Shree Krishna or simply Krishna (/ˈkrɪʃnə/, Sanskrit pronunciation: [ˈkɽɪʂɳɐ]; Sanskrit: कृष्ण, IAST: Kṛṣṇa) is a major deity in Hinduism. He is worshipped as the eighth avatar of the god Vishnu and also as the supreme God in his own right. He is the god of compassion, tenderness, and love in Hinduism, and is one of the most popular and widely revered among Indian divinities. Krishna's birthday is celebrated every year by Hindus on Janmashtami according to the lunisolar Hindu calendar, which falls in late August or early September of the Gregorian calendar.
The anecdotes and narratives of Krishna's life are generally titled as Krishna Leela. He is a central character in the Mahabharata, the Bhagavata Purana and the Bhagavad Gita, and is mentioned in many Hindu philosophical, theological, and mythological texts. They portray him in various perspectives: a god-child, a prankster, a model lover, a divine hero, and as the universal supreme being. His iconography reflects these legends, and shows him in different stages of his life, such as an infant eating butter, a young boy playing a flute, a young man with Radha or surrounded by women devotees, or a friendly charioteer giving counsel to Arjuna.
The synonyms of Krishna have been traced to 1st millennium BCE literature. In some sub-traditions, Krishna is worshipped as Svayam Bhagavan, and this is sometimes referred to as Krishnaism. These sub-traditions arose in the context of the medieval era Bhakti movement. Krishna-related literature has inspired numerous performance arts such as Bharatnatyam, Kathakali, Kuchipudi, Odissi, and Manipuri dance. He is a pan-Hindu god, but is particularly revered in some locations such as Vrindavan in Uttar Pradesh, the Jagannatha aspect in Odisha, Mayapur in West Bengal, Dwarka and Junagadh in Gujarat, in the form of Vithoba in Pandharpur, Maharashtra, Nathdwara in Rajasthan, and Guruvayur in Kerala. Since the 1960s, the worship of Krishna has also spread to the Western world and to Africa, largely due to the work of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON).
|Affiliation||Svayam Bhagavan, Paramatman,Brahman, Narayana Vishnu, Dashavatara, Radha Krishna|
|Abode||Goloka Vrindavana, Gokula, Dwarka|
|Weapon||Sudarshana Chakra |
|Texts||Bhagavata Purana, Harivamsa, Vishnu Purana, Mahabharata (Bhagavad Gita), Gita Govinda|
|Festivals||Krishna Janmashtami, Holi|
|Consorts||Radha; Rukmini, Satyabhama and other Ashtabharyas, and 16,000–16,100 other junior queens[note 1]|
|Parents||Devaki (mother) and Vasudeva (father), Yashoda (foster mother) and Nanda Baba (foster father)|
The name "Krishna" originates from the Sanskrit word Kṛṣṇa, which is primarily an adjective meaning "black", "dark", or "dark blue". The waning moon is called Krishna Paksha, relating to the adjective meaning "darkening". The name is also interpreted sometimes as "all-attractive".
As a name of Vishnu, Krishna is listed as the 57th name in the Vishnu Sahasranama. Based on his name, Krishna is often depicted in idols as black- or blue-skinned. Krishna is also known by various other names, epithets, and titles that reflect his many associations and attributes. Among the most common names are Mohan "enchanter"; Govinda "chief herdsman",, Keev "prankster", and Gopala "Protector of the 'Go'", which means "Soul" or "the cows". Some names for Krishna hold regional importance; Jagannatha, found in Puri Hindu temple, is a popular incarnation in Odisha state and nearby regions of eastern India.
Krishna is represented in the Indian traditions in many ways, but with some common features. His iconography typically depicts him with black, dark, or blue skin, like Vishnu. However, ancient and medieval reliefs and stone-based arts depict him in the natural color of the material out of which he is formed, both in India and in southeast Asia. In some texts, his skin is poetically described as the color of Jambul (Jamun, a purple-colored fruit).
Krishna is often depicted wearing a peacock-feather wreath or crown, and playing the bansuri (Indian flute). In this form, he is usually shown standing with one leg bent in front of the other in the Tribhanga posture. He is sometimes accompanied by cows or a calf, which symbolise the divine herdsman Govinda. Alternatively, he is shown as a romantic and seductive man with the gopis (milkmaids), often making music or playing pranks.
In other icons, he is a part of battlefield scenes of the epic Mahabharata. He is shown as a charioteer, notably when he is addressing the Pandava prince Arjuna character, symbolically reflecting the events that led to the Bhagavad Gita – a scripture of Hinduism. In these popular depictions, Krishna appears in the front as the charioteer, either as a counsel listening to Arjuna, or as the driver of the chariot while Arjuna aims his arrows in the battlefield of Kurukshetra.
Alternate icons of Krishna show him as a baby (Bala Krishna, the child Krishna), a toddler crawling on his hands and knees, a dancing child, or an innocent-looking child playfully stealing or consuming butter (Makkan Chor), holding Laddu in his hand (Laddu Gopal) or as a cosmic infant sucking his toe while floating on a banyan leaf during the Pralaya (the cosmic dissolution) observed by sage Markandeya. Regional variations in the iconography of Krishna are seen in his different forms, such as Jaganatha in Odisha, Vithoba in Maharashtra, Shrinathji in Rajasthan and Guruvayoorappan in Kerala.
Guidelines for the preparation of Krishna icons in design and architecture are described in medieval-era Sanskrit texts on Hindu temple arts such as Vaikhanasa agama, Vishnu dharmottara, Brihat samhita, and Agni Purana. Similarly, early medieval-era Tamil texts also contain guidelines for sculpting Krishna and Rukmini. Several statues made according to these guidelines are in the collections of the Government Museum, Chennai.
The earliest text containing detailed descriptions of Krishna as a personality is the epic Mahabharata, which depicts Krishna as an incarnation of Vishnu. Krishna is central to many of the main stories of the epic. The eighteen chapters of the sixth book (Bhishma Parva) of the epic that constitute the Bhagavad Gita contain the advice of Krishna to Arjuna on the battlefield. The Harivamsa, a later appendix to the Mahabharata contains a detailed version of Krishna's childhood and youth.
The Chandogya Upanishad, estimated to have been composed sometime between the 8th and 6th centuries BCE, has been another source of speculation regarding Krishna in ancient India. The verse (III.xvii.6) mentions Krishna in "Krishnaya Devakiputraya" (Sanskrit: कृष्णाय देवकीपुत्राय) as a student of the sage Ghora of the Angirasa family. This phrase, which means "To Krishna the son of Devaki", has been mentioned by scholars such as Max Müller as a potential source of fables and Vedic lore about Krishna in the Mahabharata and other ancient literature – only potential, because this verse could have been interpolated into the text, or the Krishna Devakiputra, could be different from the deity Krishna. These doubts are supported by the fact that the much later age Sandilya Bhakti Sutras, a treatise on Krishna, cites later age compilations such as the Narayana Upanishad but never cites this verse of the Chandogya Upanishad. Other scholars disagree that the Krishna mentioned along with Devaki in the ancient Upanishad is unrelated to the later Hindu god of the Bhagavad Gita fame. For example, Archer states that the coincidence of the two names appearing together in the same Upanishad verse cannot be dismissed easily.
Yāska's Nirukta, an etymological dictionary published around the 6th century BCE, contains a reference to the Shyamantaka jewel in the possession of Akrura, a motif from the well-known Puranic story about Krishna. Shatapatha Brahmana and Aitareya-Aranyaka associate Krishna with his Vrishni origins.
In Ashṭādhyāyī, authored by the ancient grammarian Pāṇini (probably belonged to the 5th or 6th century BCE), Vāsudeva, son of Vasudeva, and Arjuna, as recipients of worship, are referred to together in the same sutra.
Megasthenes, a Greek ethnographer and an ambassador of Seleucus I to the court of Chandragupta Maurya towards the end of 4th century BCE, made reference to Herakles in his famous work Indica. This text is now lost to history, but was quoted in secondary literature by later Greeks such as Arrian, Diodorus, and Strabo. According to these texts, Megasthenes mentioned that the Sourasenoi tribe of India, who worshipped Herakles, had two major cities named Methora and Kleisobora, and a navigable river named the Jobares. According to Edwin Bryant, a professor of Indian religions known for his publications on Krishna, "there is little doubt that the Sourasenoi refers to the Shurasenas, a branch of the Yadu dynasty to which Krishna belonged". The word Herakles, states Bryant, is likely a Greek phonetic equivalent of Hari-Krishna, as is Methora of Mathura, Kleisobora of Krishnapura, and the Jobares of Jamuna. Later, when Alexander the Great launched his campaign in the northwest Indian subcontinent, his associates recalled that the soldiers of Porus were carrying an image of Herakles.
The Buddhist Pali canon and the Ghata-Jâtaka (No. 454) polemically mention the devotees of Vâsudeva and Baladeva. These texts have many peculiarities and may be a garbled and confused version of the Krishna legends. The texts of Jainism mention these tales as well, also with many peculiarities and different versions, in their legends about Tirthankaras. This inclusion of Krishna-related legends in ancient Buddhist and Jaina literature suggests that Krishna theology was existent and important in the religious landscape observed by non-Hindu traditions of ancient India.
The ancient Sanskrit grammarian Patanjali in his Mahabhashya makes several references to Krishna and his associates found in later Indian texts. In his commentary on Pāṇini's verse 3.1.26, he also uses the word Kamsavadha or the "killing of Kamsa", an important part of the legends surrounding Krishna.
Around 180 BCE the Indo-Greek king Agathocles issued some coinage bearing images of deities that are now interpreted as being related to Vaisnava imagery in India. The deities displayed on the coins appear to be Vishnu's avatars Balarama-Sankarshana with attributes consisting of the Gada mace and the plow, and Vasudeva-Krishna with attributes of the Shankha (conch) and the Sudarshana Chakra wheel. According to Bopearachchi, the headdress on top of the deity is actually a misrepresentation of a shaft with a half-moon parasol on top (chattra).
A pillar with a Brahmi script inscription was discovered by colonial era archaeologists in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh. Using modern techniques, it has been dated to between 125 and 100 BCE, and traced to an Indo-Greek who served as an ambassador of the Greek king Antialcidas to a regional Indian king. Named after the Indo-Greek, it is now known as the Heliodorus pillar. Its inscription is a dedication to "Vasudeva", another name for Krishna in the Indian tradition. Scholars consider the "Vasudeva" to be referring to a deity, because the inscription states that it was constructed by "the Bhagavata Heliodorus" and that it is a "Garuda pillar" (both are Vishnu-Krishna-related terms). Additionally, the inscription includes a Krishna-related verse from chapter 11.7 of the Mahabharata stating that the path to immortality and heaven is to correctly live a life of three virtues: self-temperance (damah), generosity (cagah or tyaga), and vigilance (apramadah).
The Heliodorus inscription is not an isolated evidence. Three Hathibada inscriptions and one Ghosundi inscription, all located in the state of Rajasthan and dated by modern methodology to the 1st century BCE, mention Samkarsana and Vasudeva, also mention that the structure was built for their worship. These four inscriptions are notable for being some of the oldest-known Sanskrit inscriptions.
A Mora stone slab found at the Mathura-Vrindavan archaeological site in Uttar Pradesh, held now in the Mathura Museum, has a Brahmi inscription. It is dated to the 1st century CE and lists five Vrishni heroes: Balarama, Krishna, Pradyumna, Aniruddha, and Samba. Another terracotta plaque from the same site shows an infant being carried by an adult over his head, similar to the legend about Krishna's birth.
Many Puranas tell Krishna's life story or some highlights from it. Two Puranas, the Bhagavata Purana and the Vishnu Purana, contain the most elaborate telling of Krishna's story, but the life stories of Krishna in these and other texts vary, and contain significant inconsistencies. The Bhagavata Purana consists of twelve books subdivided into 332 chapters, with a cumulative total of between 16,000 and 18,000 verses depending on the version. The tenth book of the text, which contains about 4,000 verses (~25%) and is dedicated to legends about Krishna, has been the most popular and widely studied part of this text.
This summary is a mythological account, based on literary details from the Mahābhārata, the Harivamsa, the Bhagavata Purana, and the Vishnu Purana. The scenes from the narrative are set in ancient India, mostly in the present states of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Haryana, Delhi, and Gujarat. The legends about Krishna's life are called Krishna charitas (IAST: Kṛṣṇacaritas).
In Krishna Charitas, Krishna is born to Devaki and her husband, King Vasudeva of the Yadava clan in Nathdwara. Devaki's brother is a tyrant named Kamsa. At Devaki's wedding, according to Puranic legends, Kamsa is told by fortune tellers that a child of Devaki would kill him. Kamsa arranges to kill all of Devaki's children. When Krishna is born, Vasudeva secretly carries the infant Krishna away across the Yamuna and exchanges him. When Kamsa tries to kill the newborn, the exchanged baby appears as the Hindu goddess Durga, warning him that his death has arrived in his kingdom, and then disappears, according to the legends in the Puranas. Krishna grows up with Nanda Baba and his wife Yasoda near modern-day Mathura. Two of Krishna's siblings also survive, namely Balarama and Subhadra, according to these legends. The day of birth of Krishna is celebrated as Krishna Janmashtami.
The legends of Krishna's childhood and youth describe him as a cow herder, a mischievous boy whose pranks earns him the nickname a Makhan Chor (butter thief), and a protector who steals the hearts of the people in both Gokul and Vrindavana. The texts state, for example, that Krishna lifts the Govardhana hill to protect the inhabitants of Vrindavana from devastating rains and floods.
Other legends describe him as an enchanter and playful lover of the gopis (milkmaids) of Vrindavana, especially Radha. These metaphor-filled love stories are known as the Rasa lila and were romanticised in the poetry of Jayadeva, author of the Gita Govinda. They are also central to the development of the Krishna bhakti traditions worshiping Radha Krishna.
Krishna's childhood illustrates the Hindu concept of lila, playing for fun and enjoyment and not for sport or gain. His interaction with the gopis at the rasa dance or Rasa-lila is an example. Krishna plays his flute and the gopis come immediately, from whatever they were doing, to the banks of the Yamuna River, and join him in singing and dancing. Even those who could not physically be there join him through meditation. He is the spiritual essence and the love-eternal in existence, the gopis metaphorically represent the prakṛti matter and the impermanent body.:256
This lila is a constant theme in the legends of Krishna's childhood and youth. Even when he is battling with a serpent to protect others, he is described in Hindu texts as if he were playing a game.:255 This quality of playfulness in Krishna is celebrated during festivals as Rasa-lila and Janmashtami, where Hindus in some regions such as Maharashtra playfully mimic his legends, such as by making human gymnastic pyramids to break open handis (clay pots) hung high in the air to "steal" butter or buttermilk, spilling it all over the group.:253–261
Krishna legends then describe his return to Mathura. He overthrows and kills the tyrant king, his uncle Kamsa/Kansa after quelling several assassination attempts by Kamsa. He reinstates Kamsa's father, Ugrasena, as the king of the Yadavas and becomes a leading prince at the court. In one version of the Krishna story, as narrated by Shanta Rao, Krishna after Kamsa's death leads the Yadavas to the newly built city of Dwaraka. Thereafter Pandavas rise. Krishna befriends Arjuna and the other Pandava princes of the Kuru kingdom. Krishna plays a key role in the Mahabharata.
