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Balarama and Krishna with the gopis, gopas, and cows

The Supreme Person appears in innumerable forms to enjoy transcendental relationships. Some of His expansions are tiny, dependent beings, like us, and some are complete and omnipotent beings like Himself.

Balarama, or Baladeva, is Krishna's primary all-powerful expansion.

When Krishna desires to appear in this world as an avatar, Balarama arranges for that appearance by expanding Himself into more forms of God. During Krishna's pastimes on earth, Balarama was present as His elder brother. The Srimad-Bhagavatam describes Their superhuman activities in the village of Vrindavan and the city of Dwaraka.

(Pictured are Balarama and Krishna with Their friends and cows in Vrindavan.)

QT Balarama

We like to quote our sources. This page is based on the following:

  • Chaitanya Charitamrita, Madhya-lila 20.173, Purport:

    "In the Vedas it is stated that the one becomes many (eko bahu syam). The Supreme Personality of Godhead expands Himself in various forms — vishnu-tattva, jiva-tattva and shakti-tattva."

  • Bhagavad-gita, 10.37:

    "Krishna is the original Supreme Personality of Godhead, and Baladeva is Krishna's immediate expansion. . . He is the original source of all incarnations. . . The immediate expansions of the Lord are called svamsha (personal expansions), and there are also expansions called vibhinnamsha (separated expansions)."

  • Srimad-Bhagavatam, 1.3.23:

    "In the nineteenth and twentieth incarnations, the Lord advented Himself as Lord Balarama and Lord Krishna in the family of Vrsni [the Yadu dynasty], and by so doing He removed the burden of the world."

  • Srimad-Bhagavatam, 1.3.23, Purport:

    "The specific mention of the word bhagavan in this text indicates that Balarama and Krishna are original forms of the Lord. . . Lord Krishna is not an incarnation of the purusa, as we learned from the beginning of this chapter. He is directly the original Personality of Godhead, and Balarama is the first plenary manifestation of the Lord."

  • Srimad-Bhagavatam, 1.11.16-17, Purport:

    - this purport gives biographical highlights for various important personalities, Balarama among them.

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