lord Vishnu

Lord Vishnu : The “Preserver” in the Hinduism

Vishnu is one of the principle deities of Hinduism, and, along with Brahma and Shiva, forms the Hindu trinity. Vishnu is the peace-loving deity of that trinity, the Preserver or Sustainer of Life.

Vishnu is the Preserver or Sustainer of life, known for his steadfast principles of order, righteousness, and truth. When these values are under threat, Vishnu emerges out of his transcendence to restore peace and order on earth.

Vishnu’s earthly incarnations include many avatars: the ten avatars include Matsyavatara (fish), Koorma (tortoise), Varaaha (boar), Narasimha (the man-lion), Vamana (the dwarf), Parasurama (the angry man), Lord Rama (the perfect human of the Ramayana), Lord Balarama (Krishna’s brother), Lord Krishna (the divine diplomat and statesman), and the yet-to-appear tenth incarnation, called the Kalki avatar. Some sources consider Buddha as one of the avatars of Vishnu. This belief is a recent addition from a time when the concept of Dashavatara was already developed.

In his most common form, Vishnu is portrayed as having a dark complexion–the color of passive and formless ether, and with four hands.

SANKHA, CHAKRA, GADA, PADMA

On one of the backhands, he holds the milky white conch shell, or sankha, that spreads the primordial sound of Om, and on the other a discus, or chakra–a reminder of the cycle of time–which is also a lethal weapon that he uses against blasphemy.

 It is the famous Sudarshana Chakra that is seen whirling on his index finger. The other hands hold a lotus or padma, which stands for a glorious existence, and a mace, or gada, that indicates punishment for indiscipline.

THE LORD OF TRUTH

Out of his navel blossoms a lotus, known as Padmanabham.

THE PRESIDING DEITY OF PEACE

Vishnu is often depicted as reclining on a Sheshanaga–the coiled, many-headed snake floating on cosmic waters that represent the peaceful Universe. This pose symbolises the calm and patience in the face of fear and worries represented by the poisonous snake. The message here is that you should not let fear overpower you and disturb your peace.

GARUDA, THE VEHICLE

The vehicle of Vishnu is the Garuda eagle, the king of the birds. Empowered with the courage and speed to spread the knowledge of the Vedas, Garuda is an assurance of fearlessness at the time of calamity.

Vishnu is also known as Narayana and Hari. The devout followers of Vishnu are called Vaishnavas, and his consort is Goddess Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and beauty.

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