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Legend of Upakarma / Hayagriva Jayanti

Updated: Dec 9, 2022

The legend of Upakarma says that Vishnu had taken his Hayagriva (half-horse-half-man) avatar on this day to restore the four Vedas to Brahma. These were stolen by the daanavs (demons) Madhu and Kaitabha, and hidden deep inside the primordial ocean.

Hayagriva today is known as the God of knowledge and this day is also celebrated as Hayagriva Jayanti.

Interestingly, a certain sect of Brahmins ritually change their Janeyu (sacred thread) on this day, which they celebrate as Avaṇi Avittam. This is followed by Gayatri Japam on the next day wherein the Gayatri Mantra is recited 1008 times.


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