the cloud,

Who has beautiful limbs,

Who is the consort of Lakshmi,

Who has lotus like eyes,

Who is seen by saints through thought,

Who kills all worries and fears,

And who is the lord of all the worlds.

In Hinduism, Lord Vishnu is considered as the preserver of this world. As the preserver, he had declared, “Whenever evil will prevail in this world, I will take up an avatara in this world to cast-off all the evil and sufferings”.

Please Follow NewsGram on Twitter To Get Latest Updates From Around The World!

  • What is an Avatara?

Avatara (or incarnation) in Sanskrit refers to the “appearance” or “manifestation” of God or a Deity in an earthly embodiment. The concept of an avatara is principally associated with Lord Vishnu.

  • Classification of Avatars By Lord Vishnu

Avatars are broadly classified into two kinds:

  1. Sakshaty Avatara: When Lord Vishnu himself descended on earth, he took Sakshaty Avatara.

 Amsarup Avatars and Purna Avatar are sub-categories of Sakshaty-Avatara!

  • Purna Avataras: They include Lord Vishnu’s incarnation as Lord Rama, Lord Krishna and Lord Narasimha
  • Amsarup Avataras: These include Lord Vishnu’s partial incarnation Matsya, Kurma, Varaha Avatara.
  1. Avesa Avatara: When Lord Vishnu indirectly empowered some living entity on earth to represent him, he took Avesa Avatara.

(Lord Parshurama, Vyasa are examples of Lord Vishnu’s Avesa Avataras)

Also Read: 10 Ancient Hindu Temples in The Himalayas That Must be Visited Atleast Once

  • The Concept of “Dashavatara”

According to Srimad Bhagwad Purana, there are innumerable incarnations of Lord Vishnu. Among them, there are 24 important incarnations of Lord Vishnu in total.

But, from Innumerable incarnations of Vishnu, Rishis or Sages selected ten Avatars as a representative of rest, these ten incarnations are known in Sanskrit as “Dashavatar”.

The Dhashavatara list of Vishnu is introduced in Garuda Purana (1st millennium BCE).

The most popular ten avatars based on many puranas are Matasya, Kurma, Varaha, Narasimha, Vamana, Parashurama, Rama, Krishna, Buddha, and Kalki.

 Let us Understand about them in this article!

  • Dashavataras of Lord Vishnu

  1. Matasya Avatara

Matasya Avatara
The image represents Matasya Avatara of Lord Vishnu.

The matasya avatar represents the half fish, a half-human form of Vishnu. According to a story in the “Matasya Puran“, Matasya informs Manu, the leader of the humans, of the great flood, and helps him save all the motile living beings, the Vedas, and the seeds of all plants to sustain life.

  1. Kurma Avatara

Kurma Avatara
The image represents Kurma Avatara of Lord Vishnu.

Kurma Avatara represents the half tortoise half-man form of Vishnu. According to Hindu mythology, it is believed that during the churning of the ocean at the time of “Amrit-Manthan”, he balanced Mt. Mandara on his shell to assist the gods and the demons in the churning process. He is also believed to have supported the weight of the cosmos on the support of his back.

  1. Varaha Avatara

Varaha Avatara
The image represents Varaha Avatara of Lord Vishnu.

Varaha Avatara represents the half man and half boar avatar of Vishnu. According to Hindu dharma, he slayed the demon Hiranyaksha in order to save “Bhudevi”, the personification of earth, and restored her back to the original surface from a sinking state by using his tusks.

  1. Narasimha Avatara

Narasimha Avatara
The image represents Narasimha Avatara of Lord Vishnu.

Narasimha Avatara represents  the half lion and a half-human avatar of Vishnu. He was born to end the reign of the demonic king Hiranya Kashyap and save the supreme devotee of Vishnu “Prahlad” in order to establish peace, order, righteousness, and other elements of dharma on this earth.

  1. Vamana Avatara

Vamana Avatara
The image represents Narasimha Avatara of Lord Vishnu.

Vamana was a dwarf Brahmin. This avatar of Lord Vishnu comes to check the growing power of the demonic king Mahabali, which he does by tricking him during a sacrificing ceremony and sending him to the underworld inside of the Earth.

