Belur Chennakeshava Temple: Varahavatara, the third avatar of Vishnu

Belur Chennkeshava Temple -Varahavatara


The image shows a sculptural relief depicting the story of Varahavatara, the third of the ten avatars of Vishnu. Varaha in Sanskrit means wild boar. In this avatar, he assumes the form of a wild boar and rescues Bhudevi (Mother Earth) from an evil demon named Hiranyaksha, who was tormenting her.

As you can see from the image, Vishnu as Varaha is lifting Bhudevi with his tusks while Hiranyaksha lay dying on the ground killed by Vishnu.

The story of Varahavatara is a popular theme in both Chalukya and Hoysala temples. Both the Chennakeshava and the Holysalesvara temples have several reliefs carved into their walls. The Badami caves also have reliefs depicting Varahavatara.

Other Varahavatara Pages
Varahavatara – Sculptural relief in Cave – 2
Varahavatara – Sculptural relief in Cave – 3
Varahavatara – Sculpture installed in a devakoshta of the Durga Temple at Aihole
Varahavatara – Sculptural relief mounted on the outer wall of Somanathapura Keshava Temple in Karnataka, India.

Hoysala Temples
Belur Chennakeshava Temple – Bracket Figures
Belur Chennakeshava Temple – Navaranga
Belur Chennakeshava Temple – Garbhagriha Outer Wall
Kappe Chennigaraya Shrine
Somanathapura Keshava Temple
Badami Chalukya Temples
Badami, Cave – 1, Cave – 2, Cave – 3, Cave – 4
Durga Temple at Aihole

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