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Garuda The Chariot of Visnu (Vishnu)
Garuda The Chariot of Visnu (Vishnu)
Description
Introduction

The celestial bird Garuda has been dominating the Indian religious scene from the time immemorial. In the earlier texts, he was known as Garutman, Suparna and the like. In the later texts, however, he has been referred to as Garuda, the mount of Visnu. In the Satvat's list of the incarnations of the god, he is known as Vihangama and Amrtaharana, and appears to be the ninth and eighteenth incarnations. In the Rgvedic verse (1.89 and x. 178.1) he is denoted as Taraksya. In many passages of the Great Epic, he is formally identified with Vedic Garutman and brother of Aruna, the Charioteer of Surya.

Garuda, though a mythological bird, can converse in human language. Many birds according to Indian texts, can talk but the effect on the parrot of the curse of Agni introduces a myth. Religiously, and mythologically the goose or hamsa is the most exalted bird with its high flight, loneliness (above the birds) and white colour makes it an emblem of the pure soul and of God, the Supreme bird of a thousand wings (Rgveda. 5.46.14f). Yet because of Rgveda. 10.123.6 the soul-bird is golden winged, so the goose that talks, is a spiritual being and is golden, but usually hamsa is white the goose goes to Meru, lives at lake Manasa; its form is assumed by Varuna etc. it flies high (Rgveda, 2.9.44) and represents the sun, hence golden. The hamsa separates milk from water. Not every goose is godly; the kalahamsa lacks this distinction (it is grey not white). The hamsa is the vehicle of Visnu and also of Kubera; its flight is exceeded only by Garuda.

The ancient cultures and mythologies the world Over, contain reference to numerous mythological beings with fabulous or composite formations which aided, abated or even served as the close associates of their respective deities in the accomplishment of their magico-religious beliefs. Indeed the ancient scriptures and antiquarian remains of the countries, would ever have preserved rich specimens concerning the subject. Such forms, have served not only the gods or their deities but are believed to have provided healing touch to the people besides rescuing the mat the time of great dangers or distress. The ancient religious art thought and literature was infested with such mythological beings and India was no exception to it. In the Indian religious horizon several mythological beings stromed the contemporary literature, art and the religious society and have left indelible impressions in support there of. While some of them vanished from the Indian religious scene, as rapidly as they had mushroomed, few others took time in disappearing, the remaining survive even to the present day. Out of the surviving fabulous beings, however, none could attain the height, which Garuda had achieved though the lion Nandi, mouse, peacock and the swan had their own importance as the vehicles of their respective deities. This aspect is fully projected in the different episodes connected with Garuda (some times individually and at time in association of Visnu) as described in the ancient Sanskrit literature and also the fact that a full fledged Purana is ascribed to him.

About the Book

Garuda had been a powerful vehicle of Visnu, who participated in several wars fought by his master with the demons. The event of his bringing of the nectar from the heaven in order to relieve his mother of the bondage of the serpents is quite interesting, which, along with other events, has been suitably dealt with in this works. Garuda not only adored the flags of the rulers but his seals were also embossed over the important documents in the past.

About the Author

Shantilal Nagar, a graduate of the Punjab University, served in the curatorial capacity in the Central Asian Antiquities Museum, New Delhi, the Archaeological Museum, Nalanda, and Archaeological Section of the Indian Meseum, Calcutta for a umber of years. He has to his credit the scientific documentation of over fifty thousand antiquities, in these museums, representing the rich cultural heritage of the country and comprising of sculptures, bronzes, terracottas, beads, seals and sealing, ancient Indian numismatics, wood work, miniatures and paintings, textiles and Pearce collection of gems, ranging from the earliest times to the late medieval period. He was awarded, in 1987, a fellowship, for his monograph on the temples of Himachal Pradesh, by the Indian Council of Historical Research, New Delhi. He has authored more than fifty books.