  1. Parshurama Avatara

Parshurama Avatara
This image represents Parshurama Avatara of Lord Vishnu.

Lord Parshurama is a Brahmin Kshatriya. In Hindu mythology, he is depicted as a sage with an axe in his hand. He was born to end the tyranny of the evil Kshatriyas, who misused their powers and made others’ lives miserable and bring them to justice for the sake of humankind.

  1. Rama Avatara

Rama
This image represents Rama Avatara of Lord Vishnu.

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

  1. Krishna Avatara

Krishna Avatara
This image represents Krishna Avatara of Lord Vishnu.

Lord Krishna is yet another major form of Vishnu. He is known to end the reign of his tyrannical maternal uncle Kansa, and for his role as the advisor or the Pandavas and the charioteer and guide of Arjuna in the greatest epic Mahabharata.

  1. Buddha Avatara

Buddha Avatara
This image represents Buddha Avatara of Lord Vishnu.

Siddhartha Gautam, later to be known as Gautam Buddha, left his family and all material possession in search of truth and enlightenment. He founded Buddhism and taught people ways to end all kinds of suffering through Noble Eightfold Paths.

  1. Kalki Avatara

Kalki Avatara
This image represents Kalki Avatara of Lord Vishnu.

According to Srimad Bhagwad Mahapuran, Kalki remains the only avatar of Vishnu that is yet to be born. It is said that he will end all evil by defeating the demon Kali and start a new “Satyuga” or Kalkiyuga (Kali refers all the negative emotions and elements personified into one).

Kalki is depicted as a warrior riding a white horse and holding a shining sword.

In Bhagavata Mahapuran, it is mentioned that whenever evil triumphs over good, darkness take over light, and tyranny rules over justice~ Lord Vishnu will reincarnate on earth to restore Dharma and guide the people towards right path.

Next Story

The Prominence of Hari-Naam in Hinduism: Benefits of Chanting “Hare Krishna” Mahamantra

"Hare Krishna" is known as the "Maha-Mantra" as mentioned in the Kali-Santarana Upnishad during the Bhakti-movement by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Know about the benefits of chanting it

0
Hare Krishna Text
"Hare Krishna" is perhaps the most powerful but very easy mantra that anyone can chant without restrictions.

By Kashish Rai

Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna

Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare

Hare Rama, Hare Rama,

Rama Rama, Hare Hare

The Srimad Bhagvad Gita, which is the sacred book of the Hindus says that Krishna and Krishna’s name is the same. So, when you chant “Hare Krishna” you gain Krishna’s consciousness inside of you, you connect with the supreme being, so you connect with the universe.

“Hare Krishna” is known as the “Maha-Mantra” as mentioned in the Kali-Santarana Upnishad during the Bhakti-movement by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.

The “Hare Krishna Mahamantra” is composed of three words of the supreme being~ “Hare”, “Krishna” and “Rama”.

“Hare Krishna” is perhaps the most powerful but very easy mantra that anyone can chant without restrictions. In the truest might, this maha-mantra addresses the supreme power invoking its blessings on the chanter.

Know about the Benefits of Chanting “Hari Naam” in this article!

  • Benefit 1: You Get The Control Over Your Mind

The Srimad Bhagvad Gita Says, “One must conquer the mind. Those who have, their mind then becomes their best friend. In turn, those who haven’t, their mind will become their greatest enemy”.

The Chanting of “Hare Krishna” may help you to get a hold on your mind, stopping you from becoming the slaves to unwanted desires and whimsical thoughts that your mind can meander into. You can get the utmost peace of mind.

Hare Krishna Mahamantra
The “Hare Krishna Mahamantra” is composed of three words of the supreme being~ “Hare”, “Krishna” and “Rama”.
  • Benefit 2: You Can Reach The Absolute State of Happiness

In today’s world filled up with materialistic things and miseries of life, everyone is in the search for happiness! And the chanting of “Hare Krishna” can allow us to share our contact with the god and his spirit, thus, leading us to our bliss by entering his association.

This is not material happiness, but a state of absolute happiness! This is the reason that everytime one chants “Hare Krishna” with passion, they themselves start dancing!

