The Color of Krishna and Allah
Quoted from vedic scriptures and Al-Quran
Srila Prabhupada: "Vedas means the books of transcendental knowledge. Not only the Bhagavad Gita, even the Bible or the Quran, they are also."? (lecture 29-7-68)
God is understood by different religions differently, due to the different time, place and circumstances in which God reveals His divine message. He does so due to the differing of consciousness, capacity and spiritual realisation of the audience to receive His message.
Prophet Mohammed was revealed by Allah three kinds of knowledge - one which he was allowed to share with his followers, the second type he had the discretion to share or withhold, and the third category of revelation he was strictly forbidden from sharing. (Nadar Beg K. Mirza, 'Reincarnation and Islam', and Geo Widengren, 'Muhammad the Apostle of God and his ascension', page 108).
Hence Muhammad never revealed to his followers the knowledge of the most attractive Lord Krishna.
Krishna possesses beautiful dark color
Krsna (कृष्ण) or Krishna means 'All attractive'. A person is attractive if He possesses unlimited beauty, knowledge, strength, fame, riches or renunciation. Generally, an ordinary person of this world may possess any one of these six opulence’s, and even that is limited and subject to destruction by the force of time. Krishna alone possesses not only all the six opulence’s but He has unlimited abundance. Thus Krishna, who is known to Muslims as Allah, or to the Christians as the Almighty father Christ, or as Jehovah or Yahweh to many, is the most complete and attractive understanding of God.
God is not only a beautiful person but He also possesses a wonderful form. Srimad Bhagavatam reveals God has an eternalspiritual body that is full of knowledge and bliss (satcitananda). Gods body is different from what we possess in this material world- namely a material body composed of stool, urine, puss, mucus and bile. But God Krishna has a spiritual form, which is of a beautiful blackish complexion like a monsoon cloud.
The Sanskrit word KRISHNA has the literal meaning of 'black', 'dark' or 'dark-blue', and is used as a name to describe someone with dark skin.
Krishna is often depicted in murtis as black, and is generally shown in
paintings with blue skin.
The lotus-eyed, dark
skinned Krishna is the
complete and perfect understanding of god. Krishna is also called "Śyāma", the blackish one, or the beautiful dark boy with a blakish color.
When Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa was personally present in the mortal world in His eternal, blissful form of Śyāmasundara, those who were not pure devotees of the Lord could not recognize Him or know His glories. Avajānānti māṁ mūḍhā mānuṣīṁ tanum āśritam (Bg. 9.11): He is always bewildering to the nondevotees, but He is always seen by the devotees by dint of their pure devotional service to Him.
Srila Prabhupāda: Kṛṣṇa is called Śyāmasundara. Śyāma means blackish, but He's very beautiful, sundaram means very, very beautiful. Śyāmasundaram acintya-guṇa-svarūpaṁ. Acintya means inconceivable. His qualities, His transcendental qualities, are inconceivable. When in the Vedic literature it is said that God is quality-less, nirguṇa, nirguṇa means He is transcendental to these material qualities. But His transcendental qualities are there. So He is called that acintya-guṇa-svarūpaṁ govindam. We just offer our prayers, three verses only from this Brahma-saṁhitā, before our this recitation of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. That Govinda is the original Personality of Godhead, and Śyāmasundara, with a flute in His hands, and He is always smiling. And by His smiling He offers you blessings. You also, by seeing His smiling, you remain everlastingly smiling. It is so nice.
Allah possesses beautiful dark color
This is also hinted in the Quran - the sura "Al-Baqarah" or "The Cow" of the Holy Qur'an, there is a specific verse which hints at this: Sibgatallah wa man 'ah - sanu minallahi sibgah: " (We take our colour from Allah and who is better than Allah at colouring?" (2.138) The word sibgat is significant in this verse. The root meaning of this word is colour.
