What are Garuda Purana unknown facts (misconceptions)
Namaste friends, how are you doing today? Bhagavan Sri Vishnu blessings to you and your family!
Every Hindu Sanatana Dharmi should know that, “Vedas are the great sacred scripts and Puranas are the backbone of Hindu Sanatana Dharma philosophy”. All the eighteen Puranas contains essence of Hindu religion, civilization and culture.
To know the list of Purana names with meaning, you can visit the below link:
Bhagavan Sri Veda Vyasa Ji (he is an avatar of Bhagavan Sri Vishnu) has played a significant role in the field of Vedic and spiritual literature.
Bhagavan Sri Veda Vyasa Ji’s works have become guiding roadmap of Hindu Sanatana Dharma, philosophy and culture.
Bhagavan Sri Veda Vyasa Ji has compiled 18 different puranas called ‘Ashtadasha Maha Puranas’ (here ‘ashtadasha means eighteen)
This has been a great treasure gifted not only to the Hindu Sanatana Dharmi people, but rather to the whole world irrespective of the religions.
Bhagavan Sri Veda Vyasa ji compiled these 18 puranas to draw the attention of the reader or its listener towards the ultimate goal of Dharma and the Sarvottama / Supreme Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu.
All may not have the right to learn Vedas.
It should be noted that Bhagavan Sri Veda Vyaasa composed these puranas for the sake of those who have no access to Vedas to enlighten them on the Dhamic path.
First of all, let us understand what are the basics of Garuda Purana is:
The great Garuda Purana is one of those ‘Ashtadasha Maha Puranas’ (one of the 18 Maha Puranas) composed by Bhagavan Sri Veda Vyasa Ji.
This granta (divine book) is called Garuda Purana because, it was Garuda Raja the Divine Raja / King of Birds who first heard it from Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu.
This was in the form of a dialogue between the two (Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu and Garuda Raja).
Later, Garuda Raja recited the same to Maharshi Kashyapa that percolated down the line.
Garuda Purana contains about 19,000 shlokas and classified as Saatvika Purana.
Others in the list are:
The Brahma Purana
The Padma Purana
The Vishnu Purana
The Vaayu Purana
The Bhagavata Purana
The Narada Purana
The Markandeya Purana
The Agni Purana
The Bhavishya Purana
The Brahmavaivarta Purana
The Linga Purana
The Varaha Purana
The Skanda Purana
The Vamana Purana
The Kurma Purana
The Matsya Purana
The Brahmanda Purana
It is not at all possible to date great Garuda Purana.
This is because, there have been several revisions that would have been taken place and latest revision must have taken place during Sri Krishna avatar.
(Please remember that ordinary people can’t do the changes of these great Puranas – Here we are talking about either Bhagavan or other Demigods).
This happened, when Bhagavan Sri Veda Vyasa Ji edited and revised all Puranas before the birth of Bhagavan Sri Krishna.
Since it was Garuda (the Divine vehicle of Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu), who first heard it from the Primordial Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu, and thus the sacred Purana / script came to be named after Garuda Purana.
What are the contents of Garuda Purana
Similar to any other Bhagavan Vishnu related Puranas, Garuda Purana also deals with the different avatars / incarnations of Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu.
This Garuda Purana has contains:
Origin of the multiverses (unlimited Universes)
Genealogy of Demigods the Sages and the great Kings
Brief about Ramayana, Mahabharata, About Bhagavan Sri Krishna
The history of Suryavamasha / Solar family
The history of Chandravamsha / Lunar family’s dynasties
Informs about the origin and propagation of Garuda Raja
Description of Shodasa Samskaras (16 samskaras)
Different kinds of Austerities
Different methods of worship
Different ways of Praayaschitta (atoning for sins)
Divine & Sacred Mantras
Study of Gems and Jewels (Navaratnas), rare GemsVarious types & characteristics of Shalagrama
About Astrology related topics like electional astrology
Predictions based on physical traits the science of Physiognomy
Vaastu Shaastra related to Temples and Houses
Prominent places of Pilgrimage
Various types of daanas / charities and their significance
Go-daana (donating cows)
Why Garuda Purana is unique
The great Garuda Purana’s uniqueness lies in the fact that it is the only sacred granta / text that talks about the life after death.
Garuda Purana also tells us about:
The journey of the aatma / soul
Death of body and its aftermath
Rebirth or reincarnations etc
Today’s so called modern science could not break the mystery of death and after death’s consequences.
But, the great Garuda Purana has very clearly explains about these realities since unknown age and time.
Among the Shodasha Samskaras (16 samskaras) prescribed in Hindu Sanatana Dharma for a human being, last one is called as ‘Anthyeshti Samskara’ or ‘Apara Karma’ is related to matters pertaining to funeral rites and other ceremonies.
This ‘Apara Karma’ is exclusively and exhaustively explained in the great Garuda Purana.
Similarly, Garuda Purana also contains description about:
The Nether worlds,
The Yama Loka,
Various kinds of Naraka Lokas (Hells),
Experiences of the aatma / soul when it leaves the body,
Cycle of countless births the aatma / soul takes,
Law of Karma,
Fruits of Karma (actions and various types of works humans do),
Various types of punishments for sins committed
Detailed description of the Funeral rites to be performed
Funeral procedure including the rituals; followed by the ceremonies starting from death till the completion of one year including Sapindikarana
Shraaddha Asoucha Nirnaya
Significance of Kusha Grass (Dharbha), Sesame seeds (Tila), Lavana / salt,
Significance of Pinda daana Gaya Sraaddha etc.
What are the merits from Garuda Purana
As a dharmacharana / custom, the followers of the Hindu Sanatana Dharma families, paarayana (reading) of Garuda Purana takes place whenever there is a death in the family till the completion of 13th day ceremony (called Vaikuntta Samaraadhana).
During these 13 days, whoever reads and / or listens to the great Garuda Purana, he / she gains great punya (merits).
Those who narrate and the one who listen to the great and sacred Garuda Purana within ten days or even after the death of a person will get absolved from sins and is definitely assured of happiness in this world as well as in the next higher worlds.
Whereas, one who listens to Garuda Purana on the occasion of his Parents death, such parents will attain Moksha / Mukti and also he / she will be blessed with Dharmic progeny.
If someone listens the great Garuda Purana, that person will get rid of sorrows, suffering and will be blessed with peace and prosperity.
By listening to Garuda Purana:
A Brahmana will be bestowed with Vidya
A Kshatriya will be bestowed with Land
A Vaishya will be bestowed with wealth
A Shudra will get refined
If the narrator of Garuda Purana is worshiped, Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu will get pleased.
This is because it is as good as worshiping Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu himself (because the antaryaami of the narrator is Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu).
After listening or paarayana (reading) of Garuda Purana, giving daana / charity of any of the Shodasa Daanas (16 daanas) to a Brahmana is prescribed.
During Mahaalaya Pitru Paksha, listening to or reading of Garuda Purana is sacred and meritorious. This pleases our Pitrus (ancestors).
Doing daana / donating the sacred book of Garuda Purana to a Brahmana is also highly meritorious.
If someone reads the great Garuda Purana, one will get an opportunity to refine him-self and move on the Dharmic / righteous path.
Myths and clarifications about Garuda Purana
In today’s Kali Yuga, many people think that, the text of Garuda Purana is inauspicious and hence we shouldn’t read the Garuda Purana or the book shouldn’t be kept at home or should be read only on the occasion of death at home and not on other occasion.
Kali Yuga’s people hesitate to keep this sacred text at their homes or read it because of its fearful subject matter.
It is only a misconception and nothing else.
This is due to the contents of Garuda Purana.
Reading the great Garuda Purana will definitely change the mindset of an evil-doer or a sinner.
Just because the great Garuda Purana deals with death and its aftermath, it is incorrect to tag it as inauspicious.
Kali Yuga’s people are not ready to accept the reality. Kali Yuga’s people are the most fearful people.
In the most auspicious granta, that is, Bhagavad Gita, that is in chapter #2 and shloka #27 (Saankhya Yoga), Bhagavan Sri Sri Krishna says:
जातस्य हि ध्रुवो मृत्युर्ध्रुवं जन्म मृतस्य च |
तस्मादपरिहार्येऽर्थे न त्वं शोचितुमर्हसि || 27||
ಜಾತಸ್ಯ ಹಿ ಧ್ರುವೋ ಮೃತ್ಯು ರ್ಧ್ರುವಂ ಜನ್ಮ ಮೃತಸ್ಯ ಚ |
ತಸ್ಮಾದ ಪರಿಹಾರ್ಯೇஉರ್ಥೇ ನ ತ್ವಂ ಶೋಚಿತುಮರ್ಹಸಿ || 27 ||
jātasya hi dhruvo mṛityur dhruvaṁ janma mṛitasya cha |
tasmād aparihārye ’rthe na tvaṁ śhochitum arhasi || 27 ||
Death is certain for one who has been born, and rebirth is inevitable for one who has died. Therefore, you (Arjuna) should not lament over the inevitable.
