Today's blog is on multi-faced figures or personalities in our Hindu Dharm. Normally all people, Raakshas, Yaksh Devta etc have only one face but we have a few personalities who have more than one faces. I have used the word "personalities" because it includes, Devtaa, Raakshas, and some others also. For faces we use two words - Shir and Aanan. Shir means head and Aanan means face. Thus both words mean almost the same - heads in a way. Since this word, Aanan, cannot be added to Tri (means 3), there is another word for the being who has three faces - Tri-shiraa. We have two Tri-shiraa. So let us start with three heads --
Vishwaroop Devtaa (Trishiraa)
Twashtaa was one of the 12 Aaditya. Now once Indra in antipathy to Indra, Twashtaa created a son with three heads which shone like Sun Moon and Fire. Mahaabhaarat, Stories, 5/3 says that he recited Ved from his first mouth, drank wine from his second mouth and looked with third mouth as if he would absorb the person in himself. While Bhaagvat Puraan, 6/4 says that from one mouth he drank Som Ras, from the second mouth he drank wine and from the third mouth he ate food. It also says that When Indra killed Vishwaroop, his one mouth which drank Som Ras became Papeehaa, his second mouth which drank wine became Gauraiyaa, and the third mouth which at food became Teetar.
Why Indra killed him - Once Indra did not pay proper respect to Dev Guru Brihaspati Jee so he became angry and went away. When Indra came to senses, he went out to look for him, but the Guru was nowhere to be found. Indra went to Brahmaa Jee and told him everything. Brahmaa Jee suggested him that he must have a Purohit to be powerful otherwise Asur would win him, so he sent Indra to Twashtaa and asked him to request his son Vishwaroop to be their Purohit. Indra requested Vishwaroop to be their Purohit and he accepted to be their Purohit. When Vishwaroop performed Yagya, he offered Aahuti for Devtaa loudly and softly, but because his mother was from Asur family, so he offered some share to Asur also. Indra noticed it and killed him.
One Raakshas (Trishiraa)
There was one Trishiraa Raakshas. He was living with Khar and Dooshan in Panchvatee. When Lakshman insulted Shoorpanakhaa, and Shoorpanakhaa went to her these three brothers, they came to fight with Raam. Raam killed all of them, along with their 14,000 army, in a few minutes. These three Raakshas had a blemished past life, that is why they were born as Raakshas.
Yaagyavalkya Jee had three sons - Chandrakaant, Mahaamedhaa and Vijaya. Later they were as three Raakshas because of Shiv's curse. Chandrakaant became Khar, Now these three Braahman had 14 disciples who also were born as 14 Brahm Raakshas. When Shoorpanakhaa complained about her insult, Khar had known that Vishnu had incarnated as Raam, so he decided to be killed by Him to be free from his curse. One of them was Trishiraa who had three heads.
Brahmaa Jee (Chaturaanan)
Brahmaa Jee is also multi-faced. he has 4 heads that is he is called Chaturaanan. His one head was cut off by Shiv Jee, otherwise he was Panchaanan before.
Shiv Jee (Panchaanan)
Shiv Jee has 5 faces, that is why he is called Panchaanan.
Hanumaan is not 5-faced ordinarily, but once he assumed the form of a 5-faced to save Raam and Lakshman from Ahiraavan from Paataal Lok. Once Ahhiraavan took Raam and Lakshman in Paataal lok to offer their Aahuti. When Hanumaan came to know about this, he immediately went to bring them back. When he reached there, he came to know that he could not free them unless he puts 5 lamps out, lit in five directions, together. How to do that? So he created five faces on his body and blew out those 5 lamps together with the air thrown from his 5 mouths together. Since then his one form has become know as Panchmukhaa Hanumaan.
Kaarttikeya or Skand or Kumaar (Shadaanan)
Kaarttikeya, Skand or Kumaar, the son of Shiv and Paarvatee is 6-faced. When he was born 6 Krittikaa came to feed him, so to satisfy the affection of all of them, he assumed 6 faces and suckled on all the 6 Krittikaa's breasts.
Raavan, the great Asur was born with 10 heads. It is said that he used to recite four Ved with his all the 10 mouths. Once when he did penance to please Bhagvaan and he offered his heads as Aahuti, one each at the end of each 1,000 years of his penance. When he wanted to offer his 10th head at the end of 10,000 years, Brahmaa Jee appeared and granted him his desired boon. In fact he was named Dashagreev by his father. Raavan is his later name when he lifted Kailaash mountain and Shiv Jee pressed his hands under the mountain, He continued to cry for 1,000 years in pain. Then Shiv said - Since you have been crying all these years, you will be known as Raavan."
Thus we have several personalities who have more than one face.