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Lord Krishna

            Lord Krishna'"the naughty young boy, the mischievous adolescent, the lover, the flute-player, the fighter, the playboy, the desired one'"many things can be said of this Hindu deity. Krishna could possibly be one of the best-known Hindu deities in the world outside of South Asia (Smith 99). He is the eighth and maybe the most important incarnation of Vishnu. Because of this, Krishna is popularly worshipped and held beloved to his Hindu followers. His nature encompasses human desires and ambitions as well as shortcomings. He is the most humanlike deity there is, showing all the aspects of development usually associated with childhood, adolescence, and adulthood--this gives him such a likeable stature as a deity of the people.
             Lord Krishna is known as 'œThe Destructor of Evil or 'œThe Dark One.'" His whole life was chronicled mostly throughout the Bhagavad Gita and also the Mahabarata and the Bhagavad Purana so many stories are known of him. He was depicted in paintings in all stages of his life. As a child, Krishna used to steal butter and play tricks of this sort, so is painted and sculpted doing these things but was still seen as having an innocent and boyish quality and is painted as such. His depictions portray him in either black or dark blue skin unlike most of the other deities. He is shown in many styles'"sometimes as a child holding a butter-cake other times as a teen dancing with the cow herding girls. As Krishna grew, he became famously attractive and charming, which made him popular with women. One woman in particular became the most prominent among all the other cowgirls'"Radha. Krishna is almost always seen with Radha on his side. Even when there are other girls present in a painting, Radha is always next to him as she was his favorite. Krishna was also a skilled musician and is often seen in paintings playing a flute 'œat the sound of which nature pauses to listen, storms are calmed, rivers flow calmly and maidens are roused'" (Chandra 180).

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