A THREAD THROUGH 'SRIMADBHAGABAT' , 'GEETAGOVINDA' of JAIDEV and TERRA COTTA TEMPLES of BENGAL
Krsna told Arjuna , before the start of Kurukshetra war, about the Incarnations of Supreme Power through ages , in the timeless ‘sloka’, which is copied here in Bengali script :
Loosely translated, this ‘sloka’ means :
‘I make appearances through ages to rescue the Pious , to annihilate the miscreants and to preserve religious faith .’
The first verse of Jaidev’s GeetaGovinda is dedicated to the ten Incarnations of Lord Bishnu: Meena (Fish), Kurma (Tortoise), Baraha (Boar), Nrisinha (Man Lion) ,Bali (Dwarf), Parasuram, Rama, Balarama, Buddha and Kalki.According to Hindu mythology, nine of these Incarnations have already taken place and the last one, Kalki is yet to make His appearance.Each Incarnation is associated with a period of history and follows the trail of evolution of life and human race. First three Incarnations have sub-human forms. Fourth is anthropomorphic, fifth is a dwarf. Rest have normal human forms.
Jaidev’s 'Dash-avatar' is devotional and lyrical. But, that of SrimadBhagabat offers another angle to the reader. It says: God ( Lord Bishnu) has not only ten Incarnations, He has ten manifestations too. It is being established here : as Atma , the ‘soul’ , will have many ‘forms’ through re-births, ‘Parama-atma’, the Divine Soul also has many Forms too. Each of these forms has one or more very special connotation and/or story associated with it.
A panel with eight Incarnations - JorBangla temple,Bishnupur
Those, who are interested to delve into more details about these Incarnations and Manifestations, may please take the trouble of referring to the third chapter of SrimadBhagabat.