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Sunday, 21 August 2011

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Sri Krishna Jayanthi - Birth of Lord Krishna

The Sri Krishna Jayanthi which falls on August 22 will be celebrated by Hindus all over the world as a religious festival. The word "Jayanthi" is linked with the birth date of Lord Krishna. Jayanthi is a term for the constellation of stars that took place during the appearance of Lord Krishna in this world.

Sri Krishna was born in a prison cell in the city of Mathura on the banks of the river Yamuna approximately 3,000 years before the birth of Jesus Christ. It was predicted that His birth would spell the death of his wicked uncle Kamsa. This prompted the cruel Kamsa to put in prison his sister Devaki and her husband Vasu Deva and ordered that each child of theirs should be put to death as soon as they are born.

But, inscrutable are the ways of providence and the eighth child was born to the accompaniment of thunder and lightning and this was Krishna a blue baby boy like a lotus flower with beautiful smile on his tiny lips. Seeing this extraordinary baby, the parents bowed down in reverence.

A voice was heard directing Vasu Deva to take the child to Gokulam and entrust him to Yasoha and bring back her baby girl to Mathura. All the prison doors opened and the rivers parted for Vasu Deva to take the child to Gokulam and bring back the baby girl to Mathura.

Krishna is the eighth of the ten incarnations of Maha Vishnu and he slew Kamsa and wiped out all other wicked demons. Krishna was a formidable warrior, an unsurpassed statesman, the greater philosopher and world teacher.

As Arjuna's charioteer, he decided the fate of the great battle of Kurushetra. On the battle field the armies of the Kauravas and the Pandavas stood face to face, poised to destroy each other.

Seeing on the opposite side his cousin, uncles, grandfathers, teachers and several close relations and friends, Arjuna finds himself unable to fight and put his weapons down.

Declaring Himself the teacher of the universe (Jagaduru) Krishna reveals to Arjuna the most profound knowledge and expounds the importance of duty above everything. This is how he happened to deliver the eternal massage of the Bhagavad Gita.

Indeed, the Bhagavad Gita which forms part of Mahabharatha is the most popular religious poem of Sanskrit literature. It is said to be the most beautiful, perhaps the only true philosophical song and is the most influential work in Indian thought.

In the battle of Kurukshetra Arjuna typifies the struggling individual who feels the burden and mystery of the world. The despondency of Arjuna is not the passing mood or a disappointed man, exciting the sense of unrealities of things.

According to the late President of India Dr. S. Radhakrishnan as the theism of the Bhagavad Gita. "The mood of despair in which Arjuna is found is what mystics call as the dark right of the soul, on essential step in the upward path.

"The life of the soul is symbolised by the battle field or Kurukshetra and the Kauravas are the enemies who impede the progress of the soul. Arjuna attempts to recapture the Kingdom of man by resisting the temptations and controlling the passions. Indeed, the path of progress is through suffering and self-abnegation.

Undoubtedly, the Bhagavad Gita delivered by Lord Krishna in the battlefield of Kurukshetra. It is quite consistent with the mood and requirement of modern world.

Furthermore, the scriptures call him "Purna Avatara", that is the full manifestation of God. Lord Krishna was a teacher, and lover of mankind. He was most accessible to the pure hearted who have cultivated true love for him. Sri Krishna was the greater Kasma Yogi" of all times. He was the friend of the poor whom he protected from the oppressors.

He was the embodiment of humility. His immortal teachings and "Karma Yoga", "Bhakthi' and 'Gnana' have no parallel in the religious literature.

The Bhagavata Purana, the Vishnu Purana and

Mahabharatha proclaim that there was none to match Sri Krishna in beauty, in wisdom and perfection.

Indeed Sri krishna was the towering genius of his age. He embodied in himself all the great qualities of the head, heart and hand. Every word of his teachings and every act of his life was full of substance.

Further, Sri Krishna was considered to be the preserver of the universe. He descended to earth to save mankind and establish Dharma. For this purpose he took ten Avatars or incarnations.

Undoubtedly, "Krishna Jayanthi" is a religious festival which is observed in all Vishnu temples particularly at Dehiwela, Sri Venkateswara Maha Vishnu temple at Modera, Sri Swarnampiha Sametha Sri Math Arunasaleswara Devasthanam, Mutwal and Vallipura Alvas Vishnu temple at Point Pedro.

 

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