Indra Ōtsutsuki

indra naruto

Indra Ōtsutsuki‎ (大筒木インドラ, ‎Ōtsutsuki Indora) was the first born son of Hagoromo Ōtsutsuki. He was initially thought to be the most suitable successor of his father’s teachings, however, it was his younger brother Asura that ended up inheriting this mantle — a decision that would lead the two brothers to fight against each other. Indra is also credited with being the creator of ninjutsu, and the progenitor of the Uchiha clan.[1]


Indra inventing Ninjutsu.


In the anime, despite the loss of his mother following problems with his younger brother Asura’s birth, Indra’s childhood was still peaceful and joyous, spending his time either blissfully alongside his father and brother Asura,[3] or regularly reading his father’s books and journals. Under their father’s tutelage, the two brothers studied Ninshū in the hopes of one of them becoming the great sage’s successor. As Indra continued to amaze all with his natural capacities and advanced growth rate, he began showing his ingenious side, realising how chakra could be altered to perform more versatile feats. Soon afterwards, the other Ninshū followers learned from Indra’s example and began using this new innovation to improve the quality of life for both themselves and the village. While initially proud of his discovery, Indra grew concerned when he noticed that everyone began focusing more on physical growth rather than spiritual as what was meant for Ninshū. Periodically, Black Zetsu would secretly approach Indra alone, goading him with praises and curiosity towards Indra’s true potential, even going so far as to say he could rival if not surpass the Sage of Six Paths himself. After awakening his Sharingan, Indra began to take to heart the mysterious figure’s praises, focusing solely on his training and growing colder and more distant to others, including his brother.[2] Eventually, Hagoromo decided to choose his successor based on the performance of his sons by tasking them each with aiding the revival of a foreign land.[4]

Upon arriving at his destination, Indra learned that the land was in reality very fertile due to the existence of a God Tree sapling; however, he also realised that it caused the people there to gradually grow sick from relying on its nutrients. Deciding to resolve things quickly, Indra used his Sharingan to force the villagers to destroy the sapling and discover water. Upon returning home, Indra was surprised that Hagoromo chose to wait for the return of Asura as well before making his decision for successor. While respecting his father’s wish, Indra grew restless, something that Black Zetsu picked up in another meeting, noting that Indra’s vision of the future differed from Hagoromo’s. A year passed since the two brothers received their respective missions, and Indra continued training others while starting again to appreciate the company of people. Eventually, Asura returned, but with many people from the village he was sent to who helped him complete his mission. Asura then met with his brother to hear Hagoromo’s final decision.[5]

Black Zetsu tempts Indra to take Asura’s inheritance.

When their father chose Asura carry on his dream of establishing peace throughout the world, Indra was enraged and jealous that his younger brother was chosen over him and more so that his father noted Indra’s inability to acknowledge others while focusing on power as a factor in his decision.[1] While Hagoromo tried to reason with Indra, noting that the village he “helped” had ultimately destroyed itself after he left due to the villagers recklessly fighting over the water, his words fell on deaf ears. In the anime, growing so bitter towards his family while simultaneously revelling in his growing power, he came to view his father’s ninshū as incomplete and cowardly and wanted to change it into ninjutsu to reflect his views of using power to create peace and order. To ensure he was powerful enough to challenge his father and brother, and realising that his eyes grow stronger from personal loss, he secretly killed his two closest friends to awaken the Mangekyō Sharingan. On the night of Asura’s celebration as the successor, Indra attacked the village, voicing his disdain for his family and ninshū, insisting that ninjutsu was superior and the true means for peace. With sadistic joy, he attacked Asura, who surprised the older brother with his growth in repelling the attack. Determined to crush his brother and take his desired position as the true bringer of peace, Indra unleashed his Susanoo. While Asura was able to hold his brother off, having manifested his newfound power that was passed on to him from Hagoromo, Indra’s massive construct began overwhelming him. Hagoromo then had the village all share their chakra with Asura, which allowed him to fully manifest his powers and unleash the Wood Release. Combining this with the Six Paths Senjutsu, Asura was able to defeat Indra who, still refusing to acknowledge his brother, was forced into retreat. Years later, Indra went into hiding and formed a sect that supported ninjutsu. As Hagoromo was rendered bedridden as he neared the end of his life, Indra approached his estranged father, boldly telling him that his cowardly approach to peace would only bring about greater wars, which Indra would take advantage of to destroy ninshū while vowing to do so in as many reincarnations as necessary.[6]


Indra walking his path of independence.