In this verse it is explained that none can surpass Allah in lending colour to this universe. There is no colour that Allah doesn't have, and none that He is not adorned by. Had He not been so adorned, then He will be less than His creation. The very thought of such offensive minimization of Allah is wholly unacceptable by anyone who professes to be a true Muslim. This is because no Muslim will dare contradict the Qur'anic statement: 'Allahu Akbar'(Allah is Great). Since Allah is the greatest, how can the Great Allah be colourless, or a mere abstraction? The answer ist hat Allah is colourfully beautiful. Allah is the most beautiful Person.
Allah has an IMAGE:
Prophet Muhammad said: "My Lord came to me in the most beautiful image"
Al-Tirmidhi (3234) narrated from Ibn ‘Abbaas that the
Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “My Lord came
to me in the most beautiful image and said, ‘O Muhammad.’ I said,
‘Here I am at Your service, my Lord.’ He said, ‘What are the chiefs
(angels) on high disputing about…’” Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in
Prophet Muhammad said to his asabas [associates]: "We take our colour from Allah."
This means that the colour of the Arabs analogously resembled Allah's colour. From the representation of Allah's complexion by the Arabs, we can safely conclude that Allah is of a beautiful dark complexion.
Of course, this colour of God is not material but spiritual. When Prophet Muhammad met Allah (Vishnu or Krishna), he saw dazzling effulgence emanating from God. Therefore, Allah has a dazzling dark colour-contradictory to mundane senses but transcendentally beautiful.
According to recognized Vedic scriptures, Allah or Krishna has a spiritual, dazzling, dark colour, beyond the perception of the material senses and the imagination of the mundane mind.
Sibgatallah wa man 'ah - sanu minallahi sibgah: "Allah possesses beautiful dark
color", "We take our Color from Allah. Who is better than Allah at coloring?"
Actually Allah being the source of everything it is no wonder that some color
of this material world should resemble His, although His color is not material.
the above verse if Arabs analogously resembles the color of God then we can safely
conclude that color of God is a beautiful dark complexion. But God has been described
as full of dazzling effulgence and no dark color in this world is dazzling. This
seems contradictory. Actually there is no contradiction if we realize that this
dark color of Allah is spiritual but not material. Being a spiritual color it
is transcendental to perception and mind and can afford to throw out flashing
effulgence. Similarly Krishna is famous as Syamsundara or one whose complexion
is darkish but at the same time is full of most dazzling splendor. See this verse from Brahma Samhita:
"I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, whose transcendental form is full of bliss, truth, substantiality and is thus full of the most dazzling splendor. Each of the limbs of that transcendental figure possesses in Himself, the full-fledged functions of all the organs, and eternally sees, maintains and manifests the infinite universes, both spiritual and mundane." (Brahma Samhita 5.32)
Al-Quran discribes the light (Brahmajyoti) of Allah as follows:
“Allah is the Light of the heavens and the earth. The Parable of His Light
is as if there were a Niche and within it a Lamp: the Lamp enclosed in Glass:
the glass as it were a brilliant star: Lit from a blessed Tree, an Olive, neither
of the east nor of the west, whose oil is well-nigh luminous, though fire scarce
touched it: Light upon Light! Allah doth guide whom He will to His Light: Allah
doth set forth Parables for men: and Allah doth know all things. ” (24.35)
Allah is not only discribed as light, but also as the "posessor of light"
The First part says: Allaahu Nuurus…. Allah is light
Then it continues: Masalu Nuurihii…… Nuurihii means “His light”. So Allah is not only light but also possesses light.
God is not only a beautiful person but He also possesses a wonderful form. Srimad Bhagavatam reveals God has an eternal spiritual body that is full of knowledge and bliss (satcitananda). Gods body is
different from what we possess in this material world- namely a material
body composed of stool, urine, puss, mucus and bile. But God Krishna
has a spiritual form, which is of a beautiful blackish complexion like
a monsoon cloud.
So from the statements of Al-Quran we can understand, that the image of Allah is of a beautiful dark
color, surrounded by a dazzling light.
While the Quran only states, that Allah has a beautiful dark color, the vedic scriptures discribe in much more detail the dark color of Lord Krishna.
कृष्ण Kṛṣṇa (Sanskrit, alternate spellings Krsna, Krishna, "black" or "dark blu e") - Krishna literally means "the dark one" or even "the black one"; sometimes, in poetry, the colour of Krishna is compared to "a dark blue rain cloud in the monsoon season.
