Vidyasankar Sundaresan vsundaresan at HOTMAIL.COM
Thu Jun 17 05:04:29 UTC 1999

Periannan Chandrasekaran <perichandra at YAHOO.COM> wrote:

>The Tamil god murukan2' is said to have destroyed an *asura*  who is
>said to have had the head of a horse and the body ofa  human; that is
>considered a very old tradition.
>It is intriguing to see the same icon being employed as a deamon in one
>myth and as a god in another. How old is this hayagrIva viSNu icon?

There is a Puranic myth in which an Asura with a human body and horse head
steals the Vedas when Brahma is asleep between two kalpas. Vishnu has to
take a similar form as the Asura in order to kill him and retrieve the
Vedas. I forget the exact Puranic source, but it should not be difficult to
track down.

In the Brahmanda Purana, it is Vishnu-Hayagriva who reveals the worship of
Sakti to Agastya and others.


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