Ugra Narasimha

Ugra Narasimha

This is Narasimha, an avatar of Vishnu, in the act of killing Hiranyakasipu. In this form, he is Ugra Narasimha.

The story: “Hiranya-Kasipu had performed penance and obtained from Brahma the boon that he could not be killed by God, man or beast, by any weapon known to man, during the day or night, inside his palace or outside it. Therefore Vishnu had to appear as man-beast (Man-lion, Nara-simha), tear the demon’s entrails with his claws (which were not weapons), during dusk (which was not day or night) and seated upon the threshold of the palace (which was neither inside or outside)”  From Pratima Kosha Volume Three page 191. A book by Prof S K Ramachandra Rao.

His upper hands are holding Chakra and Shankha and his lower hands are tearing Hiranya Kasipu’s entrails. Narasimha sitting on a peetha supported by legs. In front of the peetha are a plate for the offerings and a lamp for Aarathi.

Worth noting are the royal insignia an umbrella (on the right) and Chamara (on the left) between his upper arms and scarf ends. The sun and moon signs are to the right and left of the crown. If you have time, please see the crown, two-layered and three-dimensional effect.

In the background, between his face and upper arms,  is the split pillar from which Narasimha emanates.

For some reasons, not known to me, it is virtually impossible to get Ugra Narasimha of the size meant for home shrines. But you do see pictures of temple bronzes of Ugra Narasimha.

This is most likely come from North Karnataka and it is 13 cm in height. This is probably more than 100 years old.

 

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