Krishna's Color is described in most of the vedic reference books as Megha-Varnam. i.e. the color of dark rain clouds that are filled with water or clouds that are ready to shower rain. Krishnas color is therefore compared to a blue-blackish rain cloud in the monsoon season.
Srila Prabhupāda: Yes. Kṛṣṇa is bluish. Kṛṣṇa's color is like the sky. When you see the clear sky, bluish sky, are you not very happy? "Oh, today is very nice day, blue sky." Especially in this country, when the sky is always overcast with cloud. So why you appreciate the color of the sky so much? That is Kṛṣṇa's color. Kṛṣṇa's body, there is a ray, brahmajyoti. That brahmajyoti is reflected in the sky. That brahmajyoti is outside this material sky, but that is being reflected. Therefore the sky's color, it appears bluish.
ghana-śyāmaḥ — whose bodily hue was intense blue-black — SB 6.4.35-39
ghana-śyāmāḥ — as having a complexion resembling bluish rainclouds — SB 10.13.46
Krishna, the dark-coloured-one, has a beautiful complexion like that of a raincloud in the monsoon season. As per the ancient writings the colour of lord Krishna is Black or darkish blue. He is been called as Shyama which means Black. The colour black depicts rain clouds and the colour blue depicts sea and sky which corresponds to 'ananth' or never ending (infinity). Further, the paintings of face of all the avatars of Lord Vishnu are always discribed as blue coloured.
For people whose life depended on rain clouds for a good crop yeild, there can be nothing more refreshing, enlivening, joyous, or celebratory than a dark rain cloud, bringing life giving rain to the fields, streams, and mountains. They are seen with eyes colored by prema... prema anjana churita. Those who see Krsna with eyes not colored by prema will see something else.
"My dear friend, where is that beautiful helmet with a peacock feather upon it like a rainbow upon a new cloud? Where are those yellow garments, shining like lightning? And where is that necklace of pearls that resemble flocks of ducks flying in the sky? The blackish body of Kṛṣṇa triumphs over the new blackish rain cloud. (CC Antya 19.39)
You are called Śyāmasundara because of Your transcendental beauty. Śyāma means blackish, yet they say that You are more beautiful than thousands of cupids. Kandarpa-koṭi-kamanīya. Although You appear in a color which is compared to that of a blackish cloud, You are the transcendental Absolute, and therefore Your beauty is many, many times more attractive than the delicate body of Cupid. (SB 10.2.35 purport)
"You appear in a color which is compared to that of a blue-blackish cloud"
The transcendental personal forms of the Lord, such as Śyāmasundara, are a mystery, and the symptoms of these forms, which are absolutely different from anything made of mundane elements, are also mysterious.
" 'In the Dvāpara-yuga the Personality of Godhead appears in a blackish hue. He is dressed in yellow, He holds His own weapons, and He is decorated with the Kaustubha jewel and marks of Śrīvatsa. That is how His symptoms are described.'
This is a quotation from Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (11.5.27). The śyāma color is not exactly blackish. Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura compares it to the color of the atasī flower. It is not that Lord Kṛṣṇa Himself appears in a blackish color in all the Dvāpara-yugas. In other Dvāpara-yugas, previous to Lord Kṛṣṇa's appearance, the Supreme Lord appeared in a greenish body by His own personal expansion. This is mentioned in the Viṣṇu Purāṇa, Hari-vaṁśa and Mahābhārata. (CC Madhya 20.337)
Apte's Sanskrit dictionary gives the meaning of atasī = common flax/Hemp/linseed/ and the botanical name is 'Linum Usitatissimum, Linum Perenne.
Monier-Williams tells us that the atasī is the "common flax, Linum usitatissimum." This highly useful, long cultivated plant provides the fiber that are the source of linen fabrics. Its seeds are rich in lignans and Omega-3 fatty acids, beneficial to health. The flower of the common flax, it turns out, is light blue. However, there is one variety of flax (Linum perenne, the "perennial flax") that does bear a dark blue flower. This, then, seems to be the śyāma in Śyāmasundara (Kṛṣṇa the beautiful dark blue boy, whose color resembles the atasi flower).
