Similar to the birthday of many Gods and Goddesses, we also celebrate the birthday of Lord Krishna. It is one of the important festivals in India that Hindus celebrate. The occasion every year falls in August/September and holds a large significance in the hearts of every Krishna follower.
Sri Krishna is the 8th incarnation of Lord Vishnu, who took birth on Earth after Lord Rama, the 7th incarnation of Vishnu. Krishna is one of the most powerful incarnations who taught many important lessons to humanity and left a great impact via his conversation in the epic Mahabharata.
It was a dark fortnight when Krishna was born on the Ashtami of Krishna Paksha. Mathura is the birthplace of Krishna, and the place is also called Krishnabhumi. Janmashtami is also known as Sree Jayanti, Gokilashtami, and Srikrishna Jayanti. Krishna was the eighth child of Devaki and Vasudeva, who came on earth to kill Kansa.
Kansa was already aware of the prophecy that the eighth son of Devaki would be the reason for his death. Hence Kansa killed all the seven children of Devaki, and he wanted to kill Krishna too. he made many attempts to kill Krishna, but all went in vain, and Krishna finally became a young man.
The Celebration Of Krishna Janmashtami
In Hinduism, Krishna Janmashtami is a significant festival; every Hindu celebrates this day, and many observe a fast. They décor their puja room for the lord and prepare a hammock. In this hammock, they place the baby figure of Krishna and swing this hammock while celebrating his birthday.
This hammock is decorated with many things such as colorful clothes, flowers, garlands, and lighting. They also sing Krishna arti and chant his Maha-mantra, which is:
“Hare Krishna hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna hare hare
hare ram hare ram, ram ram hare hare.”
They decorate the Krishna idol with new sparkling clothes, a crown, and a flute in his hand. People sing Krishna songs and bhajans and dance in devotion.
All the Hindu temples also include a hammock for Krishna and décor of the entire temple on this day. Bhajans and kirtan happen the whole night, and the lord is worshipped. Even in schools, the colors of Janmashtami can be seen. Children dress themselves as Krishna and Radha, Gopis and Gwalas, and participate in dress and dance competitions.
In every state, Janmashtami has a different way of celebrating this day. For example, in Maharashtra, Dahi Handi is a prominent part of Janmashtami. In this, an earthen pot is hung high on a three-building level with ropes. The team of men comes together and forms an elevation. A man then steps up on this elevation and reaches the top; he then cracks this handi or pot, which is full of yogurt, and the spilled content is enjoyed as prasad.
This depicts the childhood story of Krishna as he was very fond of dairy such as yogurt and makhan. He would often steal the makhan if he didn’t find it in his home. Hence all the women hung the pots higher from the ground so Krishna couldn’t reach them. Krishna, however, would always find a way to crack these pots with his friends and enjoy the makhan spilling from the crack.
Legend Behind Shri Krishna
Krishna was born to kill Kansa, the cruel king and brother of his mother, Devaki. Kansa learned that his death is certain by the eighth child of his sister Devaki. Hence he put Devaki and his husband Vasuki in a dark cell for a lifetime. Every time their child is born, Kansa would go to the cell and kill it. This way, he killed all seven children one by one.
However, Krishna was divine, so Kansa was tricked, and Kansa couldn’t kill Krishna at birth. Krishna was taken to Gokul through the heavily flowing Yamuna river at dark midnight. Here his foster parents, Yashoda and Nanda, took care of Krishna, and Krishna became an adult man.
Kansa, of course, tried many ways to kill Krishna while he was in Gokul, but he failed every time. It is also said that when Vasudeva was carrying Krishna in the basket through the Yamuna river, the Sheshnag, which is the bed of Vishnu, was protecting Krishna under his giant hood.
When Krishna was taken to Gokul, Yashoda also gave birth to a baby girl who was an avatar of Goddess Durga. This girl was born so that Vasudev could drop her from Mathura to Devaki. Therefore, Kansa believed that Devaki’s eighth child was a girl, not a boy. However, when Kansa tried to kill the girl, she turned herself into Goddess Durga and laughed at Kansa for his worthless trials to kill Krishna.
This is why to celebrate such a unique birth of Lord Krishna, we celebrate Krishna Janmashtami.For more details visit our website.