The Bhagavata Purana describes eight wives of Krishna that appear in sequence as (Rukmini, Satyabhama, Jambavati, Kalindi, Mitravinda, Nagnajiti (also called Satya), Bhadra, and Lakshmana (also called Madra). According to Dennis Hudson, this is a metaphor where each of the eight wives signifies a different aspect of him. According to George Williams, Vaishnava texts mention all Gopis as wives of Krishna, but this is spiritual symbolism of devotional relationship and Krishna's complete loving devotion to each and everyone devoted to him. His wife is sometimes called Rohini, Radha, Rukmini, Svaminiji or others. In Krishna-related Hindu traditions, he is most commonly seen with Radha. All of his wives and his lover Radha are considered in the Hindu tradition to be the avatars of the goddess Lakshmi, the consort of Vishnu. Gopis are considered as Radha's many forms and manifestations.
According to the epic poem Mahabharata, Krishna becomes Arjuna's charioteer for the Kurukshetra War, but on the condition that he personally will not raise any weapon. Upon arrival at the battlefield, and seeing that the enemies are his family, his grandfather, and his cousins and loved ones, Arjuna is moved and says his heart will not allow him to fight and kill others. He would rather renounce the kingdom and put down his Gandiv (Arjuna's bow). Krishna then advises him about the nature of life, ethics, and morality when one is faced with a war between good and evil, the impermanence of matter, the permanence of the soul and the good, duties and responsibilities, the nature of true peace and bliss and the different types of yoga to reach this state of bliss and inner liberation. This conversation between Krishna and Arjuna is presented as a discourse called the Bhagavad Gita.
It is stated in the Indian texts that the legendary Kurukshetra War leads to the death of all the hundred sons of Gandhari. After Duryodhana's death, Krishna visits Gandhari to offer his condolences when Gandhari and Drutarashtra visited Kurukshtra, as stated in Stree Parva. Feeling that Krishna deliberately did not put an end to the war, in a fit of rage and sorrow Gandhari said, 'Thou were indifferent to the Kurus and the Pandavas whilst they slew each other, therefore, O Govinda, thou shalt be the slayer of thy own kinsmen !' According to the Mahabharata, a fight breaks out at a festival among the Yadavas, who end up killing each other. Mistaking the sleeping Krishna for a deer, a hunter named Jara shoots an arrow that fatally injures him. Krishna forgives Jara and dies. The pilgrimage (tirtha) site of Bhalka in Gujarat marks the location where Krishna is believed to have died. It is also known as Dehotsarga, states Diana L. Eck, a term that literally means the place where Krishna "gave up his body". The Bhagavata Purana in Book 11, chapter 31 states that after his death, Krishna returned to his transcendent abode directly because of his yogic concentration. Waiting gods such as Brahma and Indra were unable to trace the path Krishna took to leave his human incarnation and return to his abode.
There are numerous versions of Krishna's life story, of which three are most studied: the Harivamsa, the Bhagavata Purana, and the Vishnu Purana. They share the basic storyline but vary significantly in their specifics, details, and styles. The most original composition, the Harivamsa is told in a realistic style that describes Krishna's life as a poor herder but weaves in poetic and allusive fantasy. It ends on a triumphal note, not with the death of Krishna. Differing in some details, the fifth book of the Vishnu Purana moves away from Harivamsa realism and embeds Krishna in mystical terms and eulogies. The Vishnu Purana manuscripts exist in many versions.
The tenth and eleventh books of the Bhagavata Purana are widely considered to be a poetic masterpiece, full of imagination and metaphors, with no relation to the realism of pastoral life found in the Harivamsa. Krishna's life is presented as a cosmic play (lila), where his youth is set as a princely life with his foster father Nanda portrayed as a king. Krishna's life is closer to that of a human being in Harivamsa, but is a symbolic universe in the Bhagavata Purana, where Krishna is within the universe and beyond it, as well as the universe itself, always. The Bhagavata Purana manuscripts also exist in many versions, in numerous Indian languages.
See Also : Baba Mohan Ram
Lord Krishna is said to have Incarnated as Lord Baba Mohan Ram in the cave of Kali Kholi mountain near Village Milakhpur, Bhiwadi. He is portrayed as a mystic who has given his darshan in the form of Vamana Devta to his devotee. He wears peacock feather on his head adorned with a golden ring. It has been stated that his rides on a Blue Colored Horse (Shesh Naag) and is worshiped in the form of Jyoti. 
According to Guy Beck, "most scholars of Hinduism and Indian history accept the historicity of Krishna—that he was a real male person, whether human or divine, who lived on Indian soil by at least 1000 BCE and interacted with many other historical persons within the cycles of the epic and puranic histories." Yet, Beck also notes that there is an "enormous number of contradictions and discrepancies surrounding the chronology of Krishna's life as depicted in the Sanskrit canon."
Lanvanya Vemsani states that Krishna can be inferred to have lived between 3227 BCE – 3102 BCE from the Puranas. A number of scholars, such as A. K. Bansal, B. V. Raman places Krishna's birth year as 3228 BCE. A paper presented in a conference in 2004 by a group of archaeologists, religious scholars and astronomers from Somnath Trust of Gujarat, which was organised at Prabhas Patan, the supposed location of the where Krishna spent his last moments, fixes the death of Sri Krishna on 18 February 3102 BC at the age of 125 years and 7 months.[note 2]
In contrast, according to mythologies in the Jain tradition, Krishna was a cousin of Neminatha, the 22nd Tirthankara of the Jains. Neminatha is believed in the Jain tradition to have been born 84,000 years before the 9th-century BCE Parshvanatha.
A wide range of theological and philosophical ideas are presented through Krishna in Hindu texts. Ramanuja, a Hindu theologian whose works were influential in Bhakti movement, presented him in terms of qualified monism (Vishishtadvaita). Madhvacharya, a Hindu philosopher whose works led to the founding of Haridasa sect of Vaishnavism, presented Krishna in the framework of dualism (Dvaita). Jiva Goswami, a saint from Gaudiya Vaishnava school, described Krishna theology in terms of Bhakti yoga and Achintya Bheda Abheda. Krishna theology is presented in a pure monism (advaita, called shuddhadvaita) framework by Vallabha Acharya, who was the founder of Pushti sect of vaishnavism. Madhusudana Sarasvati, an India philosopher, presented Krishna theology in nondualism-monism framework (Advaita Vedanta), while Adi Shankara, who is credited for unifying and establishing the main currents of thought in Hinduism, mentioned Krishna in his early eighth-century discussions on Panchayatana puja.
The Bhagavata Purana, a popular text on Krishna considered to be like a scripture in Assam, synthesizes an Advaita, Samkhya, and Yoga framework for Krishna but one that proceeds through loving devotion to Krishna. Bryant describes the synthesis of ideas in Bhagavata Purana as,
The philosophy of the Bhagavata is a mixture of Vedanta terminology, Samkhyan metaphysics and devotionalized Yoga praxis. (...) The tenth book promotes Krishna as the highest absolute personal aspect of godhead – the personality behind the term Ishvara and the ultimate aspect of Brahman.— Edwin Bryant, Krishna: A Sourcebook
While Sheridan and Pintchman both affirm Bryant's view, the latter adds that the Vedantic view emphasized in the Bhagavata is non-dualist with a difference. In conventional nondual Vedanta all reality is an interconnected and one, the Bhagavata posits that the reality is interconnected and plural.
Across the various theologies and philosophies, the common theme presents Krishna as the essence and symbol of divine love, with human life and love as a reflection of the divine. The longing and love-filled legends of Krishna and the gopis, his playful pranks as a baby, as well as his later dialogues with other characters, are philosophically treated as metaphors for the human longing for the divine and for meaning, and the play between the universals and the human soul. Krishna's lila is a theology of love-play. According to John Koller, "love is presented not simply as a means to salvation, it is the highest life". Human love is God's love.
Other texts that include Krishna such as the Bhagavad Gita have attracted numerous bhasya (commentaries) in the Hindu traditions. Though only a part of the Hindu epic Mahabharata, it has functioned as an independent spiritual guide. It allegorically raises through Krishna and Arjuna the ethical and moral dilemmas of human life, then presents a spectrum of answers, weighing in on the ideological questions on human freedoms, choices, and responsibilities towards self and towards others. This Krishna dialogue has attracted numerous interpretations, from being a metaphor of inner human struggle teaching non-violence, to being a metaphor of outer human struggle teaching a rejection of quietism to persecution.
The worship of Krishna is part of Vaishnavism, a major tradition within Hinduism. Krishna is considered a full avatar of Vishnu, or one with Vishnu himself. However, the exact relationship between Krishna and Vishnu is complex and diverse, with Krishna sometimes considered an independent deity and supreme. Vaishnavas accept many incarnations of Vishnu, but Krishna is particularly important. Their theologies are generally centered either on Vishnu or an avatar such as Krishna as supreme. The terms Krishnaism and Vishnuism have sometimes been used to distinguish the two, the former implying that Krishna is the transcendent Supreme Being.
All Vaishnava traditions recognise Krishna as the eighth avatar of Vishnu; others identify Krishna with Vishnu, while traditions such as Gaudiya Vaishnavism, Vallabha Sampradaya and the Nimbarka Sampradaya regard Krishna as the Svayam Bhagavan, the original form of Lord or the same as the concept of Brahman in Hinduism. Gitagovinda of Jayadeva considers Krishna to be the supreme lord while the ten incarnations are his forms. Swaminarayan, the founder of the Swaminarayan Sampraday, also worshipped Krishna as God himself. "Greater Krishnaism" corresponds to the second and dominant phase of Vaishnavism, revolving around the cults of the Vasudeva, Krishna, and Gopala of the late Vedic period. Today the faith has a significant following outside of India as well.
The deity Krishna-Vasudeva (kṛṣṇa vāsudeva "Krishna, the son of Vasudeva") is historically one of the earliest forms of worship in Krishnaism and Vaishnavism. It is believed to be a significant tradition of the early history of Krishna religion in antiquity. Thereafter, there was an amalgamation of various similar traditions. These include ancient Bhagavatism, the cult of Gopala, of "Krishna Govinda" (cow-finding Krishna), of Balakrishna (baby Krishna) and of "Krishna Gopivallabha" (Krishna the lover). According to Andre Couture, the Harivamsa contributed to the synthesis of various characters as aspects of Krishna.
The use of the term bhakti, meaning devotion, is not confined to any one deity. However, Krishna is an important and popular focus of the devotionalism tradition within Hinduism, particularly among the Vaishnava sects. Devotees of Krishna subscribe to the concept of lila, meaning 'divine play', as the central principle of the universe. It is a form of bhakti yoga, one of three types of yoga discussed by Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita.
The bhakti movements devoted to Krishna became prominent in southern India in the 7th to 9th centuries CE. The earliest works included those of the Alvar saints of the Tamil country. A major collection of their works is the Divya Prabandham. The Alvar Andal's popular collection of songs Tiruppavai, in which she conceives of herself as a gopi, is the most famous of the oldest works in this genre.
The movement originated in South India during the 7th CE, spreading northwards from Tamil Nadu through Karnataka and Maharashtra; by the 15th century, it was established in Bengal and northern India. Early Bhakti pioneers include Nimbarka (12th or 13th century CE), but most emerged later, including Vallabhacharya (15th century CE) and (Lord Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. They started their own schools, namely Nimbarka Sampradaya, Vallabha Sampradaya, and Gaudiya Vaishnavism, with Krishna as the supreme god.
In the Deccan, particularly in Maharashtra, saint poets of the Varkari sect such as Dnyaneshwar, Namdev, Janabai, Eknath, and Tukaram promoted the worship of Vithoba, a local form of Krishna, from the beginning of the 13th century until the late 18th century. In southern India, Purandara Dasa and Kanakadasa of Karnataka composed songs devoted to the Krishna image of Udupi. Rupa Goswami of Gaudiya Vaishnavism has compiled a comprehensive summary of bhakti called Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu.
Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, and Kerala states have many major Krishna temples, and Janmashtami is one of the widely celebrated festivals in South India.
By 1965 the Krishna-bhakti movement had spread outside India after Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada (as instructed by his guru, Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura) traveled from his homeland in West Bengal to New York City. A year later in 1966, after gaining many followers, he was able to form the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), popularly known as the Hare Krishna movement. The purpose of this movement was to write about Krishna in English and to share the Gaudiya Vaishnava philosophy with people in the Western world by spreading the teachings of the saint Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. In the biographies of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, the mantra he received when he was given diksha or initiation in Gaya was the six-word verse of the Kali-Santarana Upanishad, namely "Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna Hare Hare; Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama Hare Hare". In Gaudiya tradition, it is the maha-mantra, or great mantra, about Krishna bhakti. Its chanting was known as hari-nama sankirtana.
The maha-mantra gained the attention of George Harrison and John Lennon of The Beatles fame, and Harrison produced a 1969 recording of the mantra by devotees from the London Radha Krishna Temple. Titled "Hare Krishna Mantra", the song reached the top twenty on the UK music charts and was also successful in West Germany and Czechoslovakia. The mantra of the Upanishad thus helped bring Bhaktivedanta and ISKCON ideas about Krishna into the West. ISCKON has built many Krishna temples in the West, as well as other locations such as South Africa.
Krishna is found in southeast Asian history and art, but to a far less extent than Shiva, Durga, Nandi, Agastya, and Buddha. In temples (candi) of the archaeological sites in hilly volcanic Java, Indonesia, temple reliefs do not portray his pastoral life or his role as the erotic lover, nor do the historic Javanese Hindu texts. Rather, either his childhood or the life as a king and Arjuna's companion have been more favored. The most elaborate temple arts of Krishna are found in a series of Krsnayana reliefs in the Prambanan Hindu temple complex near Yogyakarta. These are dated to the 9th century CE. Krishna remained a part of the Javanese cultural and theological fabric through the 14th century, as evidenced by the 14th-century Penataran reliefs along with those of the Hindu god Rama in east Java, before Islam replaced Buddhism and Hinduism on the island.
The medieval era arts of Vietnam and Cambodia feature Krishna. The earliest surviving sculptures and reliefs are from the 6th and 7th century, and these include Vaishnavism iconography. According to John Guy, the curator and director of southeast Asian arts at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Krishna Govardhana art from 6th/7th-century Vietnam at Danang, and 7th-century Cambodia at Phnom Da cave in Angkor Borei, are some of the most sophisticated of this era.
Krishna iconography has also been found in Thailand, along with those of Surya and Vishnu. For example, a large number of sculptures and icons have been found in the Si Thep and Klangnai sites in the Phetchabun region of northern Thailand. These are dated to about the 7th and 8th century, from both the Funan and Zhenla periods archaeological sites.
The Krishna legends in the Bhagavata Purana have inspired many performance arts repertoire, such as Kathak, Kuchipudi (left) and Odissi. The Rasa Lila where Krishna plays with the gopis in Manipuri dance style (right).
Indian dance and music theatre traces its origins and techniques to the ancient Sama Veda and Natyasastra texts. The stories enacted and the numerous choreographic themes are inspired by the mythologies and legends in Hindu texts, including Krishna-related literature such as Harivamsa and Bhagavata Purana.
The Krishna stories have played a key role in the history of Indian theatre, music, and dance, particularly through the tradition of Rasaleela. These are dramatic enactments of Krishna's childhood, adolescence, and adulthood. One common scene involves Krishna playing flute in rasa leela, only to be heard by certain gopis (cowheard maidens), which is theologically supposed to represent divine call only heard by certain enlightened beings. Some of the text's legends have inspired secondary theatre literature such as the eroticism in Gita Govinda.
Krishna-related literature such as the Bhagavata Purana accords a metaphysical significance to the performances and treats them as religious ritual, infusing daily life with spiritual meaning, thus representing a good, honest, happy life. Similarly, Krishna-inspired performances aim to cleanse the hearts of faithful actors and listeners. Singing, dancing, and performance of any part of Krishna Lila is an act of remembering the dharma in the text, as a form of para bhakti (supreme devotion). To remember Krishna at any time and in any art, asserts the text, is to worship the good and the divine.
Classical dance styles such as Kathak, Odissi, Manipuri, Kuchipudi and Bharatnatyam in particular are known for their Krishna-related performances. Krisnattam (Krishnattam) traces its origins to Krishna legends, and is linked to another major classical Indian dance form called Kathakali. Bryant summarizes the influence of Krishna stories in the Bhagavata Purana as, "[it] has inspired more derivative literature, poetry, drama, dance, theatre and art than any other text in the history of Sanskrit literature, with the possible exception of the Ramayana.
The Jainism tradition lists 63 Śalākāpuruṣa or notable figures which, amongst others, includes the twenty-four Tirthankaras (spiritual teachers) and nine sets of triads. One of these triads is Krishna as the Vasudeva, Balarama as the Baladeva, and Jarasandha as the Prati-Vasudeva. In each age of the Jain cyclic time is born a Vasudeva with an elder brother termed the Baladeva. Between the triads, Baladeva upholds the principle of non-violence, a central idea of Jainism. The villain is the Prati-vasudeva, who attempts to destroy the world. To save the world, Vasudeva-Krishna has to forsake the non-violence principle and kill the Prati-Vasudeva. The stories of these triads can be found in the Harivamsa Purana (8th century CE) of Jinasena (not be confused with its namesake, the addendum to Mahābhārata) and the Trishashti-shalakapurusha-charita of Hemachandra.
The story of Krishna's life in the Puranas of Jainism follows the same general outline as those in the Hindu texts, but in details they are very different: they include Jain Tirthankaras as characters in the story, and generally are polemically critical of Krishna, unlike the versions found in the Mahabharata, the Bhagavata Purana, and the Vishnu Purana. For example, Krishna loses battles in the Jain versions, and his gopis and his clan of Yadavas die in a fire created by an ascetic named Dvaipayana. Similarly, after dying from the hunter Jara's arrow, the Jaina texts state Krishna goes to the third hell in Jain cosmology, while his brother is said to go to the sixth heaven.
Vimalasuri is attributed to be the author of the Jain version of the Harivamsa Purana, but no manuscripts have been found that confirm this. It is likely that later Jain scholars, probably Jinasena of the 8th century, wrote a complete version of Krishna legends in the Jain tradition and credited it to the ancient Vimalasuri. Partial and older versions of the Krishna story are available in Jain literature, such as in the Antagata Dasao of the Svetambara Agama tradition.
In other Jain texts, Krishna is stated to be a cousin of the twenty-second Tirthankara, Neminatha. The Jain texts state that Naminatha taught Krishna all the wisdom that he later gave to Arjuna in the Bhagavad Gita. According to Jeffery D. Long, a professor of religion known for his publications on Jainism, this connection between Krishna and Neminatha has been a historic reason for Jains to accept, read, and cite the Bhagavad Gita as a spiritually important text, celebrate Krishna-related festivals, and intermingle with Hindus as spiritual cousins.
The story of Krishna occurs in the Jataka tales in Buddhism. The Vidhurapandita Jataka mentions Madhura (Sanskrit: Mathura), the Ghata Jataka mentions Kamsa, Devagabbha (Sk: Devaki), Upasagara or Vasudeva, Govaddhana (Sk: Govardhana), Baladeva (Balarama), and Kanha or Kesava (Sk: Krishna, Keshava).
Like the Jaina versions of the Krishna legends, the Buddhist versions such as one in Ghata Jataka follow the general outline of the story, but are different from the Hindu versions as well. For example, the Buddhist legend describes Devagabbha (Devaki) to have been isolated in a palace built upon a pole, after she is born, so no future husband could reach her. Krishna's father similarly is described as a powerful king, but who meets up with Devagabbha anyway, and to whom Kamsa gives away his sister Devagabbha in marriage. The siblings of Krishna are not killed by Kamsa, though he tries. In the Buddhist version of the legend, all of Krishna's siblings grow to maturity.
Krishna and his siblings' capital becomes Dvaravati. The Arjuna and Krishna interaction is missing in the Jataka version. A new legend is included, wherein Krishna laments in uncontrollable sorrow when his son dies, and a Ghatapandita feigns madness to teach Krishna a lesson. The Jataka tale also includes an internecine destruction among his siblings after they all get drunk. Krishna also dies in the Buddhist legend by the hand of a hunter named Jara, but while he is traveling to a frontier city. Mistaking Krishna for a pig, Jara throws a spear that fatally pierces his feet, causing Krishna great pain and then his death.
At the end of this Ghata-Jataka discourse, the Buddhist text declares that Sariputta, one of the revered disciples of the Buddha in the Buddhist tradition, was incarnated as Krishna in his previous life to learn lessons on grief from the Buddha in his prior rebirth:
Then he [Master] declared the Truths, and identified the Birth: 'At that time, Ananda was Rohineyya, Sariputta was Vasudeva [Krishna], the followers of the Buddha were the other persons, and I myself was Ghatapandita."— Jataka Tale No. 454, Translator: W. H. D. Rouse
While the Buddhist Jataka texts co-opt Krishna-Vasudeva and make him a student of the Buddha in his previous life, the Hindu texts co-opt the Buddha and make him an avatar of Vishnu. The 'divine boy' Krishna as an embodiment of wisdom and endearing prankster forms a part of the pantheon of gods in Japanese Buddhism.
Bahá'ís believe that Krishna was a "Manifestation of God", or one in a line of prophets who have revealed the Word of God progressively for a gradually maturing humanity. In this way, Krishna shares an exalted station with Abraham, Moses, Zoroaster, Buddha, Muhammad, Jesus, the Báb, and the founder of the Bahá'í Faith, Bahá'u'lláh.
Ahmadiyya, a 20th century Islamic movement, consider Krishna as one of their ancient prophets. Ghulam Ahmad stated that he was himself a prophet in the likeness of prophets such as Krishna, Jesus, and Muhammad, who had come to earth as a latter-day reviver of religion and morality.
Krishna worship or reverence has been adopted by several new religious movements since the 19th century, and he is sometimes a member of an eclectic pantheon in occult texts, along with Greek, Buddhist, biblical, and even historical figures. For instance, Édouard Schuré, an influential figure in perennial philosophy and occult movements, considered Krishna a Great Initiate, while Theosophists regard Krishna as an incarnation of Maitreya (one of the Masters of the Ancient Wisdom), the most important spiritual teacher for humanity along with Buddha.
