Kali (demon)

Hdeity infobox

Image_size =150px
Caption =Kali (right) wielding a sword
Name =Kali
Devanagari =कलि
Kannada =
Sanskrit_Transliteration = Káli
Pali_Transliteration =
Tamil_script =
Script_name =
Script =
Affiliation = Demon and negative manifestation of Vishnu.
God_of =
Abode =Kali Yuga, gambling houses, taverns, women of unchaste lives, slaughtering places and gold
Mantra =
Weapon =sword
Consort =Durukti and Alakshmi
Mount =Donkey
Planet =

In Hinduism, Kali (IAST: "IAST|káli"; Devnāgari: _sa. कलि; from a root "IAST|kad" "suffer, grieve, hurt; confound, confuse") is the reigning lord of Kali Yuga and nemesis of Sri Kalki, the 10th and final avatar of the Hindu god Vishnu. According to the Vishnu Purana, he is a negative manifestation of Vishnu who, along with his extended evil family, perpetually operates as a cause of the destruction of this world. [http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/vp/vp041.htm#fr_212 CHAP. VII] ] In the Kalki Purana, he is portrayed as a demon and the source of all evil. In the Mahabharata, he was a gandharva who possessed Nala, forcing him to lose his Kingdom in a game of dice to his brother Pushkara. His most famous incarnation is the Kaurava King Duryodhana. Kali is the prototype for the demon Kroni and his incarnation Kaliyan of Ayyavazhi mythology.


The Kalki Purana describes him as a huge being, the color of “soot,” with a large tongue, and a terrible stench. From his birth, he carried an "Upaasthi" (worship) bone. The Kalki Purana says this demon "chose gambling, liquor, women and gold as his permanent abodes."Chaturvedi, B.K. "Kalki Purana". New Delhi: Diamond Books, 2004 (ISBN 81-288-0588-6)] The "Sanskrit-English Dictionary" states Kali is "of a class of mythic beings (related to the Gandharvas, and supposed by some to be fond of gambling)". [Monier-Williams, Monier, Sir.Sanskrit-English Dictionary ISBN 0-19-864308-X ] The Bhagavata Purana describes him as a sudra wearing the garments of a king. An early 20th century anti-beef eating pamphlet protesting the slaughter of the sacred cow in India portrays Kali as a brown-skinned demon with a dog-like face, protruding fangs, pointed ears, long black bushy hair and wearing a red loin cloth and golden jewelry. (See Religion and politics)

The names of the four yugas of time—Satya, Treta, Dvapara and Kali—are named after “dice throws” from a game of dice popular during the Vedic period. Their order coincides with the favorability of each throw: Satya is the best throw, whereas Kali is considered the worst. [ [http://www.achaloza.com/docs/AchalOza_CyclicalTime.pdf CYCLICAL TIME AND ASTRONOMY IN HINDUISM] (See page. 3) [Glass, Marty. "YUGA: An Anatomy of Our Fate". Sophia Perennis, 2004 (ISBN 0900588292)] During the Mahabharata, a character exorcises the disembodied spirit of Kali to a "vibhitaka" tree, [ "Terminalia belerica" (Combretaceae) is a large deciduous tree growing to a height of 25 – 30 meters, occurring throughout India up to 1000 meters elevation, except in the dry regions of western India ..." [http://www.planetherbs.com/articles/Triphala.htm] ] the nuts of which were used to create the dice for the vedic dice game. [Smith, Frederick M. "The Self Possessed: Deity And Spirit Possession in South Asian Literature And Civilization." Columbia University Press, 2006 (ISBN 0231137486)] Therefore, not only Kali’s name, but his penchant for gambling and reputation as being evil comes from this dice game.


The churning of the ocean of milk

:main|churning of the ocean of milk ("Note: There are many different versions of this tale. The following represents a lesser known Madhva version.")

During the churning of the ocean of milk, a great poison known as halahala was produced, which Lord Vayu, the god of wind, rubbed in his hands to reduce its potency. Then a small portion was given to Lord Shiva, thus knocking him unconscious and turning his throat blue. The rest was collected in a golden vessel and digested by Vayu. (One source states he drank the "Kalakuta" poison of Vasuki naga. [Mutalik, Keshav M. "Jagannath Dasa’s Harikathamrutasara (Quintessence of Hari’s Saga)". Bombay: Focus (ISBN 81-7154-787-7)] Still others more commonly state that Shiva drank alone. [In another version given by Shaivites, Shiva alone drank the deadly poison, but his consort Parvati squeezed his neck to keep it from reaching his stomach. [http://www.advaita-vedanta.org/series/11_names_of_shiva/11_names_of_shiva_bhagawan-1.htm] Still, some traditions state Vayu drank first and Shiva last and that Vayu himself is an aspect of Shiva.] )A little portion of poison that wasn't swallowed by Shiva became the body of Kali. From this poison also came, "cruel objects like snakes, wolves, and tigers."

