Episode # 146 – Why should Vasudeva escort Bhagawan Krishna to Gokula secretly overnight? A discussion!!!

We’re at the midst of an important juncture as to how Bhagawan Krishna “escaped” the prison campus at Mathura City in the middle of the night. We’ve seen in yesterday’s episode as to how Vasudeva transported Little Krishna on his head by walking across the Yamuna river, finally heading towards Gokula. Vasudeva finds Yashoda’s place, enters inside without anybody’s knowledge, places Little Krishna there and brings back the baby girl (Goddess Yoga-Maya) which Yashoda had just delivered. As all this was conspiring, it was surprising that Vasudeva was able to comfortably walk out of the prison, even amidst the tight security that Kamsa had placed. Vasudeva was able to complete the mission of transferring babies from Mathura to Gokula and vice-versa without any hassle and without anybody’s knowledge. Aren’t these instances Bhagawan’s divine plays? He wanted things to happen this way during this incarnation. The “mysterious” way in which He took birth at Mathura jail and the “mysterious” things (Leelas) that He performed all throughout His tenure in this world are all a treat for us to enjoy and experience, isn’t it? 

We might ask a question here – Why should Bhagawan Krishna act like a coward here? Why can’t He publicly announce His birth to Kamsa straightaway? Why did Bhagawan “steal” butter and other milk products when He was a little boy? Why should Bhagawan steal all these things? What kind of message does it convey to people like us? The answer is very simple – To be born in such and such ways are Bhagawan’s “Sankalpa” (Divine Will & Wish) and we’re not apt people to question that. Even if we’ve to do so, we should understand that Kamsa’s fate designed Bhagawan’s birth episode in such a way. Kamsa’s wickedness, the need for Kamsa to be repeatedly warned, etc. compelled Bhagawan to take this route. Similarly, we might find the same thing with Bhagawan Narasimha too – Why did Bhagawan Narasimha come out of a pillar and why not straight away directly in front of Hiranya Kashibu? The answer is the same – Bhagawan has to act according to the boons that these Raakshasas obtain from Bhagawan Brahma. His calculations are beyond one’s reach. 

Moreover, if we say that Bhagawan Krishna stole a lot of things during His childhood days, there is a meaning for all this in the deeper spiritual context. Bhagawan “stole” butter from the houses of Gokula and sent a message to “Bhaktas” like us that just like stealing this butter, Bhagawan is stealing our hearts which are as soft and pure as the butter. He is trying and instilling the purest “Bhakti” in all our hearts by doing so. Moreover, by stealing items at Gokula, Bhagawan is sending out the highest message that if we surrender to His lotus feet, He would “steal away” all our sins and unwanted “Praarabdha Karma”, and make us eligible to attain “Moksha”. Bhagawan Krishna takes birth in this world so that we do not need to take a re-birth again in this world. Bhagawan Krishna is taking birth in a prison complex so that we’re freed away from the “prison” called “Samsaara”. So for every action of Bhagawan, there are inert and deeper spiritual meanings. So the point here is that, we shouldn’t just look at these stories in an outward way and conclude that Bhagawan took birth in this world just to enjoy His life by stealing and playing pranks with people. There are all these deeper messages which we’re going to see one after the other in the subsequent episodes in detail as and when the situation and context arises. 

Thus, Bhagawan Krishna is transported to Gokula successfully overnight and in turn, Vasudeva brings in “Goddess Yoga-Maya” in place of Bhagawan Krishna! The baby is crying aloud, which attracts the attention of Kamsa straightaway. He immediately gets up from his sound sleep and he knew that this is the eighth child. He’s now in all forms of tension and with that, he rushes with his treacherous sword towards the prison complex, where Vasudeva and Devaki were having the baby in their hands. As soon as Kamsa reaches the prison, he comes to know that the newborn baby is a girl and not a boy! Upon seeing this, Kamsa was both shocked and surprised at the same time! He didn’t know how to react.

We’ve to recollect here – The heavenly voice once said that it would be the eighth “son” of Devaki that would kill Kamsa. Thus, the eighth baby should have ideally been a son, and not a daughter. Kamsa was perplexed at what he was seeing, however he decided to go for the kill – For “safety reasons”! He recollected Sage Narada’s words that there was a larger conspiracy planned by Indra and Co. to cheat Kamsa, and perhaps this was also a ploy to cheat him! Thinking thus, Kamsa quickly grabs the girl baby from Vasudeva’s hands and Vasudeva stops him once again. Vasudeva explains that killing a girl child is perhaps the greatest sin of all times, but this time, Kamsa had enough! He’s not going to listen to Vasudeva’s “lectures” on what is a sin and what is not! He quickly hurries to kill the girl child, until something unique happens again! What is that unique happening? Let’s wait till the next episode to find out! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 145 – Vasudeva “ESCORTS” Baby Krishna from Mathura to Gokula!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the most awaited event of Bhagawan Vishnu incarnating in this world for a great mission ahead! As we’ve seen, Bhagawan Vishnu takes birth as the eighth child for the Devaki-Vasudeva couple in the Mathura City jail. As Bhagawan incarnates as a little baby, He does so with all His four shoulders and with His “Shanka” and “Chakra” in His hands. Upon seeing thus, Vasudeva and Devaki were overwhelmed with joy and they had a feeling as if they’ve achieved a purpose for their lives in this world. All their struggles, trials, tribulations, tortures that they’ve been experiencing all these years due to Kamsa’s atrocities, have finally given way to something unique and phenomenal that none can explain through words. Thus, Bhagawan Vishnu gives them His “Vishwarupa Darshan ” in the form of the newborn baby, and it fills Devaki and Vasudeva’s eyes with tears of joy. However after a few moments of experiencing this divine blissful moment, Vasudeva comes back to his senses and says to the newborn thus, “Oh my darling child! I know who you are and I can sense the purpose for which you’ve taken this divine birth. However, if this Kamsa sees you this way, he might immediately rush to harm you in some way or the other. I cannot see you getting harmed by that treacherous fool. Hence, hide your divine form and assume the form of a normal newborn baby. 

