Vishnu: A Step Toward the Infinite



By: S. Deepak Raj
April 2015
Distributed by Coronet Books
ISBN: 9788121512664
254 Pages, Illustrated
$62.50 Hardcover


Indian culture is rich and its philosophy is robust, deep and capable of providing convincing answers to all questions. Since explaining the details of advanced philosophy to a layman is very difficult, our ancestors have devised the method of cultivating rituals. Among such rituals is the process of worship. Images, charts of mystic diagrams, paintings, stones and gems have been prescribed for daily worship to the common man. This book is an attempt to explain various forms of Vishnu and iconographical details of such images and also tries to bridge the gap between ritualistic approach to religion and the philosophical background of society. It is a guide to iconographic descriptions for the philosopher and a philosophical account for the simple devotee. This book is also a window into the evergreen forest of Indian narratives and is full of narratives related to Vishnu’s avataras as well as popular tales associated with popular temples. Individual chapters have been dedicated to every form listed in the Shrimadbhagavata. Details of iconographical proportions, interpretations of mudras, ayudhas, and bhangimas have been researched out of authoritative texts of Agamashastras and Shilpashastras. Many unknown forms of Vishnu like Badarayana, Shimshumara, and Gandabherunda have been included to widen readers’ intellect. Besides these, Appendices II and III deal with Vishnu ayudhas and Vishnu parivaara, respectively. As the title suggests, the book, however is small, but definitely, is a step toward the infinite.