10 Iconic Stories from Hindu Mythology Everyone Should Know
Hinduism is one of the oldest cultures and civilisations present on the Earth. The culture has a rich heritage and backdrop. The Hindu Mythology is full of interesting and fascinating stories. These stories have a great value, they teach us about life and its morals. Every story has some moral compass attached to it. So let’s talk about 10 iconic stories from Hindu mythology everyone should know. These stories can add great value in your life and change it in a positive manner. So, do give it a read.
10 Iconic Stories from Hindu Mythology Everyone Should Know
According to Hinduism there are 4 Yugas. ‘Kali Yuga’ is the fourth Yuga (epoch). We have surpassed 3 Yugas; Satya Yuga, Treta Yuga and Dwapara Yuga. The Kali Yuga is said to be the most dark and evil Yuga. In these times humanity will reach its absolute rock bottom. People will lose their consciousness and will be filled by anger, greed and lust. And with every passing day the righteousness of society will decrease and misery of people will increase. All this will finally come to an end with the arrival of ‘Kalki Avatar’ (an incarnation of Lord Vishnu). But fortunately or unfortunately for everyone out there, 426,877 years are still left in Kali Yuga. And we are still in the pleasant part of the Kali Yuga, which is often referred to as the morning or evening twilight of the Yuga. So, don’t worry and read the rest of our article.
Ram Setu Bridge
Often referred as Adam’s Bridge in the West is actually The Ram Setu Bridge which finds its connections with Lord Rama. The bridge and its building process is mentioned in the Hindu Epic Ramayana. It connects Pamban Island near Rameswaram (in India) to Mannar Island (in Sri Lanka). The bridge was created by Lord Ram and his army. There has been multiple researches about the bridge. Most of studies suggests that the bridge isn’t natural, it’s man made and it dates back thousands of years.
The South Indian town of Mahabalipuram is famous for its Shore Temple located on the shores of Bay of Bengal. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage site. The temple is known for its magnificent beauty and structure. It was built around 700 AD. But according to the local legends there were 7 temples which stood along the shore of Mahabalipuram. It was believed that its beauty had even drawn the gods jealous of it. And all the temples (except one) were sunk in the sores by Lord Indra during a storm, which left only one Shore Temple above the sea level out of the 7.
In 2004 things took a drastic turn of events when the sea pulled back 500 meters before the tsunamis struck the state. Reportedly few fishermen and tourists witnessed a long straight row of large rocks emerge from water. But as the tsunamis struck the ruins were submerged back into the water. However, in 2005 Indian Navy searched the coastline and discovered the remains of 2 submerged temples and a cave temple in their proceedings.
This is another interesting story which shows that good deeds will always give you good results. Prahlada was a son of a demon king but still preached god. His father (Hiranyakashipu) tried all his tricks to divert his son from the right path but failed miserably in doing so. He even threatened the young boy (Prahlada) with his life and other punishments. But the boy stood on his path of following the right and showed his faith in God. Fed up with his son, Hiranyakashipu decided to kill Prahlada. Seeing this Lord Vishnu himself appeared in the form of ‘Narasimha’ (half lion and half man) to rescue Prahlada from his evil father. Lord Narasimha ripped apart Hiranyakashipu and tore him from his guts. Not even Hiranyakashipu’s boons and powers could save him.
Shravan Kumar is known for his compassion and love for his parents. He was the son of two blind hermits. Shravan Kumar wanted to take his parents to ‘Char Dham’ (4 most sacred places of Hindu pilgrimage). He had no means to travel so decided to put each parent in a basket and then tied the ends to the basket with a bamboo pole. Which he will carry all the way to the pilgrimage on his shoulders.
According to Ramayana, Shravan Kumar was hit by an arrow of ‘King Dasharatha’ which caused his death. Dasharatha went to the forest of his kingdom where he heard some sounds from the lake. He loaded his bow with an arrow, thinking that there was some wild animal out there. When went to collect the animal he found out that the arrow had struck an innocent young man who was there to collect water for his old parents. At the time of his death Shravan Kumar requested Dasharatha to take water for his parents and tell them what had happened.