As His father says so, Bhagawan Vishnu obeys his words and thus reduces Himself to a normal newborn baby with a beaming smile. Upon seeing the baby smile so sweetly, Vasudeva couldn’t take his eyes off. He was so moved and attached to the beauty of the child and was continuously gazing at it. However, Vasudeva had one wish within himself – He wanted to share this “happy news” to the entire world outside that Bhagawan Vishnu had incarnated as his own child! However, can he do that at this moment? The answer is a big “NO”! It is because, if this news spreads out, Kamsa is immediately going to get to know that the eighth baby has taken birth, and is going to come with his sword for killing it! Hence, Vasudeva remained quiet and kept this news within himself! We would also do this in our today’s lifestyle isn’t it? For instance, if a baby is born in our house, we would immediately celebrate it by giving sweets to all our friends and relatives, isn’t it? Or, atleast, we would have telephoned all of them and would have conveyed this “good news”. For Vasudeva, none of this was possible. This was his biggest sorrow of life! 

As Bhagawan was thus “normalizing” Himself from the “Vishwarupa Darshan”, He Himself gives few instructions to Vasudeva thus, “Oh Father! Please do not worry about Kamsa! He can do nothing to stop me. Now just execute whatever I say to you – Firstly, take me away from this prison to Gokula. Cross over the Yamuna river and walk to the other bank. There would be a couple by names Yashoda and Nandagopa. Go to their house and leave me there. In return, please take their girl baby and bring it here. All these should be done within this night getting over. So please start off now itself!” Upon hearing thus from Bhagawan, Vasudeva didn’t understand how all of this could be done. First of all, his hands were tied with some metal straps. Secondly, he was inside a prison complex with truckloads of security guards outside. Thirdly it is midnight and is raining heavily outside. Amidst all this, how is he going to take this baby to the other side? 

As Vasudeva was doubting himself thus, Bhagawan tries to calm him down immediately by saying thus, “Oh Father! Please don’t worry about the surrounding situations! You just lift me in your hands and see what happens after that!” Vasudeva obeys Bhagawan’s words and thus lifts the baby in his hands. As this happens, immediately all the metal straps that were tied to his hands broke down. The prison door opened automatically! All the security guards fell asleep! Vasudeva was now free to walk across! The signals were cleared and the prison’s main door opened on its own! Vasudeva right royally walked out of the prison complex, carrying the little baby in his hands, supported by a small leaf. 

Now Vasudeva starts walking all along the banks of River Yamuna and at one stage, he had to cross the river. It was raining profusely all along the path, however, Bhagawan Aadisesha jumped in to offer his services to Bhagawan Vishnu! He immediately poses as a beautiful umbrella for Bhagawan, so as to prevent him from getting wet with the rain. Thus, Vasudeva crosses over, reaches Gokula and straightaway goes to Yashoda’s house. The door opens automatically there too. As instructed, Vasudeva places Bhagawan Vishnu there, picks up the baby girl of theirs and returns back to the prison complex at Mathura city. By this time, the prison doors automatically close, security guards come back to life, and Vasudeva’s hands automatically gets grilled up with the metal straps! It is as if nothing has happened till now! 

As dawn approaches, the security guards hear a small baby crying loud. It was from the cell wherein Devaki and Vasudeva were lodged! The news spread like wildfire that the eighth child has taken birth. Kamsa comes to know of it in a jiffy! What is going to be Kamsa’s reaction now? Is he going to try and kill this one too? What’s happening next? An absorbing episode awaits us tomorrow! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 144 – Bhagawan Krishna incarnates – Gives His “Vishwarupa Darshan” to Devaki & Vasudeva!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the stage being set for Bhagawan Vishnu to incarnate in this world, as the son to the Devaki-Vasudeva couple. We’ve witnessed all the instructions being followed meticulously by Goddess Yoga-Maya, wherein she had first played a huge role in shifting Balarama from Devaki’s womb to Rohini’s womb. Secondly, Goddess Yoga-Maya herself incarnates in the human form as a baby girl to Yashoda and Nandagopa at Gokula, precisely at the same time when Bhagawan Krishna incarnated to Devaki and Vasudeva. As this was about to happen within the next few moments, all the Devas, including Indra and Co., were eagerly awaiting Bhagawan’s arrival with flowers in their hands. Sage Narada was ecstatic and happy that finally Dharma has an opportunity to be re-established. All the Sages started to realize an abnormal and a once-in-a-lifetime event happening, and they too joined hands to sing in praise of Bhagawan. All the “Nakshatras” are shining brighter than ever. As it was night time, the Moon (Chandra Bhagawan) was in his full energy level. Chandra Bhagawan was also more interested because Bhagawan Krishna is going to incarnate in the “Chandra-Vamsa”. Thus, the entire world was awaiting this golden moment, and finally now it is time for Bhagawan to move forward. 

As all this was happening, it was already middle into the night. Sage Paraashara explains this beautifully thus, 

“Ardha raatre akhilaadhaare jaayamaane janaardhane!

Pullingeevaramathnaabham chaturbaahum udeekshatham!!”

As time was going by, Bhagawan Vishnu incarnates finally – As a lovely little baby with a bright face and a beaming smile. As the baby looks around, it is in all smiles, without even a trace of sorrow that it was born in a prison afterall! The mission commences – With a humble beginning! As Bhagawan incarnates, He is along with His “Shanka” and “Chakra” in both His small little hands. It was as if the sun has rosen way early that night! It was as if Bhagawan Surya didn’t have the patience to wait till the dawn to rise up. The entire place shone with divine brightness all around. 

