11. Krishna

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  • Krishna was born over 5,000 years ago.
  • Krishna’s birthday is called Janmashtami. It comes near the end of the summer holidays (in August or September).
  • Krishna was born in India, in a town called Mathura. He had a wicked uncle called Kamsa. Kamsa wanted to kill Krishna. Therefore, Krishna’s father sent his newly-born son to Vrindavana. It was safer there. Krishna was brought up by his foster-father (Nanda). His foster mother was named Yashoda.
  • Kamsa sent many demons to kill Krishna, but Krishna killed them all. He was very strong. He was very kind to good people.
  • Krishna liked cows. He would look after his father’s cows and calves in the forests of Vrindavan.
  • Krishna used to dress very well. He had a robe the colour of sunshine. And his skin was dark blue, like a rain-cloud. He wore a peacock feather in his hair. He was very good at playing the flute (you can often see pictures of him playing one).
  • When Krishna was a little older, he had many girlfriends. His favourite was called Radha. Many Hindus today pray to both Krishna and Radha.
  • Later, when Krishna was grown-up, he went to Mathura. He easily killed the wicked Kamsa.
  • He became a powerful king. He then built a beautiful city in the middle of the sea. It had thousands of palaces made of marble.
  • Krishna made friends with the five Pandava brothers, who were princes. They were good and fair.
  • They had 100 cousins who were jealous; this lead to a huge battle that lasted for eighteen days. Just before the battle, Krishna taught Arjuna the Bhagavad Gita. This is now one of the most important Hindu holy books.
  • Rama and Krishna are two names for God. Hindus believe that God has different names. He also has different forms (a bit like how we dress differently on different days).