#1 Who is Kalki Avatar ? – Birth, Family and Mission
There are many avatars or incarnations of the Supreme Lord as stated in Srimad Bhagavatam (1.3.26): “O Brahmanas, the incarnations of the Lord are innumerable, like rivulets flowing from inexhaustible sources of water”. However, Krishna is the fountainhead of all these incarnations of the Supreme. This has been confirmed in Srimad Bhagavatam (1.3.28) – “ete camsa kalah pumsah, krishnas tu bhagavan svayam,” which means that all the other incarnations are either plenary portions or plenary portions of the plenary portions of the Supreme Lord. However Lord Krishna is the original Supreme Personality of God.
The Supreme Lord descends into this material world time and time again to manifest His pastimes and associate with His intimate devotees. A secondary reason for His appearance is also to annihilate miscreants and rid the world of their disturbance. It has been predicted in various scriptures that at the end of the age of Kali, Kalki avatar will make His appearance to annihilate the miscreants and re-establish the postulates of eternal religion. He shall appear as the son of Vishnuyasha, an eminent brahmana of a village named Shambhala.
Athasau yuga sandhayam
Dasyu prayesu rajasu
Janita vishnu yasaso
Namna kalkir jagat patih
(Srimad Bhagavatam 1.3.25)
Thereafter, at the conjunction of two yugas (Kali and Satya), the Lord of the creation will appear as the Kalki Avatar and become the son of Vishnuyasha. At this time the rulers of the earth will have degenerated into plunderers
The Vishnu Purana (Book Four, Chapter 24) also reveals that “When the Vedic practices and institutes of law have nearly ceased to exist, and the close of the Kali Yuga is near, a portion of that divine being who exists in His divine abode, and who is the beginning and end, and who comprehends all things, shall descend upon earth. He will be born in the family of Vishnuyasha, an eminent Brahmana of the Shambhala village. He shall become renowned as Kalki, and shall be endowed with eight superhuman faculties.”
Elsewhere Padma Purana (6.71.279-282) relates that Lord Kalki will end the age of Kali and shall kill all the wicked mlecchas (demoniac and evil beings) and, thus, destroy the bad conditions of the world. He will gather all of the distinguished brahmanas and shall be instrumental in propounding the highest truth.
In this regard, the Kalki Purana reveals the following – “After hearing the prayers of the demigods regarding the pitiful situation on earth, the Supreme Lord Hari replied: O Brahma, rest assured that I will soon descend to the earth and appear in the village known as Shambhala. I will take birth in the house of a Brahmana named Vishnuyasha, from the womb of his wife, Sumati. My mission will be to eliminate the wicked Kali of his influence with the help of My four brothers. O demigods, your expansions should also take birth on the earth to serve Me in My mission. My consort Kamala-devi shall also appear on the earth, having the name Padma. She will be born from the womb of Kaumudi, the wife of Brihadratha, the King of Simhala”.
The Kalki Purana further adds that those who repeatedly hear the transcendental glories of Kalki Avatar with devotion shall find their hearts cleansed of all inauspiciousness (Kalki Purana 34.16).
#2 Kali Yuga Predictions – Reasons for the advent of Kalki Avatar
The cycle of the four yugas , namely Satya, Treta, Dvapara and Kali, rotates like the calendar months. The present Kali yuga lasts 432,000 years, out of which we have passed only 5,000 years since the Battle of Kurukshetra. As the age of Kali advances, genuine saintly or spiritually advanced souls shall gradually disappear from the face of the earth. Towards its end the dark influence of the Kali Yuga shall become very dominant, unleashing all of its evil influence. The below symptoms of Kali Yuga shall then become fully manifest –
- Religion, honesty, purity, kindness, tolerance of the people will decrease day by day.
- Hypocrisy shall be practiced as a virtue.
- People will suffer from a lack of physical strength, weak memory, and a shortened duration of life.
- The maximum span of human life will be reduced to fifty years.
- In the age of Kali, wealth alone shall be considered as one’s sign of noble birth, decent behavior, and excellent qualities.
- Might will be deemed right. Brute power will determine law and justice in this age of Kali.
- Men and women will live together merely because of shallow superficial attraction. The institution of marriage will degenerate.
- By the end of Kali Yuga, family ties will extend to no further than the immediate bindings of marriage.
- Business shall be conducted and success achieved based on deception.
- Manliness and womanliness would be decided based on one’s expertise in sexual intercourse.
- A person’s spiritual position shall be defined based on his externals. It is on this same basis, that people will change from one spiritual order to the next.