As Bhagawan incarnates thus, all the Devas are now singing praise and showering flowers upon Him. It is as if, all the Devas are welcoming Bhagawan to this world. Finally their prayers and requests are going to be answered soon! Kamsa’s end is nearing and this was the apt moment for which all of them were waiting for. Devaki thus delivers her eighth son! As Vasudeva looks at his son thus, he was surprised and shocked to see the baby with four shoulders, “Shanka” and “Chakra”. It was the perfect answer for Vasudeva’s and Devaki’s ardent devotion towards Bhagawan Vishnu. We’ve earlier seen this as well. Thus, as Bhagawan takes birth itself, He starts His mission by giving His “Vishwaroopa Darshan” to His parents! It’s a known fact that Bhagawan Krishna later gives this “Vishwaroopa Darshan” to few others as well during the course of His incarnation to Arjuna, and the likes later on. But here, the first set of people to receive this golden opportunity are none other than Vasudeva and Devaki. 

As the couple enjoys this divine golden opportunity, Vasudeva has his own concerns. He didn’t have the heart to take the baby and give it in the hands of the wicked Kamsa. So Vasudeva has a small request to the baby thus, “Oh little one!! I know and understand who you really are! However, please hide your identity for the moment as Kamsa is after your life. I don’t want you to go under the knife of that wicked fool. I shall think of some way out, to protect you from Kamsa. Or…. Rather…. Who am I to protect Bhagawan? You know it by yourself how to escape from Kamsa! Hence, my only prayer at this moment is to hide your identity and be as a normal little newborn baby!” As his father prays thus, Bhagawan immediately conceals His identity and becomes a normal newborn baby! 

This is where, Bhagawan Himself obeys to the instructions given by an ardent devotee! We’ve seen earlier as to how Bhagawan is an obedient servant to all His ardent devotees, and this Vasudeva is a perfect example for this phenomenon! So for today, let us enjoy and celebrate Bhagawan Krishna’s divine incarnation in the world and let us wait till the next episode to witness how Bhagawan Krishna “escaped” out of the prison complex at Mathura city! Stay tuned for an absorbing episode tomorrow!! 🙂 

Episode # 143 – The entire world eagerly awaits Bhagawan Krishna’s divine incarnation!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed Devaki and Vasudeva having their first child and how Kamsa was in a confused state of mind whether to “go for the kill” or not! We had also witnessed in due course of yesterday’s episode as to how Sage Narada excellently played “spoilsport” in Kamsa’s case, as he unleashed a fresh confusion in his mind! He explained how the Devas along with Indra were conspiring a plan against him by teaming up with Vasudeva, in confusing Kamsa about who amongst the eight children was the eighth child. Upon hearing thus, Kamsa started shaking with fear instantaneously. He thus immediately rushed to Vasudeva, grabbed the first child and killed it on the spot. In fact, it is for this reason that Vasudeva felt neither happy nor sad after convincing Kamsa to let the first baby unscathed. He knew within himself that Kamsa was a fickle-minded person by nature. He knew very well that Kamsa would take knee-jerk decisions without analyzing anything, and Kamsa too on his part, behaved in such a way that Vasudeva’s assumptions were true! 🙂 

Thus, the first child was mercilessly dashed on to the stone and killed. This same story repeated for the next five babies too, and Kamsa “successfully” killed all the five! It is at this time, Goddess Yoga-Maya swings into action! It is now time for the seventh child to be born, and Goddess Yoga-Maya “transfers” the child from Devaki’s to Rohini’s womb overnight! This happens within a jiffy before even Devaki and Vasudeva realize it! All Devaki knew that she was carrying the seventh child in her womb, and overnight, the child mysteriously disappeared! Her womb was totally clear of any child! In the meanwhile, Vasudeva had informed Kamsa that Devaki was carrying for the seventh time, and at the time of the child’s birth, Kamsa came ready with his sword. However, as he realized that the child had a “premature death” on its own, Kamsa was relieved and thus, walked back to his place. On one had, Kamsa had a mild doubt, but that doubt was overshadowed by the fact that Vasudeva had no chance of lying to him, given the tight security cover that was placed around the prison complex. 

So now, seven children were done and dusted, and it is now the time for the eighth child to be born – The most decisive amongst the lot! Kamsa gets the news that Devaki was once again carrying, and all sorts of thoughts are running in his mind now. How should he approach the child? Should he kill it the way he did for the remaining six? Or, should he adopt a different strategy? Is this child too powerful to handle so easily as he thinks? The voice that he heard from the sky keeps repeatedly haunting him every passing day and night! Finally the decisive day arrives – Ashtami day – The day when the Rohini Star falls!

“Prakrithisthvam paraa sookshma brahma garbhaa abavatpuraa!

Tato vaani jagadh dhaatuhu veda garbhaasi shobhane!!”

As Devaki Devi started carrying the eighth child, all the Devas were singing in praise of Bhagawan Vishnu, who has entered into her womb as her eighth son. The Devas were singing thus, “Oh Devaki Devi! Do you know who you’re carrying in your womb? The person who carries the entire world in His womb! What a great moment this is going to be in your life? How many people in this world get such an opportunity to have Bhagawan as a son? Do you even know how fortunate you are?” 

