Krishna Janmashtami Celebrations

“The Avatar behaves in a human way so that mankind can feel kinship, but He rises to super-human heights so that mankind can aspire to those heights.”

Krishnashtami (also ‘Krishna Janmashtami’ ) denotes the birth of Bhagawan Sri Krishna. The enchanting Little Krishna has been the most endearing divine form for billions of hearts over many millennia and He continues to be the stealer of hearts, an aspect glorified in the bhajan Chitha Chora Yasoda Ke Bal, Navaneeta Chora Gopal…’ His divine song, the Bhagawad Gita, is the orchestral masterpiece for human beings to reach their final destination.

Many lessons emerge from the birth of this Avatar. Krishna was born in prison! This teaches us that God incarnates or presents Himself in the dark and narrow prison of our hearts and minds so that we may derive the light of spiritual wisdom and earn freedom.

Maya is the delusion that hides the truth of Being; it limits one’s awareness to the physical body and prompts one to succumb to the cravings of the flesh. Man forgets the divine in him; he responds to the animal nature in him and he falls from his high destiny. But, when Krishna is born in the cellar of the mind, man is saved. Man must become aware of God within the cavity of his heart.

The moment Krishna was born, the chains that bound His father fell off and the prison doors that had been bolted flew open. The prison guards themselves were immersed in bliss such that they could not recognize any event in the material world. The fire of hatred that was burning in these guards was cooled and dark­ness gave way to the dawn of wisdom.

Sri Krishna was the eighth child of Devaki. This is significant for Samadhi is the eighth stage of spiritual effort, coming after Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Pratyahara, Dharana and Dhyana. This is the Ashtanga Yoga, the Eight­fold Discipline. The Lord can be visualised only after the seven steps are successfully negotiated and the mind purified in the process.

Whatever Krishna said came true. The only correct definition of Truth is ‘that which Krishna speaks’. Believe in that, be firm in that belief. Krishna had taken three vows, as mentioned in the Gita:

  1. Dharma samsthapanarthaya Sambhavami yuge yuge:
    I shall incarnate myself in every age, to revive and resurrect Dharma.
  2. Yogakshemam vahamyham:
    I shall bear the burden of ensuring peace and prosperity of all who rely on Me.
  3. Mokshayishyami maa sucha:
    I shall save all those who surrender wholeheartedly to Me and I shall liberate them from the cycle of birth and death.

Krishna assured the world that He would come in human form and lead mankind along the Dharmic path, and so liberate men from grief and birth and death. He promises His grace to all who adore Him with no other thought. The Sastras say Daivam Maanusba rupena, the Divine in the form of man has to come to save mankind. He came as Sri Rama; He came as Sri Krishna; and He came as Sri Sathya Sai Baba.

Krishna is the Embodiment of Prema. The teaching is the same: "Know thyself, that is the only right way to know Me.” Krishna led men to the realization that God is their only reality – this was the task then, as it is now.



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