Home » Vakratunda – The First Avatar Of Ganesha
Vakratunda - The First Avatar Of Ganesha

Vakratunda – The First Avatar Of Ganesha

Gods descending from heaven to defeat demons on earth is a common sight in texts of Hindu mythology. Hearing the prayers of their devotees, they would appear in different forms to eliminate the cause of their worry.

According to Mudgala Purana, Ganesha took eight forms in each era to fight evil. The evil here represents the traits like lust, fear, and anger that could bring the worst qualities out of a human.

Some legends say that the demon Matsarasura was created by Lord Indra’s carelessness. Indra rejected him. Due to this Matsarasura was filled with jealousy so much that it consumed him and he wanted to rule the world. He decided to worship Lord Shiva to gain a Vardan (blessing) from him.

After several years of intense penance, Shiva appeared before him. Matsarasura folded his hands before Shiva. Pleased with his devotion, Shiva granted him the boon of fearlessness, meaning he would fear no living creature.

Blessed with power, Matsarasura became the king of Asuras (Demons). His teacher, Devguru Shukracharya, told him that he can now win over the almighty gods. With the help of his two sons, Sundarpriya and Vishaypriya, he conquered the three worlds. Thus, his rule of destruction began.

Gods were troubled by Matsarasura and his sons. Indra, along with the other gods, went to Lord Shiva for help. Shiva was constrained due to the boon of fearlessness he had bestowed upon Matsarasura. Lord Dattatreya advised them to pray to Ganesha with a secret mantra. Thus, the gods prayed to Lord Ganesha.

Hearing their cries, Ganesha materialized as Vakratunda sitting on a lion before them. He assured them that he would stop the demon. Matsarasura sent his sons to fight in the battle. His both sons were defeated and killed by Vakratunda in the battle.

At the sight of the elephant-headed deity riding a lion, Matsarasura was terrified beyond his imagination. Matsarasura didn’t have any will to fight. So, he surrendered.

He was on his knees, pleading to Vakratunda for forgiveness. Ganesha accepted his apology and brought peace to the three worlds. That is how Vakratunda, Ganesha’s first incarnation, ended Matsarasura’s rule.

Symbolism of Vakratunda

Ganesha’s trunk is curved to either left or right. The left side which is close to the beating heart is associated with material gain while the right indicates renouncing worldly pleasures.

Achieving moksha (liberation) in Hindu mythology is said to be the peak of human life. Vakratunda beating Matsarasura is said to be a reflection of humans moving away from jealousy or material pleasures to see the ultimate truth.

Click here to read the story of Mushaka – The vehicle of Ganesha.

Mytho World

Welcome to the world of Indian Mythology!

Post navigation