Chaitanya Mahaprabhu Dancing
Image depicts Chaitanya Mahaprabhu dancing on tunes of “Hare Krishna Mahamantra” along with followers. Pinterest
  • Benefit 3: You Can Get Awakened To Your “True Self”

In this fast-paced world, we have become so accustomed to the material universe that we have forgotten our true self- the self of the spiritual. And when we have become so material, we have developed fears of death, old-age, and diseases.As definite beings~ we fear the loss of power, beauty, wealth, intelligence and so many other things.

When we chant Hari-Naam we get this supreme realisation that we are the pure, change-less spiritual souls which is different to the materialistic body. Hari-Naam is a pure spiritual sound vibration, and it can help us develop the consciousness to understand our ‘self’.

  • Benefit 4: You Can Change Your Negative Karmic Tendencies

The basic law of karma is equivalent to Newton’s third law of motion: “For every action, there is an opposite and equal reaction”.

Spiritually, it means that for every material action performed, nature forces an equivalent reaction upon the performer. We as human beings transform ourselves from one karmic destiny to another.

Chanting Hare Krishna can help us build our positive karma as chanting Krishna means that we are chanting the name with “transcendental energy” to erase all the negatives that exists within us and then Attain “Moksha” (To free ourselves of this cycle of life, we need moksha and the liberation from the endless wheel of birth and death is also known as ‘samsara’. This can only be achieved when our consciousness is completely free from material desires.)

Lord Krishna
when you chant “Hare Krishna” you gain Krishna’s consciousness inside of you, you connect with the supreme being, so you connect with the universe. Pinterest
  • Benefit 5: You Get the The Most Salient Benefit~ You Understand “The Love of God”

The most important benefit of chanting the Hare Krishna mantra is to find God-realization and pure love of God.

When our consciousness becomes one with God, our positive nature is depicted in our character and behavior in the same phenomenon just as how the sun approaches the horizon, it is preceded by warmth and illumination.

ALSO READ: Dealing with Work-From-Home in a Long-Term Remote Setup

Likewise, the name of Krishna is revived in our heart, which has been missing since the start of “Kali Yuga”.

Chanting of Hare Krishna Mahamantra does not pertain to only recalling the name of god but it takes you on a journey of self-realisation through supreme consciousness thereby redeeming yourself from the mundane state of life.

 

 

Next Story

Yoga: A Sacred Gift, with Love from Hinduism and India to the World

Yoga as a means of exercise for the body and mind is a deeply rooted concept of Hinduism for centuries, it is a gift from India to the world

0
Yoga
Yoga as a means of exercise for the body and mind is a deeply rooted concept of Hinduism in India. Pixabay

BY Varuni Trivedi

Lord Krishna said to Arjun in the Geeta, “Restless senses, O Arjuna, forcibly carry away the mind of even a wise person striving for perfection.” Patanjali’s description of the practice of yoga after the yamas and niyamas, directs towards the pratyahara, meaning turning inward of the senses. In simple terms when one is unable to restrain the senses, they become powerless to direct their minds. No matter how well-read or wise they sound while talking, it carries little importance without the practice discipline. The word “yoga” comes from the Sanskrit word ‘yuj’ (“to yoke”) which is more literally translated as “union of the individual’s Atma or soul with Paramatma or god (the universal soul). This is often understood as a union with the divine power by the integration of body, mind, and spirit. Thus, Yoga is what imparts an internal discipline, not only to the body but also to the mind and spirit. 

 

History of the art of Yoga

Bhagavad Gita, the holy scripture of Hindus also states the importance of yoga, “Yoga is the journey of the self, to the self, through the self” it beautifully quotes. The history of Yoga is accurately is difficult to trace its has many places of obscurity and uncertainty. In those ages, texts and teaching were passed down orally. Not only was the oral transmission of sacred texts is a common occurrence but the secretive nature of its teachings was also a recurring phenomenon. Furthermore, earlier writings on yoga were transcribed on fragile palm leaves that were easily damaged, destroyed, or even lost making it difficult to trace the exact time of its inception. However, experts claim that the development of yoga can be traced back to over 5,000 years ago, some researchers even think that yoga may be up to 10,000 years old old. 

