“The Trinavarta demon who took baby Krishna on his shoulder went high in the sky, but the baby assumed such a weight that suddenly he could not go any further, and he had to stop his whirlwind activities. Baby Krishna made Himself heavy and began to weigh down the demon. The Lord caught hold of his neck.” (Krishna, The Supreme Personality Of Godhead, Vol 1, Ch 7)
When a voice from the sky suddenly appears to offer you an important message, it’s probably best to pay attention. Kamsa got fair warning that his death would come at the hands of the eighth child of his sister Devaki.
Most people aren’t so lucky. All-devouring time deals the final blow of death without warning. Kamsa was a powerful king, so how could he give up that power? Not realizing that the end is inevitable for everyone, the ruthless brother of Devaki tried his best to nullify destiny. He tried to keep all the children born to his sister from ever seeing adulthood.
But the Divine will is too strong to overcome, and that eighth child finally did arrive. Narayana Himself, the Supreme Lord in the all-attractive form of Krishna appeared in this world in Mathura, the town governed by Kamsa.
There were several subsequent incidents that gave the king ample warning about the Divine nature of his nephew. Yet the nature of the hardcore atheist is to remain obstinate until the end. Even when evidence is presented right before them, they will still deny the possibility of the existence of an almighty being.
1. Escaping the prison despite careful attention
Kamsa kept Devaki and her husband Vasudeva locked up. The couple had to hand over each child to the king, who then threw the newborn against a stone slab; a more graphic version of abortion. Krishna, the eighth child, not only appeared from the womb, but also managed to escape.
It happened in the middle of the night. For this reason the annual celebration of Janmashtami reaches a crescendo at midnight, the precise moment Narayana took a seemingly human form for the sake of His devotees.
The escape was the first indication that this child was not like the others. He was not ordinary. The prophecy was still intact.
2. Surviving against a witch
Kamsa learned that the cause of his death was nearby. It was an infant, after all, so what chance did it stand against a powerful king? Kamsa sent deputies to do the work for him. One of them was a witch named Putana. She was known for killing babies.
She arrived in Gokula in disguise. Taking baby Krishna in her lap, she was ready to feed Him poison through the breast. Instead, Shri Krishna sucked the very life out of her. She died right after revealing her hideous, gigantic form.
3. Surviving against a whirlwind
Another person of bad character, asura, came to Gokula to try again for Kamsa. Trinavarta could transform into a whirlwind. Poison on the breast wouldn’t work, but how about gravity? Take the baby high into the air and then drop Him.
Once again the plan worked in reverse. While in the air baby Krishna became so heavy that Trinavarta could no longer hold Him. The asura fell to the ground and died, while Krishna remained safe throughout. Two powerful associates done away with by an infant. Kamsa still didn’t learn.
There would be more such incidents, leading up to the final deathblow coming from Krishna in Mathura. Kamsa saw God, for sure, but didn’t recognize Him. The only way to acknowledge the Divine was through death itself, which arrived in the form of the punch from the lotus-like hand of the son of Devaki.
The devotees don’t require such amazing feats for proof, but they delight in the pastimes nonetheless. They continue to sing the glories of that remover of wicked foes, chanting the holy names: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.
Crime of infanticide bold,
Since future demise foretold.
By voice coming from the sky,
Kamsa to deny destiny to try.
But failed the poisonous witch,
And on whirlwind effect to switch.
Elusive until death punch dealing,
God in terrible form revealing.
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