Varaha, the Boar Avatar

Celebrating the appearance anniversary of Varaha avatar. Varaha is Krishna appearing in the extraordinary form of a gigantic boar—gigantic enough to carry the Earth on His tusks. Sound amazing? It is. And why should the activities of the Supreme Personality of Godhead be anything less than supremely amazing? is not devoted to discussing the ordinary activities of average people.

But exactly how, and why, would the Supreme Being choose to appear in this way? Here's how that particular story begins—a few verses from Srimad-Bhagavatam, Third Canto, chapter 13:

"Brahmā thought: While I have been engaged in the process of creation, the earth has been inundated by a deluge and has gone down into the depths of the ocean. What can we do who are engaged in this matter of creation? It is best to let the Almighty Lord direct us.

O sinless Vidura, all of a sudden, while Brahmā was engaged in thinking, a small form of a boar came out of his nostril. The measurement of the creature was not more than the upper portion of a thumb.

O descendant of Bharata, while Brahmā was observing Him, that boar became situated in the sky in a wonderful manifestation as gigantic as a great elephant.

Struck with wonder at observing the wonderful boarlike form in the sky, Brahmā, with great brāhmanas like Marīci, as well as the Kumāras and Manu, began to argue in various ways.

Is this some extraordinary entity come in the pretense of a boar? It is very wonderful that He has come from my nose. . ."

Bhagavad-gita courseDying to find out what happens next? Read the entire pastime—from our online Srimad-Bhagavatam—here.

For those of you who just can't wait to click another click, here's a capsule summary of Varaha's pastimes on Earth, from “Water, a Meditation” by Urmila devi dasi:

“In Vedic cosmology, planets are conscious persons. The planet Earth once fell into the universal water when demonic persons disturbed her orbit by drilling for oil and upsetting her balance. Celestial beings, called devas, who control the universe in service to Krishna, wanted Earth to be rescued.

Responding to their desire, the Lord came to save her. He assumed the form of a splendid, gigantic boar (Varaha), dove to the bottom of the universal ocean, picked up Earth, and gently carried her on His tusks to the water’s surface. As He did so, a great demon challenged them.

Lord Varaha then carefully placed fearful Earth on the water and gave her the ability to float. A fight between the Lord and the demon ensued within the great ocean. After defeating the demon, Lord Varaha returned to the spiritual sky."

Below is a photo of an uncommon Deity of Varahadeva, worshiped at Rama Giri in India.

Bhagavad-gita courseFor an entertaining and in-depth analysis of the phenomenon of Krishna's many mysterious appearances on Earth—including His Lord Boar incarnation, check out When God Descends by Ravindra-svarupa dasa.

Stick the Earth on Varaha’s Tusks

What do people do to celebrate Varaha's appearance day?

Here's one suggestion—designed especially for children in a classroom setting but not prohibited for extraordinarily fun-loving adults—sent in by Urmila dasi, who has served as an educator for many years:

"To celebrate the appearance of Lord Varaha, the Lord as a giant boar who lifted the earth with His tusks, the children play “Stick the Earth on Varaha’s Tusks.” Some years we have groups of students make a picture of Varaha and the earth and then play the game with the best picture. Last year our grown daughter drew Varaha, and the students competed for the best earth drawing. Then, blindfolded, each of us tried to tape the earth as close as possible to the tips of the Lord’s tusks. A simple prize awaited the winner."

Ready to play Stick the Earth on Varaha’s Tusks? Please capture your game on video and send it to us immediately. The world needs to see how it's done.