Shravan vad 8 celebrates
the birth of Lord Shri Krishna, one of the most venerated incarnations
in the Hindu Dharma. Five thousand years ago, he incarnated, at the
end of the third cosmic phase, 'Dwapar Yuga' and the beginning of the
present, 'Kali Yuga'.
Janmashtami is the birthday of Lord Krishna, the re-incarnation of
Lord Vishnu who gave us the vital message of the Bhagwat Gita - the
guiding principles for every Hindu.Janmashtami is celebrated with full
vigor all over the country. Janmashtami is celebrated in various parts
of India to mark the birth of Lord Krishna. It is observed on the
Ashtami day of the Shravan month.
Eight days after the full moon of Shravan, falls the festival of
Janmashtami, the birthday of Lord Krishna. Krishna Janmashtami is an
important festival in the Hindu calendar. The first day is
Krishnashtami or Gokulashtami. The second day is called Kalastami or
more popularly Janmashtami. It is celebrated with great devotion
through out the country.
Vrindhavan, Mathura, Dwaraka are the most popular Krishna temples as
it is beleived that Lord Krishna lived here. In all these locations,
janmashtami is celebrated with lot of splendour. The image of the
infant Bala Krishna is bathed and is cradled in the midnight time.
The conch shell is blown and the devotees celebrate the birth of the
Protector of the world by singing devotional songs and by dancing with
In these places Janmashtami celebration has a special significance as
these places has an association with Lord Krishna. So the rituals
associated with the festival are followed. In some part of the North
India, Krishna Jayanthi is celebrated for three days. The first two
days are celebrated in a colorful manner. On the second day of the
festival a popular ceremony known as 'Dahi Handi' takes place where
the pot containing curd or butter or milk is broken by the youths.
Dahikala or Govinda, as the festival of tying pots of yogurt and milk,
and breaking them is called, is a special event in Mumbai and other
cities of Maharashtra.
Surrenderance - 'Sharnaagati'
During the battle Shri Krishna uttered 700 shloks in the form of the 'Bhagvad
Gita' to convince the reluctant Arjun to fight. The Lord finally
uttered the essence of his sermons in the following verse
(18/66):"Sarva dharmaan parityajya maamekam sharanam vraja,aham twaa
sarvapaapebhyo mokshayishyaami maa shuchaha."i.e. O Arjun! Forsake all
your personal beliefs and surrender to me. Do not lament for I shall
deliver you from all sinsTherefore a true spirit of Janmashtami is for
devotees to implicitly surrender at the Lord's lotus-feet, while
staunchly observing dharma.
King Kansa was the most absolute and tyrannical monarch of the period;
the bare mention of whose name was sufficient to send fear through the
hearts of all good and peace-loving people. His sister's name was
Devaki upon whom his brother Kansa showered brotherly love. And that
is the reason why, on the day of Devaki's marriage to Vasudev, when
the time came for Devaki to travel to her husband's house, that king
Kansa wanted to drive the carriage himself as a token of his brotherly
On this day, in some parts of India, especially Maharashtra, youths
celebrate it by breaking clay pots called 'Dahi-Handi', filled with
curd and butter suspended high above the ground, young men and
children form human pyramid to reach the pot and break it. This custom
follows the habit of Lord Krishna who used to steal butter in this
manner from villagers along with his friends. The reason for this is
that Gokul; the place where lord Krishna spent his childhood used to
generate a lot of milk and the people used to sell it in Mathura, thus
depriving their children from milk and butter which is very essential
for young boys and girls.