He is one of the most popular deities in India. Perhaps the most famous avatar of Vishnu, there are numerous stories, legends, and even books named after Him. He is an important character in the Mahabharata and several other Hindu texts.
What is Krishna famous for? Here are 8 Facts why.
His life as a child with cowherd friends, His love for Radha, and His many adventures are all part of His fascinating story. Arguably the most famous incarnation of Vishnu, Shri Hari has a number of stories which are central to understanding His life and purpose on earth. From being born in a prision to destroying evil Jarasandh and protecting Pandavas from danger, here are 8 facts about Vishnu’s 8th Avatar that you may not know:
1)He Was Born In Prison
Eventually, Mother Earth could not stand the atrocities committed by evil kings and rulers. Mother Earth then pleaded to Lord Brahma, the creator of the universe, to rescue her from these wrongdoers. Lord Brahma asked the supreme Lord Vishnu to grant him rebirth and liberate the Mother Earth from her bad rulers.
Lord Vishnu agreed to take care of Mathura’s ruler, Kansa, and his sister Devaki. Devaki fell in love with Vasudeva, who was the brother of her husband, Devaki.
A voice from the sky announced that their eighth child would kill Kansa and end his reign of terror. Devaki and Vasudeva were frightened to conceive their eighth child. When their first seven children were killed by the vicious Kansa, the imprisoned couple was worried about the birth of their eighth child.
Each night, Lord Vishnu appeared before them and told them that he would return and rescue them from King Kansa’s tyranny. A divine baby was born and the day he was born, Vasudeva was released from prison while the guards were asleep.
Vasudeva was able to cross the Yamuna river during torrential rains with the protection of Ananta Sesh.
Vasudeva fled with the child to a safer house and the obstacles in Vasudeva’s path were removed. When Vasudeva arrived in Gokul, he exchanged Gopal with a newborn Yashoda and Nanda and returned to prison with the infant girl. Kansa discovered that there was another infant and tried to murder the child. The infant became a goddess Yogamaya and said, “What are you going to get by killing me? A nemesis already exists.”
Meanwhile, he was raised in Gokul as a cowherd and became a master musician. When he returned to Mathura, Hari slayed Kansa and restored his father to power. As a cowherd in Gokul, a master musician. He slayed Kansa and restored his father to power.
2)He killed Putanah When He was 8 Days Old
Putanah was a demon who had the power to take any form he wanted. He came to the house of the cowherd where Prabhu was staying and transformed himself into a lady’s maid. His foster mother, Yoshoda left the baby alone with this maid who attempted to kill the baby.
However, the boy destroyed the demon. After this incident, Hari was known as the killer of Putanah. He also killed a demon named Trnavarta when he was five years old. He also killed a horse-like demon named Keshi when he was seven years old.
3)He Has Many Names
One of the most interesting facts about the Lord is that he has many names. His most popular names are:
- Govinda – One who loves the cows
- Gopal – The protector of the cows
- Madhusudan – The slayer of the demon Madhu
- Prabhu – Master
- Shyamsundar – He who is of a blackish color
- Shrinath – The lord of the goddess of fortune
- Hrishikesh – Lord of the senses
- Mahavir – The great hero
- Raam – The sovereign lord
- Bala – Baby
- Swayam – The Self
- Hari – The remover of all sins; One who takes away
- Narayana – Primal original form
4)He lifted the Govardhan Hill
When the Vraj people organised a puja and yajna to please Lord Indra, the supreme being, Nanda Maharaj and the elder people, began discussing the preparations. However, Hari, the Supreme, questioned them as to why they offered sacrifices to Indra every year.
Nanda Maharaj and the other villagers told the Lord that they did this to please Indra and ask for rain which they were dependent on for their cows to graze. Nanda Maharaj and the other villagers argued with Hari about what was right. He said that all people should follow their ‘dharma’, to the best of their ability. Shrinath explained that this Hill, the Govardhan Hill provided them with everything they needed. When the villagers were persuaded by Gopal, they did not perform a special puja.
When lndra, the King of Heaven, saw that the people of Vrindavan had neglected to worship him, he decided to punish them by sending terrible rain clouds to flood the land. King lndra was seething with rage because on the advice of a chatty village boy named Gopal the Vrajavasis had stopped the lndra-yajna and instead worshiped Govardhana Hill, the brahmanas, and the cows.
