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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > Other Scriptures by Acharyas > Nrisingha Appearance

Shri Nrisingha Chaturdashi

The Most Holy Appearance Day
of Lord Nrisinghadeva


Full Fasting till Dusk (the Appearance time of Lord Nrisinghadeva) and Fasting from grains and beans till sunrise tomorrow.


Lord Nrisingha's Appearance Pastime in short


There was once a great demon who was overwhelmed with rage: his brother Hiranyaksa had just been killed by the incarnation of Vishnu known as Lord Varaha. Thus he became very determined to become the emperor of the entire universe. In order to increase his power, he performed very powerful austerities. This penance was so severe that it disturbed the demigods. In fact, the demigods requested Lord Brahma to stop him. The chief of the demigods, Lord Brahma, therefore descended to pacify him by granting him a wish.


"Please grant that I not be killed by any crated living being," commanded Hiranyakasipu, "that I not die inside or outside any residence, during the daytime or night, nor on the ground or in the sky; that I not be killed by any being created by you, nor by any weapon, nor by any human being or animal indeed that I not meet death from any entity, either living or non-living; that I have no competitor; that I have sole lordship over all living entities and presiding deities, and that I acquire all mystic powers."


After Brahma had granted him all these requests, Hiranyakasipu very swiftly conquered all the planets in the universe, took up residence in the lavish palace of King Indra, and forced the demigods to bow down to his feet. He even stole the sacrificial oblations meant for the demigods. Intoxicated physically by wine and mentally by power, Hiranyakasipu ruled the universe very severely.


During this time his queen, Kayadhu, returned to the palace of her husband and bore him a son, Prahlada. He was a reservoir of all transcendental qualities because he was an pure devotee of Lord Vishnu. Determined to understand the Absolute Truth, he had full control over his senses and mind He was kind to all living creatures and the best friend of everyone. Toward respectable persons he behaved just like a menial servant, to the poor he was like a father, and to his equals he was always like a sympathetic brother. Always very humble, he considered his teachers and spiritual masters to be as good as the Lord Himself. Indeed, he was completely free of and pride that might have arisen from his good education, riches, beauty, and aristocratic birth.


Hiranyakasipu wanted to raise his son to be a powerful demon, but Prahlada only wanted to learn about devotional service to Lord Vishnu. After Prahlada attended school for some time, Hiranyakasipu took him on his lap and affectionately inquired, "My dear son, please tell me about your favorite subject in school."


Fearlessly, Prahlada said, "Hearing (sravanam) and chanting (kirtanam) about the holy name, form, qualities, paraphernalia, and pastimes of the Supreme Lord; remembering (smaranam) them; serving the lotus feet of the Lord (pada-sevanam); offering the Lord respectful worship with sixteen types of paraphernalia (arcanam); offering prayers to the Lord (vandanam); becoming His servant (dasyam); considering the Lord one’s best friend (sakhyam); and surrendering to Him (atma-nivedanam, in other words, serving Him with body, mind and words); these nine processes are known as pure devotional service, and I consider anyone who has dedicated his life to service of Lord Vishnu through these nine methods to be the most learned person to be the most learned person, for he has acquired complete knowledge."


Blinded by anger, Hiranyakasipu threw Prahlada from his lap onto the ground. "Servants! Take him away and kill him at once!" he screamed. However, Prahlada just sat silently and meditated on the Personality of Godhead, and the demons’ weapons had no effect on him. Seeing this Hiranyakasipu became fearful and contrived various ways to kill his son. His servants threw Prahlada beneath an elephant’s feet; they cast him into the midst of huge, fearful snakes; they cursed him with destructive spells; they hurled him from a hilltop; they gave him poison; they starved him; they exposed him to severe cold, winds, fire and water; they threw heavy stones to crush him. Hiranyakasipu even sent his sister Holika to burn him but instead she herself was burned. But throughout these trials Prahlada was simply absorbed in thoughts of Lord Vishnu, and thus he remained unharmed. Hiranyakasipu became very anxious about what to do next.


"You say there is a being superior to me," said Hiranyakasipu, "but where is He? If He is present everywhere, then why is He not present in this pillaryou see before you? Do you think He is in this pillar?"


"Yes," Prahlada answered, "He is there."


