Shiva Avatars

The sages requested Sutji to describe about the different incarnations (Avtar) of Lord Shiva. Sutji told them that, although Lord Shiva took many incarnations (Avtar) but five of his incarnations (Avtar) were very important- Sadhojat, Namadeva, Tatpurush, Aghoresh and Ishan.

Lord Shiva took his first incarnation (Avtar) from the physique of Lord Brahma, who was engrossed in his deep state of meditation, during the nineteenth Kalpa named Shweta Lohit. Lord Brahma gave him the name SADHOJAT and eulogized him. Later on, from the physique of Sadhojat four of his disciple manifested, whose names were Sunand, Nandan, Vishwanandan and Upanandan. All the four disciples were of fair complexion. Lord Shiva blessed Brahma and empowered him to do creation.

2) NAAMDEVA During the twentieth Kalpa named 'Rakta' the complexion of lord Brahma turned red, while he was engrossed in his meditative state. From his body manifested an entity who also was of red complexion. Lord Brahma named him Namadeva considering him to be the incarnation (Avtar) of lord Shiva and eulogized him. Later on four sons were born to Namadeva, whose names were Viraj, Viwah, Vishok and Vishwabhawan. All of them were of red complexion just like their father Namadeva. Naamdeva Shiva alongwith his virtuous progenies blessed lord Brahma with the power of creation.

The twenty-first Kalpa on the earth was known as 'Peetavasa'. It was named so because of the apparel of lord Brahma which were of yellow colours. Lord Brahma's prayer resulted into the manifestation of a effulgent entity. Considering this entity as Lord Shiva, Lord Brahma started chanting the mantras of Shiva Gayatri. After the chantings of the mantras, numerous entities manifested who had put on apparels of yellow colour on their body. This way the third incarnation (Avtar) of Shiva popularly known as Tatpurush manifested.

After the Peetavasa Kalp came the Shiva Kalpa. A black complexioned manifested while Lord Brahma was engrossed in his deep meditative state. Lord Brahma considering this entity as Aghor Shiva started eulogizing him. Lord Brahma's eulogization resulted into the manifestation of four more entities who had the same black complexion as that of 'Aghor Shiva'. Their names were Krishna, Krishnashikha, Krishnamukha and Krishnakanthdhari. Aghor Shiva along with those four entities blessed lord Brahma with the power of creation.

During the Kalpa named Vishwaroop, manifestations of Saraswati and Ishan Shiva took place. Lord Brahma eulogized Ishan Shiva after which four divine entities named Jati, Mundi, Shikhandi and Ardhamundi manifested from Ishan Shiva. All of them blessed lord Brahma with the power of creation.

After describing about the five chief incarnations of lord Shiva, Sutji explained about the eight famous idols of lord Shiva- Sharva, Bhava, Rudra, Ugra, Bheema, Pashupati, Ishan and Mahadeva.


Describing about the ten incarnations and their corresponding power (Shakti), Sutji said-
The first incarnation of lord Shiva was as 'Mahakal' and his Shakti was called 'Mahakali'.
Lord Shiva took his second incarnation as 'Tar' and his Shakti was called 'Tara'.
The third incarnation of Lord Shiva was as 'Bhuvaneshwar' and his Shakti was called 'Bhuvaneshwari'.
Lord Shiva took his fourth incarnation as 'Shodash' who was also known as 'Srividdyesh' and his Shakti was called 'Shodashi' or 'Shri'.

Lord Shiva took his fifth incarnation as 'Bhairav' and his Shakti was called 'Bhairavi'.
The sixth incarnation of Lord Shiva is famous as 'Chhinamastak' and his Shakti by the name of 'Chhinamasta'.
Lord Shiva took his seventh incarnation as 'Dhoomvan' and his Shakti was known as 'Dhoomvati'.
The eighth incarnation was as 'Baglamukh' and his Shakti as 'Baglamukhi'.

The nineth incarnation of lord Shiva became famous as 'Matang' and his Shakti as 'Matangi'.
Lord Shiva took his tenth incarnation as 'Kamal' and his Shakti as 'Kamala'.
If these ten incarnation of Shiva are worshipped along with his ten Mahavidyas then a man attains salvation.

Lord Shiva, later on took birth as eleven Rudras from the womb of Kashyap wife Surabhi. The name of these eleven rudras were as follows-
1) Kapali   2) Pingal   3) Bheem   4) Virupaksha   5) Vilohit   6) Shastra   7) Ajapaad   8) Ahirbudhnya   9) Shambhu   10) Chand and  11) Bhav.

These eleven Rudras fought battles with the demons and killed them. The deities were relieved after the death of the demons. They worshipped these eleven rudras to express their gratitude and indebtedness.

Apart from above incarnation, Lord Shiva has taken some other incarnation also:
1. Ardhnaarishwar Avtaar   2. Nandi Avtaar   3. Sharabh Avtaar   4. Grihpati Avtaar   5. Neel Kanth & Yaksheshwar Avtaar   6. Durvasha Avtaar   7. Mahesh Avtaar   8. Hanuman Avtaar   9. Brishabh Avtaar   10. Piplaad Avtaar   11. Vaishyanath Avtaar   12. Dwijeshwar Avtaar 13. Yatinath Avtaar   14. Krishna Darshan Avtaar   15. Awdhuteshwar Avtaar   16. Bhichhuwarya Avtaar   17. Sureshwar Avtaar   18. Bramhchoti Avtaar   19. Sunatnartak Avtaar   20. Sadhu Avtaar   21. Vibhuashwathama Avtaar   22. Kiraat Avtaar

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