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Kali and Krishna

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Essay title: Kali and Krishna

Response Paper 6

Dancing around and acting crazy is many ways in which Kali’s and Krishna’s devotees relate themselves to these gods. On the other hand, this kind of devotion and relationship to God is not found in the early Vedic traditions. In the Vedic tradition making sacrifices and praying was a way that many people devoted themselves to God. David Kinsley, author from The Sword and the Flute, expresses and explains how many people devoted to Kali and Krishna act.

The divine can appear in many different ways. For example, Krishna appears to his devotees as a “dark youth in yellow dress who sports a peacock feather for a crown… as such youth is absolutely irresistible, hypnotizing in his appearance” (Kinsley 25). In this case the main objective of all devotees is to vision Krishna as “irresistible and almost always dance around him while he plays his flute” (Kinsley 25). On the other hand, Kali appears to her devotees as “a great cloud in dark clothes… She has fearful teeth, sunken eyes, and is smiling… She has two hands and has corpses for ear ornaments” (Kinsley 81). In this situation Kali appears terrible but at the same time awesome.

Another difference between Kali and Krishna’s devotees is who they are. Even though now a days many people still worship Kali and Krishna, in Kinsley’s text, Krishna’s devotees are usually country women or gopis. When he plays his flute, these women “disregard their homes and husbands to revel illicitly with him.” In other words, these women completely stop what they are doing and ignore everything once they hear

the flute and they go to him and dance around him. Comparing Krishna’s and Kali’s devotees in Kinsley’s text, Kali’s devotees are “many wild and uncivilized tribes” (Kinsley 153). Although in Kinsley’s text tribes worshipped Kali, now a days people all across India including Vedicly Orthodox Hindus also worship Kali. This is an excellent example that shows how different Krishna and Kali’s followers can be. Although Krishna and Kali may be quite different, at the same time they are both similar, because neither divine being represents how the Vedic gods were worshiped in the Brahmanic society. The Vedic

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