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19 April 2020 THE LEGEND

THE LEGEND

The legend behind Krishna’s birth is as fascinating as the happenings during his lifetime. As per Hindu mythology, when negative forces unleashed mayhem over the world, Mother Earth approached Lord Brahma about bringing an end to the raging conditions. Lord Brahma presented this concern to Lord Vishnu, who in turn reassured him of his birth on earth to purge it from all rampant evils. As promised, Lord Vishnu took birth as Krishna at midnight on the 8th day (Ashtami) of the month of Shravan. Krishna, the eighth avatar of Lord Vishnu, was born in Mathura, to Devaki and Vasudev, in a prison. He was born at a time when evil forces were reigning supreme on earth. Krishna’s life was at risk from his uncle King Kansa. This was due to the proclaimed prophecy that King Kansa’s death would be caused by Krishna. Being aware of the dangers that lingered over the life of Krishna, his father, Vasudeva, immediately handed him over to Yashoda and Nanda in Gokul to keep him away from King Kansa. Krishna grew up in Gokul and finally came back to kill his uncle, King Kansa. This folklore is celebrated as the festival of Janmashtami by the devotees who keep a fast, sing devotional songs of Krishna, and visit Krishna temples. This happens to be one of the biggest religious festivals in India.

In Hindu mythology, the 8th incarnation of Vishnu, Sri Krishna, is the only one about whom we have vivid stories concerning every stage of his earthly life. As a child, he was quite naughty and his childhood was full of pranks and fun. Trying and stealing butter is what got him into most of the trouble. In his youth, he was the most romantic lover and wooed young gopikas (girls) with his flute. They were devoted to him but Radha was his greatest devotee. A compassionate king, he cared for the poor. He was a loyal and trusted friend. He was skilled in war and counseled his friend, Arjuna, on how one can seek union with God, on the battlefield of Kurukshetra. Freeing River Yamuna from the poisonous Kaliya Nag, rescuing his parents from Kansa, picking up the Govardhan hill to shelter the villagers from the wrath of King Indra are a few of the many captivating stories of Krishna.

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