In the anime, as a young child, Indra was a carefree and loving person who looked after and played happily with his younger brother.[3] A very mature boy, he understood the importance of patience and thinking things through. He was very protective of his younger brother and worried about the future of Ninshū when others began to deviate from its original nature following his discovery of chakra transformation. Even after he was revealed as a prodigy, he took the praises of others with modesty, since he only wanted to help others. He was also very committed to his studies and regular practice.

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However, after being manipulated with such praise by Black Zetsu and learning more about his true power, Indra revelled at how impressive he perceived his own capacities and potential to be, to the point that he was proud of being different and expected perfection from himself and others.[2] He became very independent, as was evident from his determination to walk his own path unaided. As he did everything with his own power alone, he believed power and force could achieve anything, even peace, which was an ideology he shared with his grandmother. As such, he grew very stern in enforcing the law, believing there are no exceptions whatsoever.[4] Despite also this, he was able to keep his jealousy of Asura becoming Ninshū’s successor in check and held no ill feelings towards his brother and father, who he loved and respected greatly. However, these lingering feelings of rejection from his father allowed Black Zetsu to convince Indra to take the title for himself as it was his birthright, and led Indra to challenge his father’s decision.[7][8] This caused the love Indra had for his father and brother to ultimately turn into hatred and wanting the title of Ninshū’s leader for himself. Indra’s hatred and ideology would have dire consequences for his descendants. Even more, in the anime, Indra came to view Ninshū as an incomplete and cowardly means for achieving peace, and thus sought to change it to a means of using power itself to enforce peace. His desire for power and pride in his independence went so far as to willingly kill his two best friends to accomplish both goals, even through tears and apologies.[6]


A middle-aged Indra.

Indra had long brown hair cut short on top. Two locks wrapped in bandages framed either side of his face. His eyebrows were cut short — a symbol of his nobility — and dark eyes. Later, he began wearing his hair back in a long cylinder and gained blue markings around his eyes, which were turned up at the corners. He wore a high-collared, light-coloured kimono held closed by a dark sash. The collar of the kimono was adorned with magatama. He wore a black full-bodied suit underneath. When battling Asura, he wore full-body armour, and his hair had been let out to flow around his attire. In his middle-aged years, he gained minor wrinkles on the corners of his mouth and his hair grew flatter and came to mask his left eye.[6]


Indra’s Complete Body — Susanoo.

From a young age, Indra was recognised as a prodigy, even by his legendary father, having inherited much of the latter’s power, talent and strong genes.[9] He had a great aptitude for any skill or study he applied himself to. Furthermore, he also inherited his father’s “eyes”: his powerful chakra, and spiritual energy. In the anime, virtually all of Hagoromo’s followers had little doubt Indra would eventually become his father’s successor.[2]

Chakra and Physical Prowess

In the anime, he was shown to be highly skilled in taijutsu, with none of his fellow Ninshū students being able to match him in the slightest. Like his father, he had especially powerful chakra and equally large reserves, able to unleash it for a multitude of uses, such as to enhance his strikes. He was also very precise with his chakra manipulation, never wasting more than the absolute minimum for his techniques. Additionally, he was able to sense Black Zetsu on multiple occasions.[2]


Indra’s talents naturally excelled in his father’s teachings of Ninshū, eventually expanding to single-handedly base a fighting style off it, which became known as the true original ninjutsu. Unable to freely manipulate and alter his chakra like his father, Indra instead invented hand seals, a skill that would become a worldwide-practice for all ninja. Creating various techniques like the first Clone Technique and Body Replacement Technique, even Hagoromo was amazed at his eldest son’s accomplishments, noting how revolutionary it was. Indra was a skilled crafter, having fashioned primitive kunai for battle and from which develop a basic form of shurikenjutsu.[2] In later years, he also wielded a sword, showing expertise in kenjutsu.

Nature Transformation

He could use Yin Release, and in the anime, Fire and Lightning Release. As a child, he could channel lightning into his hand, which was strong enough to kill a wild giant boar with a single hit, despite the animal’s abnormal strength.[2] By adulthood, his skill with Lightning Release improved to the point that he could channel lightning throughout his entire body to either release a powerful blast of lightning at a target or to improve his Body Flicker Technique.[6]



Indra’s Sharingan.

Indra possessed a derived form of his grandmother’s dōjutsu: the Sharingan, which he awoke after saving his brother’s life.[2] Thus, he could observe the flow of chakra, pay great attention to detail, accurately predict a person’s movements, and paralyse an enemy with a single gaze.