"(...) After attaining to fame eternal, he again took up his real nature as Brahman. The most important among Visnu's avataras is undoubtedly Krsna, the black one, also called Syama. For his worshippers he is not an avatara in the usual sense, but Svayam Bhagavan, the Lord himself.
figure 327. Manaku, Radha's messenger describing Krishna standing with the cow-girls, gopi from Basohli.
Present day Krishna worship is an amalgam of various elements. According to historical testimonies Krishna-Vasudeva worship already flourished in and around Mathura several centuries before Christ. A second important element is the cult of Krishna Govinda. Still later is the worship of Bala-Krishna, the Child Krishna—a quite prominent feature of modern Krishnaism. The last element seems to have been Krishna Gopijanavallabha, Krishna the lover of the Gopis, among whom Radha occupies a special position. In some books Krishna is presented as the founder and first teacher of the Bhagavata religion.
Arjuna (Sanskrit: अर्जुन, IAST: arjuna) is a central character of the ancient Indian epic Mahabharata, who plays a key role in the Bhagavad Gita alongside Krishna. It is believed that Arjuna was the best archer in the world at their time. Arjuna was the son of Pandu in the Kuru Kingdom. In a previous birth he was a saint named Nara who was the lifelong companion of another saint, Narayana, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu who took rebirth as Lord Krishna. He was the third of the Pandava brothers and was married to Draupadi, Ulupi, Chitrāngadā and Subhadra (Krishna's and Balarama's sister) at different times. His children included Srutakarma, Iravan, Babruvahana, and Abhimanyu. Arjuna was equal to 12 maharatha class warriors.Ben Kingsley
Sir Ben Kingsley (born Krishna Pandit Bhanji; 31 December 1943) is an English actor with a career spanning over 50 years. He has won an Oscar, Grammy, BAFTA, two Golden Globes, and a Screen Actors Guild Award. He is known for his starring role as Mohandas Gandhi in the 1982 film Gandhi, for which he won the Academy Award for Best Actor. He has appeared in Schindler's List (1993), Twelfth Night (1996), Sexy Beast (2000), House of Sand and Fog (2003), Lucky Number Slevin (2006), Shutter Island (2010), Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (2010), Hugo (2011), Iron Man 3 (2013), The Boxtrolls (2014), and The Jungle Book (2016).
Kingsley was appointed Knight Bachelor in 2002 for services to the British film industry. In 2010, he was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In 2013, he received the BAFTA Los Angeles Britannia Award for Worldwide Contribution to Filmed Entertainment.Bhagavad Gita
The Bhagavad Gita (; Sanskrit: भगवद्गीता, IAST: bhagavad-gītā, lit. "The Song of God"), often referred to as the Gita, is a 700-verse Sanskrit scripture that is part of the Hindu epic Mahabharata (chapters 23–40 of Bhishma Parva).
The Gita is set in a narrative framework of a dialogue between Pandava prince Arjuna and his guide and charioteer Krishna. At the start of the Dharma Yudhha (righteous war) between Pandavas and Kauravas, Arjuna is filled with moral dilemma and despair about the violence and death the war will cause. He wonders if he should renounce and seeks Krishna's counsel, whose answers and discourse constitute the Bhagadvad Gita. Krishna counsels Arjuna to "fulfill his Kshatriya (warrior) duty to uphold the Dharma" through "selfless action". The Krishna–Arjuna dialogue cover a broad range of spiritual topics, touching upon ethical dilemmas and philosophical issues that go far beyond the war Arjuna faces.The Bhagavad Gita presents a synthesis of Hindu ideas about dharma, theistic bhakti, and the yogic paths to moksha. The synthesis presents four paths to spirituality – jnana, bhakti, karma, and raja yogas. These incorporate ideas from the Samkhya-Yoga and Vedanta philosophies.Numerous commentaries have been written on the Bhagavad Gita with widely differing views on the essentials. Vedanta commentators read varying relations between Self and Brahman in the text: Advaita Vedanta sees the non-dualism of Atman (soul) and Brahman as its essence, whereas Bhedabheda and Vishishtadvaita see Atman and Brahman as both different and non-different, and Dvaita sees them as different. The setting of the Gita in a battlefield has been interpreted as an allegory for the ethical and moral struggles of the human life.The Bhagavad Gita is the best known and most famous of Hindu texts, with a unique pan-Hindu influence. The Gita's call for selfless action inspired many leaders of the Indian independence movement including Bal Gangadhar Tilak and Mahatma Gandhi; the latter referred to it as his "spiritual dictionary".Chaitanya Mahaprabhu
Krishna Chaitanya (IAST: Kṛṣṇa Caitanya), honorific: "Mahāprabhu" ("Great Lord"), (18 February 1486 – 14 June 1534), was a Bengali Hindu mystic, saint, and the chief proponent of the Achintya Bheda Abheda and Gaudiya Vaishnavism tradition within Hinduism. He also expounded the Vaishnava school of Bhakti yoga (meaning loving devotion to God), based on Bhagavata Purana and Bhagavad Gita. Of various forms and direct or indirect expansions of Krishna such as Lord Narasimha (Krishna in mood of anger), Maha-Vishnu and Garbhodakshaya Vishnu respectively, he is Krishna in the mood of a devotee. He popularised the chanting of the Hare Krishna mantra and composed the Siksastakam (eight devotional prayers) in Sanskrit. His followers, Gaudiya Vaishnavas, revere him as a Krishna with the mood and complexion of his source of inspiration Radha. His birthday is celebrated as Gaura-purnima.Chaitanya is sometimes referred to by the names Gauranga or Gaura due to his fair complexion, and Nimai due to his being born underneath a Neem tree.Dashavatara
Dashavatara (; Sanskrit: दशावतार, daśāvatāra) refers to the ten primary avatars of Vishnu, the Hindu god of preservation. Vishnu is said to descend in form of an avatar to restore cosmic order. The word Dashavatara derives from daśa, meaning 'ten', and avatar (avatāra), roughly equivalent to 'incarnation'.
The list of included avatars varies across sects and regions. Though no list can be uncontroversially presented as standard, the "most accepted list found in Puranas and other texts is [...] Krishna, Buddha." Most draw from the following set of figures, in this order: Matsya; Kurma; Varaha; Narasimha; Vamana; Parashurama; Rama; Krishna or Balarama; Buddha or Krishna; and Kalki. In traditions that omit Krishna, he often replaces Vishnu as the source of all avatars. Some traditions include a regional deity such as Vithoba or Jagannath in penultimate position, replacing Krishna or Buddha. All avatars have appeared except Kalki, who will appear at the end of the Kali Yuga.
The order of the ancient concept of Dashavataras has been interpreted to be reflective of modern Darwinian evolution.Gopal Krishna Gokhale
Gopal Krishna Gokhale pronunciation (9 May 1866 – 19 February 1915) was an Indian political leader and a social reformer during the Indian Independence Movement. Gokhale was a senior leader of the Indian National Congress and founder of the Servants of India Society. Through the Society as well as the Congress and other legislative bodies he served in, Gokhale campaigned for Indian self-rule and also social reform. He was the leader of the moderate faction of the Congress party that advocated reforms by working with existing government institutions.Hare Krishna (mantra)
The Hare Krishna mantra, also referred to reverentially as the Maha Mantra ("Great Mantra"), is a 16-word Vaishnava mantra which is mentioned in the Kali-Santarana Upanishad, and which from the 15th century rose to importance in the Bhakti movement following the teachings of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. This Mantra is composed of two Sanskrit names of the Supreme Being, "Krishna," and "Rama."According to Gaudiya Vaishnava theology, one's original consciousness and goal of life is pure love of the god Krishna.
