Lord Krishna is considered the most colorful character in Indian mythology. His mischievous nature, his love for his friends and stories of his childhood are narrated in every household. Kids love him and grown-ups adore him, in whatever form he is worshiped, be it infant eating butter, the young boy playing the flute, with Radha – the love of his life, or in his larger-than-life avatar giving a discourse to Arjun on the battlefield at Kurukshetra.
Here are 10 stories from the life of Krishna that kids love:
King Kamsa of Mathura was a tyrant and an evil king. It was prophesied that Kamsa would be killed by the eight child born to his sister Devaki and her husband. Vasudeva. Kamsa imprisoned both of them and ensured that each of their newborns were eliminated on the day of their births. Krishna was born as the eighth son to Devaki and Vasudeva. The night Krishna was born, a divine voice directed Vasudeva to smuggle the new born out of the prison and take him to his friend’s house in Gokul and exchange his son with his friend’s new born girl. He is assured that his son would have a safe upbringing in Gokul.
Vasudeva follows the instruction and safely delivers the new born to Gokul and get’s his friend’s new born daughter to the prison. Kamsa thinks that the eighth child, born to his sister, is not a boy but a girl. Nevertheless, he decides to eliminate the girl but is unable to do so as the new born girl was an incarnation of Goddess Durga. Kamsa finds out that the child destined to kill him is safe and out of his reach.
Read the full story here.
Kamsa, the evil uncle of Lord Krishna wanted to kill him but helped by his father, he managed to escape. Kamsa came to know that Krishna was somewhere in his kingdom. So he ordered Putana, an evil demoness, to kill all the infants in his kingdom. Putana was glad to carry out Kamsa’s orders as she was extremely ruthless. Slowly she starts eliminating all the infants, one by one, in Kamsa’s kingdom.
She reaches Gokul and comes to know about a miraculous boy, Krishna. She decides to eliminate him as well and takes the form of a beautiful maiden. She poison’s her milk and reaches Krishna’s house on the pretext of feeding him.
Was Putana able to harm the lord? Definitely not. Find out how the infant god slayed her.
Once when Krishna was still a toddler, a fruit seller came to his house. She carried juicy, ripe mangoes with her. Krishna saw saw that his father, Nandraj, bought one of the baskets from the fruit-seller. In barter, Nandraj gave her a basket of grains. (Those were the days when people would barter goods instead of using money to pay. Goods were generally exchanged for grains and other farm products).
Krishna understood that he could also buy mangoes in exchange of grains. So he ran inside and picked up as much grain as he could in his hands. He came out and offered the grains to the fruit-seller. In those little hands, Krishna could carry only very little grain.
Will Krishna be able to buy any mangoes with handful of grains? Read the complete story to find out more.
Krishna’s Uncle, the evil king Kamsa, tries every method to kill Krishna. On one occasion, he sends Arishtasura, the wild bull demon to Vrindavan. On reaching Vrindavan, the demon creates havoc, uprooting trees, destroying the houses and scaring away the villagers.
The villagers run to Krishna, who is playing with his friends on the banks of the Yamuna river. He sees that the bull is no ordinary bull, but a demon in disguise. He takes the bull by its horns and flings him around, finally shattering his horns.
When the bull is thus subdued, the spirit leaves the body of the bull and bows before Krishna. He tells him that he was actually a disciple of Brihaspati, the deva-guru (Guru of the Gods) who disrespected his teacher and had thus been cursed to be a demon till he would be find his release at the hands of the Lord.
Read the complete story here.
When Krishna defeats the bull demon Arishtasura, the sage Narada goes to Kamsa and tells him that Krishna is indeed Devaki and Vasudev’s eighth born, who will be the cause of Kamsa’s end.
Infuriated, Kamsa calls upon the long-haired horse demon, Keshi to kill Krishna. Keshi takes the form of a huge horse and scares the villagers of Vrindavan. Krishna challenges Keshi to a duel and knocks out all his teeth with his elbow. He then thrusts his elbow into the demon’s mouth choking him to death, earning him the name Keshava – the one who destroyed Keshi.
Read the complete story here.
Once Krishna and his friends were playing by the banks of Yamuna with their ball. The ball falls into the river, where the poisonous hundred and ten-headed serpent Kaliya lives with his family.
Kaliya was blinded by hatred and his venom had started poisoning the waters of Yamuna. Krishna dives into the waters to retrieve the ball, and encounters Kaliya. He orders Kaliya to stop poisoning the water and live peacefully, Blinded by rage, Kaliya refuses.
Krishna fights the giant serpent. Krishna assumes the weight of the entire universe and dances on the naga’s head, soon overpowering him. He then tells Kaliya to leave Vrindavan and the river and never return.
Each year, the villagers of Vrindavan would make elaborate offerings to Lord Indra, to appease him. Krishna saw this and questioned the practice, debating that the ‘karma’ of the villagers lay in doing their duty towards their farms and cattle.
He argued that the Giri Govardhan (Govardhan Mountain) had a larger role to play in the life of the villagers than Lord Indra as Govardhan provided fodder for their cattle. Reluctantly, the villagers agreed and stopped the annual festival. Indra, in his vanity, was furious and sent torrential rains and floods to Vrindavan. The villagers approached Krishna and asked him to rescue them, since it was because of him that Indra was angry.
Krishna then grew in size and picked up Govardhan Giri (hill) with the little finger of his left hand, making a giant umbrella under which all villagers could take refuge. For seven days and seven nights, the rains did not abate. Finally Indra realized his mistake and accepted defeat.
Read the complete story here.
Krishna eats mud
Once when Krishna was still a toddler, he was tagging along with elder brother Balarama and his friends as they collected fruits from the courtyard.
Unable to reach the trees like his elder brother, he picked off dirt from the ground and crammed his mouth full of it. When the other children saw what he was doing, they ran to mother Yashoda and told her that Krishna was eating mud. Yashoda ran out to Kanha (as she used to call him lovingly) and asked him if he was indeed eating mud. Scared to open his mouth he nodded his head, saying no.
Yashoda then told him to open his mouth, but Kanha was afraid he would get a scolding, so he kept his mouth shut tight. Yashoda looked at him sternly and ordered him to show the inside of his mouth. He looked at Yashoda and opened his mouth. When Yashoda peered into it, she saw the entire universe inside – the earth and mountains and seas and galaxies and stars, every moving and stationary object, all the planets and moons. She was dumbstruck. When Kanha closed his mouth, she looked at him with a new respect, for she now understood that this was no ordinary child, but the Lord himself.
Which are your favorite stories from Kanha’s life. Tell us in the comments below.