Sunday, August 29, 2021

Krishna Janmashtami | History | Significance | Celebrations



Happy Janmashtami! May Lord Krishna come to your house & take away all your maakhan and mishri along with all your worries & sorrow. Let there be love, happiness and laughter in your life with Lord Krishna's blessings. Wishing you and your family a very Happy Janmashtami!


Janmashtami festival mark the birth of Lord Krishna who is lovingly known as Kanha. He is considered as one of the most powerful human incarnations of the Lord Vishnu. Dahi Handi is one of the most festive event of the Janmashtami celebration. Let us have a look at the story behind the Janmashtami festival celebration and about Dahi Handi.


Janmashtami festival is widely celebrated across the country and the day marks the birth of Lord Krishna. Janmashtami is also known as Krishna Janmashtami or Gokulashtami. It is celebrated every year on the eighth day of the Krishna Paksha or dark fortnight in the month of Bhadrapada according to the Hindu calendar.


Janmashtami is celebrated as the birthday of Ruler Krishna. In Mathura, the city of Devil Ruler Kansa, Ruler Krishna was born within the jail of the Lord as the eighth child of Devaki on the eighth day of the dull fortnight of Bhadrapada month. It was midnight and Moon was rising along side Rohini Nakshatra when he was born. Consequently, Krishnashtami commemorates the birthday of Ruler Krishna each year. It is accepted that on this day, Sri Maha Vishnu, who is the preserver or sustainer of life, incarnated on Soil as Sri Krishna to battle disasters. Sri Krishna is considered as the eighth incarnation of Sri Maha Vishnu.


Sri Krishna was born around 5,200 a long time prior in Mathura, Uttar Pradesh, which is additionally alluded to as Dwapar Yuga..Devotees on this day watch quick and offer supplication to the divinity for great wellbeing and joy. The Puja custom takes put at midnight as Sri Krishna was born at midnight in a imprison where his mother and father were bolted by his uncle Kansa.
 

Old King Ugrasena of Mathura had two children, Prince Kamsa and Princess Devaki. While King Ugrasena was a good king, Prince Kamsa was a ruthless tyrant. Now Princess Devaki was to wed a nobleman named Vasudeva. Kamsa out of the love he bore for his sister decided to be the bride and groom’s charioteer for the day. While Kamsa drove the chariot bearing Devaki and Vasudeva out of the wedding hall, a voice from the heavens boomed informing Kamsa that Devaki’s eight child would be his slayer. Kamsa being the superstitious type would take no chances. He wanted to strike down Devaki that very moment. Vasudeva intervened, he begged Kamsa not to slay Devaki and show her some mercy. He further promised Kamsa that he would hand over any child born to them, if he would let Devaki live. Now Kamsa not wanting to have the blood of his sister on his hands agreed and instead placed them under house arrest.


Every time a child was born, the guards would inform Kamsa and he would take the child and kill it. Six of Devaki and Vasudev’s children met their death this way. It so happened that the seventh child was born at night, and Devaki and Vasudeva seeing the opportunity decided to try to save the child. The guards were asleep, so Vasudeva easily slid out of the palace undetected. He went to neighboring Gokul and left the child with his second wife Rohini and quickly returned to the palace (this child was named Balrama). In the morning he sent word to Kamsa that the child was still born.
 

Kamsa was pleased, he knew the next child was prophesized to be his slayer. Not wanting to take chances with the birth of the eight child, Kamsa had Vasudeva and Devaki thrown into the dungeon chained. The 8th child was born on the eight night of the month of Shravan. It was raining heavily and the skies thundered as if the Gods were trying to pay homage to the new born child. Then the miracle happened, Vasudeva’s chains fell off and the prison door opened by itself. Vasudeva found the guards to be asleep, so he decided that he would escape with the child and leave him at his friend Nanda’s place in Gokul.


Picking up the child, Vasudeva placed him in a basket. He then carried the basket on his head and made his way to Gokul. Now Gokul was on the opposite bank of the river Yamuna. Because of the thundering and the rain, the river Yamuna was in a state of turmoil. Vasudeva, wondering how he would cross the river prayed for a miracle. Then it happened!. The waters of the Yamuna parted and made way for him. Vasudeva then crossed the Yamuna and reached Gokul.
  

On reaching Nanda’s house in Gokul, Vasudeva realized that Nanda’s wife Yashoda had given birth to a baby girl. While Nanda and Yashoda were asleep, he placed his child in the cradle and took Nanda’s daughter instead. He presumed that since it was a baby girl, Kamsa would not kill her. He then made the journey back to Mathura and he took the baby girl with him. As soon as Vasudeva reached the dungeon, the dungeon doors closed behind him and the baby girl started to cry. Awakened by the cries, the guards rushed to tell Kamsa of the birth of the eight child. Hearing the news, Kamsa rushed to the dungeon and picked up the child and was about to dash it to the ground. Vasudeva begged Kamsa not to kill the child as it was only a girl and that a girl could do him no harm. The wicked Kamsa paid no heed and dashed the baby to the floor. As the baby was about to hit the floor, it suddenly flew up and told Kamsa that the one who was born to kill him still lives and is in Gokul. Then she disappeared.


The actual celebration of Krishna Janmashtami takes place during the midnight because it is believed that Lord Krishna was born on a dark, stormy and windy night to end the rule of his maternal uncle Kansa. In the whole of India, it is celebrated with devotional songs, people keep the fast whole day, several temples were decorated beautifully dedicated to the life journey of Krishna. Mainly, the Janmashtami celebration at Mathura and Vrindavan is very special as he had spent his life there. The image of Krishna at midnight is bathed in water and milk then he dressed in new clothes and worshipped. Sweets are first offered to God and then distributes as Prasada. Also, on this day people used to hang pots of butter and milk in the streets on the poles, men form pyramids to reach and break the pots. It is famous as Dahi Handi. This predicts Krishna's childhood days when he used to play with the cowherd's boys and stole curds hung out of reach by their mothers. So, he was also known as ‘Makhanchor’ the one who steals butter. People used to sing, dance in groups. So, now you may have come to know about the interesting story behind the Janmashtami festival and how is it celebrated.


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