Krishna’s pastimes are not just amusing – they are amazing

The Bhagavad-gita (04.09) makes the remarkable claim that when we understand Krishna’s appearance and activities in truth, we will attain liberation. Central to understanding this claim is the key word in this verse: tattvatah, in truth.

Many people who know about Krishna through their culture or tradition consider him amusing – especially due to his childhood pranks like stealing butter. However, the tattvatah understanding, the philosophical vision given in the Gita, helps us see Krishna in truth, as what he actually is: as God himself. Unmindful of his godhood, God chooses to take on the role of a sweet and naughty child just to reciprocate love with those who love him.

Isn’t it amazing that God who is the ultimate father of all becomes a tender child for the sake of love? Isn’t it even more amazing that God renounces that which everyone in this world longs to have – the majesty of godhood – just to relish the intimacy of love? And isn’t it most amazing that God, though he has the love of billions and billions of his devotees, considers our love for him as so invaluable and irreplaceable and indispensable that he personally descends to this world to invite us with his love-call?

Indeed, how can we not love the Lord who is so given to love? And when we choose to love him, how can he stop himself from fulfilling his heart’s longing to take us back to him and reinstate us his world of love?

Thus, Gita wisdom helps us cross the bridge from amusing to amazing in our understanding of Krishna’s pastimes. And when we thereby fall in love with him, he helps us cross the far greater bridge from the material world to the spiritual world.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 04 Text 09

“One who knows the transcendental nature of My appearance and activities does not, upon leaving the body, take his birth again in this material world, but attains My eternal abode, O Arjuna.”

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