As you know, the third-largest religion in the world is Hinduism. Unlike most other religions which have one god, in Hinduism, many gods are worshiped in different ways. However, Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu, and Lord Shiva are worshipped mainly for various reasons. Hindu Trinity, Brahma, Vishnu, and Maheshwar (Lord Shiva) are responsible for the respective roles of creation, protection, and destruction of the universe.
Today, we are presenting you with some interesting facts about Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva, the Hindu Trinity.
Lord Brahma is the creator of the entire universe. He had five heads, however, one head was cut off by Lord Shiva, and the other heads represent many aspects of Hinduism, such as the four Vedas, the yugas, and the four varnas. Quite peaceful – he does not hold any weapon in his hands, but he holds a book, rosary, and other attributes of wisdom.
Lord Brahma Facts
- Statues, reliefs, and drawings depict Brahma in red, with a beard, four faces and bodies, and eight arms. He lives on the top of Mount Meru located in the center of the world and rides on a swan.
- Brahma spontaneously originated himself in the Golden Egg, which was born by the power of heat in the primordial waters. With the power of thought, Brahma split the Egg in two. From the upper half he created the Heaven, and from the lower – the Earth and placed airspace between them. Then he, in the same way, by the power of thought, gave birth to six (and according to some scriptures, a larger number) sons, called the Lords of Creations (Prajapati). From them came the gods, demons, divine sages, people, animals, birds, snakes, and monsters.
- The wife of Brahma is considered goddess Saraswati, whom he, tormented by loneliness, created from his own body – and immediately fell in love with her without memory. Confused by Brahma’s unbreakable gaze, Saraswati stepped aside and stood on his right hand. It was then that on the shoulders of Brahma, next to one head, a second appeared, facing to the right. Devi Saraswati stood to his left and Brahma’s third head appeared on the left. When she hid behind his back, a fourth head grew from behind him. According to some myths, Saraswati also flew up into the skies – and then Brahma had five heads, but the fifth head was cut off by the god Shiva. Saraswati took her place in the heavens on the throne next to Brahma. She gave birth to sciences and arts and nourishes them with her breast, patronizing the wise and pious.
Lord Vishnu is known as the guardian god because he protects the earth. He also came to earth in nine forms or avatars. Goddess Lakshmi (goddess of fortune) is his consort. Vishnu has four arms and light blue skin. His hands hold a lotus, a club (gada), a conch (shankha), and a disc (chakra).
Lord Vishnu Facts
- The mundane incarnation of Vishnu includes many avatars: ten avatars including Matsyavatara (fish), Koorma (turtle), Varaha (wild boar), Narasimha (the lion), Vamana (dwarf), Parasurama (angry person), Lord Rama (human of the Ramayana), Lord Balarama (brother of Krishna), Lord Krishna (divine diplomat and statesman), and the tenth incarnation that had yet to appear, was called the Kalki avatar. Some sources consider Buddha to be one of Vishnu’s avatars. This belief is a recent addition from the time when the concept of Dashavatara was already being developed.
- On one of the backhands, he holds the shell of a white snail, or sankha, which transmits the primordial sound of Om, and on the other the disc, or chakra – a reminder of the cycle of time – which also deadens the weapon he uses against blasphemy. The other hand holds the lotus which means noble existence, and the mace, which denotes punishment for indiscipline.
- Vishnu is often depicted as reclining on Sheshanaga – a coiled, multi-headed serpent that floats in cosmic waters representing a peaceful universe. This pose symbolizes calm and patience in the face of fear and worries that the rattlesnake represents. The message here is that you must not let fear overwhelm you and interfere with your peace.
- Vishnu’s vehicle is the Garuda, the king of birds. Strengthened with courage and speed to spread knowledge of the Vedas, Garuda is the certainty of fear in times of calamity.
Lord Shiva is considered the main god of the Hindu trinity who removes all evil from the world. This is why he is known as the destroyer god. Shiva has a blue neck and three eyes (the third eye is on his forehead). Moreover, Goddess Parvati is his consort. They had two sons named Ganesha and Kartikeya. They live in the Himalayas. Shiva moves on the white bull Nandi (he is also revered separately; we can see Nandi’s sculptures with offerings in the temples).
Lord Shiva Facts
- Shiva sometimes sits on a tiger skin, which symbolizes passion. And the fact that he sits on it symbolizes victory over passion. They say that this skin was ripped from a tiger, which was sent to Shiva by men, angry that their wives were too eager for him. Shiva coped with the beast, as, apparently, with his passion.
- Shiva loves to dance tandava – a dance that allows him to gain energy for the next act of destruction/creation. The dance is performed for defeating the demon of ignorance. Nataraja, Shiva as a cosmic dancer is a very popular subject of figurines.
- Only God Shiva and Goddess Shakti can hold Trishul. Others cannot even touch Trishul as no one has the power to carry the tremendous energy of Trishul. Trishul (three thorns) of Shiva removes the three Gunas, namely Rajas, Tamas, and Sattva. Three thorns in Trishul indicate the three eyes of Shiva, and Shiva is indicated as Trikala darshi (who knows the past, present, and future). Once a Trishul is released from the hand of Shiva, it cannot be brought back until the task is completed by the Trishul.
- Shiva and his consort Parvati are represented in the form of Ardhanarishvara, which is a half male, half female icon. The concept of masculine energy (Purusha) and feminine energy (Prakriti) of the universe in synthesis. On another level, it is also used to mean that in a marital relationship, the wife is half of the husband and has equal status. For this reason, Shiva-Parvati is often considered an example of a perfect marriage.
- Shiva’s body is stained with ash. An important fact is that these ashes are usually from the cemetery. This is in line with the Hindu philosophy of life and death that death is the ultimate reality of life. Everything, in the end, turns to ash, and the Lord himself goes beyond the circle of life and death.
- Shiva is said to wear a Rudraksha mala with 108 beads known to be made from his own tears. These beads refer to the elements of the world and thus represent the fact that Shiva is firm in the cosmic laws and strictly abides by them.