Dattatreya is the son of saint Atri and his wife Anasuya. Dattatreya is the embodiment of the trinity of Hindu religion: Brahma (creator), Vishnu (One who preserves the Universe), and Shiva (One who detroys the Universe). Therefore He has three heads and six arms. In two of His arms, He holds Rudraksha Mala and Kamandalu signifying Brahma’s accessories. In two more hands He holds Shakha and Chakra of Vishnu. In the other two hands, He holds the Dhamaru and Trishul of Shiva. He is sorrounded by four shunakas (dogs) that represent the four Vedas. The tree behind Him is the wish fulfilling Audumbara tree. The cow is Kamadhenu literally meaning the cow of desire or the grantor of desires. The story of Dattatreya is that the trinity, Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva, wanted to test the piety of Anasuya the wife of Atri. So one day they came to her door in disguise and asked her to give them alms. When she consented, they demanded that she serve them the alms completely naked. Because she gave her word to them, and because it is not proper to turn away one’s guests, she had to comply to this rather unusual demand. But she turned them into small innocent children by her power before she went naked to feed them. Thus she protected her honor and complied with the Gods’ demand. Meanwhile, their wives became anxious and prayed to her to let their husbands return to their former adult forms. She consented. In turn, the three Gods agreed to be born to her as One, Lord Dattatreya, Datta means given. Atreya means to Atri. Some say He was adopted by her. His day of birth is the fourteenth day of the bright half of Margasira month.