The Sastras proved insufficient to make ordinary mortals understand the nature of the Supreme One. That is why He took avataras, to demonstrate His qualities to the world and to show us the path to moksha. God cannot be bought. There is no currency that is acceptable to Him, except the currency called bhakti. He cannot be tied by any rope, except the rope called bhakti. Duryodhana arrogantly put the Lord in fetters, when He went to Duryodhana’s court as a messenger of the Pandavas. But the Lord easily broke the fetters, and assumed Visvaroopa form. And yet He allowed Himself to be tied by Yasoda, because she tied Him up with love and devotion.

The Supreme One came into this world and delighted everyone with His pranks, as any other child would do. That is why the Azhvars celebrate this part of the Krishna avatara the most, said M.A. Venkatakrishnan, in a discourse. Which of His pranks was the most significant? Was it His killing of the demon Kesi, who came as a horse? Was it His dancing with the Gopikas?

Putana came to kill Krishna, but when He killed her, she attained moksha. Vedanta Desika said that he who hears the story of Putana, will never have further births. Krishna was just an infant, when He kicked at Chakatasura, the demon who came as a wheel, and killed him, indicating to us, that our problems can also be kicked out of existence by Him, if we only approach Him.

There is one poem which is not recorded elsewhere, but is perhaps just evidence of the poet’s love for Krishna. However, it shows how people view the avatara, for here is a poet coming up with an incident, entirely imaginary, but which does seem possible, given the mischievousness and smartness of Krishna. One day, Krishna told His friends, that what He could do with His eyes closed, they could not do even with their eyes open. Krishna then proceeded to demonstrate this ability of His, by closing His eyes and putting a handful of sand on His closed eyelids!

A classification of Krishna’s feats as superior, or not so superior is not possible, because the significance of the acts comes not just from the nature of the acts, but from the fact that it was the Lord who performed the feats.

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