Since the 1960s, the mantra has been made well known outside India by A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada and his movement, International Society for Krishna Consciousness (commonly known as the "Hare Krishnas" or the Hare Krishna movement).International Society for Krishna Consciousness
The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), known colloquially as the Hare Krishna movement or Hare Krishnas, is a Gaudiya Vaishnava Hindu religious organisation. ISKCON was founded in 1966 in New York City by A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada the Guru and spiritual master of the organization. Its core beliefs are based on the Hindu scriptures, particularly the Bhagavad Gita and the Srimad Bhagavatam, and the Gaudiya Vaishnava tradition, which has had adherents in India since the late 15th century and American and European devotees since the early 1900s in North America. In West Virginia, the Prabhupada's Palace of Gold is now a shrine for the founder, who died in 1977.The movement has been the subject of controversies. It is labelled a sect by many anti-cult organizations, and some adepts have been accused and condemned of sexual abuse, including towards minors. The New York Times reported similar stories in 1990. ISKCON also faced multiple accusations of child abuse, that its leaders acknowledged. In 1977, the New York State Supreme Court ruled that it is a "bonafide religion".The organization was formed to spread the practice of Bhakti yoga, in which those involved (bhaktas) dedicate their thoughts and actions towards pleasing Krishna, their Supreme Lord. Its most rapid expansions in membership as of 2007 have been within India and especially after the collapse of the Soviet Union, in Russia, Ukraine, and the rest of the ex-Soviet aligned states of Eastern Europe and Central Asia.Krishna (Telugu actor)
Krishna (born Siva Rama Krishna Ghattamaneni) is an Indian film actor, director and producer known for his works exclusively in Telugu Cinema. In a film career spanning five decades, Krishna starred in more than 350 films in a variety of roles. In 2008, he was awarded an honorary doctorate from Andhra University.
In 2009, the Government of India honoured him with the Padma Bhushan for his contributions to Indian Cinema. He was elected as a Member of Parliament for the Congress party in 1989. In 1997, he received the Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award – South.
In the early years of his film career, he starred in films such as Saakshi, which won critical acclaim at the Tashkent film festival in 1968. In 1972, he starred in Pandanti Kapuram, which garnered the National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Telugu for that year. He has essayed roles across different genres including mythological, drama, social, cowboy, western classic, folklore, action and historical.He is credited for producing many technological firsts in the Telugu film Industry such as the first Eastmancolor film – Eenadu (1982), the first cinemascope film – Alluri Seetharama Raju (1974), the first 70mm film – Simhasanam (1986), the first DTS film – Telugu Veera Levara (1995) and introducing cowboy genre to the Telugu screen. He starred in the Telugu spy film sequels Gudachari 116 (1966), James Bond 777 (1971), Agent Gopi (1978), Rahasya Gudachari (1981) and Gudachari 117 (1989). Krishna directed Shankharavam (1987), Mugguru Kodukulu (1988), Koduku Diddina Kapuram (1989), Bala Chandrudu (1990) and Anna Thammudu (1990), casting his son Mahesh Babu in pivotal roles. Krishna directed 17 feature films and he produced various films under Padmalaya Film Studio, a production house owned by him.
Krishna collaborated with several directors of the time such as Adurthi Subba Rao, V. Madhusudhana Rao, K. Viswanath, Bapu, Dasari Narayana Rao and K. Raghavendra Rao.
He also has the record of pairing up with same actress for more than 48 films with Vijayanirmala and 47 films with Jayaprada.
In December 2012, at the age of 69, Krishna announced his retirement from politics. He has acted in dual roles in 25 movies and triple roles in 7 movies.He has produced many films under his Padmalaya Studios along with his brothers Hanumantha Rao and Adiseshagiri Rao and has also directed 15 films.Krishna Janmashtami
Krishna Janmashtami (Devanagari कृष्ण जन्माष्टमी, IAST: Kṛṣṇa Janmāṣṭamī), also known simply as Janmashtami or Gokulashtami, is an annual Hindu festival that celebrates the birth of Krishna, the eighth avatar of Vishnu. It is observed according to Hindu luni-solar calendar, on the eighth day (Ashtami) of the Krishna Paksha (dark fortnight) in Shraavana of the lunar Hindu Calendar and Krishna Paksha in Bhadrapad of the lunisolar Hindu Calendar, which overlaps with August and September of the Gregorian calendar.It is an important festival particularly to the Vaishnavism tradition of Hinduism. Dance-drama enactments of the life of Krishna according to the Bhagavata Purana (such as Rasa lila or Krishna Lila), devotional singing through the midnight when Krishna is believed to have been born, fasting (upavasa), a night vigil (jagarana), and a festival (mahotsava) on the following day are a part of the Janmashtami celebrations. It is celebrated particularly in Mathura and Brindavan, along with major Vaishnava and non-sectarian communities found in Manipur, Assam, West Bengal, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and other regions.Krishna Janmashtami is followed by the festival Nandotsav, which celebrates the occasion when Nanda Baba distributed gifts to the community in honour of the birth.Krishna River
The Krishna River is the fourth-biggest river in terms of water inflows and river basin area in India, after the Ganga, Godavari and Brahmaputra. The river is almost 1,400 kilometres (870 mi) long. The river is also called Krishnaveni. It is one of the major sources of irrigation for Maharashtra, Karnataka, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.Krishna district
Krishna district is an administrative district in the Coastal Andhra region of the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. Machilipatnam is the administrative headquarters and Vijayawada is the most populated city in the district. It has an area of 8,727 km2 (3,370 sq mi) and had a population of 45,29,009 as per 2011 census of India. It is bounded by West Godavari on the east, Bay of Bengal on the South, Guntur and Suryapet districts in the west and a portion of it also borders with the state of Telangana. Krishna District is formed from District of Rajahmundry in 1859, Guntur district was separated from Krishna in 1904 to form Krishna district which was further divided in 1925, to Krishna and West Godavari districts.Krishna district is the most developed district in Andhra Pradesh.List of constituencies of the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly
The Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly (Vidhan Sabha) currently has 175 constituencies out of which 29 constituencies are reserved for Scheduled Castes candidates and 7 constituencies are reserved for Scheduled tribes candidates.Mahabharata
The Mahābhārata (US: , UK: ; Sanskrit: महाभारतम्, Mahābhāratam, pronounced [mɐɦaːˈbʱaːɽɐtɐm]) is one of the two major Sanskrit epics of ancient India, the other being the Rāmāyaṇa. It narrates the struggle between two groups of cousins in the Kurukshetra War and the fates of the Kaurava and the Pāṇḍava princes and their succession. Along with the Rāmāyaṇa, it forms the Hindu Itihasa.
The Mahābhārata is an epic legendary narrative of the Kurukṣetra War and the fates of the Kaurava and the Pāṇḍava princes. It also contains philosophical and devotional material, such as a discussion of the four "goals of life" or puruṣārtha (12.161). Among the principal works and stories in the Mahābhārata are the Bhagavad Gita, the story of Damayanti, an abbreviated version of the Rāmāyaṇa, and the story of Ṛṣyasringa, often considered as works in their own right.
