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Shanta Karam Bhujaga Shayanam,

Padmanabham Suresham.

Vishvadharam Gagana Sadrusham,

Megha Varnam Shubhangam.

Lakshmi Kantam Kamala Nayanam,

Yogibhir Dhyana Gamyam.

Vande Vishnum Bhava Bhaya Haram,

Sarva Lokaia Kanatham.

According to this shloka, Lord Vishnu is referred Kamala Nayan. Is there any story behind this?

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According to Shiva purana and other sacred scripts narrate an incident where Vishnu prays Shiva for a powerful weapon Chakra to fight against the demons.

He was advised to offer 1000 Neelkamals (Blue Lotuses) in performing Pooja so that Shiva would be pleased to grant the boon as desired. Vishnu collects the Neelkamals and offers these Neelkamals one after the other. But surprisingly there was one short of a thousand. He could offer 999 lotuses only. Immediately Vishnu took out one of his eyes and offered it as the thousandth Neelkamal.

Shiva was pleased with the sincere Pooja of Vishnu. Since Vishnu offered his eye in place of lotus Shiva named Vishnu as ‘Kamal Nayan’ to mean one who has eyes like lotus. Shiva gave a Chakra to Vishnu.

  • 2
    Can you provide the verse from Shiva purana which says it is because of Vishnu removing his eye, he is known as Kamala Nayana. – user808 Aug 10 '15 at 13:35
  • @Krishna i have listen these story from most of gentle men and have some some research scripts pdf of spiritual books which prove that that incident related to Shiva purana or Vishnu purana. – Garg's Aug 11 '15 at 4:48
  • @@Garg - Still this being incident is part of Shiva purana, you should provide the actual verses. FYI, Vishnu Purana doesnt have any such incident between Shiva and Vishnu. How, do you know that the gentlemen you are talking about are not infering it from shiva purana incident and it may not be mentioned per se in Siva purana – user808 Aug 11 '15 at 7:48
  • @@Garg - You are not sure whether it is in Vishnu or Shiva purana. This itself shows it does raise a lot of eye brows and doubts on your answer – user808 Aug 11 '15 at 7:52
  • @Krishna ji i have answer the question which i like my best it contain no false or not my opinion ...................... if have its more appropriate answer please give me .... i welcome your answer – Garg's Aug 11 '15 at 8:54
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In Chandogya upanidshad, In the the first adhyaya, the following passages dealing with the meditation of udgita, a hymn of samaveda covering the syllable Aum, refers to purusha who is seen within the sun and also within the eye with certain descriptions

Atha ya eso antaradtiye hiranmayah purusah drisyate hiranya………….tasya yatha kapyasam pundarikam akshini (Chandogya Upan. 1.6.6 and 1.6.7)

The Purusha referred in these passages denotes brahman. The supreme brahman having golden body implies the effulgent character of brahman. The red color of the eyes signifies the eyes similar to lotus petals ( Kapyasam pundarikam akshini).

1. Shankara in his commentary says this passages refer to the Saguna Brahman

2. According to Ramanuja the purusha is supreme person endowed with attributes and posses a spiritual body out of his own will.

3. According to Madhva, the purusha referred in these passages is supreme god, hari who posses blissful body and lotus like eyes.

The word Pundarikaksa (lotus eyed ) indicates the supreme purusa in the orb of Sun with lotus eyes.

The Taittiriya Upanishad says that the purusha in surya mandala is the same as the purusha in t he Hrdaya-Pundarika .i.e lotus heart. The Purusha in the sun prayed for daily by gayatri mantra is our in our lotus heart. Shankara suggests this by saying that the pundarikaksha is shining as Vasudeva in our lotus heart

So, Lord Vishnu who is identified as the supreme brahman is described in the Upanishads as having eyes like lotus petals . Hence, Lord Vishnu is known as Kamala Nayana.

Now let us see how Lord Vishnu is described as lotus eyed as per Vishnu sahsranama bhasya (commentry on Vishnu saharanama) by Adi Shankara and Sri Parasara Bhattar

Vishnu Sahasra Nama 40 : Pushkaraksah (Lotus eyed)

Parasara Bhattar provides the following meanings :

1. The lord with his lotus petals profusely rains grace on his devotees and nourishes and develops their devotion.

2. The lord has lotus like eyes to enjoy fully the loveliness of Goddess Lakshmi who also called Kamala.

3. As he resides in suryamandala, his two eyes appear like two lotuses blossomed by the sunlight

Shankara says : Lotus eyed

Vishnu Sahasra Nama 111 : Pundarikaksah

Shankara gives the following meaning

1. He is seen and realized in lotus heart

2. He has lotus like eyes (Kamala nayana)

Parasara Bhattar gives the following meaning : He is the eye of all mukthas in the paramapada called pundarika

Vishnu Sahsranama Nama 615 : Swaksha

Shankara : Lord has two eyes resembling lovely lotuses.

Parasara Bhatta : The glance of eyes removes the miseries of devotees. Hence Lord is said to have eyes like lotus petals

All this clearly indicate Why Lord Vishnu is called Kamala Nayana or Pundarikaksha or Pushkaraksha or Swaksha, because Sruti says the supreme brahman of Vedas and vedanta, who is identified with Lord Vishnu has eyes like Lotus petals.

Therefore Lord Vishnu has epithets called Kamala nayana, Pundarikaksha, Pushkaraksha, Swaksha etc which means Supreme Lord with lotus like eyes (Kapyasam pundarikam akshini).

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The word Kamala Nayanam is a symbolic one used to describe the qualities of Bhagavan Vishnu:

Q. What is Kamala Nayanam? One with eyes like a lotus?

A. What does Kamala Nayanam mean?

Kamal is lotus. Nayan is eyes.

Kamal is in water, but doesn't get wet and is fully blossomed. The mud doesn't get stuck to it. If you can see, but nothing enters inside... See, but no desires comes because you see.

Eyes that are bright, with all the energy reflected in them and ones that don't get affected or have any desire by whatever they see. That's Kamala Nayanam!

Referenced from a Q&A with Sri Sri Ravi Shankar.

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