Lord Narayana’s good qualities are like an ocean; they are beyond measure, said M.K. Srinivasan, in a discourse. The Lord is keen to ensure that the words of His devotees are never falsified. During the Kurukshetra war, He had vowed never to take up weapons Himself. But Bhishma vowed that he would make the Lord take up weapons. Krishna was keen that Bhishma should not be proved wrong. So He gave up His own vow and picked up His discus and advanced towards Bhishma during the war. Thus to the Lord, His devotee’s vow was more important than His own.

Although He broke His vow for the sake of Bhishma, He never breaks a promise He makes. When Draupadi cried over the plight of the Pandavas, Krishna assured her that the Himalayas might be reduced to pieces, but His words would never prove false. Draupadi would go back a queen.

When Prahlada said confidently that the Lord would be in the pillar pointed to by Hiranyakasipu, the Lord positioned Himself in the pillar, so as to prove Prahlada right. He behaves like one not conscious of His own status. This is seen in His acceptance of the fruits offered by Sabari, and His dancing with the Gopikas. The Lord’s words are soft. Sugriva forgot the promise he gave Rama, to help Him find Sita. Rama sent Lakshmana to remind Sugriva of his promise. But He told Lakshmana not to use harsh words against Sugriva. He is kind even to those who wish Him ill. To a spiritually broken Ravana, He said, “Go and come back tomorrow.” He could so easily have killed Ravana, but He wanted to give him one more chance to repent.

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