In fact, death is a reality though we hesitate to accept because of lack of its knowledge in Kali Yuga.
Death grins only at those who have no understanding of Sanatana Dharma and that death can’t give any pain for those who understand its implications and working.
Death, can no more be a threat to a wise man.
Death is a major learning experience.
To be frank, the entire epic of the great Garuda Purana is in the form of glorious dialogue between Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu and his Divine vehicle Garuda Raja.
When it was narrated and explained by Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu Himself to Garuda Raja, how can it be inauspicious my dear friends? Just think it over again and again.
In this whole multiverses, there is only one thing which is inauspicious is hating and not following Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu’s words.
Even in Bhagavad Gita, Bhagavan Sri Krishna makes a reference to the law of Karma, death & its realities, reincarnation etc.
But we Kali Yuga people don’t consider reading and understanding the contents of the great Bhagavad Gita. In fact we should adore it.
Garuda Purana mentions about significance of Tulasi, Cow, Tila (sesame), Kusha (Dharbha) and also Garuda Purana describes all these as auspicious.
(Many people of Kali Yuga think the Tila (sesame) is inauspicious. No. It is highly auspicious. Tila is highly auspicious and lovable thing to Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu.)
We should always note that, tila and Darbha have been emerged out from the body of Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu.
One need not get scared with the contents of the great Garuda Purana either to read or to listen.
Garuda Purana can be treated as learning granta (sacred text).
Garuda Purana enhances one’s spiritual knowledge to discipline himself / herself and to follow the Dharmic / righteous path.
Garuda Purana acts as a speed breaker for a person who is driving his life very fastly and rashly.
Garuda Purana can be treated as a caution for wrongdoers and acts as a direction to avoid committing sins.
Dear friends, now tell me, is it not good to read Garuda Purana and understand its contents and implications when we are still alive?
Instead of our kids reading for us after our death, why don’t we start reading, understanding, following the great Garuda Purana from today and now itself.
I suggest that every one should read the granta / sacred text of Garuda Purana at least once in their life time and there is nothing inauspicious about it and it is only an illusion of Kali Yuga’s people.
न वासुदॆव भक्तानामशुभं विद्यतॆ क्वचित् ।
जन्म मृत्यु जराव्याधि भयं नैवॊपजायतॆ ॥ 11 ||
ನ ವಾಸುವೇವಭಕ್ತಾನಾಮಶುಭಂ ವಿದ್ಯತೇ ಕ್ವಚಿತ್ |
ಜನ್ಮಮೃತ್ಯುಜರಾವ್ಯಾಧಿಭಯಂ ನೈವೋಪಜಯತೇ || 11 ||
Na vasudevabhaktaanaam-ashubham vidyate kvachit |
Janma-mrutyu-jaraa-vyaadhi-bhayam naivopajaayate || 11 ||
No ill-fate befalls on the devotees of Bhagavan Sri Vasudeva (read as Vaasudeva and not as Vasudeva), that is, Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu and they will never have fear from birth, death, old age and diseases.
(One should always remember that death is inevitable, but the above meaning is that the ‘apamrutyu’, that is, death which may come early than the right time).
Sri Vishnu Sahasranama says:
वनमाली गदी शाङ्गी शङ्खी चक्री च नन्दकी ।
श्रीमान्नारायणॊ विष्णुर्–वासुदॆवॊஉभिरक्षतु ॥ 108 ॥
ವನಮಾಲೀ ಗದೀ ಶಾರ್ಜ್ಗೀ ಶಂಖೀ ಚಕ್ರೀ ಚ ನಂದಕೀ ।
ಶ್ರೀಮಾನ್ ನಾರಾಯಣೋ ವಿಷ್ಣುರ್ವಾಸುದೇವೋಭೀರಕ್ಷತು ।। 108 ॥
Vanamaali Gadee Shaarngi Shankee Chakree Cha Nandakee
SrimanNaaraayano Vishnur -Vaasudevoabhirakshathu || 108 ||
Meaning of this shloka is:
Srimann Narayana, who wears the daivi / divine garland of flowers (vanamaali), who has the mace (gada – Koumodaki), who has the bow (Shaarnga), who has the conch (Panchajanya), discus (chakra – Sudarshana chakra), and the sword (nandaki), may that Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu protect all of us.
To know more about the Garuda Raja and Garuda Panchami, you can visit the below link:
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