“Vasudeva saw that wonderful child born as a baby with four hands, holding conchshell, club, disc, and lotus flower, decorated with the mark of Shrivatsa, wearing the jeweled necklace of kaustubha stone, dressed in yellow silk, appearing dazzling like a bright blackish cloud, wearing a helmet bedecked with the vaidurya stone, valuable bracelets, earrings and similar other ornaments all over His body and an abundance of hair on His head.” (Krishna, The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vol 1, Ch 3)
Friend1: I think it is amazing that Vasudeva got to see the vision of Narayana directly, when Shri Krishna was born.
Friend2: The transcendental janma and karma. The birth and activities of the Supreme Personality of Godhead are divyam.
Friend1: I accept the information on authority, but what does it mean exactly?
Friend2: Well, take the same two terms and apply them outside of that realm. For instance, the janma and karma for you and me.
Friend1: Right, so our births are not Divine, but they are miracles, nonetheless. This spark of spirit flies in from nowhere and animates a tiny body. The same spark is in there for maybe one hundred years. Then, one day it vanishes. Back into the ether. No one knows to where it has gone. We can never communicate with that person again, no matter how much we try.
Friend2: Krishna’s janma is Divine because He is not forced into the situation. He is not compelled by the laws of nature to appear within a certain womb. The same applies to His karma. His activities do not affect the future development of a material body, precisely because Krishna’s body is also spiritual.
Friend1: Which we can see in the vision of the four-handed Narayana. It is something special to behold. Vasudeva is not an ordinary person.
Friend2: The same is true of Devaki, the mother.
Friend1: Why didn’t Kamsa receive that vision? Wouldn’t that have convinced him?
Friend2: Of what?
Friend1: That the voice had been telling the truth, that Devaki’s eighth child would be his doom. He would know for certain that there is a God and that God has oversight for activities and their appropriate consequences.
Friend2: Remember, this vision is special. It is not hastily distributed. Though the same Narayana is already inside of the heart of every living thing, He is rarely perceived that way. We require special training, the eyes of shastra in conjunction with the clear vision sculpted by the spiritual master, in order to see God.
Friend1: I understand, but Vasudeva had the direct vision. Why not show the same to Kamsa? That is all I am asking.
Friend2: Kamsa could not see the soul inside of the body. Otherwise, he wouldn’t have murdered the newborn children previously appearing from Devaki’s womb. He could not perceive all-devouring time, which has guaranteed a certain destiny for each person. He could not see the hand of God everywhere else in life, in his own ascent to power, in his maintaining authority over others, in sustaining the universe, and so on.
Friend1: You are basically saying that the vision would have gone to waste.
Friend2: No point to it. He would see Narayana in a different way. The same child born to those beloved parents, Vasudeva and Devaki, was seen as the darling butter-thief by the residents of Gokula. To the cowherd boys of Vrindavana He was the hero who devoured the forest fire. To the damsels of Vraja He was the all-attractive paramour who danced with them under the full moon.
Friend1: And to Kamsa?
Friend2: All-devouring death in the form of Krishna’s fist. As they surrendered, so they were rewarded. Everyone follows Krishna’s path in all respects.
ये यथा मां प्रपद्यन्ते
तांस् तथैव भजाम्य् अहम्
मनुष्याः पार्थ सर्वशः
ye yathā māṁ prapadyante
tāṁs tathaiva bhajāmy aham
manuṣyāḥ pārtha sarvaśaḥ
“All of them – as they surrender unto Me – I reward accordingly. Everyone follows My path in all respects, O son of Pritha.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 4.11)
Vasudeva had been a devotee for a long time. He was properly rewarded with Narayana appearing as his son. It was not left up to speculation, either. There was visual confirmation. No mistaking it. This means that efforts in devotion never go to waste. At the most unexpected time, the transcendental effulgence will shine.
Though Kamsa ignorantly rejected,
That vision to parents unexpected.
Of Narayana the one,
As their eighth had come.
If shown to leader the same,
Nothing tangible to gain.
Since not even the soul could see,
In every case inimical was he.