The Vishnu Sahasranama is a list of 1,000 names for Vishnu, one of the main forms of God in Hinduism and the personal supreme God for Vaishnavas (followers of Vishnu). It is also one of the most sacred and commonly chanted stotras in Hinduism. The Vishnu sahasranama as found in the Mahabharata is the most popular version of the 1000 names of Vishnu. According to the 149th chapter of Anushasanaparva in the epic Mahabharata, the names were handed down to Yudhisthira by the famous warrior Bhishma who was on his death bed at the battle of Kurukshetra.
Yudhisthira asks Bhishma the following questions:
In this universe who is the one Deva of all? (i.e., at whose command all beings function?, or who is God of all?. Who is the one greatest refuge for all? Who is the one Divinity by praising and by worshipping whom a man attains good? Which according to you is that highest form of Dharma (capable of bestowing salvation and prosperity on man? What is that by uttering or reciting which any living being can attain freedom from cycle of births and deaths?
Bhisma answers by stating that mankind will be free from all sorrows by chanting the Vishnu sahasranama' which are the thousand names of the all-pervading Supreme Being Vishnu, who is the master of all the worlds, supreme over the devas and who is one with Brahman.
Madurai Shanmukhavadivu Subbulakshmi, popularly known as M.S. or M.S.S.) (September 16, 1916 - December 11, 2004)was a renowned Carnatic vocalist. She was the first musician ever to be awarded the Bharat Ratna, India's highest civilian honor. While Lata Mangeshkar called her Tapaswini (the Renunciate), Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan termed her Suswaralakshmi (the goddess of musical notes), and Kishori Amonkar labeled her the ultimate eighth note or Aathuvaan Sur, which is above the seven notes basic to all music. Her many famous renditions of bhajans include the chanting of Bhaja Govindam, Vishnu sahasranama (1000 names of Vishnu) and the Venkateswara Suprabhatam (musical hymns to awaken Lord Balaji early in the morning).
02. Vishnu sahasranaman