Hiranyakasipu's rage flared more and more. "Because you are speaking so much nonsense, I shall now sever your head from your body. Now let me see your most worshipable God come to protect you. I want to see it." Cursing him again and again, Hiranyakasipu took up his sword, got up from his royal throne, and with great anger struck his fist against the column.


Then from within the very pillar that he had singled out came a wonderful half-man, half-lion form never before seen. The Lord’s form was extremely fearsome because of His angry eyes, which resembled molten gold; His shining mane, which expanded the dimensions of His fearful face; His deadly teeth; and His razor-sharp tongue. Lord Nrisingha then proceeded to battle with the wasp-like Hiranyakasipu.


Finally at twilight, Lord Nrisingha captured Hiranyakasipu and placed him in His lap on the doorway of the assembly hall. As He began ripping the demon to pieces with His many, many hands, Lord Nrisingha’s mouth and mane became sprinkled with drops of blood, and His fierce eyes, full of anger, were impossible to look at. Licking the edge of His mouth with His tongue, the Supreme Lord decorated Himself with a garland of intestines taken from Hiranyakasipu's abdomen. Lord Nrisingha uprooted Hiranyakasipu’s heart and finally threw him aside and destroyed an army of Hiranyakasipu’s faithful followers.


By His transcendental cleverness, Lord Nrisinghadeva was able to kill Hiranyakasipu without contradicting any of Lord Brahma’s benedictions. The execution took place neither inside nor outside, but in the doorway; neither on land nor in sky, but on the Lord’s lap; neither during the day nor during the night, but at twilight; neither by man, beast, or demigod nor by any created being, but by the Personality of Godhead; and not by any weapon, but by the Lord's own lotus hand, relieving the whole universe of Hiranyakasipu’s demonic activities.


Having been protected by the Lord, Prahlada Maharaja offered many prayers in a voice that faltered with love:


"My dear Lord Nrisinghadeva, please, therefore, allow Your angry feature to diminish, now that my evil father Hiranyakasipu has been killed . . . [The saintly persons] will always remember Your auspicious is fearsome incarnation, for it frees them from fear. In this way, my Lord, You appear in various incarnations as a human being, an animal, a great saint, a demigod, a fish or a tortoise, thus maintaining the entire creation in different planetary systems and killing the demoniac principles."


Adapted from Shrimad Bhagavatam (7) translated by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada:


In ancient times there was a very beautiful and qualified young boy. He became attached to a prostitute, however, and because of that he gave up all his wealth and position and left his wife and children. What is the nature of prostitutes? They show affection artificially, and their only purpose is to take money – nothing else. They do not consider whether or not a person is qualified and beautiful. They do not want a relationship; they only want money.


After that young boy had given all his wealth to the prostitute and she saw that he was unable to give her anything more, she ordered him, "Do not come to me!" And she kicked him out. The boy thought, "Oh, what have I done?! I have made a great mistake." He was deeply lamenting and his heart was broken; he wanted to commit suicide. He left the prostitute's house as night was falling and entered a forest; and as he did so it became very dark and began to rain heavily. He wanted to die, but to die is not so easy. He lost his resolve and sought shelter to pass the night. Deep within the jungle he discovered an old, dilapidated temple in which he took refuge. He continued to lament and weep, wishing to give up that prostitute, but images of her came to his mind again and again.


What became of that prostitute? After that young boy left she remembered, "He was so beautiful, and he loved me from his heart." Repenting, she thought, "Oh, I have made a mistake; I should not have kicked him out. I should go and satisfy him and bring him back."


She asked many people which way the boy had gone. She followed him into that dark forest and, seeking protection from the heavy rains she entered the same temple. It was so dark that she could not see, and she took shelter in another area of the temple. She repented and wept for that boy throughout the night, and he was weeping for her. The next morning the two met in the temple. They began to weep, they apologized to each other, and they returned to the prostitute's house.


Fortunately, that previous day was the appearance day of Lord Nrisinghadeva, and that old temple was Lord Nrisinghadeva's temple. The couple was fasting and not criticizing anyone – only weeping, weeping, and weeping. They spent the night without sleeping or eating – within the temple of Lord Nrisinghadeva. This is ajnata-sukrti (spiritual pious activity performed without the performer's knowledge). What was the power of his ajnata-sukrti? That boy became Prahlada Maharaja in his next life just because of fasting, crying and sweeping the temple of Nrisinghadeva's Appearance day unknowingly.