Later, when the asura Rahu was decapitated by Vishnu's Mohini avatar, the demon’s allies attacked her and all except Kali were killed. Having the power to possess the bodies of immortal and mortal beings, he entered the hearts of man and escaped death. [The same source says Kali can never enter the bodies of Vishnu, his consort Lakshmi, or Vayu.] He occasionally entered Shiva and caused him to write evil scriptures, which created great confusion and misconceptions. Because Kali was “invisible, unimaginable, and present in all” the only way to correct the chaos born from the miswritten texts was to completely renew the sacred scriptures entirely. Thus Vishnu descended to earth as Vedavyasa, the compiler of the sacred scriptures Vedas and the writer of the Puranas. [http://www.geocities.com/prasanna_avaroth/mbtns/MBTN_2.pdf Chapter X Samudra mathana] ]

Markandeya Purana

According to Markandeya Purana, the Brahmin "Pravara" was given a magical ointment that allowed him to fly. But when he flew to the Himalayas, the ointment was washed away keeping him from returning home to his wife. During this time, the Apsara "Varuthini" fell madly in love with him and begged the Brahmin to stay with her forever. But eventually, he rejected her. He prayed to Agni who returned him home safely.

The gandharva Kali was in love with Varuthini and had been rejected by her in the past. He saw how she hungered for the Brahmin, so he took on the appearance of Pravara and came before the courtesan. He led her into the bedchamber and told her to close her eyes during their shared pleasure ["sambhoga"] . (Another version of this tale explains the reason he told her to shut her eyes was because gods revert to their true forms whenever they do the basest of things, such as eating, sleeping, and making love (including dying for demons).) As they made love, Varuthini noticed that his body became flaming hot and believed it was because his Brahmin spirit was infused with the sacrificial fire. After climax, Kali, still-as-Pravara, left the apsara and returned to his abode. Varuthini soon became pregnant and nine months later gave birth to a human child that not only looked like the Brahmin but possessed his soul as well. [Doniger, Wendy. "The Bedtrick: Tales of Sex and Masquerade". University Of Chicago Press, 2000 (ISBN 0226156427)]

In another version, Kali stipulates he will only marry the apsara if she keeps her eyes closed while they are in the forest (presumably making love). However, Kali leaves after their marriage and the birth of their son "Svarocisa". Svarocisa grows up to become a very learned scholar of the Vedas and learns to speak the languages of all creatures from one of his three wives. He later marries a goddess and fathers Svarocisa Manu, one of the progenitors of mankind.Prasad, Ramanuj. "Know The Puranas". Pustak Mahal, 2005 (ISBN 81-223-0912-7)] (See Progeny)


:"See also: The Gandharvas mentioned in Mahabharata"According to the Mahabharata, the gandharva Kali became jealous when he was late to Princess Damayanti's Swayamvara ceremony and discovered she had overlooked the celestials Indra, Agni, Varun, and Yama (and ultimately himself) to choose Nala as her husband. In anger, Kali spoke to his companion Dvapara, the personification of Dwarpa Yuga:

"I am ill able, O Dwapara, to suppress my anger. I shall possess Nala, deprive him of his kingdom, and he shall no more sport with Bhima's daughter. Entering the dice, it behoveth thee to help me." [ [http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/m03/index.htm SECTION LVIII] ]

Kali traveled to Nala’s kingdom of Nishadhas and waited twelve long years for the right moment to strike. Because Nala had rendered himself impure by not washing his feet before his prayers, Kali was able to bewitch his soul. Kali then appeared before Pushkara and invited him to play a game of dice with his brother, guaranteeing Nala’s downfall. Dwarpa took the form of the "Vrisha" die that would be used in the fixed game. Kali forced Nala to lose and, each time, he would raise the stakes higher despite the protest of his advisors and wife. Finally, Nala lost his kingdom to Pushkara. Both he and Damayanti were exiled to the forest.During their exile, Kali drove Nala to abandon Damayanti, who later enacted a curse against everyone that had caused the downfall of her husband. She eventually returned home after a short time as a hand-maiden to the Princess of Chedi. Nala, meanwhile, saved the Naga Karkotaka from fire (where he was cursed to suffer by sage Narada). Intending to exorcize the devil within him, the serpent bit Nala, injecting him with deadly poisons that forever tortured Kali. The venom also changed Nala into an ugly dwarf named Bahuka. He later became the charioteer of the Ayodhya King Rituparna, who was a master mathematician and dice player.

