The eighth avatar of Lord Vishnu is Krishna Avatar which is the most loved and worshipped of all the deities. To protect Dharma and to spread peace and love on earth Lord Vishnu incarnated as Krishna Avatar. Because he was dark-skinned, the name Krishna was given to him. Krishna in Sanskrit means the color of night. An attractive young boy with bright eyes, Krishna is portrayed as someone with a divine glow on his ‘dark or blue’ skin and who plays the flute and charms everyone.
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Story Behind Krishna Avatar
Krishna was born to Devaki and Vasudeva. King Kansa was Devaki’s brother and King Uggarsen of Mathura was her father. Known for his cruelty, King Kansa arranged the marriage of his sister Devaki with one of his friends Vasudev. King Kansa, after the marriage ceremony was over, decided to bid farewell to Devaki, by riding their chariot to Vasudeva’s home. As he was riding their marriage chariot there was Aakash Vani, the voice from Sky i.e heavens. According to the Akashvani, Kansa would be killed by Devaki’s eighth Son. On hearing this, Kansa tried to kill Devaki with his sword at that very moment but Vasudeva stopped him and convinced him saying that their eighth child will be submitted to Kansa and that he could do anything to him. Kansa didn’t want to take his chances and imprisoned Devaki and Vasudeva.
After Kansa imprisoned the couple, he went on a killing spree of all their children. Not one single child did escape their fate and fell prey to the hands of Kansa. He killed each and every child the day they were born. Year after year, he went on killing all the 6 children mercilessly. When Devaki was pregnant with the seventh child, Lord Vishnu asked Goddess Mahamaya to transfer the seventh child in Devaki’s womb to Rohini’s womb, the first wife of Vasudeva. Mahamaya did exactly as told by Vishnu. The seventh child of Vasudeva was transferred to Rohini’s womb who lived in Gokul with Yasodha and Nanda Raj, who was the brother in the Law of Vasudeva. Balaram was the seventh child who was very brave and daring.
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Birth of Lord Krishna Avatar
After a year Devaki was carrying the eight child in her womb and at midnight of Ashtami, she gave birth to Krishna. It was pouring heavily. The prison Guards were fast asleep and Devaki and Vasudeva prayed to God to have mercy on their situation and asked the Lord to protect the child from Kansa.
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The Child Krishna Brought up at Gokula
Miraculously, the chains of Vasudeva broke and the doors opened itself. Devaki hugged the child one last goodbye and gave it to Vasudeva. Vasudeva taking Krishna Avatar rushed towards Gokul where he reached the River Yamuna and saw baskets on the river bank. Without much ado, he placed the child in one of the baskets and carried it over his head.
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Sheshnaag Protecting Lord Krishna From Rain
The water of Yamuna was rising and flowing vigorously. Vasudeva still managed to step into the river and started to cross it. The water level kept rising higher and at one point touched Lord Krishna foot. Instantly the water level started dropping. The rain didn’t stop but to their rescue suddenly came a very large snake Sheshnaag. He was scared of the huge Snake at first but soon he realized that the snake meant no harm rather, it came to help Vasudeva cross the river with Krishna. The snake protected Krishna from the rain and helped them cross the river safely and reach Gokul. With his hood spread over Vasudeva, he followed him till the shore.
On reaching Nandraja’s house, his wife Yashoda had just given birth to a baby girl. Their arrival made Devaki and NandRaja shocked but at the same time also made them very happy. Vasudeva had returned after many years.
Vasudeva narrated the whole story to them. This made Yashoda’s heart fill with grief at Devaki’s misfortune. Yashoda at once told Vasudeva that she at any cost would save their eighth son and to do so, she asked Vasudeva to change her girl child with his son so that Kansa did not get suspicious.
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Vasudeva was taken aback by this grand gesture and he broke into tears. Vasudeva placed the girl child in the basket and took her to Mathura. After Vasudeva reached the prison, the chains bound around him, and the prison doors closed.
The baby girl started crying and woke the guards. Quickly they informed Kansa about the eight birth and as expected Kansa came and snatched the baby girl away from Devaki. As Kansa was about to kill the baby girl too, she vanished from into the sky. The girl then turned into a goddess and from the sky warned Kansa that his destroyer was being raised in Gokul and that Kansa’s death would meet him soon.
At Nandraja’s house, the child was named “KRISHNA” and he was brought up by Yashoda and Rohini. Krishna was raised by Yashoda as her own child. Rohini also brought him up with equal love and care just like she brought up Balarama.
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Krishna and Balarama Mathura visit on invitation of Kans
After every failed attempt of Kansa’s to kill Krishna, Kansa planned to organize Dhanoriya Yagya. He invited both Krishna and Balarama to challenge them. To bring them to Mathura, Kansa sent his cousin, Akrura to Gokul. Nobody in Gokul wanted Krishna to go but Krishna convinced them that he had to serve the purpose of his life and therefore asked them to let him go.
Akrura drove the Chariot and brought them to Mathura. As soon as the chariot entered Mathura it suddenly stopped as an old blind lady was standing in the way. The old woman had brought Sandalwood for the royalty. She had a deformed body. This woman was cursed from her previous life. Known as Manthra in her past life, on meeting Krishna, she applied Chandan on him and attained salvation.
On hearing the news of their arrival, Kansa asked his minister to unchain the mad elephant Kuvalayapidain. The elephant Kuvalayapida destroyed everything that came its way and ran towards Krishna. Krishna acted quickly and cut off his trunk with his sword killing the elephant.
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Kansa sat on his throne and the wrestling matches were organized. It was not an ordinary wrestling match. The loser would have to face death which was inevitable. Kansa organized a fight between Krishna and Balrama and Mushtika and Chanura. They were the invincible demon warriors. Balaram with his mace attacked Mushtika, and Mushtika fell down with an enormous thud in the first blow itself. He roared in pain and Krishna fought Chanura. The fight went on for quite long but the demon warriors could not stand a chance against Krishna and Balarama.
This shocked Kansa as his best warriors were in the clutches of Krishna and Balarama. Krishna then roared and warned Kansa of his inevitable death at Krishna’s hands. Kansa ran for his life, he tried every possible way to escape the arena but could not flee. Krishna caught hold of Kansa and cut off Kansa’s head with Sudarshan Chakkar.
This is how Kansa the tyrant was killed and all evil came to an end.
Why did Lord Vishnu take the avatar of Lord Krishna
- Each avatar of Lord Vishnu has its own unique purpose.
- The purpose of the Lord’s avatar is to save sadhus because the latter desire to see him and to touch his feet.
- To end the chaos created by the Rakshasas (devils).
- Lord Krishna performed every duty a person should and must. A naughty child, a dutiful son, a romantic lover, a good husband, an ideal king, a great friend, and so on..
- He was the mentor of the Pandavas during the battle of Kurukshetra.
- Became the charioteer of Arjuna in the war of Mahabharata and gave knowledge of Gita to the world.
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