Shri Chaitanya Charitamrita Adi lila, Chp 17:


(Translations by Shrila Prabhupada)




eka-dina prabhu shrivasere ajna dila

‘brhat sahasra-nama' pada, sunite mana haila




One day the Lord ordered Shrivasa Thakura to read the Brhat-sahasra-nama

[the thousand names of Lord Vishnu], for He wanted to hear them at that



Adi 17.91


padite aila stave nrsimhera nama

suniya avista haila prabhu gauradhama


As he read the thousand names of the Lord, in due course the holy name of

Lord Nrisingha appeared. When Chaitanya Mahaprabhu heard the holy name of

Lord Nrisingha, He became fully absorbed in thought.




The Chaitanya-mangala, Madhya-khanda, describes this incident as follows:

Shrivasa Pandita was performing the sraddha ceremony for his father, and as

is customary, he was hearing the thousand names of Lord Vishnu. At that

time Gaurahari (Lord Chaitanya) appeared on the scene, and He also began to

hear the thousand names of Vishnu with full satisfaction. When He thus

heard the holy name of Lord Nrisingha, Lord Chaitanya became absorbed in

thought, and He became angry like Nrisingha Prabhu in His angry mood. His

eyes became red, His bodily hairs stood on end, all the parts of His body

trembled, and He made a thundering sound. All of a sudden He took up a

club, and people became greatly afraid, thinking, "We do not know what

kind of offense we have now committed!" But then Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu

adjusted His thoughts and sat down on His seat.


Adi 17.92


Nrisingha-avese prabhu hate gada lana

pasandi marite yaya nagare dhaiya


In the mood of Lord Nrisinghadeva, Lord Chaitanya ran through the city

streets, club in hand, ready to kill all the atheists.


Adi 17.93


Nrisingha-avesa dekhi' maha-tejomaya

patha chadi' bhage loka pana bada bhaya



Seeing Him appearing very fierce in the ecstasy of Lord Nrisingha, people ran

from the street and fled here and there, afraid of His anger.


Adi 17.94


loka-bhaya dekhi' prabhura bahya ha-ila

shrivasa-grhete giya gada phelaila


Seeing the people so afraid, the Lord came to His external senses and thus

returned to the house of Shrivasa Thakura and threw away the club.


Adi 17.95


shrivase kahena prabhu kariya visada

loka bhaya paya, --  -- mora haya aparadha


The Lord became morose and said to Shrivasa Thakura, "When I adopted the

mood of Lord Nrisinghadeva, people were greatly afraid. Therefore I stopped,

since causing fear among people is an offense."


Adi 17.96


shrivasa balena, --  -- ye tomara nama laya

tara koti aparadha saba haya ksaya


Shrivasa Thakura replied, "Anyone who takes Your holy name vanquishes ten

million of his offenses immediately.


Adi 17.97


aparadha nahi, kaile lokera nistara

ye toma' dekhila, tara chutila samsara


"There was no offense in Your appearing as Nrisinghadeva. Rather, any man who

saw You in that mood was immediately liberated from the bondage of

material existence."




Shri Chaitanya Charitamrita Adi lila, Chp 17


TEXTS 178–179


kaji kahe, --  -- yabe ami hindura ghare giya

kirtana karilun mana mrdanga bhangiya

sei ratre eka simha maha-bhayankara

nara-deha, simha-mukha, garjaye vistara


The Kazi told Lord Gauranga Mahaprabhu, "When I went to the Hindu's house, broke the drum and

forbade the performance of congregational chanting, in my dreams that very

night I saw a greatly fearful lion, roaring very loudly, His body like a

human being's and His face like a lion's.


Adi 17.180


sayane amara upara lapha diya cadi'

atta atta hase, kare danta-kadamadi


"While I was asleep, the lion jumped on my chest, laughing fiercely and

gnashing His teeth.


Adi 17.181


mora buke nakha diya ghora-svare bale

phadimu tomara buka mrdanga badale


"Placing its nails on my chest, the lion said in a grave voice, ‘I shall

immediately bifurcate your chest as you broke the mrdanga drum!


Adi 17.182


mora kirtana mana karis, karimu tora ksaya

ankhi mudi' kanpi ami pana bada bhaya


"‘You have forbidden the performance of My congregational chanting.

Therefore I must destroy you!' Being very much afraid of Him, I closed my

eyes and trembled.