Traditionally, the authorship of the Mahābhārata is attributed to Vyāsa. There have been many attempts to unravel its historical growth and compositional layers. The oldest preserved parts of the text are thought to be not much older than around 400 BCE, though the origins of the epic probably fall between the 8th and 9th centuries BCE. The text probably reached its final form by the early Gupta period (c. 4th century CE). According to the Mahābhārata itself, the tale is extended from a shorter version of 24,000 verses called simply Bhārata.The Mahābhārata is the longest epic poem known and has been described as "the longest poem ever written". Its longest version consists of over 100,000 śloka or over 200,000 individual verse lines (each shloka is a couplet), and long prose passages. At about 1.8 million words in total, the Mahābhārata is roughly ten times the length of the Iliad and the Odyssey combined, or about four times the length of the Rāmāyaṇa. W. J. Johnson has compared the importance of the Mahābhārata in the context of world civilization to that of the Bible, the works of William Shakespeare, the works of Homer, Greek drama, or the Quran. Within the Indian tradition it is sometimes called the Fifth Veda.Radha
Radha (Sanskrit: राधा, IAST: Rādhā), also called Radhika, Radharani, and Radhe, is a Hindu goddess popular in Hinduism, especially in the Vaishnavism tradition. She is said to be the head of the milkmaids (also called the Gopis or Braj Gopikas) who resided in Braj Dham. She is the lover of the supreme personality of Godhead Para Brahman, who is Shri Krishna according to Vaishnavite exegesis of medieval era texts. She is thought of as the supreme goddess in her own right and celebrated on the festive day of Radhastami.
She is also called Jagat Janani (mother of the whole universe). She appeared as queen of milkmaids and queen of Vrindavan-Barsana. She taught selfless love and surrender to the Godhead Shri Krishna. She is considered the supreme goddess in Vaishnavism. Rasik sants have mentioned her as a descension of the Supreme Goddess, Source of the Infinite Lakshmi, and the original form of Yogmaya and Allhadini Shakti (Power of Divine Love) which is main Power of the Godhead Shree Krishna. She and her consort Krishna are collectively known as Radha Krishna, the combined form of feminine as well as the masculine realities of God. Lord Krishna often underwent various kinds of "leelas" with Her.
Radha is worshipped in some regions of India, particularly by Gaudiya Vaishnavas, Vaishnavas in West Bengal, Bangladesh Manipur, and Odisha. Elsewhere, she is revered in the Nimbarka Sampradaya and movements linked to Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.Shreemati Radharani ji is considered a metaphor for the human spirit (aatma), her love and longing for Prabhu Shree Krishna ji is theologically viewed as symbolic of the human quest for spiritual growth and union with the divine. She has inspired numerous literary works, and her Rasa lila dance with Krishna has inspired many types of performance arts till this day.Ramya Krishnan
Ramya Krishnan (born 15 September 1970), is an Indian film actress. She has acted in over 200 films in five languages: Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam and Hindi. Ramya has won four Filmfare Awards, three Nandi Awards and a Tamil Nadu State Film Award.
She gained popularity through her acclaimed role Neelambari in Padayappa which also won her the Filmfare Award for Best Actress – Tamil. She also won the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress – Telugu for the 2009 dramedy Konchem Ishtam Konchem Kashtam. Ramya's portrayal of Rajamatha Sivagami Devi in the Baahubali series (2015-17) received universal acclaim. While Baahubali: The Beginning (2015) is the sixth highest grossing Indian film, its sequel Baahubali 2: The Conclusion (2017) is the second highest grossing Indian film of all time. Her performance in Baahubali: The Beginning also won her the Best Supporting Actress – Telugu at the 2016 Filmfare Awards and Best Supporting Actress at Nandi Awards by Government of Andhra Pradesh.V. K. Krishna Menon
Vengalil Krishnan Krishna Menon (3 May 1896 – 6 October 1974) was an Indian nationalist, diplomat, and politician, described by some as the second most powerful man in India, after his ally, 1st Prime Minister of India Jawaharlal Nehru.Noted for his eloquence, brilliance, and forceful, highly abrasive persona, Menon inspired widespread adulation and fervent detraction in both India and the West; to his supporters, he was an unapologetic champion of India in the face of Western imperialism, who famously "taught the white man his place"; to his Western detractors, "Nehru's evil genius". U.S. president Dwight D Eisenhower characterised him as a "menace ... governed by an ambition to prove himself the master international manipulator and politician of the age", while Indian president K.R. Narayanan eulogised him as a truly great man; decades after his death, Menon remains an enigmatic and controversial figure.
As a young man, Menon served as founding editor of the Pelican Imprint of Penguin Books, and led the overseas wing of the Indian independence movement, launching the India League in London, aggressively campaigning within the United Kingdom to win public support for Indian independence, and rallying the support of such superpowers as the Soviet Union. In the immediate wake of independence, Menon emerged as engineer of and spokesman for India's foreign policy, and, more generally, architect of the non-aligned movement; he headed India's diplomatic missions to the United Kingdom and the United Nations, and distinguished himself in diplomatic matters including the Suez crisis. In 1957, Menon set the record for the longest speech(8 hours) before the U.N. Security Council while defending India's rights to the disputed territory of Kashmir, in the process earning widespread popularity and the sobriquet "Hero of Kashmir".Returning to India, he was repeatedly elected to both houses of the Indian parliament from constituencies as varied as Mumbai, Bengal, and Trivandrum in his native state of Kerala, and served as a minister without portfolio, and later as Minister of Defence, overseeing the modernization of the Indian military and development of the Indian military-industrial complex, and spearheading the Indian annexation of Goa. He resigned in the wake of the Sino-Indian War, following allegations of India's military unpreparedness, but remained counselor to Nehru, member of parliament and elder statesman until his death.Vaishnavism
Vaishnavism is one of the major traditions within Hinduism along with Shaivism, Shaktism, and Smarthism. It is also called Vishnuism, its followers are called Vaishnavas, and it considers Vishnu as the Supreme Lord.The tradition is notable for its avatar doctrine, wherein Krishna is revered in one of many distinct incarnations. Of these, ten avatars of Vishnu are the most studied. Rama, Krishna, Narayana, Kalki, Hari, Vithoba, Kesava, Madhava, Govinda, Sri Nathji and Jagannath are among the popular names used for the same supreme being. The tradition has traceable roots to the 1st millennium BCE, as Bhagavatism, also called Krishnaism. Later developments led by Ramananda created a Rama-oriented movement, now the largest monastic group in Asia. The Vaishnava tradition has many sampradayas (denominations, sub-schools) ranging from the medieval era Dvaita school of Madhvacharya to Vishishtadvaita school of Ramanuja.The tradition is known for the loving devotion to an avatar of Vishnu (often Krishna), and it has been key to the spread of the Bhakti movement in South Asia in the 2nd millennium CE. Key texts in Vaishnavism include the Vedas, the Upanishads, the Bhagavad Gita, the Pancaratra (Agama) texts and the Bhagavata Purana.Vyasa
Vyasa (; Sanskrit: व्यास, literally "Compiler") is a central and revered figure in most Sanatana Dharmic traditions. He is also sometimes called Veda Vyās (वेदव्यास, veda-vyās, "the one who classified the Vedas") or Krishna Dvaipāyana (referring to his dark complexion and birthplace). He is generally considered the author of the Mahabharata, as well as a character in it and the scribe of both the Vedas and Puranas, also known as Puranik. Vyasa is also considered to be one of the seven Chiranjivins (long-lived, or immortals), who are still in existence according to Hindu tradition.
The festival of Guru Purnima is dedicated to him. It is also known as Vyasa Purnima, for it is the day believed to be both his birthday and the day he divided the Vedas.
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1 The list of ten avatars varies regionally. The two substitutions involve Balarama, Krishna and Buddha is considered the avatar of Vishnu. Krishna is almost always included; in exceptions, he is considered the source of all avatars.