Years later, King Rituparna revealed to Bahuka the supreme skill of controlling the dice in exchange for horsemanship lessons. This skill awakened Nala from Kali’s control and allowed him (with the help of Damayanti’s curse and Karkotaka's venom) to exorcise the demon; vomiting him in the form of poison from his mouth. Nala then forced the trembling Kali’s spirit into a Vibhitaka tree. Nala then counted the fruits of the tree and left in search of his wife and later regained his true form. Kali left the tree and returned to his abode as well.

Kali was later incarnated as King Duryodhana, eldest of the one hundred Kaurava brothers. His companion Dvapara became his uncle Sakuni. The day Duryodhana was born, he unleashed a donkey-like scream which the donkeys outside the home replied to. Despite the advise from Vidura to discard the evil baby, Dhrtarashtra kept the child because demons had received a boon from Shiva that the future king would be invincible. [ [http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/m15/m15031.htm SECTION XXXI] ]

Bhagavata Purana

This purana states “The very day and moment the Personality of Godhead, Lord Sri Krishna, left this earth, the personality of Kali, who promotes all kinds of irreligious activities, came into this world.” [http://www.vedabase.net/sb/1/18/en1 Canto 1: Creation, Chapter 18] ] Thus, Kali simply came into being because the prosperity brought by Krishna left after his death.

After setting off to wage war against the evils of the world with his armies, Emperor Parikshit, the grandson of Arjuna, came across a Sudra dressed as a king who was beating a cow and an ox with a club. Parikshit immediately lead his chariot over to the scene and angrily berated the sudra for abusing the sacred cow and her mate. However, this was no ordinary sudra and these were no ordinary bovine, for the sudra was Kali and the cow and ox were embodiments of the earth goddess and Dharma. The Emperor noticed the ox was standing on one of his legs because the other three had been broken by Kali. Dharma explained his four legs represented "austerity, cleanliness, mercy and truthfulness", but he had only the leg of “truth” to stand on since the other three had been broken by kali over the preceding yugas. [http://www.vedabase.net/sb/1/17/en1 Canto 1: Creation, Chapter 17] ] Kali was intent on breaking all the legs that supported the reign of dharma so he could effect the expansion of his own dark reign on earth. The earth goddess cried for she had once been plentiful, but when Krishna died and ascended to heaven, she was forsaken and all of the prosperity left from the world. She feared evil kings like Kali would continue to lay waste to the earth.

When Parikshit raised his sword to kill Kali, the sudra stripped himself of his royal garments and prostrated himself at the emperor’s feet. The emperor knew Kali tainted the world with his evil and so had no place in it and raised his sword once more. But Kali interceded again and begged the emperor to spare his life and allow him a place to live within his empire. Parikshit decided that Kali would live in “gambling houses, in taverns, in women of unchaste lives, in slaughtering places and in gold”.Sastri, Natesa S. M. Hindu Feasts: Fasts And Ceremonies: Fasts and Ceremonies. Laurier Books Ltd., 2003 (ISBN 8120604024)] And as long as Parikshit ruled India, Kali stayed within the confines of these five places. This act allowed Dharma to regain his legs and the earth to be relieved of much burden. However, Parikshit was later cursed to die by snake bite after hunting in the forest and throwing a dead snake on an unresponsive sage practicing austerities. Upon the emperor’s death, “Kali made his way to other places like wild fire and established his power throughout the length and breadth of the whole world.” [ [http://www.vedabase.net/sb/1/en1 See chapters 16, 17, and 18] ]