Contents

1Introduction1-12
Life Profile, The need for birth.
2Literary Profile13-48
The Upanisads, The Samhitas, The Epics, The Puranas, (i) Bhagavata Purana, (ii) Brahma Purana, (iii) Devi Bhagvata Purana, (iv) Garuda Purana, (v) Linga Purana, (vi) Markandeya Purana, (vii) Matsya Purana, (viii) Skanda Purana, (ix) Varaha Purana, (x) Vayu Purana, (xi) Visnu Purana, The Classical Works, The Jatakas, (i) Uraga Jataka, (ii) Kakati Jataka, (iii) Sussondi Jataka, (iv) Kokalika Jaaka, Garuda in the regional Languages, (i) Anubhavasikhamani, (ii) Tamil Works, (iii) Arabic Works.
3Travels Abroad49-69
Egypt, Rome Assyria, Sumer, Anatolia (Turkey), Akkadian Myths, Mesopotamia, Burma, Japan, America, Nimibia, Double Head Eagle or Ganda Bharunda.
4Iconography70-74
(i) As a Celestial Bird, (ii) Composite from, (iii) Hands, (iv) Eyes, (v) Head and Headdress, (vi) Physical Features, (vii) Wings, (viii) Legs, (ix) Posture, (x) Complexion, (xi) Ornaments, (xii) Snakes.
5Art Motifs75-87
(i) The Vehicle of Visnu-Epics, Puranas, 8th-9th Century A. D., 10th-11th Century A. D., 12th-13th Century A. D., 14th-15th Century A. D., (ii) As a devotee of Visnu (iii) Carrier of Amrtaghata, (iv) Caruda and Nage
6Indian Plastic Art88-120
(a) Terracottas, (b) Wooden Objects, (c) Metal Castings, (d) Stones Sculptures, (e) Paintings-The Cave Art, Garuda in India Numismatics-(i) Garuda Stambha, (ii) As a bird, (iii) Hybrid from of bird, (iv) The bird holding snakes, (v) Other motifs, Early Indian seals
7The Tantric Profile 123-124
8The Exploits125-135
(1) As a Warrior-(i) Matsya Purana, (ii) Visnu Puruna, (iii) Harivamsa Purana, (iv) Brahmavaivarta Purana, (2) A Friend in need, (3) Restores Mukuta to Krsna, (4) Composer of Garuda Purana, (5) Garuda Vyuha, (6) Garudam or Garudi-Vidya, (7) Garuda-Yaksa.
9The Epigraphical Profile136-150
200 B. C., 3rd Century A. D. 350-650 A. D., 7th Century A. D. 8th Century A. D., 9th Century A. D., 10th Century A. D., 11th Century A. D., 12 Century A. D., 13th Century A. D., 14th Century A. D., 16th Century A. D.
10Buddhist and Jaina Views151-154
Sutrakrtanga, 1.6.18-21

Garuda The Chariot of Visnu (Vishnu)

Item Code:
IDJ883
Cover:
Hardcover
Edition:
2006
Publisher:
B. R. Publishing Corporation, Delhi
ISBN:
8176464899
Size:
8.5" X 5.5"
Pages:
154
Price:
$16.50   Shipping Free
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Introduction

The celestial bird Garuda has been dominating the Indian religious scene from the time immemorial. In the earlier texts, he was known as Garutman, Suparna and the like. In the later texts, however, he has been referred to as Garuda, the mount of Visnu. In the Satvat's list of the incarnations of the god, he is known as Vihangama and Amrtaharana, and appears to be the ninth and eighteenth incarnations. In the Rgvedic verse (1.89 and x. 178.1) he is denoted as Taraksya. In many passages of the Great Epic, he is formally identified with Vedic Garutman and brother of Aruna, the Charioteer of Surya.

Garuda, though a mythological bird, can converse in human language. Many birds according to Indian texts, can talk but the effect on the parrot of the curse of Agni introduces a myth. Religiously, and mythologically the goose or hamsa is the most exalted bird with its high flight, loneliness (above the birds) and white colour makes it an emblem of the pure soul and of God, the Supreme bird of a thousand wings (Rgveda. 5.46.14f). Yet because of Rgveda. 10.123.6 the soul-bird is golden winged, so the goose that talks, is a spiritual being and is golden, but usually hamsa is white the goose goes to Meru, lives at lake Manasa; its form is assumed by Varuna etc. it flies high (Rgveda, 2.9.44) and represents the sun, hence golden. The hamsa separates milk from water. Not every goose is godly; the kalahamsa lacks this distinction (it is grey not white). The hamsa is the vehicle of Visnu and also of Kubera; its flight is exceeded only by Garuda.

The ancient cultures and mythologies the world Over, contain reference to numerous mythological beings with fabulous or composite formations which aided, abated or even served as the close associates of their respective deities in the accomplishment of their magico-religious beliefs. Indeed the ancient scriptures and antiquarian remains of the countries, would ever have preserved rich specimens concerning the subject. Such forms, have served not only the gods or their deities but are believed to have provided healing touch to the people besides rescuing the mat the time of great dangers or distress. The ancient religious art thought and literature was infested with such mythological beings and India was no exception to it. In the Indian religious horizon several mythological beings stromed the contemporary literature, art and the religious society and have left indelible impressions in support there of. While some of them vanished from the Indian religious scene, as rapidly as they had mushroomed, few others took time in disappearing, the remaining survive even to the present day. Out of the surviving fabulous beings, however, none could attain the height, which Garuda had achieved though the lion Nandi, mouse, peacock and the swan had their own importance as the vehicles of their respective deities. This aspect is fully projected in the different episodes connected with Garuda (some times individually and at time in association of Visnu) as described in the ancient Sanskrit literature and also the fact that a full fledged Purana is ascribed to him.

