Narayana (Sanskrit: नारायण, IAST: Nārāyaṇa), another
name for Vishnu, is the supreme absolute being in
Hinduism and is
considered as the supreme deity in Vaishnavism. The Bhagavata Purana
Narayana as the
Para Brahman (Supreme Lord) who creates
unlimited universes and enters each one of them as Lord of the
Narayana engages in the creation of 14 worlds within the universe as
Brahma when he deliberately accepts rajas guna.
sustains, maintains and preserves the universe as Vishnu. In Shaivism,
Narayan also accepts sattva guna and annihilates the universe at the
end of maha-kalpa as
Rudra when he accepts tamas
guna. According to the Bhagavata Purana, Lord
Narayana is the
supreme controller and is supreme among deities, the ultimate soul. He
is also called as Surya Narayana, one who shines like the brilliant
sun.  He is said to pervade whatever is seen or heard in this
universe from inside and outside alike. He is also mainly
associated with the cosmic waters of creation.
According to Madhvacharya,
Narayana is one of the five vyuhas of
Kṛṣṇa, which are cosmic emanations of God in contrast to his
2 Ancient Texts
5 See also
7 External links
Vedas and Puranas, Lord
Narayana is described as having the
divine blue colour of water-filled clouds, four-armed, holding a padma
Panchajanya shankha (conch) and the
Sudarshana Chakra (discus).
Narayana is also often identified as Sharangapani, Vishnu, Hari,
Jagannath in the Hindu sacred texts such
as the Bhagavad Gita, the
Vedas and the Puranas.
Narayana is also
venerated as Mukunda (giver of Moksha, liberation from cycle of
births and deaths in the material world). In the Mahabharata, Krishna
is often referred to as
Arjuna as Nara. The epic
identifies them both in plural 'Krishnas', or as part incarnations of
the earlier incarnations of Vishnu, recalling their mystical identity
Narayana is also described in the
Bhagavad Gita as having a universal
form (Vishvarupa) which is beyond the ordinary limits of human
perception or imagination.
Narayana's eternal and supreme abode beyond the material universe is
Vaikuntha which is a realm of bliss and happiness called Paramapadha,
which means final or highest place for liberated souls, where they
enjoy bliss and happiness for eternity in the company of supreme lord.
Vaikuntha is situated beyond the material universe and hence, cannot
be perceived or measured by material science or logic. Sometimes,
Ksheera Sagara where
Vishnu rests on Ananta
Shesha is also
Vaikuntha within the material universe.
Narayana is hailed in each and every part of
Narayana is also hailed in the
Upanishads like, Narayana
Upanishad, Isopanishad, Chandogya Upanishad, Brihadaranyaka Upanishad,
Mundaka Upanishad, Mandukya Upanishad, Katha Upanishad, Kenopanishad,
Prasna Upanishad, Svetasvatara Upanishad, Maha
Narasimha Tapani Upanishad.
There are multiple variations of Lord Narayana's name.
The word 'Narayana' means "The one who rests on waters of creation".
The waters are called "narah", for the waters are, indeed, produced by
Nara-Narayana (the first Being); as they were his first residence
"ayana", he is called Narayana.
Narayana also means,
"The Supreme Being who is the foundation of all men".
Another interpretation sees,
Nara means "human" and Ayana as "direction/goal". Some view Narayana
as meaning "son of man." Hence,
Narayana refers to the "direction of a
human" (towards moksha).
Nara means "Human" and Ayana also means "Shelter" so
shelter of all human beings. The
Narayana Upanishad reads:
Om Namo Narayanayeti mantra upasaka
Vaikuntha bhuvanam gamishyati,
In Sanskrit, The word 'Nara' can also refer to a man, male or a
Narayana is spoken of in the scriptures as being
parabrahman, paramatma parameshwar parashakti and parajyothi which are
all ways of saying "absolute" or "supreme".
In the Vedas, it is written,
Narayana parabrahman tatvam
which points to how
Narayana is essentially the supreme force and/or
essence of all.
Narayan Temple on Narayanhiti palace premises,Kathmandu,Nepal
Oldest Sridhar Narayan statue at Naksaal, Kathmandu
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Narayana.
Bhagavata Purana Canto 2 Chapter 10 Verse 10
Bhagavata Purana Canto 2 Chapter 5 Verse 16-18
Bhagavata Purana Canto 11 Chapter 4 Verse 5
Vishnu Purana 1.2.61-63
Bhagavata Purana (12.12.56): "Narayanam Devam adevam isam - Lord
Narayana, the Supreme controller and the ultimate Soul of all
existence, beyond whom there is no other God.
Bhagavata Purana (12.13.16): Just as the river Ganges is the
greatest of all rivers, Lord Achyuta (
Vishnu or Narayana) the supreme
among deities (devas) and Lord Shambhu (Shiva) the greatest of
Bhagavata Purana is the greatest of all Puranas.
^ Bryant, Edwin F., Krishna: a Sourcebook. p.359 "Madhvacharya
separates Vishnu’s manifestations into two groups: Vishnu’s vyuhas
(emanations) and His avataras (incarnations). The vyuhas have their
basis in the
Pancharatra agamas, a sectarian text that was accepted as
authoritative by both the
Vishishtadvaita and Madhva schools of
Vedanta. They are mechanisms by which the universe is ordered, was
created, and evolves. According to Madhvacharya,
Vishnu has either
four or five vyuhas, named Narayana, Vasudeva, Sankarshana, Pradyumna
and Aniruddha, which evolve one after the other in the development of
the universe. The status of the fifth vyuha, Narayana, is not clear,
and in some passages, he is not even mentioned."
Bhagavad Gita (15.18): Because I am transcendental, beyond the
fallible and the infallible, and because I am the greatest, I am
celebrated both in the world and in the
Vedas as that Supreme Person
^ Name No. 515 in
^ Vaisnavism Saivism and Minor Religious Systems, Ramkrishna Gopal
Bhandarkar. Published by Asian Educational Services, p.46.
^ Hiltebeitel, Alf (1990). The ritual of battle:
Krishna in the
Mahābhārata. Albany, N.Y: State University of New York Press.
ISBN 0-7914-0249-5. p61
^ Prabhupada, AC Bhaktivedanta. "Bhagavad-gita As It Is Chapter 11
Verse 3". vedabase.net. Archived from the original on 15 May 2008.
Retrieved 10 May 2008. "see the cosmic manifestation"
^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 15 May 2007.
Retrieved 21 May 2007.
^ "Narayanastra – Defending
Vaishnavism as the supreme Vedic
position". narayanastra.blogspot.in. Retrieved 2015-10-21.
^ Manu Smruti 1:10 " The Law Code of Manu", Published by Oxford
University Press, ISBN 0-19-280271-2, page 11, also, The Laws of
Manu in the 21st Century  by Pt. Sri
Ramanuja Acharya, page 6
^ Harivansh, Adhyay 88 shlock 44, also, Manu Smruti 1:10 " The Law
Code of Manu", Published by Oxford University Press,
ISBN 0-19-280271-2, page 11
^ "॥ नारायणसूक्तम् सार्थ ॥ -
Narayana Sukta .. -
Sanskrit Documents". sanskritdocuments.org.
Narayana even at the time of death can save a great sinner,
http://www.srivaishnavan.com/ans_secrets.html (See Answer #14.)
Narayana and Ayurveda
Avatars of Vishnu
1 The list of ten avatars varies regionally. The two
substitutions involve Balarama,
Krishna and Buddha is considered the
avatar of Vishnu.
Krishna is almost always included; in exceptions, he
is considered the sour