"I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, round whose neck is swinging a garland of flowers beautified with the moon-locket, whose two hands are adorned with the flute and jeweled ornaments, who always revels in pastimes of love, whose graceful threefold-bending form of Śyāmasundara is eternally manifest." (Brahma-Samhita)
"I worship the original Personality of Godhead, Govinda, whom the pure devotees, their eyes smeared with the ointment of love of Godhead, always observe within their hearts. This Govinda, the original Personality of Godhead, is Śyāmasundara with all transcendental qualities." (Brahma-Samhita)
Śyāmasundara, "beautiful Śyāma, Kṛṣṇa." Yaṁ śyāmasundaram acintya-guṇa-svarūpam. He's śyāma -śyāma means blackish- but at the same time, the most beautiful. Here in this material world, if somebody is blackish, he cannot be called beautiful. But Kṛṣṇa, although He is blackish, He is sundaram, very, very beautiful. How much sundaram? Kandarpa-koṭi-kamanīya-viśeṣa-śobham [Bs. 5.30]. Kandarpa-koṭi. If you keep one side millions of Cupids, still, Kṛṣṇa will appear more beautiful.
Prabhupāda: Yes, śyāmāvadātāḥ, śyāma, śyāma. Śyāmasundara. Kṛṣṇa is known, therefore, Śyāmasundara. This is the sky color. You can understand. Because the sky has no own color, because the color of Kṛṣṇa is spread as brahmajyoti, that is being reflected in the sky. This is the color of God. Śyāmasundara, therefore called. Yaṁ śyāmasundaram acintya-guṇa-svarūpaṁ govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam aham... So we can see at least the color of the Lord. Here it is said "sky-bluish". How can you deny? Who can say that "I have not..." If you have seen... Just like the sunshine. Sunshine is whitish. So in the sunshine, you can see the whitish color. So you can at least imagine what is the color of the sun planet, what is the color of the predominating deity there. A little intelligence required. So if the sky... When clear sky, you see bluish sky. That is reflection of Kṛṣṇa's bodily effulgence. Yasya prabhā prabhavato jagad-aṇḍa-koṭi [Bs. 5.40]. Yasya prabhā, by expansion of the bodily effulgence, the brahmajyoti... In that brahmajyoti there are many universes, in that brahmajyoti, jagad-aṇḍa-koṭi. The sky's bluish effulgence is there. Above this material sky there is another sky whose reflection you simply can see little. Just like outside there is a brilliant light, so you can get little reflection within your room, similarly, this universe is dark and covered. It is covered, round, surrounded. But outside that universe... Or this universe is floating in that effulgence. It is reflected. The sky is reflected bluish. This is the... Let the so-called scientist challenge it. Here is a description from the Bhāgavata: yasya prabhā [Bs. 5.40]. So we have to know from the right source what is God. We cannot imagine. You cannot know even what is there within the sky. (SP lecture Tokyo, April 28, 1972)
Yasya prabhā prabhavato jagad-aṇḍa-koṭi koṭiṣv aśeṣa-vasudādhi vibhūti-bhinnam [Bs. 5.40]. It is stated in the Brahma-saṁhitā, "On account of distribution of the rays of His body, the brahmajyoti, there are generation of innumerable universes." So all these universes—this is one of the universes—they are in that brahmajyoti, and that brahmajyoti is being reflected in the sky, and sky is so beautiful. So how much beautiful is Kṛṣṇa, just we can imagine. Just like the sunshine. The sunshine is the rays of the sun planet, and in the sun planet there is sun-god. So if sunshine is so pleasing, just imagine how the sun-god is pleasing. Similarly, Kṛṣṇa's jyoti, brahmajyoti, is so important. Then just imagine how Kṛṣṇa's beauty is appreciated in transcendental world. Yaṁ śyāma-sundaram acintya-guṇa-svarūpaṁ. Barhāvataṁsam asitāmbudha-sundarāṅgam. Barhāvatāmsam asitāmbudha.His color is compared with the blackish cloud, asitāmbudha, sundarāṅgam, but very, very beautiful.
