Hindu gods divine weapons 1
Here are some of the divine weapons of the Hindu gods
A. Sudharshana Chakra
The Sudharshana Chakra is the divine weapon of lord Vishnu. It’s a divine swirling weapon. It’s the most powerful of all the divine weapons. It punishes wrongdoers and destroys enemies who don’t follow law and order like the rakshasas and asuras. the Sudarśana chakra does not discriminate between brāhmaṇa demons and śūdra demons. Anyone against the Supreme Personality of Godhead and His devotees is called a demon. In the śāstras, we find many brāhmaṇas and kṣatriyas who acted as demons and have been described as demons.
This wheel which is accepted by the Personality of Godhead (Viṣṇu or Kṛṣṇa) as His personal weapon is the most powerful weapon, greater than the brahmāstras or similar other disastrous weapons.
The literal meaning of the Sanskrit word Sudarshana is “auspicious vision”. It is a combination of the words “Su” which means “Divine/auspicious” and “Darshana” which means “Vision”. Sudarshana is worshiped by Vaishnavas and regarded as the Deity who helps the devotees to clear the difficult path to attain the lord.
Structure of the Sudharshana Chakra
A novel description of the discus has been made in the Vaman Puran (82.23-26). Mr. Vasudevsharan Agraval expresses it as: ‘The discus has been described as the discus of time (Kalachakra). It consists of twelve spokes (Dvadashar, Rigveda 1.164.11) and six navels. The twelve spokes represent the twelve months of the Hindu lunar calendar and also the twelve deities (Vij, Agni, Som, Mitra, Varun, Indra, Indragni, Vayu, Vishvadev, Prajapati, Dhanvantari, etc.). The six navels represent the six seasons.’
The middle stable part: It is named bhruvi (equality), bhag (radiance), nirdesh (speed) and sampada (endowed with the nectar of nutrition). The spokes: It has twenty-seven spokes charged with the runa energy of the twenty-seven feminine principles created from Prajapati. These spokes contain the yoginipanchak – the basic components of the five cosmic elements. The energy in all feminine principles is beyond the restrictions of direction and time.
Parigh (periphery): This is constituted by the eight masculine principles
Set into motion by the Supreme Personality of Godhead and wandering in all the four directions, the disc of the Supreme Lord has sharp edges as destructive as the fire of devastation at the end of the millennium. As a blazing fire burns dry grass to ashes with the assistance of the breeze, may that Sudarśana chakra burn our enemies to ashes.
It is so tiny that it can be kept on the tip of a leaf of the tulsi (sacred basil, occimum sanctum) plant. At the same time, it is so vast that it can encompass the entire universe
The divine and all powerful chakra is not an ordinary weapon. It is not thrown but traverses through the enemies with will power. It is more than a physical instrument and it has the power to devastate anything. It revolves very fast and went swirled by the mental it will destroy the evil doer and return back to the owner on its own.
Legend of the chakra
This chakra was given to lord Vishnu by lord Shiva. Once the asuras became very powerful and were troubling the devas or the cosmic gods. They had no other go but to approach lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu wanted to help the devas but he did not have a powerful weapon to kill them . so he told the devas that lord Shiva can give him a good weapon and that he will approach him.
Lord Vishnu went to meet lord Shiva but lord Shiva was in deep penance. Lord Vishnu did not want to disturb his penance. So he started praying to lord Shiva. But his prayers went for years together but lord Shiva never came back from his penance.
One day lord Shiva opened his eyes pleased by lord Vishnu’s prayers. Seeing this lord Vishnu became very happy and went to collect 1000 lotus to pray to the god. Lord Shiva wanted to play with lord Vishnu so he hid one of the lotus. Lord Vishnu started praying to lord Shiva by offering one by one the lotuses but when he was to complete there was only 999 lotus. Now if he has to go in search of the last lotus Vishnu thought that it will become too late and so he plucked his eyes and offered to lord Shiva. Pleased by this immediately lord Shiva asked lord Vishnu to ask whatever he wanted.
Lord Vishnu asked lord Shiva to give him a powerful weapon which would destroy the asuras. So lord Shiva gave the Sudharshana Chakra to lord Vishnu.
Another stroy is that the celestial architect Viswakama maried his daughter Sanjana to Soorya deva. But Sanjana could not approach Soorya because of his heat so she informed this to her father. Viswakarma reduced the heat of Sun god and reduced his brilliance and and used the left out sun rays to form a disc called the Sudharshana Chakra
Places where the Sudharshana Chakra has been used
- Lord Vishnu used it to kill the asuras to protect the devas
- When lord Krishna lifted the Govardhana hills with his litle fingers he placed the Chakra beneath the hills
- Lord Krishna killed Shishupala using his discus
- Lord Krishna used the discus to cover the sun when Arjuna was fighting with Jeyadrata to trick Jeyadrata to come out in Mahabaratha war
- It was also used to cut the parts of Goddess Sati, consort of Lord Shiva into 51 pieces after she gave up her life by throwing herself in a Yagna (worshipful fire ritual) which was held at his father’s place. It is said that Shiva, in grief, carried around her lifeless body and was inconsolable. The 51 parts of the Goddess’ body were then tossed about in different parts of Bharatvarsha and came to be known as “Shakti Peeths”.
The chakra, as an expression of infinity and ultimate truth, is intimately connected with the spiritual and cultural life of India from time immemorial. This is the symbol that has found an important place in the mythologies of many nations. In our ancient religious literature, particularly Vedic, Tantric, Buddhist and to some extent, Yogic – the wheel constitutes a mystic symbol of esoteric and secret doctrines. As the sun, time and life move without stopping, they are allegorically termed ‘wheels’ by the ancient people.
This is the weapon held by lord Shiva. It is considered to be one of the most powerful weapon in Hindu mythology equal to the Sudharshan chakra of Lord Vishnu. This is also held by some goddesses like Durga and Parvathi.
The three spokes of the Trishula has many representations like
- lord Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva
- goddess Saraswati, Lakshmi, and Parvathi
- three gunas Rajas, Tamas and Sattva
- three Lokas – Swarg, Bhu and Patal.
- physical, mental and spiritual senses of mankind
- three energy channels —ida, pingala and shushmana
- three kala – past, present, and future
- three powers—will , action and wisdom
- three modes of nature —creation, maintenance and destruction
- signifies that lord Shiva is above three states waking, dreaming, and sleeping
Whenever the trishul has been used by Lord Shiva, it has always been for the restoration of peace and divinity in the Universe and the destruction of evil. It destroys the ego of devotees and spreads divinity and Shakti into their souls.
There is a damuru in the Trishula. Shiva is often described as cosmic dancer and a great musician. Shiva’s Tandavam is the cosmic dance and his Damaru (a small hourglass shape drum) represent the cosmic sound.The sounds from the damaru beats the the rhythm of the cosmic vibrations and the energy is activated by the divine Mother or Shakti.
As trident symbol represents auspiciousness ….so by praying and giving pure thoughts to the mind with devotion we can be ONE with the lord by balancing our thoughts and actions which can relieve us from Past, present and future or the agony of birth, life, and death. Thus help us to lead a life of bliss while still being under the protection of the almighty
The pasupatastra is one of the most powerful weapon in Hindu mythology and is owned by lord Shiva, Goddess Kali, and Adhi Parasakthi. It cannot be used against any lesser enemies or by any lesser warrior. It has the power to destroy the entire universe if misused. It cannot be used against any mortals.
It is said that lord Shiva sealed the mantra for using this divine weapon before the start of Kaliyuga because he knew that if people of Kaliyuga knew the use of this weapon it will be dangerous.
Among men of the world, it is known that only Arjuna of Mahabharata owned the Pasupatastra. Some text says that Lakshmana and Indrajit also used this weapon in the Ramayana war but not for sure.
How Arjuna came in possession of this divine weapon
Arjuna and his brothers were in exile along with their wife Draupadi losing the game of dice and having been instructed by their cousin Duryodhana to spend 12 years in exile in the forest. But for the humiliation that their cousin caused against the Pandavas could never be forgotten by them so once their exile period was over the Pandavas wanted to wage a war against the Kauravas and even if they were not interested they knew that war was inevitable. Sage Vyasa who met them in exile advised them to get prepared for the war and he asked Arjuna to get divine weapons for the war as the war has to be challenged against great warriors of the world. So Arjuna went and did penance for lord Shiva to get divine weapons
He made a linga and started praying to it with devotion. As he was praying for many days one day during his prayers a boar was heading towards him trying to attack him. Immediately he took his Gandiva and shot an arrow at it. The boar fell down dead soon . But only then he realized that there was another arrow too sticking to the boar’s body. When he was wondering who that was a tribal hunter along with his wife emerged from the bush. His name was Kiratta and he claimed the boar saying that it was his arrow which shot the boar first. Arjuna refused to accept and told that if Arjuna shoots an arrow it is that arrow which reaches the target first. For that, the hunter asked him who Arjuna was and he did not know him. Infuriated more by his words Arjuna asked the hunter to fight with him. But even before Arjuna could pick his Gandiva the Hunter arrested him by shooting a stream of arrows. Humiliated Arjuna again continued his penance and asked lord why he got humiliated. Then he applied a sandalwood tilak and a garland for the linga and again closed his eyes and prayed to the lord
When Arjuna opened his eyes the hunter emerged from the bush again with a sandalwood tilak and garland which he put for the lord in his neck. Then Arjuna knew that the hunter was no other than lord Shiva himself and asked the lord to forgive him for his mistake. Then lord Shiva and Parvathi appeared in their original form and blessed Arjuna
Lord Shiva told Arjuna that he was very impressed with his prayers and that the reason he had come. The lord also told that Arjuna was the right person to own the Pasupatastra and that he would give him that weapon and also teach him how to use it
This was how Arjuna came in possession of the weapon but he never used it even once as it use might destroy the entire world.