In another version of the tale, Kali enters into the Emperor’s crown when Parikshit gives him permission to reside wherever there is gold. Upon returning home after offending the sage, Parikshit says to himself, "Kali-yug’s abode is in gold; this was on my head; hence I had so evil a thought that, having taken a dead snake [I] cast it on the Rishi’s neck. Therefore, I now understand that Kali-yug has taken his revenge on me. How shall I escape this grievous sin?" [ [http://books.google.com/books/pdf/The_Prema_s__gara.pdf?vid=OCLC22083046&id=Nd26P9p1rNkC&output=pdf&sig=1f05oX_MDQcqbVHpaoi-bGeztck The Prema-Sagara: Or the Ocean of Love] (PDF ONLY)] [Bahadur, S.P. "Gitavali: Complete Works of Goswami Tulsidas (Volume III)". India: Prachya Prakashan, 1979 (ISBN 8121506697)]

Kalki Purana

The beginning of the Kalki Purana describes Kali’s lineage starting with Lord Brahma, his great-great grandfather, and ending with the birth of his children’s children. Instead of being born of poison from the churning of the ocean of milk, he is the product of a long line of incestuous monsters born from Brahma's back. (See Family Lineage below) Kali and his family were created by Brahma to hurry the dissolution of the cosmos after the pralaya period was over. When his family takes human form on earth, they further taint the hearts and minds of mankind to bring about the end of Dvapara Yuga and the beginning of Kali Yuga. During the first stage of Kali-Yuga, the Indian caste system breaks down and god-worship is forsaken by man. All through the second, third, and fourth stages, man forgets the name of god and no longer offers Yagya (offerings) to the Devas. It is at this point when Lord Vishnu reincarnates as Kalki in the name of the Devas and all of mankind to rid the cosmos of Kali's dark influence.

The remainder of the tale describes Kalki's childhood, military training under the immortal Parashurama, his marriage, his preparation for war against Kali, and the decisive war between the two. Kalki kicks off his campaign by performing the Ashvamedha sacrifice and leading his armies behind the horse as it runs freely from kingdom to kingdom. If any evil king tries to stop the horse, Kalki engages them in combat. After defeating them, he continues to follow the horse until all evil kingdoms are vanquished. When Kali finally faces Kalki's forces, his entire family blood line is wiped out by the avatar's generals and he presumably dies from wounds inflicted by Dharma and Satya Yuga personified. Kalki, meanwhile, battles and simultaneously kills the demon's most powerful generals, Koka and Vikoka, twin devils adept in the black arts.


Kali dies one-third of the way through the Kalki Purana. During the decisive battle between Kali and Kalki’s armies, Kali tried to face both Dharma and Satya Yuga personified, but was overwhelmed and fled on his donkey because his chariot had been destroyed, leaving his owl-crested war flag to be trampled on the battlefield. Kali retreated to the citadel of his capital city of "Vishasha" where he discovered his body had been mortally stabbed and burned during his battle with the two devas. The stench of his blood billowed out and filled the atmosphere with a foul odor. When Dharma and Satya burst into the city, Kali tried to run away, but, knowing his family had been destroyed, coupled with his grevious wounds, he "entered his unmanifested years". This might lead some to believe he died, but one version of the Kalki Purana in the book "The Origins of Evil in Hindu Mythology" states Kali does not die but, instead, escapes through time and space to live in the Kali Yuga of the next Kalpa. The author comments, "Unlike most battles between gods and demons, however, this apparent victory is immediately undercut, for Kali escapes to reappear in 'another age'—in our age, or the next Kali Age." [O'Flaherty, Wendy Doniger. "The Origins of Evil in Hindu Mythology". University of California Press, 1980 (ISBN 0520040988)] Since he had the power to manifest himself in human form on earth, he was able to forsake his dying corporal form to escape in spirit.

Family lineage


Kali is the great-great grandson of Lord Brahma. He is the son of "Krodha" (Anger) and his sister-turned-wife "Himsa" (Violence). He is the grandson of "Dambha" (Vanity) and his sister-turned-wife, Maya (Illusion). He is the great-grandson of Adharma (Impropriety) and his wife, "Mithya" (Falsehood). Adharma was originally created from Lord Brahma's back as a "Maleen Pataka" (a very dark and deadly sinful object).

