Lord Krishna – The Divine and the Supreme Being
Krishna is a deity worshipped across many traditions in Hinduism. While the Vaishnavas recognize him as avatar of Vishnu, other traditions within Krishnaism consider Krishna as Swayam Bhagwan or the Supreme Being. The stories of Lord Krishna appear across various Hindu philosophical and theological traditions.
Lord Krishna – His divinity and powers
Lord Krishna is seen in a variety of roles – a god child, a prankster, model lover, divine hero apart from the Supreme Being. He is talked about in scriptures such as the Mahabharata, the Harivamsha, the Vishnu Purana, and the Bhagvat Purana. The Sanskrit word “Krishna” literally means “black”, “dark” or “dark blue” and is usually used to describe someone with dark skin.
Lord Krishna is considered to be the 8th Avatar of Lord Vishnu because of his great godly power. It is Krishna who delivered Bhagwad Gita on the battlefield to Arjun. The Lord is known for his bravery in destroying the evil throughout his life. He is often depicted as playing the flute (murali), implying that the melody of love has spread amongst people.
Lord Krishna’s birthplace is Mathura, also known as Brij Bhoomi, the land where Shri Krishna spent his youth. It is a pilgrim place for the Hindus and is one of the 7th sacred cities in India. The primary pilgrim center in Mathura is the Shri Krishna Janmabhumi temple. Krishna’s birth is celebrated as the Sri Krishna Janmashthana.
The Lord and story behind His birth
The birth of Lord Krishna is a transcendental phenomenon which creates awe among Hindus who’re surprised with it’s supra mundane happenings. Unable to bear the sins committed by evil rulers and kings, Mother Earth appealed to Brahma for help. Brahma, the Creator appealed to Lord Vishnu who promised he would come down to earth and bring an end to the evil forces. One such evil force, the Kamsa was the ruler of Mathura (northern India). Kamsa killed the first 6 sons of his sister Devaki and Vasudeva as because he was afraid of an Akashvani or voice from the sky stating that Devaki’s 8th son would be responsible for the death of Kamsa.
Kamsa had earlier tried to kill his sister but Vasudeva insisted that he would hand over every new born child to him if he spared his wife. However, suddenly before the 8th child was born, Lord Vishnu appeared and asked Vasudeva to carry the child off to his friend’s house in Gokula where the cowherd chief Nanda and his wife Yashoda had given birth to their daughter. Vishnu asked Vasudeva to exchange the boy and bring Nanda’s daughter back to prison thereby giving the assurance that nothing should stop Vasudeva from doing it successfully.
When Lord Krishna was born at midnight on Ashtami in Kamsa’s prison, Vasudeva took him to Nanda’s house fighting against odds such as the chains in his legs, the iron-barred doors, the rain and the river – all of which miraculously helped him in his escape to Gokula with the baby boy. He exchanged the babies and went back to Kamsa’s prison with the baby girl who was born to Nanda and Yashoda. Quite obviously when Kamsa came to know about the birth of the child, he tired to kill the baby but it skipped from his hand and reached the sky thereby transforming into goddess Yogamaya. The goddess warned Kamsa that his destroyer had already landed on the earth.
However, Lord Krishna later on killed Kamsa in his youth. The Lord then liberated his parents from prison and gave back the kingdom of Mathura to Ugrasena.