Monday, November 07, 2011

Mahabharat 14: Krishna's Awesomeness

(The standard disclaimers apply. Do not read if below 18 years of age).

(A quick recap: Krishna and Balarama grew up in the village, herding cows for a living. They foiled many attempts of Kamsa to kill them, Krishna using his divine powers in most cases. Finally, Kamsa invited them both to Mathura in order to have them killed, but instead got killed by Krishna.)

Now, Krishna was much like Tiger Woods: he was black, he was a genius, and a real womanizer, much in the Tiger Woods mode. Back in the time when he was growing up in the village under cover, he had affairs with many village girls at the same time, a practice that's remembered in India as "Ras Lila". He used to seduce girls through a 3P strategy: a mix of philosophy, poems and perverseness. He also had a flute, which he used to sing these small songs he wrote himself. Here are a few examples (translated from Sanskrit):

Happiness is a state of mind,
And mine is pretty easy to find,
if only you will be very kind,
and show me your naked behind.

Radha, you are the only girl in my life,
and I want to make you my wife,
but before we settle down in our own cozy home,
lets have some fun, and involve Rita in a smashing threesome.

Needless to say, he had his way with women. He had managed to impress himself (pun intended) on every girl he knew in the village - which for a cowherd was unheard for. Which is why they had cried when he had left for Mathura and had not promised to return back.

He looked forward to greener pastures, in a manner of speaking. City girls were way hotter, he had heard, and wore clothes that left little to the imagination. They were often more experimental too, from what little he had read. He had often imagined different positions from the Kamasutra that he could try, but had been unable to get Radha or any of his other beloveds to try them, despite writing songs about them. He had heard that city girls would try anything, and he looked forward to it. But before that a lot of work had to be done - politically.

Krishna, as mentioned , having killed his maternal uncle, Kamsa, refused the throne of Mathura for himself - as was wanted by the people of Mathura - instead giving it back to his grandfather Ugrasen. This was a move that did not please many people who wanted Krishna to be the king - one person had even threatened to commit suicide if Krishna did not become the king. However, Krishna remained adamant, and slowly the people of Mathura accepted Krishna's decision as final, and agreed to Ugrasen as king. Now Ugrasen was an old, bearded, silent man - some recent excavations at Mathura reveal that he looked a lot like Mr. Manmohan Singh - and he did not have much of the power, which was concentrated between Krishna and Balarama, who were both named Princes. This suited both of them, for they had all the power without any responsibility. Krishna wanted to be able to enjoy the city girls in the same way he had the village girls and felt his indiscretions as king would be well-publicized. (Editor's Note: For all those people who claim Sonia Gandhi is not Indian enough, how could she have the brainwave of refusing the post of Prime Minister had she not read the Mahabharat and known this particular incident?)

Krishna was the brains, Balarama the brawn - and they formed a solid team.

The people of Mathura were overjoyed to have Krishna and Balarama instead of Kamsa. The reign of Kamsa saw high tax rates, and the public suffered as a result. Inflation was also rampant, and the common man reeled from effects of daily price rise and oil rate hike. Moreover, Kamsa was among other things, a sex maniac, and no girl was safe from his predations. His acts had spurred a number of parents in Mathura to kill the girl child as soon as she was born - the first recorded history of female infanticide in India. However, with Krishna and Balarama at the helm, people felt much safer, and one of the first popular decisions that the two princes took was to decrease the tax burden - bringing down taxes by as much as 90%. They also banned female infanticide. Bringing down inflation was the top priority of Krishna, who doubled as the Finance and External Affairs Minister, while Balarama looked after departments of Home and Defence. Mathura looked forward to times of peace and prosperity, while the two princes looked forward to enjoy their princely rights - having had a tough childhood in the village.

However, Mathura was immediately under threat. The powerful king of Magadha, Jarasandha, who was one of the most powerful kings in history, was the father-in-law of Kamsa, and by making his 2 daughters widows, Krishna had made himself a sworn enemy. Jarasandha, with an assortment of armies from his many vassal kings, launched an attack on Mathura. There were 100:1 odds offered by bookies against Mathura's survival against such onslaught (Yep, for those of you wondering, betting was prevalent even back then), but Balarama's valour and Krishna's strategy won the day.

However, Jarasandha was not finished, and he gave Krishna and Balarama no respite, attacking them 17 times in a short time, being dragged back each time, but barely giving the princes time to enjoy any of the princely rights they were hoping to enjoy. Jarasandha had a large army, and he was on the verge of attacking Matura for the 18th time. Moreover, war cost money, and soon tax was raised to a level higher than it was during Kamsa's time, which plummetted the ratings of the new princes to a new low level. Inflation ran rampant, and the conditions of the common man worsened. Moreover, a number of men died defending Mathura, and Mathura was soon running out of resources.

Something needed to be done: and so Krishna came up with a new strategy - the move of the capital away from Mathura. Using his divine powers, and the divine architecture, Vishwakarma, he built a new city in Dwarka, which was on the far west corner of India, and as far away from Magadha as possible, and overnight shifted the population from Mathura to Dwarka. (Editor's Note: This is where Indian history scores over Christian and Jewish history. Moses took 40 years of voyage to deliver Jews into the promised land. Krishna did the same distance, and moved more number of people overnight. India rocks!!).

The people of Mathura were kind of surprised when they woke up the next day, but soon they settled and finally looked to long periods of peace and prosperity. And no taxes, for Dwarka was built on an island which had large deposits of oil. Oil income drove the revenues and Dwarka became the ancient day Dubai. While Dwarka thrived and prospered, the two princes got down to pursue their princely pleasures.

Which for Krishna meant, a whole swinging party. He was tall, dark and handsome, and a prince on top of that. Girls threw themselves at him, and he was not the one complaining. He started enjoying life to the hilt, and would soon have 16108 wives, which would make him the most well satisfied men in the history of the world - leaving behind such well known names like Charlie Sheen, Wilt Chamberlain and N.D. Tiwari far behind.

To cut it short, Krishna had an awesome life. As this couplet, translated from Sanskrit, reveals.

I have made love to a sixteen thousand women,
and one hundred and eight more,
I have tried all positions in the Kamasutra,
either soft or hardcore.