"B.K. Chaturvedi", a modern translator of the Kalki Purana, states in a foot note that the growth of this dark sinful object into Adharma seems to, "convey the growth of Kaliyuga and its obnoxious offshoots."Chaturvedi, B.K. "Kalki Purana". New Delhi: Diamond Pocket Books, 2004 (ISBN 81-288-0588-6)]

Vishnu Purana

Kali's family lineage is told differently in the Vishnu Purana, which is a father purana to the Kalki Purana:

The wife of "Adharma" (vice) was "Himsá" (violence), on whom he begot a son "Anrita" (falsehood), and a daughter "Nikriti" (immorality): they intermarried, and had two sons, "Bhaya" (fear) and "Naraka" (hell); and twins to them, two daughters, "Maya" (deceit) and Vedaná (torture), who became their wives. The son of Bhaya and Máyá was the destroyer of living creatures, or "Mrityu" (death); and "Dukha" (pain) was the offspring of Naraka and Vedaná. The children of Mrityu were "Vyádhi" (disease), "Jará" (decay), "Soka" (sorrow), "Trishńa" (greediness), and "Krodha" (wrath). These are all called the inflictors of misery, and are characterised as the progeny of Vice (Adharma). They are all without wives, without posterity, without the faculty to procreate; they are the terrific forms of Vishńu, and perpetually operate as causes of the destruction of this world. On the contrary, Daksha and the other Rishis, the elders of mankind, tend perpetually to influence its renovation: whilst the Manus and their sons, the heroes endowed with mighty power, and treading in the path of truth, as constantly contribute to its preservation.

In this version, Himsa is Adharma's wife instead of his granddaughter.

Bhagavata Purana

According to the Bhagavata Purana, Adharma is the husband of "Mrishá" (falsehood), and the father of "Dambha" (hypocrisy) and Máyá (deceit), who were adopted by "Nirritti" (Hindu god/dess of misery). The series of their descendants is also somewhat varied from our text; being in each descent, however, twins which intermarry, or Lobha (covetousness) and Nikriti, who produce Krodha (wrath) and Hinsá: their children are, Kali (wickedness) and Durukti (evil speech): their progeny are, Mrityu and Bhí (fear); whose offspring are, Niraya (hell) and Yátaná (torment).See [http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/vp/vp041.htm#fn_212 55:14] ]

In this version, Mrisha is the wife of Adharma and not Himsa or Mithya.

Linga Purana

The Linga Purana enumerates Adharma among the Prajapatis (Lords of Creatures).

Dharma Personified

Since Dharma is one of the major antagonists of Kali, it is important to note this personified deity has his own line of offspring that work against the demon and his family to bring balance to the world. The following comes from the Vishnu Purana:

The progeny of Dharma by the daughters of Daksha were as follows: by "Sraddha" he had "Kama" (desire); by "Lakshmi", "Darpa" (pride); by "Dhriti", "Niyama" (precept); by "Tushti", "Santosha" (content); by "Pushti", "Lobha" (cupidity); by "Medhá", "Sruta" (sacred tradition); by "Kriya", "Danda", "Naya", and "Vinaya" (correction, polity, and prudence); by "Buddhi", "Bodha" (understanding); by "Lajj", "Vinaya" (good behaviour); by "Vapu", "Vyavasaya" (perseverance). "Santi" gave birth to "Kshema" (prosperity); "Siddhi" to "Sukha" (enjoyment); and "Kírtti" to "Yasas". These were the sons of Dharma; one of whom, "Kama", had "Hersha" (joy) by his wife "Nandi" (delight).

Again, the Bhagavata Purana gives a different account of his children's names. [See [http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/vp/vp041.htm#fn_211 55:13] ]


Kali’s sister-turned-wife, "Durukti" (Calumny), gave him two offspring: a son named "Bhayanak" (Fear) and a daughter named "Mrityu" (Death). His son and daughter gave him two grandchildren: a boy named "Naraka" (Hell) and a girl named "Yatana" (Torture). Again, there are some discrepancies here. The Vishnu Purana says Mrityu and Bhayanak are his brother and sister. Mrityu is even represented as male instead of female.

Kali is the grandfather of Svarocisa Manu, one of the progenitors of mankind. As previously mentioned, Kali had a son named Svarocisa with the Apsara Varuthini. Svarocisa once traveld to Mt. Mandara and was met by "Manorama", a cursed-woman being chased by a demon. In the past, she had made fun of a sage practicing Tapasya austerities on Mt. Kailas and was cursed to be captured by a demon. When her friends "Vibhavari" and "Kalavati" berated the sage for enacting a curse for such a minor offence, he cursed one to be a leper and the other a carrier of diseases. Manorama had knowledge of a powerful spiritual weapon, but did not know how to wield it, so she taught it to Svarocisa. When the demon leaped out of the forest and grabbed a hold of the woman, Svarocis called forth the weapon. But the demon stayed his hand and explained he was actually Manorama’s father, "Indivara". He had also been cursed to become a demon by the sage "Brahmamitra" because he tried to covertly obtain the secrets of Ayurveda medicine without the sage’s knowledge. The sage told him that the curse would end when he was about to eat his own daughter. Once he regained his true form, Indivara taught Svarocisa the Ayurveda medication, which he used to cure Manorama’s friends. He later married the three and had three sons with them. He learned the languages of all creatures from Vibhavari and the "Padmini vidya" from Kalavati.

