Vishnu's Sudarshan Chakra is a very powerful weapon. Most of Vishnu's battles were won through the Chakra. Now, I want to know what were the instances in which Sudarshan Chakra had to face defeat.

I have also heard that Hanuman once ate up the chakra.


The story of Daksha's Yajna, Devi Sati's demise is quite well known. When Lord Shiva received the news of Sati's demise he was furious and he created out of himself a terrifying demon called "Virabhadra".

And Virabhadra did defeat Lord Vishnu and his powerful weapon, the Sudarshana Chakra.

Quoting the relevant portions from the Kurma Purana:

Virabhadra had a thousand heads, a thousand feet, a thousand eyes and a thousand arms. His body shone with radiance like the sun at the time of destruction. The thousand arms held all sorts of weapons in them.

“What are my orders?” Virabhadra asked Shiva.

“Go and destroy Daksha’s yajna,” was the reply.

Virabhadra ascended a bull and set out for Daksha’s house. He created thousands and thousands of demons who would aid him in the task of destruction. These demons were armed with spears, tridents, maces, clubs and stones. Parvati also created a goddess named Bhadrakali who would help Virabhadra.........

Vishnu himself came to intervene and Virabhadra began to fight with Vishnu.

Vishnu has a wonderful weapon named sudarshana chakra (a bladed-discuss) and he hurled this at Virabhadra. But Virabhadra easily repelled this weapon with his arrows. Vishnu is carried by Garuda, king of the birds. Garuda attacked Virabhadra, but so fierce was Virabhadra, that Garuda had to flee. The entire universe marvelled to see that Virabhadra could thus vanquish Vishnu and Garuda.

So,this incident records one failure of the Sudarsana Chakra.

Edit- Adding yet another incident where Vishnu's weapons (including the Sudarshana Chakra) failed.

This incident is mentioned in the Linga Purana where Rishi Dadhichi proves the superiority of Shiva-Shakti to king Ksupa. You should read the whole story from the above link. I'm quoting below only the relevant portions from that page.

Brahma’s son King Kshupa and Maha Muni Dadhichi the son of Maharshi Chyavana were good friends but got entangled in an argument whether Kshatriyas were superior to Brahmanas......

As Dadhici accomplished indestructibility of his bones thanks to his exemplary devotion to Parama Shiva, the Muni retaliated King Kshupa and hit him hard when the latter remembered Vishnu and prayed to him very sincerely:....

As Bhagavan appeared before the King who was a life -long Bhakta of his, the King narrated the entire background as to how he was insulted and humbled and requested Vishnu that Dadhichi the invincible due to his devotion to Shiva had turned arrogant and hence must be taught a lesson. Vishnu assumed the form of a Brahmana and sought a boon from Dadhichi, the Shiva Bhakta. As Dadhichi had the powers of recognition, he recognised Vishnu and a smiling Vishnu complimented the Muni and stated that since the Muni was a Shiva Bhakta he should be afraid of nothing including Vishnu. As Dadhichi asserted so and even belittlled Vishnu; Vishnu grew angry with the brazen and bold behaviour of the Muni, and got ready to fight; as Vishnu readied to instruct his Sudashana Chakra, Dadhichi joked that Shiva gifted the Chakra and thus would not hurt a Shiva Bhakta and similarly Brahmastra would not work anyway. Vishnu got furious and tried various other Astra-Shastras but Dadhichi used Kusha grass tops and the Vishnu’s Astras proved ineffective. As a final resort Vishnu spread his Maya and created crores of his own Swarupas, crores of Devas and of Munis. Dadhichi shouted on Vishnu, ‘Lord! Please do not utilise your old tricks of Vishnu Maya on me but instead look at me as Parama Shiva in whose body you could vision every body including yourself and the entire ‘Brahmanda’. As Dadhichi said so, Devatas got frightened and flew away and Vishnu became still and motionless! Dadhichi then cursed Devas for their deeds against him and forewarned them that at the time of Daksha Yagna in the future, Rudra Deva would teach a lesson to all including Vishnu! As the Maharshi said this and returned to his ‘Ashram’, everybody including Brahma and Devas, let alone the King Kshupa followed him and paid respects to him and that Place came to be famed as Sthaaneshwara there after.

  • This incident also clearly proves that Shiva is more powerful than Vishnu. – Indu Bhusan Nath Mar 29 '16 at 5:30
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    You should not differentiate between the Trinities.Its a grave sin.Shiva and Vishnu are one.Since we all live in dulaties we can't realise this unity.A true devotee of Shiva is a devotee of Vishnu and also vice versa. – Rickross Mar 29 '16 at 5:41
  • Yes, it is. I agree. But, in terms of might, Shiva is superior to Vishnu. – Indu Bhusan Nath Mar 30 '16 at 12:52
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    @InduBhusanNath The whole creation is the ecstasy of the ultimate reality. Ultimate reality is transcendental & Aishwarya as well along with infinite attributes or power. That transcendence is seen as Lord Shiva & Aishwarya as Lord Vishnu. You shouldn't differentiate between Gods. All that is Brahman alone. – ㅤㅤㅤㅤㅤ Mar 30 '17 at 15:20
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    @ParthaBanerjee We belong to the same school but some people are different and understandably so .. :) remember the rule – Rickross Jan 29 '19 at 6:30

Yes , there is instance mentioned in Mahabharata where sudarshana Chakra has to fail to harm a Datya (Graha) called "Mandara ". Mandara was son of well known daitya Hiranyakashipu from the boon obtained from Mahadeva in fighting Indra for a million years , the war is known as devasur-Sangram. This is mentioned in Mahabharata - Anushasan Parva - Danadharma Parva - SECTION XIV (14) .

