Garuda Purana
Chapter Forty five

Characteristics of Salagrama

Sri Hari said:

1. Relevant to the context I shall explain the characteristics of Salagrama stone a touch of which destroys the sins of a crore of births.

2. Gadadhara (Vishnu) bearing Shankha, Chakra, Gada and Padma is called Keshava. (In this and those follow, the order of the weapons shall be preserved for the success of meditation). The supreme lord holding Abja (Padma), Kaumodaki (gada) Chakra and Shankha is Narayana.

3. Srigadadhara (Vishnu) bearing Chakra, Shankha, Abja and Gada is Madhava Gadadhara (Vishnu). He can be worshipped as Govinda wearing Gada, Abja, Shankha and Chakra.

4. Obeisance unto thee of the form of Vishnu bearing Padma, Shankha, Chakra and Gada. Obeisance to Madhusudana murti (form bearing Shankha, Abja, Gada and Chakra).

5. Obeisance unto Trivikrama (the incarnation Vamana who took three steps) bearing Gada, Chakra, Shankha and Abja. Obeisance unto Vamana murti, bearing Chakra, Kaumodaki, Padma and Shankha.

6. Obeisance unto Sridhara-murti bearing Chakra, Abja, Shankha and Gada. Obeisance unto Hrsikesha bearing Abja, Gada and Shankha and Chakra.

7. Obeisance unto thee in the form of Padmanabha bearing Abja, Chakra, Gada and Shankha. O Damodara, obeisance, obeisance unto thee bearing Shankha, Chakra, Gada and Padma.

8. Obeisance unto Vasudeva bearing Chakra, Shankha, Gada and Abja. Obeisance unto Shankarsana bearing Shankha, Abja, Chakra and Gada.

9. Obeisance to Pradyumna-murti bearing Shankha, Gada, Abja and Chakra. Obeisance unto Aniruddha bearing Gada, Shankha, Abja and Chakra.

10. Obeisance to Purusottama-murti bearing Abja, Shankha, Gada and Chakra. Obeisance unto thee in the form of Adhoksaja bearing Gada, Shankha, Chakra and Padma.

11. Obeisance unto Nrsimha-murti bearing Padma, Gada, Shankha and Chakra. Obeisance to Achyuta-murti  bearing Padma, Chakra, Shankha and Gada.

12. I invoke Janardana  here bearing Shankha, Chakra, Abja and Gada. Obeisance, obeisance unto thee, O Upendra having Gada, Chakra, Padma and Shankha.

13. Obeisance unto Hari-murti bearing Chakra, Abja, Gada and Shankha. Obeisance unto Srikrsna-murti bearing Gada, Abja, Chakra and Shankha.

14. The Salagrama stone white in colour that has two ring-like marks at the entrance is called Vasudeva. Let Lord Vishnu presiding over it protect you all.

15. The stone red in colour, having the mark of a lotus in front, with two clearly defined ring-like marks, is called Shankarsana. If it is yellow in colour with ring-like marks not clearly defined it is called Pradyumna.

16. Aniruddha stone is blue in colour; it has a long aperture at the top, it has three lines at the lateral aperture. It is circular in shape.

17. The Narayana stone is black in colour with the form of Gada in the middle, with the Chakra lines at the centre that is lifted up. The stone called Nrsimha has a stout chest and three dots. IT is tawny in colour. May it protect us.

18. Or it may have five dots. Only Brahmacharins (students) shall worship it. The Salagrama with two uneven ring-like marks is called Varahasaktilinga. May it protect us.

19. The Kurma murti is blue in colour. It has three lines. It is stout and has dots. May the stone called Krsna depressed at the back and having circular curb protect you.

20. Let the Sridhara stone marked with five lines, a garland of forest flowers and club protect us. Vamana stone is circular and short. Sureshvara stone has a ring-like mark on the left side.

21. The Anataka stone is of various colours and forms with serpentine marks. The Damodara stone is stout and of blue colour. In its middle there is a ring-like mark of deep blue colour.

22. The Brahma stone is of crimson colour. It has a small aperture. May it protect you. It has a long line and a ring-like mark and a large lotus in the aperture.

