The problem with our Religious Texts is that it is extremely difficult to understand the real meaning for practical use on any issue, because, in the first place our Gurus do not want that to happen and secondly Hindu society is totally Passive, and finally the texts are too voluminous with the result that the real physical meaning is lost.
An example will help. Matsya Avatar, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, escorted the desperate persons left from earlier Mahayug/Kalp to the new one. The difference in years from the previous Kalyug to the next Satyayug is 7,20,000 years, which is also called Sandhi Kaal, or interim period. This period makes sense as the traces of earlier civilization totally disappeared, earth recharged itself, and the only possible life during this period was at sea of those desperate people who were fighting for survival. The earth, after the Sandhi Kaal of 7,20,000 years became ready to welcome the new civilization or Satya Yug.
Note: we do not know the definition of year used in ancient text, so the period in years could change.
Now leaving the texts aside how or why was fish given the prominence of Avatar during this period. Was it because there was no other food available and fishes were also available in a limited area, known as Bharat, but then under sea. The reader has to draw his own conclusion. Remember physical realities and how we handle them for the progress of humanity defines Dharm. Yet our religious leaders shy away from explaining these. So as far as Matsya avatar is concerned, I will leave readers to define this.
There are physical phenomena defining a Mahayug/Kalp. If this was not so Hindu scripture would not have mentioned Yugs, Mahayugs, in case they could not be classified on the basis of physical phenomena.The most important is the birth of Rahu and Ketu during start of Satyayug and end/death of them at the end of Kalyug. So Kurma avatar or tortoise signifies the start of wave movement at sea, and perhaps (??) Kalika avatar, or rather the end of Kalika avatar would signify the STOPPAGE of all wave movement at seas, and death of Rahu and Ketu. Here Kurma Avatar simply signifies the start of wave movement at sea and perhaps Kurma, on its own, had NOTHING to do with the start of wave movement.
Yes Kurma avatar also signifies the birth of Rahu and Ketu. So now at least we have one physical phenomena defining the start of a new Mahayug, and that is birth of Rahu and Ketu, and Kurma avatar signifies this. Rahu and Ketu are the orbital nodes of the Moon, that is, the points where the orbit of the Moon crosses the ecliptic (which is the apparent path of the Sun across the heavens against the background stars). The ascending node, Rahu, is where the moon crosses to the north of the ecliptic. The descending node, Ketu is where it crosses to the south.I will not discuss Kalika avatar as I do not have information regarding this.
Similar is the case of Varah Avatar. While Kurma stayed in sea and also ventured out and stayed on land, Varah, was purely a land animal. Varah avatar signifies significant release of land by the receding sea water. Once again, it is difficult to understand anything more from this. AS MORE AND MORE LAND BECAME AVAILABLE TO THE PEOPLE THEN, THEY WOULD SEE VARAH MOVING AROUND IN FOREST.
I do not intend to discuss all the avatars. My intention is to let the readers understand the significance of avatar, and then define avatar.Another important avatar is Narsingh avatar. Since this blog does not believe in supernatural powers, you have to view things here on physical plane and understand how evolution progressed. We have everything in our ancient texts but those have never been explained rationally. To understand how evolution progressed, please read: HINDU HISTORY... START OF A NEW KALP
Narsingh was an evolved human with tail. His face resembled that of a lion. During the fight with Rakshas king Hirnakashyap, for the first time evolved humans and people from civilized society joined hands, and managed to defeat Rakshas. Hirnakashyap was killed by Narsingh. Narsingh Avatar even today signifies the human efforts to join hand in distress and fight against a common enemy. It is true that Rakshas were also humans, but they were human flesh eaters and killed humans for that purpose, as such they were enemy of Humanity.Then humanity witnessed Avatars like Parashuram, Ram, and then Parashuram once again in Dwapar Yug, then Balram and Krishna. These avatars played more significant role in making corrections in the then human societies.
Matsya Avatar PROVIDED conditions for humanity to survive.
Kurma and Varah avatar SIGNIFY significant improvement in condition for humanity to survive.Note: It is important to understand the difference between ‘Signify’ and ‘provide’.
Vaaman Avatar and Narsingh made one time correction in conditions of Human Society.Parashuram, Ram, then again Parashuram, Balram and Krishna were present with humanity for a longer period to make necessary corrections. Note here longer period means historical records however weak are available on them for their life.
Avatars as such either signify or provide (like in case of Matsya avatar) significant improvement in condition for humanity to survive. Avatars, as incarnation of God (in human form), make corrections in society, as and when humanity is in deep distress.And the physical effort made for the progress of society or humanity is Dharm.You may also like to read: