Lord Vishnu is one of the Gods of Hinduism and a Supreme character in the Vaishnavism tradition. Vishnu, along with Brahma and Shiva form a Trimurti(trinity). In Vaishnavism, he is similar to a concept which has no form and structure called as Brahman. Who is the greatest of all, the ‘Svayam Bhagavan’.Who can take various avatars as “the purpose-full protector whenever the world is in danger regarding destruction and evil forces. His major avatars include Lord Krishna in the Mahabharata and Lord Rama in the Ramayana. He is also referred as Narayana, Jagannath, Vithoba, Vasudeva, and Hari. He is equal to five of the deities worshiped in Panchayatana puja belonging to Smarta Tradition of Hinduism.
Jaya and Vijaya :
The residence of Vishnu (VaikunthaLok) is guarded by two gatekeepers(dwarapalakas) namely Jaya and Vijaya. BhagavataPurana says that the Four Kumaras named as Sanandana, Sanaka, Sanatana, and Sanatkumara. They are the manasaputras of Brahma which mean sons who were born from the mind power of Brahma. They were traveling around the worlds, a day they planned to visit Narayana(Vishnu’s form that rests upon Sheshnaga).
The SanatKumaras went to Jaya and Vijaya asking them to come in. They had the huge strength of tapas, so the four Kumaras looked just like children, though they were of great age. Jaya and Vijaya looked like children and being the gatekeepers of the Vaikuntha stopped the Kumaras. They also told the Kumaras that Lord Vishnu is resting so they cannot visit him now.
The angry Kumaras told the gatekeepers that Vishnu is ready to meet his devotees at any time. Kumaras cursed both of them saying “You have to give up their divine powers, be born as dying creatures and live life like normal Human beings”.
Afterward, Vishnu woke up and came to know what has happened to his two dwarapalakas. He feels pity towards them. Vishnu was worried as they were cursed by the great SanatKumaras just for they did their duty. He asked for forgiveness to the SanatKumaras. Vishnu promised them Jaya-Vijaya that he will do something to help them pass this tough circle of Life and Death.
Choices that Lord Vishnu gave to his gatekeepers:
Vishnu was not able to lift the curse of the great SanatKumaras one way, so put forward the two options:
The first option was that they could take birth for seven times on Earth. And they will be born as a devotee of Vishnu. Next option was that that they could take birth three times on Earth. But this time they would be born as his enemy. After the effect of these sentences, they can again be in the form of their stature at Vaikuntha. This way they can be with Him permanently. Jaya and Vijaya were not ready to stay away from their Lord Vishnu even for seven lives as a devotee. Due to which, they chose taking birth three times on Earth. No matter if they were born Vishnu’s enemies. Vishnu then changed his avatars and released them from each of their lives.
Jaya-Vijaya and the three births:
First Birth: Jaya’s and Vijaya’s first birth as Vishnu’s enemy took place. They were born namely Hiranyaksha and Hiraeyakasipu in the Satya Yuga. Hiranyaksha or Jaya was an Asura and the son of Diti and Kashyapa. He was killed by Lord Vishnu. Later Hiranyaksha took over this Earth to the bottom. It is described as the “Universe of Ocean”. Vishnu took the form of a Boar (a mammal which can swim). It is also referred to as Varaha Avatar. He then jumped into the deep ocean to lift the Earth.
During this the process, he killed Hiranyaksha as he was blocking his way. This battle between the two lasted for one thousand years. Hiranyakashipu or Vijaya was his elder brother. After having completed his punishments he turned very powerful and strong against several conditions. Hiranyakashipu was later killed by the lion-headed figure called Narasimha. It is considered as another avatar of Vishnu.
Second Birth: In their second birth, Jaya and Vijaya were born as Ravana(King of Lanka) and Kumbhakarna(Ravana’s brother). This yuga of their birth was the Tretayuga. This time they were killed by Lord Rama(Another avatar of Lord Vishnu).
Third Birth: The third and the last birth of Jaya-Vijaya was in the form of Sisupala and Dantavakr. It was towards the end of the Dwapara Yuga. Again Lord Vishnu came up in the avatar of Krishna and killed them thrice.
After three births they return to God:
Taking continuous births as per the choices Lord Vishnu offered them. They kept moving from one life to another life. This way they moved more and more close to the God. Starting from the Asuras(being the worst) then Rakshasas, later on as Humans and at last Devas. Finally, they went back to Vaikuntha.