According to Indian mythology, who are the seven immortals?

According to Indian mythology, who are the seven immortals? by @sonalsi58

Answer by Sonal Singh:

People always ask, Who are the seven immortals (Chiranjivi) of Hindu Mythology?

Well lets first start with the meaning of the wird Chiranjivi. Chiranjivi or चिरंजीवी in Hindi, are immortal living beings in Hinduism who are to remain alive on Earth through this Kali Yuga till its very end.

There have been many great warriors, saints, gods etc, in Hindu mythology. According to the various Indian traditions and stories there are eight immortals who walk on this Earth. I present what I found after my research.

The Astha-Chiranjivins (“Eight Immortals”):

  • Mahabali, a righteous demon king who conquered heaven, earth, and the underworld, but was forced to give it back by Vamana.
  • Markandeya, a famous devotee of Lord Shiva/Lord Vishnu
  • Parashurama, an Avatar of Vishnu.
  • Vibhishana, Ravana’s brother who was made King of Lanka by Rama.
  • Hanuman, who served Rama.
  • Vyasa, a sage who narrated the Mahabharata, he was also a sage in the epic.
  • Kripacharya, a teacher of the princes in the Mahabharata.
  • Ashwathama

(1). Bali :

the Asura King Mahabali, who had conquered all the three worlds, had to be subdued by Vishnu on the request of Indra, after having developed an unhealthy arrogance. Vishnu banished Bali to the underworld, but his pious deeds on Earth granted him the boon of being able to visit his subjects once a year, now celebrated as Onam in Kerala.

(2). Markandeya :

Markendeya is a devotee of the Lord Shiva, and was granted immortality by him when Shiva and Yama (the God of death) fought to decide the Rishi’s destiny. A tale from the Bhagavata Purana states that once sage Narayana visited Markandeya and asked him for a boon. Markandeya prayed to sage Narayana to show him his illusory power or maya since sages Nara-Narayana are incarnation of Supereme Lord Narayana. To fulfill his wish, Vishnu appeared in the form of a child floating on a leaf, and declared to the sage that he was Time and Death. Sage Markandeya entered into his mouth to save himself from the surging water. Inside the boy's stomach Markandeya discovered all the worlds, the seven regions and the seven oceans. The mountains and the kingdoms were all there. So were all living beings. Markandeya did not know what to make of all this. He started to pray to Vishnu. The sage spent a thousand years with Vishnu. He composed the Bala mukundashtakam at this moment.

(3). Parashurama :

6th avatar of Vishnu, master of all astras, sastras and divine weapons. The Kalki Purana writes that he will re emerge at end time to the martial guru of Kalki. He will then instruct the final avatar to undertake penance to receive celestial weaponry, required to save mankind at end time.

(4). Vibhishana :

The brother of Ravan, Vibhishan, who fought on Ram’s side in the Ramayan. He was made a Chiranjeevi to maintain morality and righteousness in Lanka and to guide people over the world in Dharma.

(5). Hanuman :

Lord Hanuman really needs no introduction, he is devotion personified, and his strength, form and knowledge characterise him. It is said that whilst other characters from the Ramayan achieved their sought-after Moksha, Hanumanji shunned the heavens and requested to remain on Earth as long as Lord Ram is venerated by people, to reside wherever the name of Ram is taken- such was, and is his love for God. Whoever recites the glories of Lord Hanuman is supposedly certain to overcome life’s miseries and obstacles. It is also said that the person who arrives first, and leaves last from a Ram Katha is always Chiranjeevi Hanuman.

(6). Vyasa :

A sage who narrated the Mahabharata. He represents erudition and wisdom.He was the son of Rishi Prashar and grandson of Rishi Vashist. He was born in almost last of Tretayug, lived to see the whole Dwaparyug and also has seen the initial phase of Kalyug.

(7). Kripa-Charya :

Kripa was the Kul Guru of the Kurus during the Mahabharat, and whilst his status as a Chiranjeevi is disputed, his impartiality towards all of his students is the most commonly documented reason for his immortality.

(8). Ashwatthama :

Ashwatthama was the son of guru Drona. He is one of the seven Chiranjivis. Dronacharya loved him very dearly. The rumours about his death in the Kurukshetra war led to the death of Drona at the hands of Prince Dhrishtadyumna. He is the grandson of the Brahmin sage Bharadwaja. Ashwatthama fought on the Kaurava side against the Pandavas in the Mahabharata war.

Hindu scripture contains a mantra about the seven immortals, in which their names are recited for luck and longevity: Ashwathaama Balir Vyasaha Hanumanthra Vibeeshanaha Kriba Parasuramas cha Saptaitey Chiranjeevinaha Om Namah Shivay It is specified that Markandeya had boon that he will never die and is blessed with immortality. However it is not clear as to why the name of Markandeya has not appeared in above mantra.

THANK YOU FOR READING.

According to Indian mythology, who are the seven immortals?

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