Havan Narasimha Jayanti
Havan Narasimha Jayanti is dedicated to Narasimha (Sanskrit: नरसिंह).
Narasingh, Narsingh and Narasingha-in derviative languages is an avatar of the Hindu god Vishnu and one of Hinduism's most popular deities, as evidenced in early epics, iconography, and temple and festival worship for over a millennium.
Narasimha is often visualised as half-man/half-lion, having a human-like torso and lower body, with a lion-like face and claws. This image is widely worshipped in deity form by a significant number of Vaishnava groups. He is known primarily as the 'Great Protector' who specifically defends and protects his devotees in times of need.
Bhagavata Puran describes that in his previous avatar as Varaha, Vishnu killed the asura Hiranyaksha. The younger brother of Hiranyaksha, Hiranyakashipu wanted revenge on Vishnu and his followers. He undertook many years of austere penance to take revenge on Vishnu. Brahma thus offers the demon a boon and Hiranyakashipu asks for immortality. Brahma said, "Tatha asthu" (be it so) and vanished. Hiranyakashipu was happy thinking that he had won over death.
One day while Hiranyakashipu performed austerities at Mandaracala Mountain, his home was attacked by Indra and the other devatas. At this point the divine sage Narad intervenes to protect Kayadu, whom he describes as 'sinless'. Following this event, Narad takes Kayadu into his care and while under the guidance of Narad, her unborn child (Hiranyakashipu's son) Prahlad, becomes affected by the transcendental instructions of the sage even at such a young stage of development. Thus, Prahlad later begins to show symptoms of this earlier training by Narad, gradually becoming recognised as a devoted follower of Vishnu, much to his father's disappointment.
Hiranyakashipu furious at the devotion of his son to Vishnu, as the god had killed his brother. Finally, he decides to commit filicide, but each time he attempts to kill the boy, Prahlad is protected by Vishnu's mystical power. When asked, Prahlad refuses to acknowledge his father as the supreme lord of the universe and claims that Vishnu is all-pervading and omnipresent.
Hiranyakashipu, unable to control his anger, smashes the pillar with his mace, and following a tumultuous sound, Vishnu in the form of Narasimha appears from it and moves to attack Hiranyakashipu. in defence of Prahlad. In order to kill Hiranyakashipu and not upset the boon given by Brahma, the form of Narasimha is chosen. Hiranyakashipu can not be killed by human, deva or animal. Narasimha is neither one of these as he is a form of Vishnu incarnate as a part-human, part-animal. He comes upon Hiranyakashipu at twilight (when it is neither day nor night) on the threshold of a courtyard (neither indoors nor out), and puts the demon on his thighs (neither earth nor space). Using his sharp fingernails (neither animate nor inanimate) as weapons, he disembowels and kills the demon.
Narasimha indicates God's omnipresence and the lesson is that God is everywhere. For more information, see Vaishnav Theology.
Narasimha demonstrates God's willingness and ability to come to the aid of His devotees, no matter how difficult or impossible the circumstances may appear to be.
Prahlad's devotion indicates that pure devotion is not one of birthright but of character. Prahlad, although born an asura, demonstrated the greatest bhakti to God, and endured much, without losing faith.
Narasimha is known by the epithet "Mriga-Sharira" in Sanskrit which translates to Animal-Man. From a philosophical perspective. Narasimha is the very icon of Vaishnavism, where jnana (knowledge) and Bhakti are important as opposed to Advaita, which has no room for Bhakti, as the object to be worshipped and the worshipper do not exist. As according to Advaita or Mayavada, the jeeva is Paramatma.
In South Indian art – sculptures, bronzes and paintings – Vishnu's incarnation as Narasimha is one of the most chosen themes and amongst Avatars perhaps next only to Ram and Krishna in popularity.
Lord Narasimha also appears as one of Hanuman's 5 faces, who is a significant character in the Ramayan as Lord Raam's(Rama) devotee.
Narasimha is also a protector of his devotees in times of danger.