Indian Mythology: Read stories behind some famous Indian mythological creatures

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Read stories behind some of the famous Indian mythological creatures according to the Hindu Mythology:

indian mythological creatures

Nandinandi

Nandi is Lord Shiva’s bull. He is believed to be the protector of all animals. According to Hindu mythology, he is the one who calms down Lord Shiva when he is angry.

Story of Nandi bull – Kamadhenu (mother of all cows) started giving birth to a lot of calves, the milk from all of these cows flooded Shiva’s home. This disturbed his meditation and also resulted in his temper to rise up. With the power vested in him, he struck the cows with a bolt of fire from his third eye. To calm him down, the gods offered him a magnificent bull, Nandi.

Indian mythological creatures

Airavatairavat

Airavat is the legendary white elephant believed to have served as Indra’s mount.

Story of Airavat elephant – Airavat was born along with Garuda when Lord Brahma recited the 7 sacred hymns over the two halves of an eggshell. He is also the reason behind the myth that elephants can bring clouds. According to the legends, when Indra defeated Vritasur, Airavata reached down to the watery underworld with his trunk and sprayed the water into the clouds. Indra then caused the watery clouds to rain down upon the drought-stricken land.

Must Read: Tungnath – the highest temple of Lord Shiva in the world

More stories about the famous Indian mythological creatures

Narasimha

narasimha

Narsimha is a fierce combination of a man and a lion.

Story of Narsimha Avatar – Hiranyakasyipu (the asura king) had a boon from Lord Brahma which made him almost indestructible. He could not die on earth nor in space; not in fire nor in water; neither during the day nor at night; neither inside nor outside of his home nor by a human, animal or God; neither by an inanimate nor by an animate being.

To kill Hiranyakasyipu, Lord Vishnu took the form of Narasimha. He came out to kill him at twilight (neither day nor night), on the doorsteps of his palace (neither inside nor outside), used his nails to kill him (neither animate nor inanimate), put him on his lap before killing (neither earth nor in space). This way the boon was thus made ineffective. Read more about the Narsimha avatar of Vishnu.

Indian mythological creatures

Sheshnaag

sheshnaag

Sheshnaag is the serpent with 1000 heads which keeps the earth stable.

Story of Sheshnaag– Sheshnaag had 1000 brothers who frequently caused trouble for everyone around them. Being tired of living in such a bad company, Sheshnaag left his home and went to the Himalayas. He started meditating and observing strict penances for his brothers’ deeds. Due to his dedication, Lord Brahma was impressed by him and offered him a boon. While Sheshnaag only asked to be a servant of spirituality, Lord Brahma asked Sheshnaag to coil around the earth and hold it steady, which he gladly accepted to do. It is believed that when Sheshnaag coils forward, creation happens, and when it coils backward, the universe ceases to exist.

Also Read: Kurma Avatar of Vishnu

Most famous Indian mythological creatures

Garuda

garuda

Garuda is the famous winged beast of Indian mythology.

Story of Garuda – Garuda and his mother were enslaved by snakes and in order to be free, Garuda had to go to Indra’s kingdom and steal Amrit. Knowing this, Garuda did exactly that. Although he had to battle all of Indra’s might to do this, he managed to set himself and his mother free.

Lord Vishnu had asked Garuda to prevent the snakes from drinking the Amrit. So just as the serpents were about to drink the Amrit, Garuda asked them to clean up first. While the snakes were away cleaning, Indra attacked Garuda and tried to claim the Amrit. Garuda somehow managed to smash Indra’s thunderbolt but couldn’t keep the Amrit. However, a few drops of Amrit fell on the ground and the snakes licked it. The Amrit was so strong that it burnt their tongues. Apparently, that is the reason why snakes have forked tongues.

Indian mythological creatures

Vasuki – The snake around Lord Shiva’s neck

vasuki

Story of Vasuki naag – This snake has many stories. It has so many legends but the most popular one of them says that at the time when the cosmic oceans were being churned, the poison produced by it was consumed by some snakes along with Shiva himself. Being impressed by this, Lord Shiva accepted Vasuki around his neck. It is also believed that the snake helps in keeping the poison in Shiva’s throat and does not let it slide down to his body.

It is said that the three coils of the snake around Shiva’s neck represent the past, the present, and the future. The direction of its hood is towards the right, signifying Lord Shiva’s perpetual laws of reason and justice preserving natural order in the universe.

Do Read: Interesting facts about Bhagavad Gita

Lord Ganesha’s mouse – One of the most famous Indian mythological creatures

Lord Ganesha

Story of Ganesha mouse– Now this mouse also has several stories. According to one interesting belief, a musician god, Krauncha, was cursed to become a mouse. But he was the size of a mountain and destroyed almost everything in his way. When he reached the ashram where Lord Ganesha was staying, he was captured. Then, begging for forgiveness, he became Ganesha’s vehicle (sawari).

Another one of the stories suggests that the mouse symbolizes Lord Ganesha’s victory over the rodent, an obstacle to the prosperity of farmers. By conquering it, Lord Ganesha conquered obstacles, living up to his name, Vighnaharta.

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