manu is a title accorded to the progenitor of mankind, and also the very first king to rule this earth, who saved mankind from the universal flood. He was absolutely honest which was why he was initially known as "Satyavrata" (One with the oath of truth).

Mahabharata says:

"And Manu was imbued with great wisdom and devoted to virtue. And he became the progenitor of a line. And in Manu's race have been born all human beings, who have, therefore, been called Manavas. And it is of Manu that all men including Brahmanas, Kshatriyas, and others have been descended, and are, therefore, all called Manavas. Subsequently, O monarch, the Brahmanas became united with the Kshatriyas. And those sons of Manu that were Brahmanas devoted themselves to the study of the Vedas. "The ten sons of Manu are known as Vena, Dhrishnu, Narishyan, Nabhaga, Ikshvaku, Karusha, Saryati, the eighth, a daughter named Ila, Prishadhru the ninth, and Nabhagarishta, the tenth. They all betook themselves to the practices of Kshatriyas. Besides these, Manu had fifty other sons on Earth. But we heard that they all perished, quarrelling with one another."

The 14 Manvantaras

Manu is a title accorded the progenitor of humankind during an eon called a manvantara. 14 Manvantaras make up a kalpa, a period corresponding to a day in the life of Brahma; each Manvantara is headed by a manu. Puranas ascribe to each manvantara one Indra, one Vishnu avatara, etc. 14 Manus of the present Śveta Vārāha Kalpa are:

  1. Svayambhuva Manu
  2. Svarocisa Manu
  3. Uttama Manu or Auttami
  4. Tamasa Manu
  5. Raivata Manu
  6. Caksusa Manu
  7. Sraddhadeva Manu (son of Vaivasvata)
  8. Savarni Manu
  9. Daksa Savarni Manu
  10. Brahma Savarni Manu
  11. Dharma Savarni Manu
  12. Rudra Savarni Manu
  13. Deva Savarni Manu or Raucya
  14. Indra Savarni Manu or Bhauta

Currently we are in the 7th Manvantara headed by Sraddhadeva Manu (Vaivasvata).


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