Lord Krishna

Shri Krishna and Hercules – indian and greek mythology

A comparison of Shri Krishna and Hercules – Gods from indian and greek mythology

Greek mythology and Indian mythology have some similarities. Earlier we saw that Shri Krishna, the incarnation of Lord Vishnu(god) had one weakness, that was in his heel. That was also the case with Achilles, one of the greatest warriors from Greek mythology.

If we follow the events of Hercules life, we come across similarity between him and Shri Krishna.

Birth of Hercules

When Hercules was born, he was not liked by his step-mother goddess Hera, wife of zeus. Hercules was born to Alcmene, who was deceived by Zeus in having believing him as her husband, Amphitryon. We again see a similarity between Greek and Indian mythology as Indra, the king of gods deceived Ahalya in the same way. Later, he was cursed by her husband, sage Gautam.

Hera - wife of Zeus
Hera – wife of Zeus

Hera wanted Hercules to be dead and she sent two serpents to kill him as he lay in his cot. Heracles throttled a single snake in each hand and was found by his nurse playing with their limp bodies as if they were a child’s toys.

Baby Hercules and Snakes
Baby Hercules and Snakes

Interesting birth stories in Indian mythology


Shri Krishna and Putna

Above incident is quite similar to the infancy of Krishna when his uncle Kansa sent a number of demons to kill him. The famous incident was with Putna, who came to feed young Krishna, but lost her life.

Krishna and Putna
Krishna and Putna

There is also another story of Hera feeding Hercules. Zeus had tricked Hera into nursing the infant Heracles: discovering who he was, she pulled him from her breast, and a spurt of her milk formed the smear across the sky that can be seen to
this day. This led to the origin of the Milky Way.

Milky way and Hercules
Milky way and Hercules

If we look at the above two images, we would realize that how similar Greek and Indian mythologies are. Krishna being a common factor.

(Read : Shri Krishna and Achilles)

Hercules went on to become the great warrior and is known for his many adventures, which took him to the far reaches of the Greco-Roman world. One cycle of these adventures became canonical as the “Twelve Labours. Shri Krishna’s whole life has been filled with adventures, with the greatest of them is the winning the Mahabharata for Pandavas.

Hercules’s twelve labours are listed as below:

Slay the Nemean Lion.
Slay the nine-headed Lernaean Hydra.
Capture the Golden Hind of Artemis.
Capture the Erymanthian Boar.
Clean the Augean stables in a single day.
Slay the Stymphalian Birds.
Capture the Cretan Bull.
Steal the Mares of Diomedes.
Obtain the girdle of Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons.
Obtain the cattle of the monster Geryon.
Steal the apples of the Hesperides.
Capture and bring back Cerberus.

Shri Krishna’s exploits can be found here.

3 thoughts on “Shri Krishna and Hercules – indian and greek mythology”

  1. Lord Krishna recognized by scholars long time ago.

    From time to time we see attempts to find historical evidence for our spiritual knowledge. Eager to remove our doubts we are sometimes contributing with new finds. It is, however, necessary to keep in mind to avoid offensive unethical or anti-ethical behavior in the name of being known as so-called rationalists or scientists as well as using hypercritical language applied to Lord Krishna and the Vedic history.

    For example, very common in Indology books, even from Hindu authors, are words like “mythology”. It is derived from the Greek root mitos, untruth, seen also in the Spanish word men-ti-ra, falsity, and ultimately coming from the Sanskrit mithya. Another example of misunderstanding is when some traditional believers say, “In this work I will be proving that Lord Krishna was an historical personality”, etc. because Lord had been long recognized as an historical personage:

    Dr. Bimanbihari Majumdar, 1968: “The western scholars at first treated Krishna as a myth… But many of the Orientalists in the present century have arrived at the conclusion that Krishna was a ksatriya warrior who fought at Kuruksetra,…” (1).

    Dr. R. C. Majumdar, 1958: “There is now a general consensus of opinion in favour of the historicity of Krishna. Many also hold the view that Vâsudeva the Yadava hero, the cowherd boy Krishna in Gokula… were one and the same person.” (2).

    Horace H. Wilson, 1870: “Rama and Krishna, who appear to have been originally real and historical characters,…” (3).

    Dr. Thomas J. Hopkins, 1978: “From a strictly scholarly, historical standpoint, the KRISNA WHO APPEARS in the Bhagavad-Gita is the princely Krishna of the Mahabharata… Krishna, the historical prince and charioteer of Arjuna.” (4).

    The New British Encyclopaedia: “Vasudeva-Krisna, a Vrisni prince who was presumably also a religious leader levitated to the godhead by the 5th century B C.” (5).

    Rudolf Otto, 1933: “That Krishna himself was a historical figure is indeed quite indubitable.” (6).

    1. Majundar, Bimanbihari. Krishna in the History and Legend. University of Calcutta. 1969, pp. 5
    2. Majumdar, R. C. The History and Culture of the Indian people, vol. I, pp. 303
    3. Wilson, Horace H. The Visnu Purana. Nag Publishers. 1989, pp. ii
    4. Hopkins, Thomas J. et al. Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna. Five Distinguished Scholars on the Krishna movement in the West. Groves Press, N.Y. l983, pp. 144.
    5. The New Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1984, vol. 7 Micropedia, pp.7.
    6. Otto, Rudolf. The Original Gita, cit. for Majumdar Bimanbihari, ot. cit. pp. 5

  2. Jai Shri Krishnh
    You have mentioned very correctly. I respect your love to ALMIGTHY KRISHNH.
    Our Beloved Krishnh is ONLY the ALMIGHTY (God Head) who controls all.
    There is no comparison with Krishnh nobody can reach on that level as work depends on base, it is not the base that required work. So, the Krishnh is base of all the universes. All in the universes requires Krishnh every time because without him nothing will be left.
    I have in person experience of what I have mentioned above and will be very hard to believe by others who does not know the affect of Krishnh Consciousness.
    The story started after I read a book by great Yogi where he mentioned his master as Krishnh’s incarnation in the book and his master has keep quite on that. Then I wrote on a website to addressing master himself directly that your silence on the statement of a great Yogi proved it correct but practically it cannot be true because nobody can be an incarnation of beloved Krishnh as he himself appears wherever he is needed. Surprisingly another great Yogi the disciple of the same master mentioned in his book that his master specifically directed him to mention in his book that a great Yogi mistakenly mentioned the master as Krishnh incarnation and actually it is not.
    If you want to know the name of books written by both the great Yogis mentioning the statement which I wrote above I may send to you on direct message.
    With Respect

  3. With all respect. But had been a very funny tentative to comparations. But there are aviable historical evidence that, according to scholars, Hercules lived around to 8 BC. And Sri Vásudeva Krishna is more more early. Check please the follow paper:
    May be, the greeks borrow for his legends from India hagiographical works of Krishna…
    With my best wishes
    Horacio F. Arganis Ph D.

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