Adi 17.183


bhita dekhi' simha bale ha-iya sadaya

tore siksa dite kailu tora parajaya


"Seeing me so afraid, the lion said, ‘I have defeated you just to teach you

a lesson, but I must be merciful to you.


Adi 17.184


se dina bahuta nahi kaili utpata

teni ksama kari' na karinu pranaghata


"‘On that day you did not create a very great disturbance. Therefore I have

excused you and not taken your life.


Adi 17.185


aiche yadi punah kara, tabe na sahimu

savamse tomare mari yavana nasimu


"‘But if you perform such activities again, I shall not be tolerant. At

that time I shall kill you, your entire family and all the meat-eaters.'


Adi 17.186


eta kahi' simha gela, amara haila bhaya

ei dekha, nakha-cihna amora hrdaya


"After saying this, the lion left, but I was very much afraid of Him. Just

see the marks of His nails on my heart!"


Adi 17.187


eta bali' kaji nija-buka dekhaila

suni' dekhi' sarva-loka ascarya manila


After this description, the Kazi showed his chest. Having heard him and

seen the marks, all the people there accepted the wonderful incident.




Shri Chaitanya Charitamrita Adi Lila 16.51:




baisa ‘pahaca'-pache upara daksina-dike

eka Nrisingha-murti achena uthite vama-bhage


On the southern side, behind and above the twenty-two steps, is a Deity of

Lord Nrisinghadeva. It is on the left as one goes up the steps toward the



Antya 16.51


prati-dina tanre prabhu karena namaskara

namaskari' ei sloka pade bara-bara


Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, His left side toward the Deity, offered obeisances

to Lord Nrisingha as He proceeded toward the temple. He recited the

following verses again and again while offering obeisances.


Antya 16.52


namas te nara-simhaya


hiranyakasipor vaksah-



namah -- I offer my respectful obeisances; te -- unto You; nara-simhaya --

Lord Nrisinghadeva; prahlada -- to Maharaja Prahlada; ahlada -- of pleasure;

dayine -- giver; hiranyakasipoh -- of Hiranyakasipu; vaksah -- chest; sila

 -- like stone; tanka -- like the chisel; nakha-alaye -- whose fingernails.




"‘I offer my respectful obeisances unto You, Lord Nrisinghadeva. You are the

giver of pleasure to Maharaja Prahlada, and Your nails cut the chest of

Hiranyakasipu like a chisel cutting stone.




This and the following verse are quoted from the Nrisingha Purana.


Antya 16.53


ito Nrisinghah parato nrsimho

 yato yato yami tato Nrisinghah

bahir nrsimho hrdaye nrsimho

 Nrisingham adim saranam prapadye



itah -- here; Nrisinghah -- Lord Nrisingha; paratah -- on the opposite side;

Nrisinghah -- Lord Nrisingha; yatah yatah -- wherever; yami -- I go; tatah --

there; Nrisinghah -- Lord Nrisingha; bahih -- outside; Nrisinghah -- Lord

Nrisingha; hrdaye -- in my heart; Nrisinghah -- Lord Nrisingha; Nrisingham -- Lord

Nrisingha; adim -- the original Supreme Personality; saranam prapadye -- I

take shelter of.




"‘Lord Nrisinghadeva is here, and He is also there on the opposite side.

Wherever I go, there I see Lord Nrisinghadeva. He is outside and within my

heart. Therefore I take shelter of Lord Nrisinghadeva, the original Supreme

Personality of Godhead.'"




From Navadvipa Bhava Taranga by Seventh Goswami Shrila Sacchidananda Bhaktivinoda Thakura:


Southeast of there is Nrisingha Puri, also known as Devapalli in Navadvipa Dhama. When will I see the beauty of this place? At this abode of Nrisingha I will roll about on the ground in ecstatic love, begging for unalloyed love of Gauranga-Krishna. In my heart reside duplicity, insincerity, the desire for fame, and the six enemies beginning with lust. The six enemies are: kama, krodha, mada, moha, matsarya and bhaya-that is, lust, anger, intoxication, illusion, envy, and fear. Therefore I will pray at the feet of Lord Nrisingha to purify my heart and give me the desire to serve Krishna.


Weeping, I will beg at the lotus feet of Nrisingha that I may worship Nityananda-Gauranga and Radha-Krishna in Navadvipa, free from all obstacles. When will that Lord Hari, who strikes fear in fear personified, be pleased and bestow His mercy on me?


