Narasimha Jayanti 2023 – 4th May
Narasimha Jayanti is celebrated on Vaisakh Chaturdashi (14th day) of the Shukla Paksha, which in 2023 will fall on 4th May. On Narasimha Jayanti day Lord Vishnu appeared in the form of Narasimha (a half lion, and half man) as the fourth incarnation of Lord Vishnu. He appeared as Narasimha to protect Prahlada from his demoniac father Hiranyakashipu.
The fourth and the greatest incarnation of Lord Vishnu amongst his ten prime avatars is Lord Narasimha who emerged out of a pillar as Man-Lion, i.e., Lion’s head on Man’s trunk. He took this avatar to guard his devotee Prahlada.
Narasimha is often visualized as half-man/half-lion, having a human-like torso and lower body, with a lion-like face and claws. Vishnu is believed to have taken the avatar to destroy the demon king Hiranyakashipu. Hiranyakashipu was the Father, and Queen Kayaadu Mother of Prahalad’s. When Prahalada was in the womb of his mother, Queen Kayaadu, he had the fortune of listening to Devarishi Naradha regarding Lord Vishnu’s compassion towards his devotees. Hence right from his birth, Prahalada was dedicated to the name of Lord Vishnu.
Hiranyakashipu received a special benediction from Lord Brahma that he could not be killed by any human being, demigod, or animal, or any other entity. He could not be killed by any kind of weapons, neither during day nor night, neither on earth nor on the sky. So, the Lord appeared in half-man half-lion form and killed him with His nails at twilight, thus satisfying all the conditions.
Hiranyakashipu was an arch-rival of Lord Vishnu and a symbol of torture to noble souls, could not bear with his son and started torturing young Prahalada in many ways. Through his henchmen, he advised Prahalada that Hiranyakashipu himself was the prime god and Lord Vishnu stood null in front of Hiranyakashipu. Young Prahalada denounced such thoughts and stuck to his wisdom that Lord Vishnu was “Purushothama”, the supreme.
One day, Hiranyakashyapu screamed at Prahalada and questioned him as to where his Lord Vishnu was present and whether he could save Prahalada from death at his own hands.
To this, Prahalada replied that Lord Vishnu is omnipresent. Hiranyakashyapu pointed out at a pillar in his palace and asked Prahalada whether Vishnu was present in it. Prahalada’s reply was affirmative. The Demon using his Gadha(Mace) broke open the pillar and there emerged Lord Narasimha who slain the demon using his sharp paws and blessed Prahalad as his topmost devotee on earth. To mark the above incident and to pay our respect to the Lord, Narasimha Jayanthi is celebrated at several temples.
There are three major forms of Lord Narasimha.
1. Ugra-Narasimha – His fierce form: In this form, He has conch – ṣanka, discus – chakra, mace – gada, bow – chāpa, bells – ghanta-, trident like – ankuśa, and his two hands ready to chisel the demon heart, as His āyudhams – weapons. This form is worshipped in the evenings.
2. Lakshmi Narasimha – In this form, he is very peaceful – ṣanta – with His consort – Sri Lakshmi sitting on his left lap, with adisesa on his head like an umbrella, and Prahallāda standing in his front praying with his folded hands. This manifestation is followed after his fierce form– as a result, he is worshipped in the morning.
3. Yoga Narasimha – meditative: Here, He is in his Meditative form for those who aspire for results of Yoga.
Lord Narasimha destroys sins, grants virtues, grants moral religious merits, grants objects of human pursuit. The lord grants ultimate peace, knowledge, and joy. He fulfills wishes for the seekers of worldly desires.
How is Narsimha Jayanti celebrated?
Since the inception of this avatar is in the evening, the worship is done in the evening. It is a sacred day to remember Lord Narasimha. Special prayers and pooja will be offered in the Lod Vishnu Temples. On this day, Hindus fast, meditate, and pray for the spiritual fortitude of Prahlada. Sometimes they demonstrate the depth of their devotion by giving cows, grain, gold, robes, and other goods to the poor and the Brahmans as acts of charity.
The Significance Of Narasimha Jayanthi is gaining good over evil. To restore the Dharma by killing the demon Hiranyakashipu who did adharma by the proud of his boon. Lord Narasimha came out of a pillar at a sandhya time (Between day and night) and he placed him in the middle of the door base and killed him with his nails.
We pray to Sri Prahlada Narasimha for the protection, good health, and welfare of the world, in the wake of the prevailing Covid-19 pandemic.
Sri Narasimha Mantra
“Ugram viram maha-vishnum jvalantam sarvato mukham |
nrisimham bhishanam bhadram mrityur mrityum namamy aham ||”
उग्रं वीरं महाविष्णुं ज्वलन्तं सर्वतोमुखम्।
नृसिंहं भीषणं भद्रं मृत्युमृत्युं नमाम्यहम् ॥
Meaning – I bow down to Lord Narasimha who is highly ferocious and brave and the emanation of Lord Maha Vishnu. He is full of effulgence, terrific and auspicious, and the death of death.