Indra ordered the samvartaka clouds be sent to Vrindavan and used to destroy the entire cosmic manifestation at the end of a kalpa, resulting in extensive floods that would cause widespread suffering to the Vrindavan area. Within minutes, torrents of rain as thick as pillars, accompanied by thunder, lighting, and howling winds, poured down on Vrindvan, which threatened to cause harm its inhabitants.
The land became so saturated with water that no one could distinguish between high and low ground. Frightened because of the severe cold brought on by the torrential rains, Vrindavan’s inhabitants asked Hari for refuge.
Upon knowing the situation, Hari lifted Govardhana Hill with His left hand and held it up like an umbrella. The residents of Vrindavan, accompanied by their cows, took shelter from the heavy rains under the hill for seven days without experiencing hunger or thirst. When they saw Hari balancing Govardhana Hill on His little finger, they were stunned.
After being destroyed by Indra’s arrogance, the clouds of devastation were called back and the sun shone again over Vrindavan’s beautiful land. Nanda Baba, Yasoda, Balarama, and all the residents of Vrindavan returned to their homes without fear once Govardhan Nath had reassured them.
Hari gently put the Govardhan Hill in the same place. When the gopis sang poems about Sri Hari’s extraordinary deeds, Vrindavan people went home with their cows. The demigods in the higher planets began to beat kettledrums and shower the earth with fragrant flowers as the gopis sang about Hari’s magnificent deeds.
Then Lord Indra came to the holy feet of Hari, bowed down, and asked for forgiveness. The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Shri Hari, explained his dharma and duty.
Lord Indra prostrated at the holy feet of Sri Hari and folded his hands in prayer, asking for forgiveness. His dharma and responsibilities as a master were explained to him by the Supreme Lord. At this time, He became known as ‘Govinda’.
5)He is Known As Govinda Protector of the Cows
The most famous animal associated with Hari is the cow. He is the protector of cows and those who work with them. The cow is known as a sacred animal.
Many of his temples are built next to the homes of people who raise cows. Outside of this one fact, there are other interesting facts about cows and Hari. For example, Gopal was raised by a clan of cow herders. The cows provided them with butter, ghee, and other products that were good for humans.
6)Shri Hari Never Leaves Vrindavan
Vrindavan is a city that is south of Mathura, the place where Gopal was raised. It is a small city where today, many people worship the Lord in over 5000 temples.
It is also the place where Shri Radha was born in nearby Varshana. It is believed that Shri Hari saved the people of Vrindavan from a terrible flood by lifting the Govardhan Hill.
While Govinda did ‘leave’ Vrindavan, it is said that He always lives in Vrindavan and never left. He always remains in Vrindavan in His bhav form.
7)He Is the Speaker of the Bhagavad Gita
The Bhagavad Gita is a very famous Hindu text that people from all over the world read. It is a great source of wisdom and knowledge. It has been translated into many different languages. The Bhagavad Gita is a conversation between the Lord and Arjuna. It is a collection of philosophical ideas about life and the world. It is a great text that is still used today.
The Kurukshetra war, between the Pandavas and the Kauravas (led by King Dhritarashtra), was fought for the Pandava throne. At the Kurukshetra war, the Lord served as Arjuna’s charioteer. Despite the Kauravas’ provocations, Shri Hari tried to avoid the battle. However, He was forced to enter the fray.
Hari gave Arjuna a choice – to have Hari’s army, or to have Kthe Lord Himself, who would not fight. Arjuna chose Hari’s counsel. The Bhagavad Gita was born as Arjuna and Sri Prabhu discussed the immortal dialogue at the Kurukshetra battlefield.
8) Kali Yuga began upon Hari’s Departure
The Sanskrit scriptures describe a succession of yugas. Within the present Mahayuga, it goes through Satya Yuga, Treta Yuga, and Dvapara Yuga in succession. The final yuga, Kali Yuga, is characterized by the demon Kali (not to be confused with the goddess Kālī). The “Kali” of Kali Yuga refers to “discord”, “quarrels”, and “conflicts”. According to Puranic sources, Hari’s departure marks the beginning of Dvapara Yuga and the start of Kali Yuga on February 17/18, 3102 BCE.
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