Although this form of the Lord is terrible for the evil, He is exceedingly auspicious for the devotees headed by Prahlada. When will He become pleased to mercifully speak to me, a worthless fool, and remove my fears?


"Dear child, stay here happily in Gauranga-dhama. Worship Nityananda-Gauranga and Radha-Krishna, and develop attraction for the holy name. By the mercy of My devotees, all obstacles are transcended. With a purified heart just worship Nityananda-Gauranga and Radha-Krishna, the abodes of sweet nectar."


After speaking in this way, when will that Lord joyfully place His feet upon my head? At that moment, by Lord Nrisingha's mercy, I will exhibit symptoms of ecstatic love for Nityananda-Gauranga and Radha-Krishna, and I will roll on the ground by the door of Lord Nrisingha's temple.




Shri Navadvipa Dhama Mahatmya of Seventh Goswami Shrila Saccidananda Bhaktivinoda Thakura


Then, singing loudly the name of Gauranga, the party of pilgrims entered Devapalli in Navadvipa. In that village, they took rest as the guests of the presiding Deity, Nrisingha, and then took their midday meals. At the last minutes of daylight, as they all wandered in the village, Nityananda spoke: "This is Devapalli, and here is the temple of Nrisinghadeva, well known since Satya-yuga. After bestowing His mercy on Prahlada by killing Hiranyakasipu, the Lord came here to rest.


"Brahma and the other demigods made their houses here and formed a village. This village was established on tilas, hillocks, here on the bank of the Mandakini River, and all the residents were absorbed in the worship of Nrisinghadeva. According to the scriptures, this village in Navadvipa, named Shri Nrisingha-ksetra, is most purifying.


"See here Surya-tila and Brahma-tila and to the east was Nrisingha-tila. The place is now transformed. See there Ganesa-tila, and over there is Indra-tila. Though Visvakarma built hundreds of jeweled houses here, in time, all were destroyed, and the Mandakini dried up. Now only the hillocks mark the places. See these countless broken stones, the remnants of the temples. Again in the future, one devotee king will receive a drop of Nrisingha's mercy, and he will make a large temple, reinstall Nrisingha, and take up service to Nrisingha again. This is on the border of the Navadvipa parikrama within the sixteen krosas."


Giving up the net of maya and having only the wealth of the lotus feet of Nitai and Jahnava, this beggar, Bhaktivinoda, sings the glories of Navadvipa, which have no limit.



Ontological Position


According to Vedic philosophy, Vishnu descends in a variety of avatars all of whom are non-different from Him. All the avatars are of the nature of sat-cid- ananda: eternity bliss and knowledge. They reside in the spiritual world, Vaikuntha. When They descend into the material world, They are called "avatar a" (literally, "descent"). Any attempt to minimize the transcendental status of any avatar constitutes an offense and is a stumbling block on the path of self-realization. And to understand Lord Nrisingha, one must first appreciate the transcendence of Vishnu.


In addition, the scriptures describe Lord Nrisingha as prominently manifesting all six attributes of God (strength, wealth, renunciation, splendor, energy, wisdom): "In Nrisingha, Rama, and Krishna, all the six opulences are fully manifest." (Nrisingha-rama-krsnesu sad-gunyam paripuritam--Padma-purana)


Lord Krishna or Lord Narayana is considered to be the origin of the other transcendental forms of God. From Narayana, Vasudeva is manifest, and from Vasudeva, Sankarsana is manifest (Agni-purana 48.13). And according to the scriptures, Lord Nrisingha is an expansion (amsha) of Sankarsana. [Padma-tantr a 1.2.31 and Vishnu-dharmottara-purana 3.78(2).5-7 (haris Sankarsanamsena Nrisingha-vapur dharah)] Just as Sankarsana destroys the universe, Lord Nrisingha destroys all ignorance and all sins arising from body, mind and speech.


Lord Nrisingha Himself is recognized in the scriptures by a variety of forms. The Vihagendra-samhita (4.17) of the Pancaratra-Agama enumerate more than seventy forms of Nrisingha. Most of these forms are distinguished by the arrangements of weapons in the hands, His different postures, or other subtle distinctions.


