"O Keshava! O Lord of the universe! O Lord Hari, who have assumed the form of a gigantic boar! All glories to You! The earth, which had become immersed in the Garbhodaka Ocean at the bottom of the universe, sits fixed upon the tip of Your tusk like a spot upon the moon." (Dasavatara Stotram 3 of Jaya deva Goswami)vasati dasana-sikhare dharani tava lagna
sasini kalanka-kaleva nimagna
keshava dhrta-sukara-rupa jaya jagadisa hare
the world when it was submerged within the water of Garbhodaka Ocean. The
universe which we are seeing, it is only half. The other half is filled
with water, and in that water is Garbhodakaçäyé Viñëu
lying. So one demon, Hiraëyäkña, he pushed this earthly
planet within that water, and Lord Kåñëa delivered this
earthly planet from water in the shape of a boar. So that auspicious day
is today, Varäha-dvadaçé. This is called Varäha-dvadasi.
So on this day it is better to sing, to glorify the different incarnations
of Lord within this universe. The first incarnation is the fish form.
So these prayers were offered by Jayadeva Gosvämé. One Vaiñëava poet advented about seven hundred years before Lord Caitanya’s appearance. He was a great devotee, and his specific poetry, Géta-govinda, is very famous all over the world. Géta- govinda. Géta-govinda is the subject matter of Kåñëa playing on flute about Rädhäräëé. That is the subject matter of Géta-govinda. The same poet, Jayadeva Gosvämé, has offered this prayer, pralaya-payodhi-jale-dhåtavän asi vedam. He says, “My dear Lord, when there was devastation within this universe, everything was filled with water. At that time You saved the Vedas, stacked in a boat. And you held the boat from being drowned in the water, in the shape of a big fish.” This fish first of all was caught in the waterpot just like a small fish. Then it enlarged, and the fish was kept in a bigger water reservoir. In this way the fish was increasing. Then the fish informed that “Devastation is coming. You just save all the Vedas on a boat, and I shall protect it.” So Jayadeva Gosvämé is offering prayer, “My Lord, You saved the Vedas when there was devastation in the shape of a fish.”
The next is Kürmävatära. There was churning of the ocean. One side all the demigods and one side all the demons. And the churning rod was a great hill called Mandara-pärvata. And the resting place was on the back of the Lord appeared as a tortoise. So he’s offering his prayer that “You appeared as a tortoise just to become the resting place. And this happened because You were feeling some itching sensation on Your back. So You accepted this big rod, Mandara Hill, to itch, as the itching instrument.”
Then the next incarnation is this Varäha, boar or hog. He delivered this earthly planet by the tusk, and He kept the whole world on His tusk. We can just imagine how big He appeared. And the world at that time appeared just like the moon disc with some marks on it. So keçava dhåta-varäha-çaréra. He says, “My dear Lord, You have appeared as the great boar. So let me offer my respectful obeisances unto You.”
The fourth incarnation is Nåsiàhadeva. Nåsiàhadeva appeared to save Prahläda Mahäräja, who was five-years-old boy and he was being tortured by his atheistic father. So He appeared from the pillar of the palace as a half-man, half-lion. Because this Hiraëyakaçipu took benediction from Brahmä that he’ll not be killed by any man or any animal. So the Lord appeared neither man nor animal. This is the difference between the Lord’s intelligence and our intelligence. We are thinking that we can cheat the Lord by our intelligence, but the Lord is more intelligent than us. This Hiraëyakaçipu wanted to cheat Brahmä by indirect definition. First of all he wanted to become immortal. Brahmä said, “That is not possible because even I am not immortal. Nobody in this material world is immortal. That is not possible.” So Hiraëyakaçipu, the demon... The demons are very intelligent. He thought that “Round about way I shall become immortal.” He prayed to Brahmä that “Please give me the benediction that I shall not be killed by any man or any animal.” Brahmä said, “Yes, that is all right.” “I shall not be killed in the sky, on the water or on land.” Brahmä said, “Oh yes.” “I shall not be killed by any man-made weapons.” “That’s all right.” In this way he utilized his intelligence in so many ways just to come to the conclusion of being immortal. But the Lord is so cunning that He kept intact all the benediction given by Brahmä, still he was killed. He said that “I’ll not be killed either during daytime or night.” Brahmä said “Yes.” So he was killed just in the evening, just in the junction of day and night. You cannot say it is day or night. He took the benediction that “I shall not be killed in the sky, on the water, on the land.” So he was killed on His lap. He took the benediction that “I shall not be killed by any man-made or any God-made weapons.” That was given, “All right.” So he was killed by the nails. In this way, all the benedictions were kept intact, still he was killed. Similarly, we may make plan, we may make very advancement in scientific knowledge, but the killing process of nature will be there. Nobody can escape. By our intelligence we cannot escape. The four principles of material existence means birth, death, old age and disease. We can manufacture many medicines, many weapons, many means, many methods, but you cannot escape these four principles of material existence, however great you may be. That was proved by Hiraëyakaçipu. Hiraëyakaçipu was one of the stalwart materialistic and he wanted to live forever, enjoy, but he also could not live. Everything was finished.