About the Book

Garuda had been a powerful vehicle of Visnu, who participated in several wars fought by his master with the demons. The event of his bringing of the nectar from the heaven in order to relieve his mother of the bondage of the serpents is quite interesting, which, along with other events, has been suitably dealt with in this works. Garuda not only adored the flags of the rulers but his seals were also embossed over the important documents in the past.

About the Author

Shantilal Nagar, a graduate of the Punjab University, served in the curatorial capacity in the Central Asian Antiquities Museum, New Delhi, the Archaeological Museum, Nalanda, and Archaeological Section of the Indian Meseum, Calcutta for a umber of years. He has to his credit the scientific documentation of over fifty thousand antiquities, in these museums, representing the rich cultural heritage of the country and comprising of sculptures, bronzes, terracottas, beads, seals and sealing, ancient Indian numismatics, wood work, miniatures and paintings, textiles and Pearce collection of gems, ranging from the earliest times to the late medieval period. He was awarded, in 1987, a fellowship, for his monograph on the temples of Himachal Pradesh, by the Indian Council of Historical Research, New Delhi. He has authored more than fifty books.

Contents

1Introduction1-12
Life Profile, The need for birth.
2Literary Profile13-48
The Upanisads, The Samhitas, The Epics, The Puranas, (i) Bhagavata Purana, (ii) Brahma Purana, (iii) Devi Bhagvata Purana, (iv) Garuda Purana, (v) Linga Purana, (vi) Markandeya Purana, (vii) Matsya Purana, (viii) Skanda Purana, (ix) Varaha Purana, (x) Vayu Purana, (xi) Visnu Purana, The Classical Works, The Jatakas, (i) Uraga Jataka, (ii) Kakati Jataka, (iii) Sussondi Jataka, (iv) Kokalika Jaaka, Garuda in the regional Languages, (i) Anubhavasikhamani, (ii) Tamil Works, (iii) Arabic Works.
3Travels Abroad49-69
Egypt, Rome Assyria, Sumer, Anatolia (Turkey), Akkadian Myths, Mesopotamia, Burma, Japan, America, Nimibia, Double Head Eagle or Ganda Bharunda.
4Iconography70-74
(i) As a Celestial Bird, (ii) Composite from, (iii) Hands, (iv) Eyes, (v) Head and Headdress, (vi) Physical Features, (vii) Wings, (viii) Legs, (ix) Posture, (x) Complexion, (xi) Ornaments, (xii) Snakes.
5Art Motifs75-87
(i) The Vehicle of Visnu-Epics, Puranas, 8th-9th Century A. D., 10th-11th Century A. D., 12th-13th Century A. D., 14th-15th Century A. D., (ii) As a devotee of Visnu (iii) Carrier of Amrtaghata, (iv) Caruda and Nage
6Indian Plastic Art88-120
(a) Terracottas, (b) Wooden Objects, (c) Metal Castings, (d) Stones Sculptures, (e) Paintings-The Cave Art, Garuda in India Numismatics-(i) Garuda Stambha, (ii) As a bird, (iii) Hybrid from of bird, (iv) The bird holding snakes, (v) Other motifs, Early Indian seals
7The Tantric Profile 123-124
8The Exploits125-135
(1) As a Warrior-(i) Matsya Purana, (ii) Visnu Puruna, (iii) Harivamsa Purana, (iv) Brahmavaivarta Purana, (2) A Friend in need, (3) Restores Mukuta to Krsna, (4) Composer of Garuda Purana, (5) Garuda Vyuha, (6) Garudam or Garudi-Vidya, (7) Garuda-Yaksa.
9The Epigraphical Profile136-150
200 B. C., 3rd Century A. D. 350-650 A. D., 7th Century A. D. 8th Century A. D., 9th Century A. D., 10th Century A. D., 11th Century A. D., 12 Century A. D., 13th Century A. D., 14th Century A. D., 16th Century A. D.
10Buddhist and Jaina Views151-154
Sutrakrtanga, 1.6.18-21
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