Thus, as Devaki approached the tenth month of her pregnancy and when the date was approaching fast, all the “Nakshatras” (Stars) were eagerly waiting for Bhagawan to incarnate. All the Devas were standing amidst the “Aakaasha” (Sky), eagerly waiting for the divine moment to conspire. Sage Narada was eagerly waiting as well, for His Bhagawan to incarnate! Vaayu Bhagawan was slowly showing his presence, with his gentle breeze. Thus, the stage was set for the grand event to take place! So for today, let us all wait alongside the Devas, Bhagawan Vaayu, the “Nakshatras”, Sage Narada, etc. and await Bhagawan’s divine incarnation – For the ninth time in this world! We shall wait till the next episode to witness the auspicious event of Bhagawan Krishna’s divine incarnation! An absorbing episode awaits us tomorrow! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 142 – Birth of Vasudeva’s first child – Sage Narada “CONFUSES” Kamsa!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the significance and roles that Goddess “Yoga-Maya” played in the incarnation of Bhagawan Krishna and Bhagawan Balarama. As we had witnessed, Goddess Yoga-Maya was going to play an instrumental role in shifting Balarama from the womb of Devaki to the womb of Rohini (Vasudeva’s another wife) who resided in Gokula at that time. With this, Goddess Yoga-Maya saved Balarama from the wrath of Kamsa (Balarama was officially the seventh son of Devaki-Vasudeva) and created an illusion that Devaki’s womb had some problems and hence the child died in the womb itself before being born. At the same time, she is also going to play a role in Bhagawan Krishna’s incarnation too – She herself is going to take birth as a girl child to Yashoda and Nandagopa at Gokula, and is going to play an instrumental role in deceiving Kamsa by maring the actual truth behind Bhagawan Krishna’s birth. Thus, the plans are all in place and all of them were waiting for the apt time to unleash their plans on Kamsa. 

Thus, as time progressed, Devaki and Vasudeva started having one child after the other. Six such children were born, only for Kamsa to kill all of them mercilessly. There was an instruction from Kamsa to Vasudeva – To bring each new born baby immediately after it takes birth and Kamsa would destroy the new borns then and there in front of Vasudeva’s eyes! How treacherous can this be to a father to see the killing of his own babies right in front of him? Such were the trials and tribulations that Devaki and Vasudeva had to undergo, before obtaining Bhagawan Krishna as their son. Of course, Bhagawan would make us toil hard before giving us something great in hand as a gift, isn’t it? He would ensure that we undergo so much pain in our life if we’re ardent devotees! We’ve seen this in many people – Something that keeps happening even today. We might see some of our known people around, who might be ardent devotees, but would have to undergo so much trials and tribulations in their lives. We might immediately ask – Why is Bhagawan doing this? Doesn’t He have the compassion towards His devotees? Why should Bhagawan let devotees suffer before granting them “Moksha”? There are multiple ways of looking at this and we shall witness answers for this when the apt time comes. 

For now, let us continue with the series of events that conspired at Mathura City. As the children take birth one after the other, Vasudeva takes each of them to Kamsa immediately after they’re born. All the six consecutive babies were dashed upon a stone by Kamsa and were killed on the spot. Amidst all what was happening, there was a small sub-event that conspired here. When Vasudeva was bringing the first child to Kamsa, he was having a small thought process running in his mind whether Kamsa would still spare this first child. He tries to negotiate with Kamsa thus, “Oh Kamsa! As per your instruction, I’ve brought this first child of ours to you. However, think for a moment – It is only the eighth child that is going to create problems for you, isn’t it? Then why kill the first child itself? Don’t you know that killing a newborn baby is a sin and one of the greatest crimes in this world? Hence, please leave this child and when the eighth child is born, I’ll volunteer to bring it to you for killing!” 

Saying thus, Vasudeva was in tears and he literally begged Kamsa to leave the child alone. Seeing Vasudeva’s state of mind, Kamsa thought for a moment and he had a feeling that Vasudeva was right in his argument. It was only the eighth child that is going to be problematic, and why kill the first child itself? Hence, he gave back the first child in Vasudeva’s hands with a smile of acknowledgment. Vasudeva felt relieved that Kamsa had spared their first child somehow and thus, started walking back to the prison. 

Now here is where the twist in the story lies 🙂 Sage Narada hurries into Kamsa’s palace from nowhere! He has been seeing all this from the sky as he was roaming around. Normally it is believed that Sage Narada would come and create some sort of a confusion in everyone, but that confusion would end up in some good thing. Similarly here too, Sage Narada sought to create confusion in Kamsa’s mind! As Kamsa was coming back thoughtfully, Sage Narada intercepted him in the middle. He speaks to Kamsa with a tone in which Kamsa’s fear increases manifold! Sage Narada says thus, “Oh Kamsa!! Till now I was under the impression that you’re a great and a studious king! But now I realized how big a fool you are!” Upon hearing this, Kamsa didn’t understand the head or tail of what Sage Narada is saying! He sought more explanation from Sage Narada, upon which Sage Narada replies, “I didn’t expect you to fall so cheaply into the trap that was laid by the Devas! Oh Kamsa! You had taken a vow to kill all the children born to Devaki and Vasudeva, isn’t it? Let me tell you the trap here – As all the eight children take birth one after the other, Vasudeva is planning to deceive you by pointing out the fourth or fifth child as the eighth child. For this, all the Devas including Indra are “partners in crime” and you’re falling right into their trap by not killing the first child!” 

This thought made Kamsa shiver! He found a lot of sense in what Sage Narada was saying! Thus, he immediately rushes to Vasudeva and grabs away the first child, dashes it on the stone and kills it then and there! All of this happened within the split of a second and Vasudeva couldn’t make sense of what was happening! Father as he was, Vasudeva couldn’t tolerate seeing his baby dead in front of him! Thus, both Devaki and Vasudeva were subjected to tortures like this by Kamsa! So for today, let us join Devaki and Vasudeva in sharing their profound grief, and let us wait till the next episode to move forward with what happened next! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 141 – Goddess Yoga-Maya’s roles in Bhagawan Krishna’s incarnation – Sage Parashara narrates!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the significance of Goddess “Yoga-Maya” and how Bhagawan Vishnu controls the world with her. We’ve seen that just like how a magnetic field controls the iron pieces within it, Goddess “Yoga-Maya” unleashes the “illusion” amongst all of us and makes sure that we keep revolving inside this magnetic field called “Samsara”. As Bhagawan Krishna Himself explains in His Bhagawad Gita, none of us have the power within ourselves to escape this “Maya” that is created in this world. In fact, it is only because of the “Maya” we have all sort of bondings with people around, as friends, relatives, parents, spouse, children, etc. Coming out of this “Maya” is nearly impossible for us. However, the catch here is that, only if we’re able to come out of this “Maya”, we’d be able to attain Moksha. How do we do that? This is where Bhagawan is explaining that, although we do not have the power to come out of the “Maya”, if we surrender to Bhagawan’s divine lotus feet, He is going to pull us out of it and in turn, we shall attain “Moksha”. This is why we have the entire concept of “Sharanagati Dharma”, which we’ve also spoken about in our previous episodes as well. 

