Why does Lord Vitthal wear fish in his ears?

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Lord Vittala is shown wearing a ornament which is in the shape of Fish: Makara-Kundala (fish-shaped earrings) .

Vitthal Wearing Fish in Ear

मकर कुंडले तळपती श्रवनी।

“Ornament resembling fish are adorned in ear” of Vitthal

Why does Lord Vitthal wear fish in his ears as an ornament?

It is said that a poor fisherman had come meet the lord. Being a society with division of caste and creed obviously did not allow him to even come close to the Lord. All the Brahmins and pandits started cribbing and shooing him off from there saying

“ Are you in your senses, how can you even enter this area. Did you not know that you are not supposed to be here especially with those fish in your hand. This is a sin..Please go away”

To this the poor fisherman replied “ I have come here to meet the Lord. I am poor man with fishing as my occupation. I dont even have money to buy a gift for my lord , all i have is these 2 fishes that i have caught which i wanted to gift my lord, please allow me to atleast see him”

Vitthal Fish Ear

Hearing this Lord Vitthal himself came out, accepted the fish and wore it as a earings and addressed

“ I would accept anything from anybody who comes to me with love and devotion in his/her heart, after all LOVE is the language of the universe. Look at that poor fisherman, without even having his food he came to me with this gift with love, compassion and devotion. I was, am and will always be accessible to anybody and everybody who comes of me for help irrespective of his/her background, caste, religion and creed. We need to understand this that It is LOVE & only LOVE that can change you, heal you and raise you to spiritual height”

That’s why we see Lord Vitthal wear fish in his ears as an ornament. He also wears a necklace of tulsi-beads, embedded with the legendary kaustubha gem, and makara-kundala (fish-shaped earrings) that the poet-saint Tukaram relates to the iconography of Vishnu. Pandharpur’s Vithoba holds a shankha (conch) in his left hand and a chakra (discus) or lotus flower in his right, all of which are symbols traditionally associated with Vishnu.

Jay Hari Vitthal !!!


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