Narasimha, the fourth incarnation of God Vishnu, is half-human half-lion and provides a very fascinating study of the Lord's incarnation in order to alleviate the sufferings of his devotees. Sage Kashyap had four wives, Diti, Aditi, Vinita and Kudroo. Diti gave birth to demons and from Aditi were born gods, while from Vinita was born Garud, the carrier of Vishnu and the last one Kudroo created the hydras. Dithi gave birth to Hiranyaksha and Hiranyakashipu. Vishnu killed Hiranyaksha as he oppressed the devas. At the death of Hiranyaksha, Hiranyakashipu was overpowered with grief. His mother Dithi was heart-broken. Hiranyakashipu also was filled with sorrow and it burnt his own heart like fire. He hated Vishnu and Vishnu's very name was like poison to him. His blood was boiling with the hatred of Vishnu.
Hiranyakashipu, King of the Rakshasas, retired to the mountain Mandara and began tapas - the severe order of penance. Brahma was pleased with his devotion. He appeared to Hiranyakashipu and said, 'Hiranyakashipu, arise. I am pleased with your devotion. I have never seen such a severe meditation before. Ask for whatever you desire.' Hiranyakashipu replied, "Great Lord, if you will grant my prayer, this is what I seek: Let not death come to me from any creature created by you; let me not meet with death either in the house or outside it; let not my death occur either during the day or at night; no weapon should cause my death; I should not die either on land or in the sky."
After this blessing the demon crossed all bounds in oppression and dethroned Indra, the king of heavens. The very gods were filled with fear. Indra, along with the other gods, appeared before Brahma and prayed for deliverance. Brahma was very much worried and replied that the demon had become powerful due to the blessings bestowed by him and he could not destroy him. He also advised Indra to go to Vishnu, which they did. The gods went to Vishnu and retold their story of sufferings and said that due to boons given by Brahma the demon had been indulging in all sorts of oppression. Vishnu promised to destroy him in due course of time.
Hiranyakashipu had a son named Prahalad. Right from his very childhood Prahalad was attracted towards Vishnu and the other gods. Prahalad had not obeyed the orders of his father not to worship Vishnu. His father tried to destroy his son in a fit of anger; tying a stone to Prahalad's body, he was thrown into the river but Vishnu himself stopped him from drowning. Hiranyakashipu later tried to get Prahalad trampled under the feet of an elephant but the elephant lifted Prahalad lovingly by the help of his trunk and put him on its back. He then built a house and put Prahalad into it and set the same to fire; even this could not harm Prahalad. The father even tried to poison the son, but to no avail.
At last the king thundered at the boy, "You, curse of the family! Have you not yet given up your evil thoughts? The three worlds tremble at my glance. But you, my son, how do you dare to disobey me? You are very young; some one must have misled you and encouraged you. Otherwise you would not have had such evil ideas and such courage. Tell me who has shown you such an evil path." The earth shook as the king roared at the boy. But Prahalad calmly replied, "Dear father, it was Hari who gave me this courage. He is stronger than anyone else. You and I, the universe, even Brahma are nothing before his strength. He is the real Lord of the Universe."
All the gods were under the thumb of the mighty Hiranyakashipu; and here was a mere boy of five giving him advice. The king of the Rakshasas was mad with anger. He shouted in rage: "Unlucky fool, your death is near. I am the Lord of all the worlds, the only master. Is there another? Where is he? Show him to me." "He is everywhere," young Prahlad's answer came without a moment's delay. The king could no longer control himself through anger. He hit a pillar with his mace. "Wicked fellow, is he everywhere? You mad boy, why should he not appear to me in this pillar? I am going to kill you this very moment. You have been praising Hari as the Lord of the Universe. Let him come to your help if he can." So saying he drew out his sword and pounced upon the little boy. There was a terrible deafening noise as if the universe itself split into two. Even the very brave Hiranyakashipu stared from his place at the terrible noise. The courtiers shook with fear and stood like statues of stone. As the stunned men watched, the pillar split into two.
There was Sri Hari, in the form of Narasimha. He had the head of a lion and the body of a man. (Nara = Man : Simham = Lion). The eyes of this terrible figure were dazzling and they looked like molten gold. The hair on the head and the moustache and the beard stood straight and erect. The sharp and pointed jaws chattered harshly; the tongue quivered like a sword and was sharp as a dagger. His eyebrows were close knit. The ears were raised and stood erect. The mouth gaped like a mountain cave. The two nostrils looked like wells turned upside down. The body was huge and mountain-like. It seemed to touch the skies and to stop the very clouds. It had countless arms. The body was covered with a white substance like silver. The very sight of the sharp claws made one tremble.
This terrible form split the pillar and came out. Hiranyakashipu's courtiers had crowded the hall; but not one dared to look at him, not to speak of ever approaching him. Narasimha caught Hiranyakashipu with a loud roar and carried him to the threshold of the hall. He sat on the threshold with the Rakshasa in his lap. Then he dug his nails deep into his body and tore it open. He took out the entrails and wore them round his neck. Thus the wicked asura was finally killed at the hands of the man-lion, Vishnu. All the asura bodyguards who fell on Narasimha in fierce rage were crushed into a lump of flesh in the winking of an eye. After the enemies were destroyed, Narahari (Vishnu) sat on the throne of the Rakshasa King, glaring at those around him. The gods showered flowers from heaven. The Gandharva sang divine music and the Apsaras, the dancers of heaven, danced in joy. The entire earth rejoiced.
The gods praised Vishnu's ways. "Hiranyakashipu got boons from Lord Brahma; and Narasimha has respected all the promises. For it is now twilight, which is neither day nor night; the place is neither outside the house nor inside it, it is the threshold. Again he was killed neither on land nor in the sky, but on the lap of the god; he was killed neither by weapons nor by missiles but torn by nails; no one created by Brahma has killed him nor was he born in the wombs by ordinary course; it is Vishnu, in the form of Narasimha, who slew him. The little boy Prahalad touched the feet of Narasimha with his head in deep devotion. At the tender touch of Prahalad the Lord was pleased. He grew calm and anger gave way to kindness. Vishnu gave his blessings to Prahalad - the true devotee.
Please eat once on the previous day (Trayodashi) and on the Narasimha Jayanthi day keep fast from morning till chaturdashi tithi ends. After sunset, perform Pooja to Lord Narasimha. Please keep night vigil. Perform visarjan pooja next day morning. If chaturdasi prevails more than 3 prahara break fast before noon next day. If possible do 'teel patra dana' to brahmin.
After taking a bath do Lord Narasimha pooja with abhishekam, and perform homam to Lord Narasimha. Perform Punchasukta homam, Narasimha moola mantra homam, Sri Lakshmi-Narasimha mantra homam. Additionaly one can add Sri Sudarshan homam as well. Please visit the hindu temple in your area where these ceremonies are performed and take blessings of Lord Narasimha. Most temples perform Lakshi-Narasimha Sudarshan homam on this day. Certain temples celebrate these festivals for nine days starting from shasthi till chaturdashi.
om vajranakhāya vidmahe
tanno nārasiṁhaḥ pracodayāt
Pandit Mahesh Shastri & Dr. Ramachandra Joisa - Nrisimha Jayanthi
қαvї - கவி