Despite his prosperity, Svarocis was unhappy in his life and could hear the ducks and deer talking about him behind his back. One day he went hunting and took aim at a boar, but a deer came through the clearing and asked to be shot in its place. When he enquired why, the deer told him that she was really the goddess of the forest and wished to marry Svarocisa. So he embraced the deer and she turned into a beautiful woman. Together, they had a son named "Dyutiman", who later became the Svarocisa Manu.

One source states, "Kali's wife Alakshmi and her sons who supervise evil also came from Kshirasagara [the ocean of milk] ." Alakshmi is the elder sister of the goddess Lakshmi, the consort of Vishnu. Since the Kalki Purana states his wife "Durukti" is his sister, Alakshmi would be a second wife because she is not directly related to him.

There are a number of connections and similarities between Kali and Alakshmi. First and foremost, Alakshmi’s sister is the consort of Lord Vishnu, who sent his Kalki avatar to earth to defeat Kali.Pattanaik, Devdutt. "Lakshmi: The Goddess of Wealth and Fortune-An Introduction". Vakils Feffer & Simons Ltd, 2003 (ISBN 8187111585)] Second, legends say she was born either from the churning of the ocean of milk, the poison from Vasuki (who helped churn the ocean) or the back of Prajapati. [Krishna, Nanditha. "The Book of Vishnu". Penguin Global, 2001 (ISBN 0670049077)] As previously mentioned, Kali is said to have been born from the halahala poison created from churning the ocean or from a lineage created from Lord Brahma’s back. Third, Alakshmi takes the form of an owl. Kali's emblem on his war flag is of an owl. Fourth, whenever Alakshmi enters a house, families fight and turn on one another. [Chakrabarty, Dipesh. "Provincializing Europe". Princeton University Press, 2000 (ISBN 0691049092)] The presence of Kali and his family on earth causes mankind to fight and turn on one another. Finally, Alakshmi is said to ride a donkey. Kali also rides a donkey in the Kalki Purana.


Religion and politics

Kali’s image was used in several pamphlets circulated by various "Agorakshanasabh" (“cow protection leagues”) and “wandering ascetics” as a protest against the practice of beef-eating during the British raj.Pinney, Christopher. "Photos of the Gods: The Printed Image and Political Struggle in India". Reaktion Books, 2004 (ISBN 1861891849)] Gupta, Charu. "Sexuality, Obscenity, And Community: Women, Muslims, and the Hindu Public in Colonial India." Palgrave Macmillan, 2006 (ISBN 0312295855)] These pamphlets were produced in a time when Hindu-Muslim riots over cow slaughter occurred in several areas of India; including Azamgarh district (1893), when a total of 100 people died in similar conflagrations throughout the empire; Ayodhya (1912-1913); and Shahabad (1917). [http://www.indowindow.net/sad/article.php?child=17&article=11 Paradox of the Indian Cow: Attitudes to Beef Eating in Early India] ] One such pamphlet entitled “The Present State” showed a cow being slaughtered by a trio of "Muhammadan" butchers. Another portrayed Kali raising a sword above the head of a sacred cow, whose body was illustrated to be a microcosmic paradise in which all the Hindu gods resided. There were many different editions of this version. For instance, one showed a woman labeled "The Hindu" waiting with bowl-in-hand for the cow's calf to finish suckling before she could get milk. A form of Krishna labeled "Darmaraj" ("Ruler of Dharma") stood "behind" the cow and Kali was, again, harassing her with his sword. Still, a different one deleted the woman and calf and instead portrayed Dharmaraj "in front" of the cow pleading "mat maro gay sarv ka jivan hai" ("don’t kill the cow, everyone is dependent on it"), while Kali rebuts "he manusyaho! Kaliyugi Mansahari jivom ko dekho" ("mankind, look at the meat-eating souls of the kaligyug").

