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"...When the demigods are offering prayers to Lord Nrsimha, Indra the King of heaven says, "O supreme one, these demons talk of our share of participation in the performances of ritualistic sacrifices, but simply by Your appearance as Lord Nrsimhadeva You have saved us from terrible fears. Actually, our shares in the sacrificial performances are due to You only, because You are the supreme enjoyer of all sacrifices. You are the Supersoul of every living entity, and therefore You are the actual owner of everything. Long were our hearts always filled with fear of this demon, Hiranyakasipu. But You are so kind toward us that by killing him You have removed that fear from within our hearts and have given us the chance to place Your Lordship within our hearts again. For persons who are engaged in the transcendental loving service of Your Lordship, all the opulences which were taken away from us by the demons are counted as nothing. Devotees do not care even for liberation, what to speak of these material opulences. Actually, we are not enjoyers of the fruits of sacrifices. Our only duty is to always be engaged in Your service, for You are the enjoyer of everything."

The purport of this statement by Indra is that beginning from Brahma down to the insignificant ant, no living entities are meant for enjoying the material opulences. They are simply meant for offering everything to the supreme proprietor, the Personality of Godhead. By doing so, they automatically enjoy the benefit. The example can be cited again of the different parts of the body collecting foodstuffs and cooking them so that ultimately a meal may be offered to the stomach. After it has gone to the stomach, all the parts of the body equally enjoy the benefit of the meal. So, similarly, everyone's duty is to satisfy the Supreme Lord, and then automatically everyone will become satisfied.

Nectar of Devotion, Chapter 4

Nrsimha Caturdasi is the celebration of the appearance day of Lord Nrsimhadev, a direct incarnation of the Lord in His half-man, half-lion form. Lord Nrsimhadev appeared in order to protect his dear most devotee, Prahlada Maharaja, whose demonic father, Hiranyakasipu was a powerful atheist and enemy of the Lord.

When the angry demon Hiranyakasipu asked his Vaisnava son whether his God existed within the columns of the palace, Prahlada Maharaja immediately accepted that since the Lord is present everywhere, He was also present within the columns. Hiranyakasipu then struck the pillar with his fist, and with a tumultuous roaring sound, Lord Nrsimha burst forth from the column and killed the demon. Afterwards, Prahlad and the Demigods came immediately to the enraged Nrsinghadev's side to calm Him by offering sweet words, garlands and prayers.

On Nrsimha Caturdasi, the devotees read and discuss the Lord's inconceivable pastimes, and offer prayers to the Lord requesting His protection for the Vaisnavas who face peril as they preach Krsna Consciousness to the fallen conditioned souls.

Our Nrsimha Catudasi feast includes preparations reminiscent of the Lord's glorious pastime and the sweet attempts of His devotees to calm and soothe His transcendental anger. We begin with a tart Lemon Rice and an ecstatic South Indian mango lentil Khatti Dal which comes from the region of Ahobilam, where the Lord's pastimes occurred.

The Lord's fiery nature is celebrated with a pungently tart Methi Saag of fenugreek infused spinach. The Saag goes very well with Spicy Almond Sesame Naan.

Sri Prahlad's sweet devotional nature is remembered with a Fruit Dahi Vada, which offers a pleasing aroma of dates, pineapple and ginger. Lord Nrsinha's mixed expression of fury and transcendental affection for His devotees comes to mind with a Poda Pitta a black peppery sweet cake that is both luscious and sharp.

In honor of the temple columns from which the Lord burst forth, we have Coconut Singhara Columns, a potato and coconut savory that is crisp on the outside, and filled with a creamy nectar filling.

As sudden as Nrsinghadev's roar will be the delight bursting forth on behalf of Mirchi Ka Salan, a sumptuously delightful South Indian preparation of stuffed chillies in spicy gravy. The Mirchi's peppery heat is cooled down with a Grape Raita, where black grapes bubble about in a soothing bath of yoghurt.

Our feast includes skewers of fried, then baked Bitter Melon Boats, in which a soothing and savory cashew butter takes the bitter edge off the kerala.

The heat is subsiding in an offering of Hot Apple Chutney, where the tangy ginger is mellowed out by sugary dark raising and apples.

Nrsimha's Claws are delightful milk sweets rolled in brown nuts and coconut, with frightful apricot claws sticking out. Another tasty sweet comes in the form of Fried Garland Sweets reminiscent of the garlanded flowers Prahlad placed around the Lord's neck.

Finally, the mercy of Sri Laksmi Devi, who is dear to Lord Nrsinha, is remembered with the Malkhana Kheer Laksmi, an exotic beverage of puffed lotus seeds in sweet kheer. Nrsimha Caturdasi, kijai!

Nrsimha Caturdasi Feast Recipes

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