There were pandals raised everywhere. Announcements were being made that Janmashtami celebrations are starting. All are cordially invited. Personal invitations are also being given. Press conferences are called for and the journalist are also told about the celebrations. ISKCON Noida is celebrating as well as the whole world. 50 years ago when Srila Prabhupada was travelling in the boat and when it reached the Atlantic ocean that was the day of Janmashtami. Srila Prabhupada celebrated Janmashtami in the ship itself. He invited captain Pandya, captain of the ship and his crew for the celebrations there in the boat itself. Iskcon’s first Janmashtami in 1965 was in the ship. And now after 50 years of the incident, around 150 countries are celebrating this Janmashtami festival. I went to China and there too in Beijing celebrations were in progress. I had been there in this month only. Its August right? So Janmashtami is getting celebrated in China.
“karti katha gati gane gudiya torane”
Sant Tukaram Maharaja of Maharashtra sang this song. It was Janmashtami festival during that time. Do you know what is “torana”? In marathi its torana. They tie mango leaves and flowers on the rope and hang it to the doors. Such decorations are going on. The whole Gokula was decorated. And,
anandalya nara nari
All the men and women were happy and joyfully singing the glories of the Lord. They were experiencing bliss. They were singing glories of Lord and dancing. A few minutes before, I saw that it was time for katha/ class but all of you were doing kirtana, singing and dancing and playing some musical instruments. 5242 years ago, I don’t want to go into calculations of how the grand total came. But from 5242 years onwards this festival of Sri Krishna Janmashtami is being celebrated. Till the moon and the stars are in the sky, this festival will be celebrated. From one generation to the other the Lord is giving an opportunity for the living entities to celebrate this festival. This objective also we will talk about. The reason why the Lord appears? So now when everything is getting ready for the celebrations then we will also make up our mind, getting ready mentally by hearing to some Hari katha , Krishna katha, janma katha. Then our mind will be “changa”. It’s a Punjabi word. So when Bhagavan appears on Janmashtami day then we will be ready mentally. The ground of our heart should be kept neat and clean. Then we will be eligible to hold the Lord in our hearts. Lord should take birth in our minds and in the courtyard of our hearts.
Before taking birth from the womb of Devaki, Lord had appeared in the mind of Vasudeva. Then from the mind of Vasudev He appeared into the heart of Devaki. Vasudeva’s mind and Devaki’s heart were the suitable pure places, vessel for the Lord to appear. And He appeared on the night of ashtami day. The Lord is not the product or combination of men and women. Krishna doesn’t take birth like us, like our body takes birth. Bhagavan does not take a birth, He doesn’t have a material body because He is not the product or the combination of man and woman. We don’t hear this in the lila, do we? Vasudeva is a man and Devaki is a woman. But when Lord was born how? He was very wonderful child. So we can understand that the birth is not common. The child was laughing. Did we ever come across any child in this material world taking birth laughing? No. That means this birth is unlike the material birth that we know of. The births that take place in this samsar, material world it is definitely not like the birth of Lord Krsna, that’s why Bhagavan is called Ajanma. The one who has no relation with the birth but still we celebrate Krishna Janmashtami. That’s why Bhagavan is saying,
janma karma ca me divyam evam yo vetti tattvatah
My birth is divya, transcendental. One who knows My transcendental birth and activities will also get benefitted by this when we understand this principle of transcendental birth and activities of the Lord. The tattva of the Lord’s birth or the reason of His Birth, etc. We want to discuss about such topics and this we will start from the prayers of Kunti Maharani. She knew the Lord. Amongst the knowers of the Lord, Kunti Maharani was the Lord’s parshada/ parikar. She was not a conditioned soul. She was not a common wordly women. When the Lord appears in this material world he appears along with His associates. For example when a King is going somewhere he doesn’t go alone. He is followed by his body gaurds, His ministers , associates , His priests, etc. King doesn’t come alone. Similarly when Bhagavan is coming He doesn’t come alone. In some of His avatars Lord doesn’t come alone or didn’t come. For example when He came as Lord Rama, He didn’t come alone. Sri Krishna, when He appeared, sometimes like Rama sometimes like Shyam , He didn’t come alone. He came as Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, He didn’t come alone but when He came as Narsimha Deva then He came alone. Similarly He came in so many other avatars alone like araha bhagavan. So in many such avatars He comes alone but dharma sya glanir bhavati – when there is decline in the dharma- religious principles abhyutthanam adharmasya tadatmanam srjamy aham.
When the irreligiousness is spreading everywhere and religious principles are declining, not taken care, at that time Bhagavan says I appear tadatmanam srjamyaham. So during such times or circumstances the Lord appears. So at that time only one lila will be played and then the Lord disappears after that lila is over. But in some lila’s the Lord appeared and stayed for 125 years right from His birth, then balavastha –childhood, pauganda avastha then Kaishor avastha, navayavannam ca – yuva avastha –youth. Lord Rama also stayed long around 11000 years on this planet earth, Sri Krishna stayed for 125years and Sri Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu for 48 years. So these 3 avatars are little special. Lord stayed on this planet earth for 1000’s of years displaying His pastimes.