सुदर्शनं तदा तस्य लोके नाम परतिष्ठितम् |
तज्जिर्णमभवत तात ग्रहास्याङ्गेषु केशव ||79 ||
ग्रहस्यातिबलस्यङ्गे वरदत्त्स्य धीमत : |
न शस्त्राणि वहन्त्यङ्गे चक्रवज्रशतान्यापि ||80 ||

P 42 . He who took his birth as the Danava named Hiranyakashipu, whose strength was so great that he could shake the very mountains of Meru, succeeded in obtaining from Mahadeva the puissance belonging to all the deities and enjoyed it for ten millions of years. He who was the foremost of all his sons and who was celebrated by the name of Mandara, succeeded, through the boon he had obtained from Mahadeva, in fighting Sakra for a million of years. The terrible discus of Vishnu and the thunderbolt of Indra were both unable to make the slightest impression, O Kesava, in days of yore, upon the body of that great cause of universal affliction. The discus which thou bearest, O sinless one, was given unto thee by Mahadeva after he had slain a Daitya that was proud of his strength and used to live within the waters. That discus, blazing with energy and like unto fire, was created by the great god having for his device the bull. Wonderful and irresistible in energy it was given unto thee by that illustrious god. In consequence of its blazing energy it was incapable of being gazed at by any person save Siva the wielder of Pinaka. It was for this reason that Bhava (Siva) bestowed upon it the name of Sudarsana. From that time the name Sudarsana came to be current in all the worlds. Even the weapon, O Kesava, failed to make the slightest impression on the body of Hiranyakashipu's son Mandara, that appeared like an evil planet in the three worlds. Hundreds of Chakras like thine and thunderbolts like that of Sakra, could not inflict a scratch on the body of that evil planet endued with great might, who had obtained a boon from Mahadeva. Afflicted by the mighty Mandara, the deities fought hard against him and his associates, all of whom had obtained boons from Mahadeva. Gratified with another Danava named Vidyutprabha, Mahadeva

So its clear that in the war between Devas and Danavas , due to a boon obtained, the Sudarshan Chakra was unable to harm the Danava Mandara.


Yes, Hanuman once swallowed Sudarshana Chakra. The story is as follows:

Sudarshana Chakra and numerous other items and people associated with Vishnu had grown in pride in the Dwapara Yuga. To curb the unwanted pride of his attendants, Krishna took the help of Hanuman. The story of Hanuman Swallowing Sudarshana Chakra is part of this attempt.

Hanuman was in deep meditation in Himalayas and was not aware that Treta Yuga had ended and Dwapara Yuga had begun. He was also not aware of the avatar of Sri Krishna. Hanuman constantly meditated on Sri Ram.

So once, Sri Krishna asked Garuda to take his message to Hanuman. Krishna had asked to carry the message that ‘Sri Rama is Calling You.’ On receiving the message, Hanuman immediately flew in full speed to Dwarka.

Sri Krishna had deputed Sudarshana Chakra to guard the main gate as he was expecting an important guest.

Sudarshana Chakra prided in his strength and thought he was invincible.

Hanuman soon reached Dwarka but was stopped by Sudarshana Chakra. Hanuman did not want to waste time in unwanted arguments. So he grabbed Sudarshana Chakra and swallowed it.

Soon Sri Krishna and Rukhmini appeared before Hanuman as Sri Ram and Sita. Hanuman’s eyes were teeming with joy and he prostrated himself to them.

Soon Sri Krishna asked Hanuman had someone stopped him from entering the palace.

Hanuman then told that a metallic discuss tried to stop him and as he was in a hurry, he did not want to exchange blows so he simply swallowed him.

Soon, Hanuman spat out Sudarshana Chakra, who realized his mistake, and never again prided about his strength or in the association with Vishnu.

  • This is a good one – user4698 Jan 25 '16 at 12:17
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    Welcome to Hinduism.SE! You should cite sources. – Keshav Srinivasan Jan 25 '16 at 13:06
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    @user4698 Story of Rama happened in 24th Treta Yuga and Story of Krishna happened in 28th Dwapa Yuga. You should cite sources to back your answer. This story might be folk fore. – The Destroyer Jan 25 '16 at 17:04
  • Downvoted as no sources are given. – Wikash_ Jan 26 '19 at 22:38

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