Of these seventy-four, nine are very prominent (Nava-vyuha-Nrisingha):


(1) Ugra-Nrisingha

(2) Kruddha-Nrisingha

(3) Vira-Nrisingha

(4) Vilamba-Nrisingha

(5) Kopa-Nrisingha

(6) Yoga-Nrisingha

(7) Aghora-Nrisingha

(8) Sudarsana-Nrisingha

(9) Laksmi-narasima


In Ahobila, Andhra Pradesh, the nine forms are as follows:


(1) Chhatra-vata-Nrisingha (seated under a banyan tree)

(2) Yogananda-Nrisingha (who blessed Lord Brahma)

(3) Karanja-Nrisingha (4) Uha-Nrisingha

(5) Ugra-Nrisingha (6) Kroda-Nrisingha

(7) Malola-Nrisingha (With Laksmi on His lap)

(8) Jvala-Nrisingha (an eight armed form rushing out of the pillar)

(9) Pavana-Nrisingha (who blessed the sage Bharadvaja)


Other forms are as follows:

Stambha-Nrisingha (coming out of the pillar)

Svayam-Nrisingha (manifesting on His own)

Grahana-Nrisingha (catching hold of the demon)

Vidarana-Nrisingha (ripping open of the belly of the demon)

Samhara-Nrisingha (killing the demon)


The following three refer to His ferocious aspect:





Jvala-Nrisingha (with a flame-like mane)

Laksmi-Nrisingha (where Laksmi pacifies Him)

Prasada-Nrisingha or Prahlada-varada-Nrisingha

(His benign aspect of protecting Prahlada)

Chhatra-Nrisingha (seated under a parasol of a five-hooded serpent)

Yoga-Nrisingha or Yogesvara-Nrisingha (in meditation)

Avesha-Nrisingha (a frenzied form)

Attahasa-Nrisingha (a form that roars horribly and majestically strides

across to destroy evil)

Chakra-Nrisingha (with only a discus in hand)

Brahma-Nrisingha, Vishnu-Nrisingha, and Rudra-Nrisingha

Prthvi-Nrisingha, Vayu-Nrisingha, Akasa-Nrisingha, Jvalana-Nrisingha, and

Amrta-Nrisingha (representing the five elements)

Pusthi Nrisingha (worshipped for overcoming evil influences)


There are still other varieties which are standing, riding on Garuda, alone, in company, benign, ferocious, and multi-armed (two-sixteen). All of these forms point to the diversity in transcendence of the Nrisingha-Avatar.



vag-isa yasya vadane

laksmir yasya ca vaksasi

yasyaste hrdaye samvit

tam Nrisingham aham bhaje


 "Lord Nrisinghadeva is always assisted by Sarasvati, the Goddess of

learning, and He is always embracing to His chest Laksmi, the Goddess of

fortune. The Lord is always complete in knowledge within Himself. Let us

offer obeisances unto Nrisinghadeva."


 "I worship Lord Nrisingha, within Whose mouth reside the great masters

of eloquence, upon Whose chest resides the Goddess of fortune, and within

Whose heart resides the divine potency of consciousness.




sarad-indu-rucim vande

parindra-vadanam harim


 "Let me offer my obeisances unto Lord Nrisinghadeva, Who is always

enlightening Prahlada Maharaja within his heart and Who always kills the

nescience that attacks the devotees. His mercy is distributed like

moonshine, and His face is like that of a lion. Let me offer my obeisances

unto Him again and again."



vidirnam udirna-nana-bhava-

tapa-taptamkathancid apannam

iha prapannam tvam uddhara

shri-nrhare nr-lokam


"O Shri Nrhari, please deliver those human beings who have suffered

all kinds of torments and been ripped apart by the sharp edge of samsara's

wheel, but who have now somehow found You and are surrendering themselves

unto You."






Kevala-Nrisingha -- Nrisinghadeva alone (with 2 or 4 hands), standing.

Girija-Nrisingha -- coming out of a mountain cave, seated.

Yoga-Nrisingha -- in yoga-asana, sometimes with yoga-patta around legs.

Stambodbhava-Nrisingha (Sthauna-Nrisingha) -- coming out of the pillar.

Yanaka-Nrisingha -- riding on Garuda or lying on Ananta-sesa

Laksmi-Nrisingha -- peaceful or fierce. Fierce form described in Naradiya

Mahapurana: five faces (each with 3 eyes), garland of entrails, yajnopavita made of a serpent.

Yogananda-Laksmi-Nrisingha -- "yoga" and "bhoga" combined; very rare

Varaha-Laksmi-Nrisingha -- rare. Mouth of Varaha. Laksmi on lap.

