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Celebrating Krishnashtami: The eternal power of Lord Krishna

Celebrating Krishnashtami: The eternal power of Lord Krishna

Lord Krishna was such a God, who saved this earth from the cruel clutches of Kansa and Kaurava  both. This savior of the world, this darling of Gokul and Mathura, gave humanity a message of love and affection. He preached to the great warrior Arjun in the battlefield of Kurukshetra that this world is transitory and there is no such thing called permanent relation. 

Per ancient scriptures like the Mahabharat, Krishna told Arjun, who was unwilling to war against his own kith and kin: You can liberate this world from injustice. You will not be called a warmonger but a true lover of mankind. So you have to fight this great war of Mahabharat at any cost to free yourself from the tyranny and terror of the Kauravas. 

For showing the path of righteousness, Krishna is remembered today with respect and reverence. Krishnasthami is celebrated in Nepal and India with great fun and fervor. 

Krishna was very fond of  Makhan (butter) in his childhood and he used to steal it from every household with his like-minded friends. That is why he is also called Makhan-Chor (the butter thief).

Krishnashtami is an annual commemoration of the sacred birth of Krishna, the eighth Avatar of Lord Vishnu. This festival is observed on the auspicious eighth day (Astami Tithi) of the dark fortnight of the month of Bhadra every year with pomp and show, especially in Tarai-Madhes and other regions where Vaishnavites, the adherents of Vaishnav Dharma, live. 

Krishna Lila, a Ramlila-like drama based on the life of Krishna, is staged at night every year as a special spiritual feature in these regions, by recreating flirtations of Krishna’s youthful days with the Gopinis (milkmaids) mentioned in the scriptures. 

Krishna was deep in love with Radha. He used to play the flute inviting Radha to come to him.   

Vidyapati, a pioneer poet from the Mithila region, has also narrated Krishna’s love toward Radha in many of his poems. He has painted several rosy pictures of their love as well as pictures of Radha’s sadness when she had to spend lonely and long periods of separation in Krishna’s absence. 

One of Vidyapati’s poems goes like this:

Who said,

The southern breeze was soothing?

Its gentle touch kills lonely women

And the pollen of flowers

Scorches like a fire

Trans. Deven Bhattachaya

(Love Songs of Vidyapati P 95)

This year, Krishnashtami falls on September 6—20 Bhadra, 2080 BS. The month of Bhadra is considered very much sweet and soothing. Devout devotees fast the whole day and they break their fast at midnight when, per the Veda, Upanishad and other religious scriptures, Kishna was born.

Observed with much fanfare across the country, this auspicious day not only signifies the pious birthday of a Vishnu incarnate but also of a divine preacher, who inspired the whole of mankind with his divine knowledge and supernatural powers. Krishnashtami is not merely a ritualistic celebration, but also a day of eternal and everlasting religious significance. Western customs and movements like the Hare Krishna movement (ISKON) draw from Lord Krishna and his teachings. 

Such is the eternal power of Lord Krishna. 

The author is a veteran linguist