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Gokulashtami - August 23rd, 2008

10:33 PM Posted by Vijayasri

Shri Krishnastami falls on Saturday August 23rd 2008.

Sri Krishnastami or Krishna Jayanthi marks the celebration of the birth of Lord Sri Krishna; the eighth avatar of Lord Vishnu. Lord Sri Krishna was born on the ‘Rohini’ nakshatra on Ashtami, that’s why it is called Krishnastami. In TamilNadu, it is also known as Gokulashtami .The festival occurs between August and September in our English calendar.

According to our Hindu mythology, Krishna was born to destroy Mathura’s demon King Kamsa, brother of his virtuous mother, Devaki. A celestial voice told Kamsa that he would be killed by the eighth child of Devaki. Alarmed by the message, Kamsa imprisoned Devaki and her husband Vasudeva. Taking no chances, Kamsa went on killing Devaki’s children soon after birth. Lord Krishna was born as the eighth child of Vasudeva at midnight.
But at Krishna’s birth, under divine instructions, Vasudeva left the prison unnoticed with the baby. He crossed the mighty river Yamuna which was in spate due to heavy rains. Without any difficulty, he walked across the river protected from rain by the mighty serpent Shesha, and reached Gokul.

In Gokul, on the same midnight, a girl named Yogamaya had been born to Yasoda, wife of Nanda a herdsman. The babies were exchanged, and Vasudeva came back to prison with the girl. When Kamsa was told that his sister had given birth to a child, Kamsa attempted kill the child. But the baby who was Goddess Maya, flew off to the heaven, warning Kamsa that Krishna, who would kill him, had already been born and was alive. Eventually, Krishna killed Kamsa, and released his parents from the prison, and brought peace and happiness to the common people.

Janmashtami is the joyful celebration of Lord Krishna’s birth. Major celebrations of Krishna Janmashtami takes place at midnight as Krishna is said to have made his divine appearance in that hour. Fasting, bhajans, pujas and many other rituals mark Janmashtami celebrations.

In Tamilnadu, we decorate the house with kolams drawing Baby Krishna's feet entering our house , and we celebrate making lots of snacks for Lord Krishna like sweet seedai, salt seedai, murukku, thenkuzhal and payasam. We also give fruits , coconut ,butter, poha to Lord Krishna and do the pooja in the evening of Gokulashtami day.

Hear this beautiful bhajan by Jagjit Singh - a special bhajan for Krishna Jayanthi day.


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