Moving on thus, Sage Paraashara is now going to explain what is going to be the role of this Goddess “Yoga-Maya” in Bhagawan Krishna’s birth, and how is she going to shake Kamsa with the fear of death. We’ve seen already how Kamsa is fearing his upcoming death, and this is why, as a knee-jerk reaction, he has jailed both Devaki and Vasudeva in Mathura City. As all this happens, Sage Paraashara explains the role of Goddess Yoga-Maya thus, 

“Yoga nidra mahaa maayaa vaishnavi yogitam mayaa!

Avidhyayaa jagadh sarvam taamaah bhagawan harihi!!”

Now Bhagawan Vishnu calls Goddess Yoga-Maya and gives her some orders thus, “Oh Yoga-Maya! You’re going to be given a big task now – Go and take birth in Gokula village as the daughter of the couple – Yashoda and Nandagopa. You’ve to do two things here – Firstly – The seventh baby that would be born to Devaki at Mathura jail, should be shifted to the womb of Rohini, who is in Gokula. This Rohini Devi is Vasudeva’s second wife. You’ve to create an illusionary situation wherein the world should believe that Devaki’s seventh baby has died within her womb itself (“Garbha Sankarshana”). Whereas, the baby should be safe and shifted to Rohini’s womb. I shall incarnate from that womb as Balarama. Secondly – I would incarnate as the eighth son of Vasudeva and Devaki. Vasudeva would bring me from Mathura City to Gokula, wherein you would just be born as a girl child to Yashoda and Nandagopa. He would place me there at Gokula, and bring you to Mathura. Kamsa would try and kill you, as you arrive into the Mathura jail. At that time, you escape from his hands and warn him again saying that, the baby who is going to kill him has already taken birth and is residing at Gokula! Once you finish this task, you may come back to me at Vaikunta. So please do these two tasks that I want you to do!” 

Thus, the tasks for Goddess “Yoga-Maya” is cut out here! She is waiting for the right time to take birth as the daughter of Yashoda and Nandagopa at Gokula, while Bhagawan Vishnu is waiting to incarnate as the eighth son to Vasudeva and Devaki. Meanwhile, Balarama’s incarnation should also happen. Thus, all of them were just waiting for the right time to conspire, and the plans are set! 

Bhagawan Vishnu continues to tell Goddess Yoga-Maya as to how she would be praised in this world, if she does this duty correctly. Bhagawan Vishnu says thus, 

“Ye tvaam aaryeti durgeti veda garbhaa ambiketi cha!

Bhadreti bhadra kaali thi kshema daa bhaagyathe vi cha!!”

Most of these names would appear in the “Shri Lalitha Sahasranama” too – Durga, Ambika, Bhadra, Bhadra Kali, Padmanaabha Sahodari, etc. For readers who are familiar with the Lalitha Sahasranama – A collection of thousand divine names of Goddess Devi, these are important divine names given to Her. Bhagawan Vishnu explains here that if Goddess Yoga-Maya completes these two tasks properly without any blemish, she would be revered and respected by the world in terms of these above names. Hence, next time when we chant the Lalitha Sahasranama, we should lay special emphasis on these names of Goddess Devi! 

So for today, let us understand the significance of Goddess Yoga Maya and what  is going to be her role to play in the Krishna-Avatara. We shall wait till the next episode to continue with Sage Paraashara’s accord on how things conspired further! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 140 – Significance of Goddess “YOGA-MAYA” – An important discussion!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the continuation of the discussion on why the “Krishna-Avatara” is given much more prominence in description amongst all the Puraanas, as compared to the “Shri-Rama-Avatara”. We had witnessed one important answer for the same in the last episode, wherein Bhagawan Krishna as a child is easy for all of us to identify and relate, as compared to Bhagawan Rama, who was a strict epitome of “Dharma”. Of course, I’m not saying that Bhagawan Krishna wasn’t standing for “Dharma”. The biggest difference between Bhagawan Rama and Bhagawan Krishna in their pursuit towards Dharma is that, Bhagawan Rama would follow the “Dharma” as per how it is written in the “Dharma text book”! He wouldn’t deviate an inch from what is written in the Vedas and Upanishads. Whereas, if we see Bhagawan Krishna, His philosophy is quite simple here – “Whatever I do is Dharma”! 🙂 This is pretty easy for us and for Him too! If we ask Him why isn’t He following the “Dharma” as written in the Vedas, Bhagawan Krishna would lovingly reply us thus, “Oh! I’ve already followed and illustrated all of that during my previous Rama Avatara. Now why should I repeat the same thing over and over again?” 

Thus, we can see here that even Bhagawan Krishna Himself says pretty much the same thing as what Sages Sukhaachaarya and Paraashara had said – “If you want to understand more on Bhagawan Rama and the Dharma that He followed, go and refer to the Valmiki Ramayana text!” Hence, the point is very clear here, isn’t it? So with this understanding, now let us move on with what Sage Paraashara is going to narrate with regards to how Bhagawan Krishna is incarnating in this world. We’ve already witnessed so far how Devaki and Vasudeva have been jailed at Mathura city by the wicked Kamsa, and in the meanwhile, Bhagawan Vishnu too decides that He has had enough with Kamsa’s atrocities in this world. Thus, Bhagawan Vishnu declares to the world that He would take birth as the eighth son to Devaki & Vasudeva, and Balarama would be the seventh son to the same couple, born out of a “broken pregnancy” or “aborted pregnancy” of Devaki. We’re going to witness this “Charitra” in the coming episodes. At the same time, there would be another girl baby born to the couple of Yashoda and Nandagopa at Gokula town, wherein she would be Goddess Devi or Goddess “Yoga-Maya” or Goddess Vaishnavi Devi. 