Mangekyō Sharingan

Indra’s Mangekyō Sharingan.

Over time, Indra awakened the Mangekyō Sharingan, which took the appearance of swirled lines originating from his pupils.

In the anime, he awakened the dōjutsu after killing his two closest followers who were also his best friends.[6] With it, he unlocked the ability to use Susanoo. Owing to his talent, his mastery over the technique was such that he could use Complete Body — Susanoo, which dwarfed the surrounding landscape. He would use it to combat Asura’s own battle avatar.[10] Also in the anime, with his left eye, he could use Hinokagutsuchi.[6]

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Indra’s invention of ninjutsu would later become prominently recognised for jump-starting the age of the shinobi in history, though many credited Hagoromo as its creator rather than Indra himself; a fact that became forgotten to time.

Though his body was destroyed, Indra’s chakra would continue to exist. His chakra reincarnated into various individuals throughout history, and his reincarnations would also inherit his will. Indra’s desire for his father’s title led to centuries of bloodshed and conflict between his and Asura’s descendants. The descendants of both brothers continued this feud for centuries to come. Indra’s eventual descendants — the Uchiha clan — would feud with Asura’s eventual descendants — the Senju clan. Neither clan knew why or how their hatred of the other came to be.[7]

During the Warring States Period, Madara Uchiha was his reincarnation. With his help, Hashirama Senju, the reincarnation of Asura at the time, created the very first shinobi village, Konohagakure, and helped set up the contemporary ninja system. However, due to his ambition, insecurity, and Black Zetsu’s machinations, Madara defected, and resumed his conflict with Hashirama. After their final fight at the Valley of the End, Madara stole Hashirama’s DNA, which he later implanted into his wounds. A portion of Asura’s chakra merged with Indra’s chakra within Madara, and eventually, he awakened the Rinnegan, something Hagoromo warned against.[11]

Indra’s chakra inhabiting Sasuke Uchiha.

When Madara and Hashirama died, the transmigration cycle resumed. Sasuke Uchiha became the latest inheritor of Indra’s chakra and will, with Naruto Uzumaki inheriting Asura’s chakra and will. Due to the centuries old conflict that arose from Indra’s hatred and Hagoromo’s decision to anoint Asura, Hagoromo’s spirit decided to grant his power to both Naruto and Sasuke when he was able to appear before them. He hoped that the hatred felt by Sasuke would turn into love, and that his sons’ reincarnations would be able to work together.

Ultimately, Naruto managed to accomplish what all of the previous reincarnations had failed to do: end the rift between the two lines of the reincarnated brothers. Naruto achieved this after defeating Sasuke, who finally accepted Naruto’s ideals at the end of their fight. This brought about the end of the bitter feud that had lasted for centuries. According to Black Zetsu, the reincarnations of Indra and Asura were almost always in conflict with each other and rarely worked together. Naruto and Sasuke are one of the exceptions, assuming other exceptions have existed throughout the centuries.

In Other Media

Video Games

Indra Ōtsutsuki is a playable character in the following video games:


  • “Indra” literally means “King of Gods” in Sanskrit, a possible reference to his obsession with his father’s title.
  • The rivalry of Indra and Asura and their descendants (Uchiha and Senju) is derived from Hindu and Buddhist religions where the Gods, led by Indra, are in constant battle against the Asuras. In the teachings, Asuras were malevolent and Indra was benevolent. In the series, however, the brothers’ roles were reversed.

Indra’s Mangekyō Sharingan later in the anime.

  • It is hinted straight tomoe Mangekyō Sharingan are connected to Indra as Madara noted despite its rarity, both he and Sasuke possessed one and correctly speculated they shared some connection beyond blood, as Indra’s reincarnations even though he did not seem to be aware of it.[12]
  • During his debut, Indra’s Mangekyō was depicted with a swirl pattern. Later in the anime, Indra’s Mangekyō Sharingan pattern was changed to be the same as Sasuke’s.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Fourth Databook, page 25
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 Naruto: Shippūden episode 465
  3. 3.0 3.1 Naruto: Shippūden episode 464
  4. 4.0 4.1 Naruto: Shippūden episode 466
  5. Naruto: Shippūden episode 467
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 Naruto: Shippūden episode 468
  7. 7.0 7.1 Naruto chapter 462, pages 12-13
  8. Naruto chapter 681, page 10
  9. Naruto chapter 670, page 12
  10. Naruto chapter 670, page 17
  11. Naruto chapter 671, page 7
  12. Naruto chapter 674, page 8

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