But there is a version of Ramayana which states the use of the pashupatastra by Lakshmana against Meghanada.
According to the Kurma Purana, in the battle between the Purusha and the demonic forces, the Narasimha (half man – half lion) avatar of Lord Vishnu escapes the powerful pashupatastra. The Kurma Purana is one of the 18 Mahapuranas which is narrated by Lord Vishnu. The weapon didn’t cause any harm to anyone because its primary aim is to uphold Dharma or faith. As mentioned earlier it can be used ‘n’ number of times, provided it is not being used against a lesser enemy. The mantra to obtain the weapon is sealed by Lord Shiva so that it cannot be misused under any circumstances, especially in the Kali Yuga. The pashupatastra can be neutralized only through another pashupatastra or any other Astra (weapon) whose presiding deity is Lord Vishnu.
It’s described as a mythical equivalent of modern day atomic weapons, nuclear and thermonuclear bombs. It’s so powerful that it can destroy any weapon and can destroy the universe if used. Its ten times more powerful than the atomic bomb used on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. This weapon manifest with the all five heads of Lord Brahma as its tip.Brahma earlier lost his fifth head when he fought with Lord Siva.This weapon,Brahmanda astra is said to possess the power to destroy entire solar system or Brahmand,the 14 realms according to Hindu cosmology.
This weapon can be obtained only through Lord Brahma or from a Guru who knows it and it could only be used once in a day. The user would have to display immense amounts of mental concentration. Brahmadanda was Brahmarishi Vashistha’s best weapon and it contained the spiritual powers of the 7 greatest sages of Hinduism.
This Brahmadanda was the weapon of the great sage Vashista. Sage Vishwamitra when he was a king one day demanded the cow Kamdhenu from sage Vashista but the sage refused to give it. So enraged sage Vishwamitra forcefully tried to take it away. But sage Vashista single-handedly fought against Vishwamitra. All the powerful weapons of Vishwamitra was countered by one weapon in the hand of sage Vashista the great Brahmadanda. Finally, sage Vishwamitra used the Brahmastra but that also was countered by Brahmadanda.
Guru Drona also knew the use of the Brahmadanda but he never imparted the knowledge to either his son Aswaththama or his disciple Arjuna. Drona used this weapon on the 15th day of the great Mahabharata war and thus he was invincible on that day since no one knew to counter this weapon. So the Pandavas had to use a trick to kill Drona.
Brahma had created a weapon even more powerful than the Brahmastra, called the Brahmashira.This weapon is 4 times more powerful than the Brahmastra and it holds the four heads of Brahma when it is released into the air. It is equivalent to our present day nuclear bombs. When released it emits a huge amount of flames and strikes the target with great sound. Everything on earth would tremble on its strike. The place it strikes will lose all its living beings and there won’t be any life there for almost 12 years. It was never used in any war except in Mahabaratha where its use was curtailed by sage Vyasa
In Mahabaratha when Ashwathama was finally confronted by the Pandavas for killing their sons, Ashwathama had no weapons with him. So he took a piece of straw and invoked the mantra of Brahmashira on that straw and threw it on Arjuna. Arjuna to counter that weapon sent his Brahmashira. To note only Ashwathama and Arjuna knew the use of this weapon. But if these two had collided with each other it would have caused the destruction of the entire universe so sage Vyasa stopped the two weapons but it could be recalled back only by the person who had invoked it. Arjuna knew to take back his weapon and took it back but Ashwathama did not know so sage Vyasa asked him to direct it elsewhere so Ashwathama directed it towards Arjuna’s unborn grandson and son on Abhimanyu, Parikshit. The baby of Uttara and Abhimanyu was born dead but life was given to it by lord Krishna.
Brahmastra was a weapon of mass destruction created by Lord Brahma,along with its more powerful versions like Brahmashira astra,Brahmadanda astra and Bhargavastra. Brahmastra is considered to be the very deadliest of weapons. When a Brahmastra is discharged, neither a counterattack nor a defense of any kind can stop it. According to ancient Sanskrit writings, the Brahmastra is invoked by a key phrase or invocation that is bestowed upon the user when given this weapon. Through this invocation the user can call upon the weapon and use it via a medium against his adversary. It is said that the weapon manifest with the single head of Lord Brahma as its tip.
Brahma is considered the Creator in Sanatana Dharma, it is believed by Hindus that Brahmastra was created by him for the purpose of upholding Dharma and Satya, to be used by anyone who wished to destroy an enemy who would also happen to be a part of his (Brahma’s) creation. The target, when hit by Brahmastra, would be utterly destroyed.
The land where the weapon was used became barren and all life in and around that area ceased to exist, as both men and women became infertile. There was also a severe decrease in rainfall with the land developing cracks, like in a drought.
The Brahmastra never missed its mark and had to be used with very specific intent against an individual enemy or army, as the target would face complete annihilation.
Places where the Brahmastra is used
- Vishvamitra used it against Vasishta, but the Brahmastra was swallowed by Brahmadanda, Lord Brahma’s countermeasure against the Brahmastra.
- In the Ramayana a Brahmastra is used by Shri Rama several times: once against Jayanta (Indra’s son) when he hurt Sita, against Mareecha in their last encounter, against the Ocean when he did not answer his prayer to allow his army and himself to cross over to Lanka and finally in the last battle with Ravana.
- Also, Indrajit used Brahmastra against Hanuman, but Hanuman survived because of Lord Brahma’s boon, when he was destroying the Ashok Vatika after meeting Sita.
- It is also mentioned in vedas that Brahmastra was aimed by Shri Rama to make way out of sea so that the army of apes can march towards Lanka, however at the very moment, Varuna appeared and told Lord Rama, about the technical flaws of using the weapon and hence later was aimed towards Dhrumatulya by Lord Rama,which fell at the place of modern day Rajasthan causing it to become a desert.
- Also Indrajit aimed a Bhramastra at Lord Lakshman on the final battle between him and Lord Lakshman, however the deadly weapon returned because Lakshman himself was the avatar of Trinity.
- In Mahabharata, Bhishma used a Brahmastra against his guru Parashurama, and this weapon was neutralized by a counter brahmastra.
The Narayanastra was the personal weapon of lord Vishnu in his Narayana(or Naraina) form. This Astra(“weapon” in Sanskrit) in turn fires a powerful tirade of millions of deadly missiles simultaneously. The intensity of the shower rises with increase in resistance. The only way of defense towards this missile, is to show total submission before the missiles hit. This in turn will cause this weapon to stop and spare the target.
The Drona Parva of the Mahabharata describes how Drona’s son Ashwatthama, desperate to avenge his father’s death, launched the Narayanastra, the illustrious weapon of Vishnu. The Narayanastra wreaked great havock on the Pandava army by making countless weapons rain down from the heavens, until Krishna told the secret of surviving it: laying down your own weapons and surrendering to its power. The Pandavas promptly did this, but out of arrogance Bhima refused and tried to fight against the Narayanastra. It was about to destroy him when Krishna and Arjuna forced Bhima to put down his weapons, at which point the Narayanastra was finally pacified.
Formerly on one occasion, Narayana, assumed the form of a Brahmana, came to Ashwathama’s father Drona. Bowing unto him, his father presented his offerings unto him in due form. Taking them himself, the divine Lord offered to give him a boon. Drona then solicited that supreme weapon called Narayana. The divine Lord, the foremost of all gods, said, No man shall ever become equal in battle to him. The lord also told that the weapon, should never be used in haste. It never comes back without effecting the destruction of the foe and that It would slay even the unslayable. Therefore, it should not be used (without the greatest deliberation). He also insisted that the weapon, should never be hurled upon persons who abandon their cars or weapons in battle, or upon those who seek for quarter or those who wield themselves up.
With the aid of this weapon, you can pour diverse showers of celestial weapons in battle and blaze with energy in consequence of it told lord Narayana and ascended into the sky
From his father Drona, Ashwathama got this weapon and vowed to use it against the pandavas to avenge his father’s death