Indian Mythology (by ApamNapat)

Parashurama - Rama of the Axe

परशु राम

Parashurama is one of the avatars (incarnations) of Lord Vishnu. He was born as the son of the sage Jamadagni and Renuka and was named Bhargava. He was known as Parashurama because the axe was his favorite weapon. He executed his mother at the bidding of his father and later had her brought back to life. According to legend, Parashurama learnt the art of war from Lord Shiva himself. There is also a story that explains why Parashurama was so proficient in arms.

He is one of the biggest enemies of the Kshatriya (warrior) class, because they killed his father. In revenge, he rid the world of all Kshatriyas twenty one times. After conquering the whole earth, he donated it to Kashyapa, who was his Guru, who had taught him the scriptures. Parashurama then retired to the forest to lead a life of austerity.

In the Mahabharata, he is the teacher of Bhishma. He is also the teacher of Karna, who enrolled his student under the guise of a Brahmana. When Parashurama found out that in truth, Karna was a Kshatriya, he cursed him saying that all the divine weapons and spells that he had taught would become useless to Karna in the hour of his need. Thus he is one of the many persons either directly or indirectly responsible for Karna's death.

Last Modified At: Sat Mar 26 23:52:25 2005