23. Hayagriva stone has a big aperture, a stout ring-like mark and dark spots. That which has five lines in the form of a goad is Kaustubha stone.

24. Vaikuntha stone is lustrous like a precious gem. It has a single ring-like mark and a lotus. It is dark in colour. The Matsya stone is of great length in the form of a lotus with lines at the aperture. May it protect you.

25. May the Trivikrama stone with ring-like mark on the left and lines on the right and dark in colour protect you. Obeisance unto the lord with Gada staying in Salagrama in Dvaraka.

26. May the Laksmi Narayana stone protect us – the stone that has one aperture with four ring-like marks, which is bedecked with garland of  flowers. It has golden lines in the form of cow's hoofs. It is of the shape of a Kadamba flower.

27. The Sudarsana class of stones is marked with a single characteristic.

28. May Vishnu presiding over it protect us. The Laksmi Narayana class is marked with two features, the Trivikrama class with three features. The Chaturvyuha class is marked with four features: the Vasudeva class with five.

29. The Pradyumna class with six and the Shankarsana class with seven. The Purusottama class is marked with eight features, the Navavyuha class with nine.

30. The Dasavatara class is marked with ten features and Aniruddha with eleven. May it protect us. The Dvadasatma class is marked with twelve features and the Ananta class with more features.

31. He who reads this prayer consisting of Vishnu's forms shall go to Heaven. Brahma is four-headed. It (the image) has a staff and two water pots.

32. That of Maheshvara has five faces, ten hands and the emblem of a bull. It has suitable weapons and the attendants Gauri, Chandika, Sarasvati.

33. And Mahalaksmi. The idol of the Sun has a lotus in the hand. The Ganadhipa has the face of an elephant. Skanda has six faces.

34. These images of the different characteristic features shall be duly worshipped and installed in mansions after duly consecrating the plot of land. Then the owner of that building shall obtain Virtue, Wealth, Fulfillment of desires, emancipation and other benefits.

1) Name of Vishnu, literally meaning ‘from whose navel comes out a lotus’

2) Name of Vishnu, more properly of Krsna because his foster mother tried to tie him up with a rope (daman) round his belly (udara).

1. Name of Vishnu, unseen Lord

2. Unfallen; a name of Vishnu or Krsna. It has been variously interpreted as signifying “he who does not perish with created things”, in the Mahabharata as “he who is not distinct from final emancipation”, and in the Skanda Purana as “he who never declines (or varies) from his proper nature”. It can also mean ‘one who is firm, one who does not yield to passions. (CDHM P. 2; SSED p. 7).

3. The adored of mankind; a name of Krsna or Vishnu; but other derivations are offered, as ‘extirpator of the wicked’ by Shankaracharya.

4. Name of Vishnu as the younger brother of Indra in his fifth or dwarf incarnations.

5. A name of Vishnu - one who takes away.

1. the indicator of the power of the Boar (incarnation of Vishnu).

2. Refers to the Tortoise incarnation of Vishnu.

3. This is supposed to be a paradise where Vishnu resides. Sometimes Vishnu is also called Vaikuntha.

4. Refers to the Fish incarnation of Vishnu.

5. Vishnu is called Trivikrama because he took three steps at the time of Tamasa-incarnation.

6. Name of Vishnu. Literally Laksmi and Narayana.

1. Anthocephalus indicus (GVDB p. 60)

2. It refers to the worship of Vishnu in four-fold forms of Vasudeva, Shankarsana, Pradyumna and Aniruddha.

3. The worship of Vishnu in the nine forms. They are, according to Garuda Purana – Vasudeva. Balarama, Kama (Pradyumna), Aniruddha, Narayana, Brahma, Vishnu, Simha (Nrsimha) and Varaha (GPEA pp. 332-3).

4. For ten incarnations of Vishnu see p. 2, fn. 6.

5. Twelve forms of Vishnu, to be worshipped in each month of the year, viz., Keshava, Narayana, Madhava, Trivikrama, Vamana, Sridhara, Pradyumna, Hrsikesha, Padmanabha, Damodara and Aniruddha.

6. Siva.

7. Ganesha.