Author: Shivashankar Rao
THE PERSONALITY OF SHREE KRISHNA
We refer to Krishna mentioned in Chandogya Upanishad (Devakiputra) and not Krishna of Rig Veda (1.116.23) or Krishna of Kowsheethaki Brahman (30.9) or Aithareya Aaranyaka (3.26). We consider Krishna as a syncretic deity of four: – Naarayana, Vishnu, Vaasudeva and Gopaala.
Krishna has been ruling the hearts of millions for a long time. His Avathaara was for establishing righteousness (Dharma) on a firm foundation.
HIS CONCERN FOR THE UNDERPRIVILAGED
The care he took of the cowherds, his curing Kubja of her deformity, his protecting the honour of Droupadi and his bestowing the wealth to Kuchela indicate his care for the weak.
He was the strongest and greatest warrior of his time. The demons and tyrants he vanquished are many.
The three geethas- Bhagavadgeetha, Anugeetha and the Uddhava geetha speak of his scholarship in the Vedic lore.
He was so intelligent and his intuition and common sense are legendary. His peace mission, his negotiation with Karna and several steps he took to bring success to the Pandavas in the war are too famous.
After killing Kamsa and Jaraasandha, he could have usurped their kingdoms. But he gave them to Ugrasena and Sahadeva.
THE PATIENCE HE SHOWED BEFORE KILLING Shishupaala indicates how cool he could be amidst provocation.
HE WAS YOGESHWARA
Bhagavata narrates several instances of his extraordinary powers. Giving a vision of Vishnu to Akroora, his curing Kubja-Trivakra are examples.
From birth till the end, he was always active and dynamic, but always in the interest of others.- not for himself.
When he felt that a particular practice is out of time, he had no hesitation to modify it. He stopped the worship of Indra and started worshiping cows and the Govardhana hill. He agreed to be a charioteer to Arjuna although that was considered menial at that time.
HIS HUMAN NATURE.
His beauty, enchanting music, sweet words and simple logic could enslave anybody. He was naturally considered purushottama.
CHARGES AGAINST KRISHNA
The stories as depicted in Mahabharata and Bhaagavatha are the basis for any charge against him. These pertain to his relationship with Gopis and his tricks in the war against Kouravas. Bhagavatha’s Gopivastraapaharana and Raasa leela are the major incidents commented upon. The first incident is not mentioned in Vishnupurana and Harivamsha whereas Rasa leela is mentioned in all the three.
Gopis were Kumaris in the prepuberty age group and Krishna himself was seven at that time. So, it is foolish to attribute any sexuality. Moreover, the girls were doing the Katyayini vratha to get Krishna as their husband!! This type of worship is recognized as Kaanthaa bhaava or Madhura bhaava. (Incidentally, it may be mentioned that this is present in Christianity and Sufism also). What is intended here is the symbolic of total surrender of the Jeevas to God. We should study the incident in the proper perspective.
The Gopi stories are poetical fancies of later writers (Not at the time of Mahabharata)!
Many mystics have cultivated this type of love towards the divine. Aandaal, Akka mahaadevi, Meerabai, St.Teresa of Avila of Spain and Rabiya of Basra, Iraq are well known mystics. Gopis remained faithful to their husbands although they loved God. Even their husbands had no objections.
Men are classified into three groups-the ordinary people, Jeevanmuktas, and Eeswaras. The supra-dharmic doings of Eeswaras cannot be followed by ordinary people.
His 16008 wives really represent 16 parts of the human personality with which the Jeevatma is associated.- 5 organs of perception, 5 of action, five vital airs and the mind. In the ultimate analysis the jeevatma is identical with paramatma Krishna is depicted as having 16 (000) wives.