Prahladanugraha Murti -- blessing Prahlada with His hand.

Rare, not mentioned in agama-sastras.

Nrisingha and Chencheta -- Nrisingha in Hari-Hara aspects

Tandava (Nritta Nrisingha) -- Dancing. No sanction in agama-sastras.


Nrisingha-tapani Upanisad mantra:

shri Nrisingha, jaya Nrisingha, jaya jaya jaya shri Nrisingha

ugram viram mahavisnum

jvalantam sarvato-mukham

nrisingham bhisanam bhadram

mrtyu-mrtyum namamy aham


ugram-terrible; viram-heroic; mahavisnum-Maha Vishnu; jvalantam-effulgent; sarvato-mukham-having faces everywhere; Nrisingham-half-man, half-lion; bhisanam-astounding, terrible; bhadram-auspicious; mrtyu-mrtyum-death personified, or death to death itself; namamy aham-I offer my humble obeisances.


This mantra was given by Nrisinghadeva to Lord Brahma of the previous creation in the same way that our Lord Brahma received the Gopal mantra after performing tapasya. This mantra is the main subject of the Nrisingha-tapani Upanisad.


Madhya-lila: Chapter Eight, Text 5


                shri-Nrisingha, jaya Nrisingha, jaya jaya Nrisingha

                  prahladesa jaya padma-mukha-padma-bhrnga


All glories to Nrisinghadeva! All glories to Nrisinghadeva, who is the Lord of Prahlada Maharaja and, like the honeybee, is always engaged in beholding the lotus-like face of the goddess of fortune.




The goddess of fortune is always embraced by Lord Nrisinghadeva. This is mentioned in Shrimad-Bhagavatam in the First and Tenth Cantos by the great commentator Shrila Shridhara Svami. The following verse was composed by Shridhara Svami in his commentary on Shrimad-Bhagavatam (10.87.1).


 vag-isa yasya vadane

  laksmir yasya ca vaksasi

 yasyaste hrdaye samvit

  tam Nrisingham aham bhaje


"Lord Nrisinghadeva is always assisted by Sarasvati, the goddess of learning, and He is always embracing to His chest the goddess of fortune. The Lord is always complete in knowledge within Himself. Let us offer obeisances unto Nrisinghadeva."

Similarly, in his commentary on the First Canto of Shrimad-Bhagavatam (1.1.1), Shridhara Svami describes Lord Nrisinghadeva in this way:


 prahlada-hrdayah ladam

  bhakta vidya-vidaranam

 sarad-indu-rucim vande

  parindra-vadanam harim


"Let me offer my obeisances unto Lord Nrisinghadeva, who is always enlightening Prahlada Maharaja within his heart and who always kills the nescience that attacks the devotees. His mercy is distributed like moonshine, and His face is like that of a lion. Let me offer my obeisances unto Him again and again."


Madhya-lila:  Chapter Eight, Text 6


  ugro'py anugra evayam

   sva-bhaktanam nr-kesari

 kesariva sva-potanam

  anyesam ugra-vikramah


     "Although very ferocious, the lioness is very kind to her cubs. Similarly, although very ferocious to nondevotees like Hiranyakasipu, Lord Nrisinghadeva is very, very soft and kind to devotees like Prahlada Maharaja."




     This verse was composed by Shridhara Svami in his commentary on Shrimad-Bhagavatam (7.9.1).


ugraM vIram mahA-viSNuM

jvalantaM sarvato mukham I

NrisinghaM bhISaNaM bhadraM

mRtyur mRtyuM namAmy ahaM II


I bow down to Lord Nrisinghadeva who is ferocious and heroic like Lord

ViSNu. He is burning from every side. He is terrific, auspicious and

the death of death personified.


om hrim ksraum -  bIj mantra for Lord Nrisingha (?)


ugraM - ferocious / terrible


vIram - heroic


mahA-viSNuM - the Supreme Lord Maha Vishnu


jvalantaM - (guessing from the translation below) fiery?


sarvato mukham  - whose face is everywhere / who faces all directions (?)


NrisinghaM  - Lord Nrisingha


bhISaNaM bhadraM - turns poison into auspicious substance


mRtyur mRtyuM  - is the original mantra not 'mRtyumRtyum' ? - He is death to

death itself


namAmy ahaM - I offer my respectful obeisances unto Him