- A person’s status in society will be determined by his wealth. If he does not earn much, he/she would be deemed unholy.
- One who is very clever at juggling words will be judged a good scholar.
- One’s hairstyle would come to define one’s beauty.
- Filling the belly would become the ultimate goal of life.
- Principles of religion will simply be observed for the sake of reputation.
- A holy place would simply be considered to be a pool of water located at a distance.
- As the earth becomes populated with such wicked people, whoever exhibits himself to be the most powerful, will gain political power.
- Losing their wives and properties to these leaders, who are no better than thieves, citizens will flee to the mountains and forests.
- Devastated with famine and excessive taxes, people would resort to eating roots, leaves, flesh, honey, flowers, seeds, etc.
- By the end of Kali Yuga, all creatures including trees shall be considerably reduced in height.
- By the end of Kali Yuga, the religious principles of Varnasrama (class and order) shall be completely destroyed.
- By the end of Kali Yuga, the path of Vedas will be completely forgotten and human society will be largely atheistic and animalistic.
- Deception, lying and unnecessary violence will become the primary occupations of men.
#3 Mission and activities of Kalki avatar
In the Kalki Purana (3.9-10) Lord Parasurama, Kalki’s teacher, explains to Lord Kalki about His mission. He says, “You have learned the art of discharging arrows from Me. You will imbibe transcendental knowledge from Sukadeva Gosvami, and You will be awarded a powerful weapon by Lord Shiva. Thereafter, You will marry a woman named Padma from the island of Simhala (Sri Lanka). Your mission is to re-establish Sanatana dharma. Thereafter, You will set out to conquer the entire world and in the course of that conquest, You will defeat many sinful kings who are representatives of Kali. You will also destroy many atheistic people and finally, You will entrust the responsibility of ruling the world to Devapi and Maru”.
We have to understand that by the time Kalki avatar appears, the essence of Sanatana Dharma shall become lost and whatever little is left of any religion will only be a cheating form of atheism. We should also make a note that anyone who is killed by the Supreme Lord Himself achieves liberation from this material world. They merge with the brahman effulgence of the Supreme. Offenders like Kamsa and Sishupala had attained similar destinations in the past. Therefore being killed by the Supreme Lord is also a blessing for these demoniac people of Kali Yuga who would have otherwise entered lower realms of existence or even the hellish planets in their next lives to suffer for their sins. The Srimad-Bhagavatam describes Lord Kalki’s activities as follows :
asvam asu gam aruhya
devadattam jagat patih
vicharann asuna ksaunyam
(Srimad Bhagavatam 12.2.19-20)
Lord Kalki, the Lord of the universe, will ascend His swift horse Devadatta and, carrying a sword in hand, travel over the earth exhibiting His eight mystic opulences and special qualities of Godhead. Unveiling His unmatched effulgence and riding with great speed, He will kill by millions those thieves who have dared dress as kings.
The Agni Purana (16.7-9) also explains that when the miscreants, posing as kings, start devouring righteous men and feed on human beings, Kalki, the son of Vishnuyasha, and Yajnavalkya His priest and teacher, will destroy these miscreants with His weapons. Linga Purana, Brahmanda Purana, and the Vayu Purana further reveal that Lord Kalki shall carry with Him a big army of horses, chariots, and elephants, surrounded by hundreds and thousands of spiritually cleansed brahmanas armed with weapons (Being Brahmanas, these weapons may be brahminical weapons that are initiated by mantras, such as the powerful brahmastra instead of crude weapons). Though the demons would try to fight Him, Lord Kalki will kill all of these heretics and wicked kings. No one would be able to stop Him as He would wield His discus and annihilate all the barbarians. After accomplishing His mission, He would rest in the land situated between the Ganges and Yamuna along with His ministers and followers. He would only allow a few people to survive, and they shall be scattered all over the planet. After making way for the next age of Satya yuga and delivering the earth from the ill-effects of Kali-yuga, He shall return to His eternal abode along with His army.
Kalki avatar shall establish the principles of eternal religion once again, and the people will return to the path of righteousness. After the earth is rid of all imposters, the citizens shall be able to smell the winds carrying the most sacred fragrance of sandalwood paste and other paraphernalia of Lord Vishnu. Thus their body and mind shall become purified. This will mark the beginning of Satya Yuga, an era of virtue, enlightenment, and spirituality. At that specific moment the sun, moon, and Jupiter (Brihaspati) shall collectively be at the constellation of Cancer (Karkata). These three shall together enter into the lunar mansion of Pushya (Pushya Nakshatra).
Image Credits :
Anurag choubisa, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons