Narayaneeyam Dasakam: 30 -- The Vaamana Incarnation

The Vamana Incarnation

Lord Vamana is the fifth incarnation of Srihari Vishnu. In Vamanavatara (Vaman Avatar), Lord Vishnu appeared as a dwarf Brahmin before King Bali. Mahabali was a wise, benevolent and judicious ruler and beloved of his subjects. Soon his fame as an able king began to spread far and wide, but when he extended his rule to the heavens and the netherworld, the gods felt challenged and began to fear his growing powers. Presuming that he might become over-powerful, Aditi, the mother of Devas pleaded with Lord Vishnu to curtail Mahabali's powers..

Balichakravarthy in his quest for power of Indra, was doing the 100th Ashwamedha Yagna. He had already completed 99 yagnas. If he completes the 100th yagna he would be eligible for the post of Devendra he can throw out Indra. (The present Indra is Purandara). When Devataas lost their power to Balichakravarthi (King Bali), Adithi, the mother of Devataas requested Sage Kashyapa to get a son who can bring back the powers to Devataas from Daithyaas .At the advice of her husband Kashypa she took a vow of Lord Vishnu for twelve long days and on the thirteenth day Lord Vishnu appeared before Mother Aditi and said, "O Divine lady, invincible though the Asuras are your worship shall not provefruitless. I shall be born as a son to you and protect your progeny."
Months later, on the twelfth day of the bright half of Bhadrapada (the sixth month of the Hindu calendar), Lord Vishnu took his descent from aditi and thus was born the sixth incarnation of Vishnu. Now as the couple stood amazed, Vishnu changed hisform to that of a short - stautured Brahman - The Vamana.Clad in a loin cloth, he carried a staff and a gourd in the hand. He had the matted hair on his head.

Kashyapa Rushi told Aditi to do Payovratha for one year, which she did successfully. As a result of her Jnaana, bhakthi, vairagya, was born Vamana, on Bhadrapada Shudda Dwadashi in Shravana Nakshatra, and Abhijin Muhoortha. This particular dwadashi is also called as Vijaya Tithi
When he was born itself, Vamana was having Chaturbhuja, Shanka, Chakra, Gada, Padma. He was neelameghashyama and was having Srivatsa Lanchana. Aditi-Kashyaparu did the Jatakarma Samskara.
Surya did the Gayatri Mantropadesha.

Bruhaspatyacharyaru gave Yagnopaveeta, kashyaparu gave the "darbe Ududaara", Bhoodevi the Krishnajina, Chandra gave Muttugada Danda (palasha).

Aditi gave him koupeena. Brahma gave Kamandalam, saptarishees gave darbe, Saraswathi gave the aksharamale., Kubera gave Bhikshapatre, Annapoorne gave the first bhikshe.

Vamana after Upanayana, did the Agnikaarya and after this Vamana went to Balichakravarthi's Yagna Shaale in Brukukutsa kshetra, near Narmada River north bank. Vishnu transformed himself into a dwarf called Vamana and approached Mahabali while he was performing a yajna and asked for alms. Bali rose from his seat to welcome him. Bali's wife then came with a Golden pitcher full of water to wash Vamana's feet.Then he gave the Brahman( Vamana) the special seat and washed his feet. Bali Chakravarthy on seeing the Baala Brahmachari Vamana, did the paadapooja of the brahmachari and asked him what he wanted? the land, Gold, Mrustanna? marriage, Elephants, Horses, Chariot, etc? After that he asked, " O holy one, what can I do for you? Take from me whatever you desire

But Vamana kept quiet. Seeing this Bali again said, " Do not hesitate, ask for what ever you want - Cows, Elephants, horses, Chariots, Villages.. anything?" This time Vamana shooked his head and said, " All I need is a strip of land, Three paces long as measured by my stride."

Bali was very disappointed with Vamana's humble demand and said, " When I am ready to grant you a whole continent, what all you want is only three paces of land ?

Vamana replied, " He who is not satisfied with three paces of land will not be satisfied with the whole continent. I have asked for three paces of land and that is all I need. " Bali laughed and said, " Then you shall have as much you want."

At that moment Guru Shukracharya, realized the truth that the Brahman was non other than Lord Vishnu.As Bali took the consecrating water in his palm, Shukracharya, stopped him by saying that, " Wait, this midget is LordVishnu. He is here to help our enemies, the devtas." " Nothing can be done now , Guru Shukracharya, I have given my words." replied Bali. Shukracharya tried to stop him in many ways but Bali said, " I have promised once that I shall give this Brahman

Guru Shukracharya became very furious that his disciple had dared to disregard his advice he cursed him, " You have ignored my command and you will soon fall from your high position." Vamana just asked him to give three steps of land. Bali was surprised for having asked that little daana. Vamana was satisfied with three steps only. Bali agreed.

"And to everybody's surprise Vamana began to grow and grow. Bali and all others present there were astounded to see the whole creation of the Vamana's body.Now Vamana began to measure the three paces, with his first stride he covered the earth, and with his second stride he covered the Heavens.Bali soon realized that he has been cursed by his Guru and that his fall is inevitable." Vishnu now asked Bali that, " You had promised me three paces of land and I have covered all that was yours in two.where should I place my third stride? You have failed to keep your words and for that you shall suffer."

Bali said, " O lord, I am not afraid of punishment, place your third step on my head, which is more valuable to me than all my possessions put together."

Vamana then increased his stature and with the first step covered the sky, blotting out the stars, and with the second, straddled the netherworld. Realising that Vamana's third step will destroy the earth,

(Images taken from google.Thanks google)

Mahabali offered his head as the last step.Vishnu's fatal third step pushed him to the netherworld, but before banishing him to the underworld Vishnu granted him a boon.