“Dear Lord,” the demigods prayed, “when You appear in Your different incarnations, You take different names and forms according to different situations. Lord Kṛṣṇa is Your name because You are all-attractive; You are called Śyāmasundara because of Your transcendental beauty. Śyāma means blackish, yet they say that You are more beautiful than thousands of cupids. Kandarpa-koṭi-kamanīya. Although You appear in a color which is compared to that of a blackish cloud, You are the transcendental Absolute, and therefore Your beauty is many, many times more attractive than the delicate body of Cupid.
Although Kṛṣṇa’s transcendental form is presented as black, devotees who are in love with the Supreme Personality of Godhead appreciate the Lord as Śyāmasundara, having a very beautiful blackish form. The Lord’s form is so beautiful that the Brahma-saṁhitā (5.30) also states:
“I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, who plays on His transcendental flute. His eyes are like lotus flowers, He is decorated with peacock plumes, and His bodily color resembles the color of a fresh black cloud, although His bodily features are more beautiful than millions of Cupids.” This beauty of the Supreme Lord can be seen by devotees who are in love with Him, devotees whose eyes are anointed with love of Godhead (premāñjana-cchurita-bhakti-vilocanena [Bs. 5.38]).
Lord Kṛṣṇa has many forms, as stated in the Brahma-saṁhitā (5.33): advaitam acyutam anādim ananta-rūpam. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu asked Raghupati Upādhyāya which form was the best of Lord Kṛṣṇa's millions of forms, and he immediately replied that the supreme form was the Śyāmasundara form. In that form, Kṛṣṇa stands curved in three places and holds His flute. The Śyāmasundara form is also described in the Brahma-saṁhitā (5.38):
Sometimes Krishnas complexion is compared to the color of blue sapphires (indra-nila-mani).
All glories to Sri Krsna, who enjoys transcendental pastimes in Vrndavana forest. His lovely complexion is as splendid as blue sapphires (indra-nila-mani). His ears decorated with blossoming kadamba flowers, and his broad chest is decorated with a garland of gunja berries. (Sri Prathama Kunja-vihary-ashtaka by Srila Rupa Gosvami)
His lovely complexion is as splendid as blue sapphires (indra-nila-mani)
Srila Prabhupada: “This Kṛṣṇa name means "all-attractive." He attracts everyone. That is the real name, all-attractive. You have seen Kṛṣṇa's picture. He is attractive to the animals, cows, calves, birds, bees, trees, plants, water, in Vṛndāvana. He's attractive to the cowherds boy. He's attractive to the gopīs, He's attractive to Nanda Mahārāja, He's attractive to the Pāṇḍavas. He's still attractive to the whole human society. Therefore, if any particular name can be given to God, that is Kṛṣṇa.”
It is not a colour we can find in this world; that we can see with our material eyes. It is the colour of God. Those who have seen it have tried to describe it as the hue of blue clouds, as freshly-formed rainclouds, as the beautiful colour of the syama flower, etc.
It would seem that when Kṛṣṇa refers to a colour it means black, but when Kṛṣṇa refers to the Supreme Lord, it means the All-Attractive Person, Śrī Kṛṣṇa.
"Krish" - all attractive and "na" - Person. Why He is called this is self-evident, for certainly no one else can be so called.
How to see the beautiful form of Śrī Kṛṣṇa
SB 10.2.36, Purport: "I
worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, who plays on His transcendental
flute. His eyes are like lotus flowers, He is decorated with peacock
plumes, and His bodily color resembles the color of a fresh black cloud,
although His bodily features are more beautiful than millions of
Cupids." This beauty of the Supreme Lord can be seen by devotees who are
in love with Him, devotees whose eyes are anointed with love of Godhead.
Srila Prabhupada: In the Brahma-saṁhitā (5.38) it is stated, premāñjana-cchurita-bhakti-vilocanena: only a person whose eyes are smeared with the ointment of love can see the beautiful form of Śrī Kṛṣṇa. We are worshiping Govinda, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the original person. And this song we were just singing —govindam adi-purusam tam aham bhajami— is
reaching Him. He’s hearing it. You cannot say He’s not hearing it.
