Kali Yuga - The Dark Age•
Posted on October 28 2021
The Kali Yuga is the 4th and last in the yuga cycle, preceded by the Dwapara yuga. According to the Puranas, Lord Krishna’s departure from earth to Vaikuntha marks the end of the Dwapara Yuga and the beginning of Kali Yuga. Kali Yuga is said to have begun on 18.02.3102 BC. It started in the reign of King Parikshit and it is believed shall end after a period of great upheaval with the birth of Lord Vishnu’s avatar of Kalki. The duration of this yuga is 1200 divine years or 432000 earth years.
The Kali Yuga is regarded as the worst of the four yugas, with the best being Satyug, which is supposed to commence again after the end of Kali Yuga. The Dharma Bull symbolizes morality has only one leg during Kali Yuga, reflecting the decline in righteousness and moral values during this yuga. It is often referred to as one-quarter virtue and three-quarters sin.
The name Kali Yuga comes from the word Kali (not the Goddess) who was a demon, the colour of soot, with a long tongue. He was a vindictive gandharva. The word also means strife, discord, quarrels, and is an apt representation of the age of darkness.
The typical features of Kali Yuga are the diminishing of truth, cleanliness, and tolerance, and the rise of avarice, animosities, murder, mayhem, partaking of intoxicating drugs and drinks, and decay of dharma. Gurus and preceptors are not respected and people having values and ideals suffer hardships while the wicked shall flourish. The Rulers will be unreasonable and levy heavy taxes on the people. There will be strange diseases afflicting the people. Climate changes will take place and overall, there will be a decline in morals and spirituality.
The Srimad Bhagavatam has outlined certain characteristics of Kali Yuga which are summarised as below:
- In Kali Yuga wealth alone will be considered a sign of a man’s good birth, proper birth, and fine qualities.
- Law and justice will be applied only on the basis of one’s power.
- Man will be known as a Brahmin only by wearing the sacred thread. His behaviour will not conform to that of a Brahmin.
- People will suffer from the vagaries of Nature in the form of excessive heat, cold, rain, and winds.
- They will suffer from hunger, thirst, and severe anxieties.
- Men will no longer protect their parents.
- Servants will abandon a master who has lost his wealth, even if that Master is a saintly person of exemplary character. Masters will abandon an incapacitated servant even if that servant has been in the family for generations.
- Those who know nothing about religion will pretend to be very spiritual and give discourses on the subject.
- Illegal constructions will be rampant.
It is believed that Lord Vishnu shall take his 10th avatar Kalki in the Kali Yuga. The purpose of this avatar will be to get rid of all thieves and sinners from the earth and reset the time cycle back to Satya Yuga. He is depicted as a warrior riding a white horse and carrying a sword. This is the only avatar of Lord Vishnu which is yet to be born.
Written by Aarti Natarajan Sharma