Some Hindus considered Kali’s presence in the picture to be a representation of the Muslim community. When one of the versions of these pamphlets came into the possession of a state official in 1893, he commented that the image “contained a representation of a Musalman [Muslim] advancing to slay the cow ...”. One book states, “The Magistrate [at Deoria] found Muhammadans excited because they heard a picture was in circulation representing a Muhammadan with a sword drawn sacrificing a cow, and this they considered an insult.” In 1915, a color version of this picture ran by the "Ravi Varma Press" [A lithograph press founded by Indian artist Ravi Varma in 1894. [http://www.india-today.com/itoday/millennium/100people/ravivarma.html] ] caught the attention of the colonial censors and was presumably censored in some way.


"Nala Damayanti" (1921): This big-budget film depicts a famous episode from the Mahabharata, starting with Narada's ascent of Mount Meru. It shows Swarga, the Heaven of Indra, the Transformation in the Clouds of the Four Gods into impersonations of King Nala, Swan Messengers of Love, the Transformation of Kali into a Serpent, the Meeting of Kali and Dwarpa and the Four Gods amidst the Blue Air. [ [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0154931/plotsummary Plot Summary for Nala Damayanti (1921)] ]


External links

* [http://www.bapcast.org/audio/2006/bapcast_047_20060323.mp3 Places of Kali] – Podcast of Kali’s tale from the Bhagavata Purana.
* [http://www.swargarohan.org/Bhagavata/Chapter01/09.htm કલિયુગનાં ચાર આશ્રયસ્થાન (Kaliyuga's mainstay)] – The tale of Kali and Parikshit in Gujarati.
* [http://www.srimadbhagavatam.org/canto1/c1-contents.html Srimad Bhagavatam: Cant 1] – See chapters 16 and 17.
* [http://www.krsna-art.com/paints/viewImage.asp?

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  • Kali Yuga — (Devanāgarī: sa. कलियुग, lit. Age of Kali , age of vice ), is one of the four stages of development that the world goes through as part of the cycle of Yugas, as described in Indian scriptures, the others being Satya Yuga, Treta Yuga and Dvapara… …   Wikipedia

  • Kali (disambiguation) — Kali may refer to:Hinduism* The Goddess Kālī *Kali (Demon), Lord of Kali Yuga and nemesis of Kalki (the 10th Vishnu incarnation) *Kali Yuga, the age of Kali in Hinduism *Kali is a genre of Punjabi singingGypsy lore*Sara e Kali, Sarah the Black ,… …   Wikipedia

  • Kālī — Hdeity infobox| Caption = The Goddess Kali, (1770) by Richard B. Godfrey (1728 N/A); from LACMA Name = Kali Devanagari = काली Sanskrit Transliteration = Kālī Pali Transliteration = Tamil script = Affiliation = Devi , Mahavidya , Matrika God of =… …   Wikipedia

  • Kali Youga — Le cycle des yuga. Le Kali Youga (en écriture devanāgarī : कलियुग, « âge de Kali », « âge du vice »[réf. souhaitée]), est le quatrième et actuel âge de la cosmogonie hindoue, les trois autres étant le Krita Yuga, le… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Kâlî Yuga — Kali Youga Le cycle des yuga. Le Kali Youga (en écriture devanāgarī : कलियुग, « âge de Kali », « âge du vice »[réf. souhaitée]), est le quatrième et actuel âge de la cosmogonie hindoue, les trois autres étant le… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Demon, Togo — Demon …   Wikipedia

  • Kali — For other uses, see Kali (disambiguation). Kalika redirects here. For other uses, see Kalika (disambiguation). The black one redirects here. For the 2005 drone metal album, see Black One. For the male choral group, see The Black Ones. Kali The… …   Wikipedia

  • Kali — /kah lee/, n. Hinduism. the wife of Shiva and the malevolent form of the Mother Goddess. Cf. Parvati. * * * Destructive and devouring Hindu goddess. She is a terrifying aspect of Devi, who in other forms appears as peaceful and benevolent. Kali… …   Universalium

  • Kâlî — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Kali. Kâlî Conjoint Shiva Autres noms …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Kali Rocha — Infobox actor name = Kali Rocha imagesize = 200px caption = Kali Rocha in Detroit birthname = Kali Michele Rocha birthdate = birth date and age|1971|12|5 location = flagicon|USA Memphis, Tennessee, U.S. deathdate = deathplace = othername =… …   Wikipedia

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