We might be wondering why is this “Yoga Maya” taking birth here, and who is this “Yoga Maya”. In fact, this “Yoga Maya” is nothing but the “Maya-Shakti” (Power of Illusion) with which Bhagawan Vishnu operates this entire world. In Bhagawad Gita too, Bhagawan Krishna Himself explains this concept in a beautiful way. He says thus, “Oh Arjuna! Please understand that all people in this world including you, are bonded by the three Gunas – Satva, Rajas and Taamasa Gunas, which are in turn embroiled into the “Yoga-Maya” or the Illusionary power. Thus, even if you try your best, you would not be able to come out of the power of “Maya”!” Arjuna was listening to this and posed a counter question to Bhagawan thus, “Oh Keshav! You’re saying that it’s not going to be possible for me to win over this “Maya” and come out of it. If that is the case, why at all should I fight this war? Why should I kill these thousand-odd people standing in front of me? What is the use of doing such a thing, if neither myself nor Duryodhana is going to escape this “Maya” at all? Let him live happily with the Hastinapura Kingdom and let me go to the forest to do penance”! 

Upon hearing thus from Arjuna, Bhagawan Krishna realized that He was talking too much! 🙂 We’ve to note here that during the entire Bhagawad Gita Arjuna is only trying to run away from the battlefield and everytime he’s trying to do so, Bhagawan Krishna is trying to pull him back! Thus, Bhagawan replies to Arjuna’s “escapism”, “Oh Arjuna! I think you’ve misunderstood what I’m trying to say here. I’m only saying that you do not have the power to win over the “Maya”! However, with my helping hand, you can always come out of it and win it over! Why don’t you realize this point? Hence, if you do what I say and if you follow what I’m trying to explain, I shall help you in coming out of this “Yoga-Maya” and with that, you would be able to attain Moksha. Please understand that all those who surrender to my feet with ardent devotion, I would help them to overcome this “Yoga-Maya” successfully. Hence, take up your bow and arrows and start fighting, without wasting more time!” 

Thus, we should also understand the important point here – Bhagawan Krishna has the “Yoga-Maya” under His control and it is with that, He binds the world together like a magnetic force. Since it is a huge binding force, we as normal human beings would not be able to break that force and come out of it. We need external help in the form of Bhagawan’s divine grace so that He cuts it open and takes us out of it. This is where we need the complete surrender to Bhagawan’s divine lotus feet (“Sharanagati”) and with this, we shall overcome the “Yoga-Maya” and henceforth travel towards “Moksha”! So for today, let us understand the significance of this “Yoga-Maya” and in the next episode we shall witness how this “Yoga-Maya” played an important part in Bhagawan Krishna’s incarnation! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 139 – Why do Puraanas focus on the “Krishna-Avatara” more than the “Rama-Avatara”? A discussion!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the continuation of Bhagawan Vishnu’s robust planning process for the upcoming Krishna-Avatara in this world. We had seen how Bhagawan Vishnu took out two hair strands from His forehead – One was black in color and the other one being whitish, and threw them down. The black hair strand was to incarnate as Bhagawan Krishna and the white one was to incarnate as Bhagawan Balarama. In due course of the yesterday’s episode, we had also witnessed a very interesting question as to why great sages like Sage Paraashara in this case of Shri Vishnu Puraana and Sage Sukhaachaarya in the case of Shrimad Bhaagawatha Puraana laid so much of emphasis on this Krishna-Avatara, and not much on the previous Rama-Avatara, which was also equally important. We had witnessed in our previous Shrimad Bhaagawatha Puraana project that Sage Sukhaachaarya had mentioned to King Parikshit to go and read Valmiki Ramayana for more information on the Rama-Avatara. However, he could have easily said that King Parikshit should go and refer to Sage Veda Vyaasa’s Mahabharata text or some other text for Bhagawan Krishna’s incarnation. Or, Sage Sukhaachaarya could have easily said to King Parikshit that he could refer to the Shri Vishnu Puraana text for a detailed accord of the Krishna-Avatara, which is written by his own father nonetheless! We’ve already seen that Sage Sukhaachaarya was the son of Sage Paraashara, isn’t it? Hence, Sage Sukhaachaarya could have easily pointed out references to his father’s text. Yet, why did he devote the entire “Dashama-Skandha” in his Shrimad Bhaagawatha Puraana text for explaining the Krishna-Avatara in detail? Why did Sage Paraashara devote the entire fifth “Amsa” here for Bhagawan Krishna? Let us see some possible answers today. 

We’ve witnessed earlier as well that Bhagawan Krishna’s childhood days are worth an experience for any “Bhakta” (Ardent devotee). No matter whether Bhagawan is an epitome of “Dharma”, or He would punish those who walk the path of “Adharma”, etc., these are all known facts for all of us. However, if we’ve to imagine Bhagawan in such a way everyday during our prayers, we would only gain more and more fear towards Bhagawan, for all the wrongdoings that we’re doing every passing day. Whereas, if we can imagine and portray Bhagawan as a small and an innocent little child, it gives us an opportunity to develop love and affection towards Bhagawan isn’t it? In this way, it would be easier for us to relate to Bhagawan more easily isn’t it? This is perhaps the reason why lot of emphasis is given to Bhagawan Krishna, as there are innumerable episodes and narratives to describe His childhood days! 

