Who is Krishna?

Hinduism has a trinity consisting of a creator, stabiliser or harmoniser and a destroyer. These are actually the three aspects of the Supreme Brahman. These three are known as Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. Whenever the world order deteriorates and the ancient dharma (law of righteousness) is no longer followed, Vishnu, in his role as the stabiliser takes many avatars or incarnations. It is his duty to put the world in harmony with the cosmic forces. Krishna is the 8th avatar of Vishnu. With the passage of time the Vedic way of life had deteriorated into a system of elaborate rituals and sacrifices that could not be done or even understood by the ordinary person. The mantras and rituals were only known to the Brahmins or the priest class. Only the kings or the very rich could afford to hold such sacrifices or “yajnas” as they are called. 

Thus we find that after the Vedic Age we have the Purāṇic Age which is the age of the great epics known as the Ramāyāna and the Mahābhārata. The sage Vyasa was the author of the eighteen Purāṇas (books about the various gods) as well as the epic called the Mahābhārata. The Vedic truths were imbedded in the Purāṇas so that unconsciously the listeners or readers imbibed these truths in an easy manner. The Purāṇas were written in the form of a story and was easily understood by the common person. The life of Krishna comes in the Mahābhārata as well as the Bhāgavad Purāṇa.  

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