When Dasharatha (filled with guilt) went with water to the hermits. They were unable to bear the pain of the passing away of their son. They even rejected the water and cursed Dasharatha of ‘Putrashoka’ (sorrow due to loss of son) and eventually died of thirst.
Ganesha and Kubera’s story
This is an interesting story about the God of wealth Kubera and Lord Ganesha. The story goes as Kubera decides to invite all the gods and goddesses to show-off his wealth. He also decided to invite Lord Shiva and Parvati. But they decline Kubera’s offer. But after Kubera’s request they agree to send their son Ganesha to the party (as he’s fond of eating).
When Ganesha reaches Kubera’s place he gets served with exotic foods. There was a variety of never-ending cuisines and sweets. Ganesha starts eating, after a point food starts getting out of stock. Kubera orders his cooks to prepare more food but they also can’t match the phase of Lord Ganesha. After a point even there is a shortage of food items in the palace. Kubera feels embarrassed and starts to hunt food all around. There comes a point where he’s unable to find any food source. When food gets over hungry Ganesha starts eating everything around him (furniture, utensils). At one point he even threatened Kuber that if he did not satisfy his hunger, he ‘d even eat Kuber. Scared Kubera runs to Lord Shiva for rescue. Eventually Kubera understood his mistake and realized his mistake. Then Lord Shiva gave him a handful of roasted rice with love and humility. Shiva also stated that this food will satisfy Ganesha’s hunger. This story teaches us the important lesson of humility.
It’s a story where a demon King’s brother leaves even his family for the right. He fights for the Right and takes a stand against Raavana (his brother). During this journey it was not easy for Vibhishana to stay on the path of right fullness but he stood strong and did what was right. He was called upon as a traitor, a weak person, a weak warrior and a coward. However, he still supported Lord Rama in the war against Raavana. Vibhishana’s support and help became one of the key points for Lord Rama’s army in the epic battle against the demons.
Valmiki is often referred to as the ‘Adi Kavi’ (first poet). Once the Maharishi (Valmiki) was once going for his evening bath in a river. Where he saw two crane birds mating. Valmiki was mesmerized by their love and compassion. But suddenly an arrow struck the male bird. The bird was killed by a male hunter (nishad). In the pain and grief of her partner, the female bird also died. After seeing this tragic event Valmiki couldn’t control his anger and cursed the hunter (“Oh hunter, may you not get rest for eons, for you killed a ‘Kraunch’ from the pair, when they were in so much bliss”), which became the the first verse in Sanskrit. Later when he came back to his place he realized he shouldn’t have cursed the hunter as he was doing his duty. Valmiki also realized that his curse had a poetic style to it.
Krishna and Sudama’s Friendship
You may have heard 100’s of stories of true friendship but nothing beats this. Krishna Sudama’s friendship is beyond any boundaries and a perfect example of true friendship. Sudama was the childhood friend of Krishna, when he lived in Mathura. Sudama was poor but had dignity and high self esteem. Whereas Krishna was a King and an incarnation of Lord Vishnu himself.
The story goes that once Sudama comes to meet his childhood friend. He also carried a humble gift (a handful of beaten rice) for his friend ‘Krishna’. When he reached the gates of the place he was denied access by the gatekeepers because of his appearance. When Krishana came to know that his childhood friend was waiting at his palace’s gates . He rushed towards the gate in utter bliss and joy. The Lord himself greeted his childhood friend and gave him a grand welcome. Sudama was embarrassed with his humble gift after seeing the luxury and royalties out there. But Krishan asked what have you brought. When he saw the rice, he thanked Sudama and had the rice with joy. It was an emotional moment for both. Later when Sudama left for his home, he witnessed that all his problems and misery had been taken away by the Lord. This story teaches us the meaning of true friendship which goes beyond everything.
Lord Rama’s Personality and Character
Rama was an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, who came to Earth as a human. His human form teaches us the perfect way of living. Rama portrayed the way a man should live his life and conduct himself. He was a good son, a good husband, an ideal brother, a great warrior and a perfect king who prioritizes his people (even above his personal choices and wishes). He even established ‘Rama Rajya’ (a perfectly governed state where prosperity and humanity are at its peak). That is the reason he is referred to as ‘Maryada Purushottam Ram’.
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