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Why did Lord Vishnu take the incarnation of a tortoise?

Why did Lord Vishnu take the incarnation of a tortoise?

Why did Lord Vishnu take the incarnation of a tortoise?
Why did Lord Vishnu take the incarnation of a tortoise?

Samudra or Amrit manthan story | Why Lord Vishnu took kurma avatar?

Once devas or the demigods lost their immortality due to a curse by the short-tempered sage Durvasa. The sage had once presented a garland of flowers to Indra, the king of demigods, who carelessly gave it away to his elephant which stepped on it. Lord Vishnu asked them to churn the ocean of milk. However, this task wasn't something the Devas could do by themselves.

Vishnu said that they would need the help of the Asuras to accomplish this task. Although the Devas and the Asuras were never on good terms and were known to disrupt each other's lives, they agreed with this cause in exchange for the offer to share Amrit or the nectar of immortality that would ensure their invincibility. Upon the news of the co-operation between the Devas and Asuras, Vishnu told them what exactly to do. In the universe is a sacred ocean of milk. They would have to throw all kinds of vegetables, grass, creepers, and herbs into that ocean and churn it.

From this churning he said, would come the nectar of immortality. To churn the ocean they would have to use the golden mountain, Mandara as a churning rod. With great difficulty and Lord Vishnu's help, they managed to lift and transfer mount Mandara to the milk ocean; they used Vasuki as a rope. In the beginning, playing a trick, Indra asked the Asuras for the head end of Vasuki, but Asuras suspecting foul play took the head end. Only to be deceived as the poison from Vasuki was slowly weakening them. Wrapping Vasuki around the mountain, the demons took hold of his head and the demigods took his tail and began churning the ocean.

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They tried to churn, but the mountain sank into the ocean and they began to despair. Then Vishnu took the form of a gigantic tortoise (Kurma) and supported the mountain on his back. In the form of a giant tortoise, he balanced the opposing force of the demons and the demigods about the churning rod of mount Mandara in the milk ocean. The demons and the demigods started to churn again back and forth. Kurma felt as though they were scratching an itch on his back and this gave him pleasure.

The first thing the churning produced was a deadly poison that threatened the whole world. This was selflessly drunk by Lord Shiva to save everyone. As they continued churning many wonderful things came out of the ocean, but at last, they got what they wanted the Nectar of immortality. Both groups wanted the Amrit and a quarrel developed. Vishnu came to the aid of the demigods to help them get the Nectar for themselves. Lord Vishnu took the form of an apsara, a beautiful maiden named Mohini, and seduced the Asuras into letting her distribute the nectar and also abide by her order of distribution.

As soon as the Devas were served, Mohini disappeared thus deceiving the Asuras and making them weak. Seeing that they had lost the Amrit, the Asuras attacked the Devas and after a terrible battle, the Asuras were defeated. In the end, the Devas, who were his devotees of Vishnu, got the nectar.


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