The word yoga was first mentioned in the oldest sacred known to mankind, the Rig Veda. These Vedas are sacred Hindu texts and were a collection of songs, mantras, and rituals to be used by Brahmans and Vedic priests. Later on, Yoga was slowly refined and developed by the Brahmans and Rishi munis who documented their practices and beliefs in the Upanishads, which contains 200 scriptures. However, to date, the most renowned Yogic scriptures where Yoga and its benefits are mentioned in the Bhagavad-Gita which was composed in around 500 B.C.E. 

Yoga’s long rich history can be divided into four main periods of innovation, practice, and development or the pre-classic, classical, post-classical, and the modern period. Yoga as a means of exercise for the body and mind is a deeply rooted concept of Hinduism in India for centuries.  Karma Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Jnana Yoga, and Raja Yoga are considered the four main yogas, but with time and development now there are many other types. 

Yoga and meditation
Yoga is more of a spiritual act and it remains a vibrant living tradition. Pixabay

 

Yoga in the modern period

Yoga is more of a spiritual act and it remains a vibrant living tradition. It is seen all across the world as a means to enlightenment for the mind and soul. In the 1800s and 1900s, yogic gurus traveled to the West, gaining attention, and followers and making Yoga more and more famous. Essentially this spread can be traced back to, 1893 when in the Parliament of Religions in Chicago, Swami Vivekananda left the attendees spellbound with his speech. His lectures on yoga and wellbeing were a great catalyst in spreading the word about this art. Late, in the 1920s and 30s, Hatha Yoga was strongly promoted in India as the work of T. Krishnamacharya, Swami Sivananda, and other yogis became popular.

Krishnamacharya was the first to open a Hatha Yoga school in Mysore in 1924. Sometime later in 1936 Sivananda founded the Divine Life Society on the banks of the holy river Ganges, he aroused three students that continued his legacy and increased the popularity of Hatha Yoga. They were B.K.S. Iyengar, T.K.V. Desikachar, and Pattabhi Jois. Sivananda himself wrote over 200 books on yoga and established nine ashrams and many yoga centers across the world, making yoga popular worldwide. In the western world, the importance of yoga and its popularity soared when Indra Devi opened her yoga studio in Hollywood in 1947. 

Yoga is popular in many parts of the world. Especially in the United States, yoga has become associated with the asanas (postures) of Hatha Yoga, which have gained immense popularity as fitness exercises. Even though Yoga is central to Hinduism, other religions like Buddhism, Sikhism, and Jainism, have also been greatly influenced by it throughout the world. Some of the most important Hindu texts which have laid the ground for yoga worldwide include the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, the Bhagavad Gita, and the Hatha Yoga Pradipika.

 

Yoga
The practice of Yoga asanas and meditation provides natural support to the immune system. Pixabay

Yoga and Modi

PM Modi has been a patron of yoga, practicing and propagating the idea of yoga and its importance worldwide. Recently at a yoga event called “Yoga for Peace” in Argentina’s capital Mr. Modi addressed the participants saying that the practice of Yoga connects everyone to happiness. The Prime Minister further said that if the mind is at peace, there would be peace in family, society, country, and the world as well. He went on to say that “Yoga is India’s gift to the world for health, wellness, and peace.” Yoga can be credited to connects us with wellness and happiness and bring peace of mind to many across the globe.  PM Modi further said that Yoga is bridging the vast distance between India and Argentina. It is connecting people worldwide and binding them in a positive light. PM Modi has on other occasions termed yoga as the “unifying force of the world”

Also Read: Paatal Lok and its Objectionable Motives

Yoga In the Times of Pandemic

The multiple benefits that the practice of yoga has on a person’s wellbeing are accepted all across the world. In these tough times when people are locked inside their houses as anxiety and worklessness eat them up, Yoga can be a great support. It would not only help to bring the mind at peace but also help with the body at such times when physical activity is low. Yoga could help deal with anxiety and stress which commonly surround people in a lockdown. In fact, recent studies have said that Yoga even helps in quitting smoking and other tobacco products. This can be a great time for people to quit their bad habits and turn to a path of spirituality. Yoga in every sense of the world is excellent support in these stressful times or literally every time. It brings harmony and peace not only to the mind but also to the body.