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Krishna’s birth – a lesson in Sacrifice

On Devaki and Vasudev’s wedding, a voice in the sky foretold that Supreme Lord Krishna would appear as their eighth child and would be the cause of Kamsa’s death. Instantly Kamsa’s loving affection for his sister Devaki and her husband changed to anger. Later he imprisoned both of them and killed each child born to them immediately on birth, by smashing the baby on a rock, right in front of the parents. Devaki was devastated to see this cruelty, yet, knowing it to be the Lord’s will to appear through her, she tolerated the distress and became pregnant again, waiting patiently for the Lord to appear. Devaki and Vasudev thus showed unparalleled sacrifice and perseverance.

When Lord Krishna appeared as their eighth child within the prison cell of Kamsa, He immediately ordered Vasudeva to take Him to Vrindavan and exchange with Nanda’s daughter. Although Vasudeva and Devaki had made tremendous sacrifices all these years so that they could get the Lord as their child, now the Lord wished to leave them. They didn’t protest or demand justice; despite undergoing years of distress, they readily complied with the Lord’s desire. Vasudeva and Devaki now exemplified selflessness by agreeing to take Krishna to Vrindavan.

The incident happened five thousand years ago in Mathura, a province of Uttar Pradesh, one of the largest Indian states. Even today millions of pilgrims visit the jail each year to remember the sacrifice of Vasudev and Devaki and to also receive Krishna’s blessings. The event of Krishna’s birth brings hope to devotees’ hearts; just as God appeared in the dark prison cell of Kamsa, He can appear even within our dark prison like heart and light up our lives with love, wisdom and purity.

For the light of Krishna to appear in the womb of our consciousness, we can take inspiration from Vasudeva and Devaki, and internalize their spirit of service and sacrifice. Let us resolve on this day to cultivate the mood of being a servant and add love and meaning to others’ lives. This way we can truly please Lord Krishna and also fill our own hearts with spiritual happiness.

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