Especially in this scientific age, when radio messages are broadcast
thousands and thousands of miles so you can hear them, it is easy to
understand how Govinda, Krishna, can hear your sincere prayer.
Similarly, just as you can see a television picture transmitted
from thousands and thousands of miles away, you can always see Govinda
in your heart if you prepare yourself properly. Only those who have smeared their eyes with the ointment of love of
Godhead can see everywhere the Supreme Lord face to face; it is not
possible by imagination or so-called meditation. This is stated in the Śrī Brahma-saḿhitā [5.38]:
TRANSLATION - I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, who is Śyāmasundara, Kṛṣṇa
Himself with inconceivable innumerable attributes, whom the pure
devotees see in their heart of hearts with the eye of devotion tinged
with the salve of love.
PURPORT - The Śyāmasundara form of Kṛṣṇa
is His inconceivable simultaneous personal and impersonal
self-contradictory form. True devotees see that form in their purified
hearts under the influence of devotional trance. The form Śyāma
is not the blue color visible in the mundane world but is the
transcendental variegated color affording eternal bliss, and is not
visible to the mortal eye. On a consideration of the trance of Vyāsadeva
as in the śloka, bhakti-yogena manasi etc., it will be clear that the form of Śrī Kṛṣṇa
is the full Personality of Godhead and can only be visible in the heart
of a true devotee, which is the only true seat in the state of trance
under the influence of devotion. When Kṛṣṇa manifested Himself in Vraja, both the devotees and nondevotees saw Him with this very eye; but only the devotees cherished Him, eternally present in Vraja, as the priceless jewel of their heart. Nowadays also the devotees see Him in Vraja
in their hearts, saturated with devotion although they do not see Him
with their eyes. The eye of devotion is nothing but the eye of the pure
unalloyed spiritual self of the jīva. The form of Kṛṣṇa
is visible to that eye in proportion to its purification by the
practice of devotion. When the devotion of the neophyte reaches the
stage of bhāva-bhakti the pure eye of that devotee is tinged with the salve of love by the grace of Kṛṣṇa, which enables him to see Kṛṣṇa face to face. The phrase "in their hearts" means Kṛṣṇa is visible in proportion as their hearts are purified by the practice of devotion. The sum and substance of this śloka is that the form of Kṛṣṇa, who is Śyāmasundara,
Naṭavara (Best Dancer), Muralīdhara (Holder of the Flute) and
Tribhańga (Triple-bending), is not a mental concoction but is
transcendental, and is visible with the eye of the soul of the devotee
I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, who is adept in playing on His flute, with blooming eyes like lotus petals with head decked with peacock's feather, with the figure of beauty tinged with the hue of blue clouds, and His unique loveliness charming millions of Cupids. Sri Brahma-Samhita 5.30
"I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, round whose neck is swinging a garland of flowers beautified with the moon-locket, whose two hands are adorned with the flute and jeweled ornaments, who always revels in pastimes of love, whose graceful threefold-bending form of Syamasundara is eternally manifest."
The matchless beauty of Krishna, the Supreme Lord of Goloka, is being described. Krishna, the all-pervading cognition, has a spiritual form of His own. The form of Krishna is not a fanciful creation of imagination formed after visualizing the beautiful things of the world. What Brahma saw in his ecstatic trance of pure devotion, is being described. Krishna is engaged in playing upon His flute. That flute by his enchanting musical sound attracts the hearts of all living beings. Just as a lotus petal produces a pleasant sight, so the two beautiful eyes of Krishna who causes the manifestation of our spiritual vision, display the unlimited splendor and beauty of His moonlike face. The loveliness that adorns His head with peacock feather figures, the corresponding feature of the spiritual beauty of Krishna. Just as a mass of blue clouds offers a specifically soothing, pleasant view, the complexion of Krishna is analogously tinged with a spiritual dark-blue color. The beauty and loveliness of Krishna is far more enchanting that that of Cupid multiplied a millionfold.