Then next incarnation is Vämana, the dwarf. Lord Vämana appeared before Bali Mahäräja. That was also another cheating. Bali Mahäräja conquered all the universal planets and the demigods were too much disturbed. So Vämana Mahäräja... Vämanadeva went to Bali Mahäräja that “You give me some alms. I am brähmaëa. I have come to beg from you.” So Bali Mahäräja said, “Yes. I’ll give You.” So He wanted three feet land only. So by one feet the whole universe was covered, upside, and another feet the other half was covered. Then the third feet Bali Mahäräja said, “Yes, now there is no place. Please keep Your feet on my head. Still my head is there.” So Vämanadeva was very much pleased by the sacrifice of Bali Mahäräja. He gave up everything for the Lord. So he is one of the great authorities. Out of the twelve authorities, Bali Mahäräja is one of the authorities because he sacrificed everything to satisfy the Lord.
And next is Paraçuräma. Paraçuräma, twenty-one times He made a massacre propaganda for killing all the kñatriya kings. The kñatriya kings were very much dishonest at that time, so he killed them for twenty-one times. They fled from here and there. And from the history of Mahäbhärata it is understood, at that time some of the kñatriyas fled and took shelter in the European side. And the Indo-European stock is from those kñatriyas. That is history, inform..., historical information from Mahäbhärata.
Then next incarnation is Lord Räma. So He fought with Rävaëa who had ten heads. So ... And the next incarnation is Balaräma. Balaräma is the elder brother of Kåñëa. He is incarnation of Saìkarñaëa, next expansion of Kåñëa. So He was very white in complexion, and He was wearing blue garments, and with His plow He was, sometimes He was angry with Yamunä River, and He tried to dry up the Yamunä River. That description is given here. And Yamunä, out of His fear, she agreed to the proposal of Balaräma.
And the next incarnation is Lord Buddha. Lord Buddha, He decried the Vedic principles. Therefore He is calculated as atheist. Anyone who does not agree with the Vedic principles, he is considered as atheist. Just like one who does not believe in the Bible, they are called heathens, similarly, those who do not accept the Vedic principles, they are called atheists. So Lord Buddha although incarnation of Kåñëa, He said that “I do not believe in Vedas.” What was the reason? The reason was to save the poor animals. At that time people were sacrificing the poor animals under the plea of Vedic sacrifice. So demonic persons, they want to do something under the protection of authority. Just like a big lawyer takes the protection of the lawbook and he makes the law unlawful. Similarly, the demons are so intelligent that they take advantage of scriptural injunction and do all nonsense. So these things were going on. In the name of Vedic sacrifice, they were killing animals like anything. So Lord became very much compassionate these poor animals, and He appeared as Lord Buddha, and His philosophy was nonviolence. His philosophy was atheist because He said that “There is no God. This combination of matter is a manifestation, and you dismantle the material elements, there will be void and there will be no sense of pleasure and pain. That is the nirväëa, ultimate goal of life.” That was His philosophy. But actually His mission was to stop animal killing, to stop the men from so much sinful activities. So Lord Buddha is also prayed herewith. So people will be surprised that Lord Buddha is designated as atheist and still the Vaiñëavas, they are offering their respectful prayers to Lord Viñëu (Buddha). Why? Because the Vaiñëava knows how the God is acting for His different purposes. Others, they do not know.
The next avatär incarnation is Kalki. That is yet to take place. Kalki avatära will appear at the end of this age, Kali- yuga. The age of Kali-yuga, duration of this age is still to be, I mean to say, fulfilled in 400,000’s of years. So at the end of Kali, that means at the last stage, after about 400,000’s of years, the incarnation of Kali will appear. That is predicted in the Vedic literatures, as Lord Buddha’s appearance was also predicted in the Çrémad-Bhägavatam. And Çrémad-Bhägavatam was compiled five thousand years ago, and Lord Buddha appeared about 2,500 years ago. Therefore about Lord Buddha’s appearance it is predicted that at the beginning of Kali-yuga Lord Buddha will appear.
There was prediction, and that has actually come to be true. Similarly, there is prediction about Kalki avatära, and that will also come to be true. So at that time Lord Kalki’s business will be simply to kill. No instruction. Just like... In Bhagavad- gétä Lord Kåñëa gave instruction in the shape of Bhagavad-gétä. But at the end of Kali-yuga, people will be so much degraded that there is no more possibility to give any instruction. They will not be able to understand even. At that time the only weapon will be to kill them. And one who is killed by the Lord, he also gets salvation. That is God’s all-merciful quality. Either He protects or He kills, the result is the same. So that will be the last stage of this Kali-yuga, and after that, again Satya-yuga, the age of religiosity, will begin. These are the statements of Vedic literature. (end)
(His Divine Grace Srila .C. Bhatvedant wami Prabhupada)