However, if we look at Bhagawan Rama’s Ramayana text, there is very little or no mention at all about Bhagawan Rama’s childhood days. If we look at Valmiki Ramayana’s “Bala Kanda”, Valmiki Bhagawan explains that Bhagawan Rama was born to King Dasharata and Kaushalya Devi and within just 23 to 24 slokas, Sage Vishwamithra makes his way into King Dasharata’s palace. Sage Vishwamithra’s entry happens when Bhagawan Rama was 12 years old. Thus we can see here that, to explain the first 12 years of Bhagawan Rama’s life, it took just 23 slokas. The entire Ramayana story starts only after Bhagawan Rama gets older. Whereas, this is not the case with Bhagawan Krishna. To explain the first 10 years of Bhagawan Bala-Krishna, it takes a minimum of around 10,000 slokas, if we combine the Alwars’, Acharyas’ works, Shrimad Bhaagawatha Puraana (Dashama Skandha) and Shri Vishnu Puraana (Fifth Amsa). 

We might again ask this question – Why is this partiality towards Bhagawan Rama? There is no partiality here – We should realize here that the purpose behind every incarnation of Bhagawan is different for different incarnations. Whereas, for Bhagawan Krishna, it was to give this childhood experience to devotees, Bhagawan Rama’s main agenda was to act as a role model in following all the various aspects of “Dharma”, as written in the Vedas and Upanishads. Hence, if one has to follow all the “Dharma” principles as per the book, it can be done only after getting older, isn’t it? For instance, Bhagawan Rama set the ball rolling for the “Dharma” of how to behave as a son to a father, how to behave as an elder brother to a younger brother, how to behave as a husband for a wife, etc. All these could be illustrated only at a certain age, and not during childhood. Whereas, Bhagawan Krishna’s agenda was different – He purposefully wanted to give that childhood experience to His ardent devotees and thus, we have so much of prominence to Bhagawan Bala-Krishna. 

However, we should understand that Bhagawan Krishna lived for the next 120 years. There aren’t many narratives about Him after His childhood days are over. Even in the Bhaagawatha Puraana, the childhood narratives occupied a prime stage in the Dashama Skandha. However, once Bhagawan Krishna left Mathura to Dwaraka, there aren’t many incidents to narrate, except for few like the “Rukmini-Kalyana”, Bhagawad Gita, the role that He played for the victory of the Paandavas, etc. Thus, we can clearly see here that the purpose of the Krishna-Avatara is grossly different than that of the Rama-Avatara, and it is for this reason, both Sage Paraashara and Sage Sukhaachaarya laid more emphasis on the Krishna-Avatara. The main purpose of the Puraanas, as we’ve witnessed in our earlier episodes, is to serve as an aid for devotees to attain the highest “Moksha” in the easiest possible way. The easiest possible way is to portray Bhagawan as a loving innocent child, and this is the reason why Bhagawan Krishna is of prime focus in both these Puraana texts. 

So for today, let us understand this point very clearly and let us wait till the next episode to continue with Sage Paraashara’s beautiful description of how Bhagawan Krishna incarnated in this world! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 138 – Bhagawan Vishnu to incarnate as “BALARAMA” and “KRISHNA” through two of His hair strands!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed an important and a pertinent discussion as to who controls whom? Is Bhagawan controlling us or are we controlling Him? The answer is very simple here – If we’re ardent devotees of Bhagawan, we can control Him very easily and He would dance to all our tunes. Whereas, if we’re Raakshasas and are following the path of “Adharma”, then obviously Bhagawan has no other option but to control us. This is exactly what we see in all of Bhagawan’s incarnations. The Yaadavas, Gopikas and many others during the Krishna-Avatara were ardent devotees, and hence, Bhagawan Krishna made it a point to spend ample time with all of them in whatever way they wanted to. Mahatma Vidura was yet another epitome of this point as well. When Bhagawan Krishna came as a messenger for the Paandavas to talk with King Dhirdiraashtra, it was at Vidura’s place did Bhagawan Krishna reside for that evening. Bhagawan Krishna enjoyed the time that He spent with His ardent devotee. Thus, we can see at every instance as to how Bhagawan enjoys His time and moments with His ardent devotees. So the point that we’ve to learn from here is that, we should also make ourselves into that list of ardent devotees, so that Bhagawan would voluntarily come towards us and be with us forever. 

Moving on thus, we shall witness some other important points as to how Bhagawan Vishnu planned the Krishna-Avatara. Sage Paraashara explains this beautifully here thus: 

“Yevam samsthooyamaanasthu bhagawan parameshwaraha!

Ujjahaara aatmanah keshav sithakrishnau mahaa mune!!”

This is a very important point that Sage Paraashara is trying to explain here. He says “Ujjahaara aatmanah keshav” – This means, Bhagawan pulls out two hair strands from His head and takes them in His hands. Sage Paraashara explains further, “sithakrishnau mahaa mune” – This means, out of the two strands of hair, one was black and the other was white in color. Bhagawan Vishnu drops both these hair strands on the floor and declares thus, “These two hair strands would take birth as two different human beings, who would be my incarnations. The incarnation emerging out of the white hair strand would be very fair in color and would be named “Balarama”, and the incarnation emerging out of the black hair strand would be black in color and would be named “Krishna”. All the Devas would take birth alongside both of us as the “Gopikas”. All the “Apsara” women would be taking birth at Gokula village as ordinary villagers. Thus, all of us are going to descend together to the “Bhoolokha”, and together we would finish Kamsa’s atrocities!” 

Thus, we can see here that the Krishna-Avatara’s primary purpose was to finish off Kamsa. However, this was just a two-minute work for Bhagawan Krishna. But the ten years of His childhood days (Bala-Krishna) was the prime significance of all the “Alwars” and “Aachaaryas” as they’ve experienced Little Krishna in various beautiful ways, which if we start experiencing, would bring tears of joy and devotion to all of us as well! Sage Paraashara too on his part, is trying to bring out the significance of Bhagawan Bala-Krishna and we’re going to witness it in the upcoming episodes as well.

