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Vishnu and Avatars

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The description of Vishnu and Avatars

Dashavatara (Sanskrit: दशावतार, daśāvatāra) refers to the ten primary avatars of Vishnu, the Hindu god of preservation. Vishnu is said to descend in form of an avatar to restore cosmic order. The word Dashavatara derives from daśa, meaning 'ten', and avatar (avatāra), roughly equivalent to 'incarnation'.

The list of included avatars varies across sects and regions, and no list can be uncontroversially presented as standard. However, most draw from the following set of figures, omitting at least one of those listed in parentheses: Matsya, Kurma, Varaha, Narasimha, Vamana, Parashurama, Rama, Krishna, (Balarama) or (Buddha) and Kalki. In traditions that omit Krishna, he often replaces Vishnu as the source of all avatars. Some traditions include a regional deity such as Vithoba or Jagannath in penultimate position, replacing Krishna or Buddha.

The order of the ancient concept of Dashavataras has been interpreted to be reflective of modern Darwinian evolution
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