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Vedas glorify Indra as a hero but most Puraans show him in a bad light?

For example:

  1. Indra's cheating Vritra after befriending him
  2. Indra's killing of Namuchi
  3. The Ahalya episode
  4. Indra stealing horses from Ashwamedh Yagnyas

Was it just a political thing as some western Indologists say or is there a Vedic basis to the stories of Indra's treachery?

  • 1
    It is not easy for one to maintain his saintly behavior after getting so much power and authorities. Indra is King of Gods and that post is enough one to store ego inside of him (even without his wish). Ego force one to do all those things which are against dharma. That's why it is said that one should only store that many things which are his needs, not more than that. Else more storage can cause ego and you will ended up doing any sin. Storage can be of anything like property, money ect. More you have, more ego will get and more chances you will have to do any sin coz of ego. – Rishabh Jul 28 '17 at 7:45
  • I agree with this assessment but there are many who feel that the Puranic depictions are distortions to bring down Indra's significance. It could be true if there are no verses in Vedas that put Indra in any bad light hence my question. In case of any doubt we are supposed to believe the version that Shruti texts share rather than what's written in Smriti so it would be good to have at least some hints about his misbehavior in the Vedas as well! – Dr. Vineet Aggarwal Jul 28 '17 at 8:04
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    Vedas never gives details about someone's karma (deeds). And you can't judge a person fully without seeing his karma. And to see his karma you have to go for purana instead of Vedas. In Vedas, Indra's nature or importance has been described And in purana, his deeds has been described. And some of his deeds are full of sins. – Rishabh Jul 28 '17 at 8:13
  • @Rishabh actually thats not completely right. Vedas talk about so many deeds for Indra - his defeat of Vritra, realeasing the waters, breaking Vala, beheading Namuchi, helping some kings and so many other deeds are mentioned! – Dr. Vineet Aggarwal Jul 28 '17 at 8:20
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    @Dr.VineetAggarwal there was no political reason at All, Indra is shown in positive light during vritra vadh in puranas too, but Vedas too condemn Indra for his lust. Such nonsense speculation is commonplace by indologists. They totally forget that Vedic indra is much more sinful than the puranic one. – Anubhav Jha Mar 26 '18 at 15:05

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