Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Lord Vishnu is said to have manifested himself in various incarnations, called Avatars, for the destruction of evil or restoration of faith and justice in the world. These incarnations are said to have been in the human form, in the animal form and even in the combined human-animal form. Though popularly believed to be ten in number, the Bhagvat Purana mentions twenty two such incarnations with innumerable more to follow. It is believed that out of the ten incarnations (called Dashavatar) that are popularly believed in, nine have already been manifested while the tenth is yet to appear. Though all of the incarnations are highly revered, the incarnations of Lord Rama and Lord Krishna have found acceptance as gods in their own right and are propitiated deities in Hinduism.

The first four of the ten avatars have appeared in the Krita Yuga (the first of the four Yugas or Ages that comprise one Mahayuga – for more details please read the section above on Lord Brahma). The next three avatars appeared in the Treta Yuga, the eighth incarnation in the Dwapar Yuga and the ninth in the Kali Yuga. The tenth is expected to appear at the end of the Kali Yuga.

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