We might have yet another interesting question here. If we consider both these Puraana texts here – Shri Vishnu Puraana of Sage Paraashara and Shrimad Bhaagawatha Puraana of Sage Sukhaachaarya – Both of them do not talk about the Rama-Avatara in minute detail. In other words, we’ve already seen during our Bhaagawatha Puraana project previously that when it came to the Rama-Avatara, Sage Sukhaachaarya explains to King Parikshit that if he wants more details about the Rama-Avatara, he should go and refer to the Valmiki Ramayana text, wherein there are 24,000 slokas dedicated for this. This is the same narrative that Sage Paraashara is also telling Sage Maithreya. We might think here that atleast one out of these two sages should taken up Shri Rama-Avatara in detail, isn’t it? Whereas, when it comes to the Krishna-Avarara, both the sages have dedicated one full part of their Puraanas to describe it in detail. We’ve seen that Sage Sukhaachaarya had dedicated the entire “Dashama-Skandha” (Tenth Skandha) of the Shrimad Bhaagawatha Puraana for Bhagawan Krishna, and here too we’re witnessing that Sage Paraashara has dedicated the entire Fifth Amsa for Bhagawan Krishna. We might think here – Why is this partiality towards Bhagawan Rama? Why is everyone focusing on the Krishna-Avatara, more than the Rama-Avatara? Is there any significance that is lesser in the Rama-Avatara as compared to that of the Krishna-Avatara? Let’s wait for an interesting answer to these questions in the next episode! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 137 – Does Bhagawan control us, or do we control Bhagawan? An interesting discussion!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the continuation of how Bhagawan Vishnu plans His incarnation in this world. On one hand, He assures Indra & CoBhagawan Brahma, Goddess Bhoomadevi, etc. who had come to Vaikunta to voice out their grievances, and on the other hand, Bhagawan started planning His future set of actions. We had witnessed that Bhagawan Vishnu chooses and handpicks Devaki and Vasudeva to be His parents when He incarnates. We’ve also witnessed in due course of yesterday’s episode as to why Bhagawan chose these two people and why not someone else. We’ve seen how Devaki and Vasudeva were once ardent Vishnu devotees in the past, which is why Bhagawan is trying to honor their highest level of devotion by being born as their own son. Bhagawan always wishes to be controlled by His ardent devotees, and this is one example. 

We might wonder here – Is Bhagawan controlling all of us, or are we controlling Bhagawan? What is the difference between the two? If we’re Bhaktas of the highest order, Bhagawan automatically comes into our fold and starts dancing to our tunes. However, if we’re starting to walk the path of “Adharma”, Bhagawan has no other option but to start controlling us. We can see this in all incarnations of Bhagawan. In our previous Ramayana project also we’ve seen this – Bhagawan Rama was an obedient son of King Dasharata and His three mothers – Kausalya, Kaikeyi and Sumitra Devi. Bhagawan Rama descended to the forest for fourteen long years with just that one instruction from His father. Here, King Dasharata was just an ordinary “Jeevatma” like all of us. Even then, if Bhagawan (“Paramatma”) has to listen to the words of a “Jeevatma”, we can see how much of a Bhakta, King Dasharata was. In fact, just like how we’re currently talking about Devaki and Vasudeva being great Bhaktas of Bhagawan Vishnu in their previous births, King Dasharata and Kausalya Devi had a similar past as well. This is why Bhagawan chose them as His parents during the “Rama-Avatara”. Hence, if we’re Bhaktas of the highest level, Bhagawan would automatically be under our control, and Bhagawan likes to be controlled and instructed by Bhaktas. 

There is a similar instance too that happened with Bhagawan Panduranga at the famous “Pandarpur Kshetra” in the Indian state of Maharashtra. Many of us might be knowing this place and Bhagawan Panduranga is none other than Bhagawan Krishna Himself. Once upon a time at Pandarpur, when all the Bhaktas were dancing with ecstasy with all the bhajans and devotional songs being sung, Bhagawan Pandurangra was slowly losing patience and finally at one stage, He too joined the Bhaktas and started dancing along with them! In fact, for a few minutes nobody realized that Bhagawan too was dancing along with them, unless and until somebody in the group realized what was happening! As people realized that Bhagawan was also amidst them, all of them stopped whatever they were doing, looked up to Bhagawan and asked thus, “Oh Panduranga! All of us are your ardent devotees! We wanted to dance and sing in praise of you. If that is the case, why are you joining us and dancing? You should be the one who is witnessing all of it, isn’t it? You should be the one who should be blessing us with your divine grace by witnessing all our singing and dancing!” 

To this, Bhagawan Panduranga replied thus, “Oh devotees! I’m seeing your ardent devotion every passing day, and I’m getting overwhelmed by your deep affection and love towards me. At some point, I couldn’t resist myself and badly wanted to be amidst all of you and dance amongst you! I got that opportunity today and here am I, dancing along with you! I’m really enjoying your presence all around me! Why do you want to spoil this experience?” Bhagawan Panduranga continues further thus, “Oh Bhaktas! Let me request you one more thing – Please do not “isolate” me at one place. By doing so, I’m starting to feel very lonely, standing at one place without doing anything! When I see all of you dancing and singing happily, I always have that urge to be amidst all of you to do the same! Hence, please include me also in your group, and please let me dance and sing along with you!” 

Upon hearing thus from Bhagawan Panduranga, all the devotees were in tears of joy! If Bhagawan had to express that He’s feeling lonely without being amidst His Bhaktas, we can clearly see here as to how Bhagawan loves to be controlled by His Bhaktas, isn’t it? So for today, let us understand this point very clearly that Bhagawan would automatically come under our control if we pray ardently at His divine lotus feet with our blind, pure and innocent devotion. Thus, in the next episode, we shall continue further with how Bhagawan Vishnu planned the various other aspects of His upcoming incarnation in this world! Stay tuned! 🙂