Dasa Avatars

kalyan chakravarthy kalyan_kc at HOTMAIL.COM
Mon Apr 28 09:10:11 CDT 2003


Even though Rama and Parashurama were concurrent avatars, they are assigned
the chronology of seven and six respectively, because Parashurama was born
before Rama. So if Balarama is an avatar of Vishnu, then Krishna would be
the ninth avatar, because Balarma was born before Krishna. But Krishna is in
general considered the eighth avatar only. (Many consider Balarama to be an
avatar of Adishesha just like Lakshmana in Ramayana.)

As for devi, we know that she represents the shakthi or energy of nArAyaNa
and therefore cannot be an avatar. Thus we are left with Buddha alone as a
reasonable choice. The argument against Buddha is that he rejects the vedas.
But the argument in favour is that he in not a materialist like Charvaka.

Best Regards

>From: Malolan Cadambi <cadambi at HOTPOP.COM>
>Reply-To: List for advaita vedanta as taught by Shri Shankara
>Subject: Re: Dasa Avatars
>Date: Sat, 26 Apr 2003 07:55:09 -0500
> >I understand of course that there is a long-standing practice including
> >Buddha as an Avatar and I can appreciate that there may have been
> >historical reasons for the development of such a tradition. However, and
> >with all respect to those who propound and adhere to such a view, I
> >personally understand its logic. Nastika philosophies were rejected by as
> >heretical from the outset and the logic of continuing to consecrate
> >as an Avatar is (for me) highly dubious. He, after all, rejects the
> >of the Vedas and denies their Revelatory status or intent and rejects the
> >notion of Atma. Though I can understand that the Madhyamika, under
> >interpretations, leads to a measure of intellectual convergence with
> >Advaita, I fail to see how even such syncretism warrants Buddha's
> >to an Avatar.
>Not true. Buddha, i.e Siddhartha Gautama (S.G) henceforth, was not included
>in the original list. Srimad Bhagavatam mentions that the advent of a
>avatara who was born to Anjana. But SG was born to Maya not Anjana. The
>Buddha Avatara of the Bhagavatam came down in order to trick the Asuras
>On the other hand, it is mainly due to the works of Jayadeva of Gita
>fame that most North Indian traditions and Nepali traditions include
>Buddha(S.G) as an avatara of Vishnu. Apart from them, in modern times,
>Neo-vedantins like Vivekananda and the Gaudiya-s (ISKCON) inlcude S.G as
>of the Avataras. The VHP and the Sangh include any non-christian,
>non-islamic icons as avatara-s. Enough said.
> >The problem is compounded by the fact that, in my opinion, even a
> >perfunctory exegesis of the Puranas reveals that the Sri Balarama
> >as an Avatar is also exposed to a degree of logical disquiet. There are
> >many specific points for concern but I raise three for illustration:
> >Firstly, what is the rationale for having two concurrent Avatars? This
> >not seem logical.
>Here is a Sri Vaishnava prespective, which I am sure is endorse by
>and Madhava-s as well:
>Balarama and Parashurama are said to be concurrent Avataras. This is
>perfectly logical.
> >Secondly, to my view of thinking, it obviates some natural dichotomies in
> >the Puranas and the Mahabharata in particular- Bhagavan Narayana - Sage
> >Narada -„³ Sri Rama- Lakshman „³ Bhagavan Krishna-Arjuna. That
>is to say it
> >does not seem consistent.
>There were two sages - Nara and Narayana - who descend down as Arjuna and
>Krishna. The dwArapAlaka-s (gate-keepers) of Vishnu in Vaikunta descend
>as HiranyAksha and Hiranyakashipu, who are anhilated by Varaha and
>Narasimha, and as Ravana and Kumbhakarna who are anhilated by Rama and as
>Shishupala and Dantavaktra who are anhilated by Krishna.

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