Krishna Episode 16 – Krishna’s Naming ceremony

How Did Lord Krishna Get His Name? Story Behind His Naming Ceremony -


At the request of Vasudeva, Garga, the family priest of Yadus, noted for rigid asceticism, visited Nanda’s Vraja. Nanda was highly pleased to see Garga. He stood up to show respect to him and folded his palms. He  worshipped him, lying prostrate before him, regarded him to be Lord Vishņu.When the sage was properly received and comfortably seated, Nanda, pleasing him with sweet words, asked, “Oh Brāhmaṇa, what service should I render to you who are self accomplished and want nothing. Oh venerable sage! Visits of great people like you contribute to the supreme good to persons who are attached to their households and are distressed in their minds. They never turn out to be contrary.


You have directly compiled a treatise on the science of astrology  which is beyond the range of senses. It is by that that a man knows his past and future. You are foremost among the knowers of the Vedas. You should, therefore, perform the purificatory rites of these two boys; for a Brāhmaṇa is the preceptor of all people, by his very birth.”


Garga said:  “I am the family priest of the Yadus and I am known over the world as such. If I were to consecrate your son with religious rites, they will regard him as the son of Devaki. Kamsa is wicked by nature. The friendship between you and Vasudeva is also well known. Kamsa has heard the words of Devaki’s daughter that the eighth born (womb) of Devaki cannot be a female. If taking into account all these, Kamsa gets suspicious, and if he were to kill your son, it will be our blunder.”


Nanda replied: “Please perform the purificatory rites proper for members of the twice-born castes, invoking heavenly blessings with benedictory hymns. Please do so secretly at Gokula, with out being noticed even by my own people.” Thus requested by Nanda, the Brahmaṇa who himself was desirous of it performed the naming ceremony of the two boys (the sons of Rohini and Yasoda) secretly, remaining himself unnoticed.


Garga said: “This son of Rohini will be called Räma as he will delight his friends with his amiable excellent qualities, and he will be known as Bala due to his superiority in strength. They will call him Sankarṣaṇa due to his capacity to draw together and unite dissenting Yadus (Garga does not want to disclose the transfer of Balarama from the womb of Devaki to Rohini due to which he was really called Sankarṣaṇa).


As to this second son, he assumed human forms in every Yuga with three different complexions, viz., white, red and yellow for each, successively. Now he has assumed the dark complexion. Hence he will be known as Kṛṣṇa. Formerly, this son of yours was sometime born in the house of Vasudeva. Hence the wise knowers of this fact will designate him as Väsudeva, the glorious. Numerous are the names and forms of this son of yours suitable to excellent qualities and marvellous deeds. I know them (all), but not the common people. 


This delight of Gopas and Gokula (i.e. Kṛṣṇa) will bring prosperity to you all, and you will easily surmount all calamities with his help. In times of yore, while anarchy prevailed, he protected pious people who were harassed by rogues and robbers, and when strengthened by him, they, the righteous people vanquished the miscreants. Just as those who side with Vişņu are not vanquished by Asuras, those fortunate persons who passionately love him are not overpowered by enemies.


Therefore, Oh Nanda, this son of yours is a compeer of Lord Nārāyaṇa¹ in excellent qualities, splendour, glory and prowess. Therefore, please take care of him with very minute attention.” When Garga returned home after instructing Nanda thus (or addressing Lord Kṛṣṇa), Nanda was so highly delighted that he considered himself blessed with all well-beings.


In a short while, Rāma and Kesava began to creep on their hands and knees and sportfully went round Gokula. While they crawled speedily even in the moist places of Vraja, dragging the pair of their legs (behind them), there arose a sweet tinkling sound of the tiny bells of their girdles and anklets. Their minds being delighted with the jingling sound, they followed the passers-by (a few steps) only to return to their mothers, as if in bewilderment and fright.Their two mothers with their breasts spontaneously overflowing with milk due to motherly affection, embraced in their arms their sons who looked charming with their bodies besmeared with mud. They enjoyed ecstatic delight while gazing at their (sons’) countenances beaming with bewitching smiles and tiny tender teeth when they were sucking the breasts.


Categories: Bhagwat Puran, Krishna Avataar, Lord Krishna

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: