In case of Shri Rama I have heard about Vali and Ravana he killed both of them at the end of the battle.

Similarly Shri Krishna killed Narakarasura, Bakasura, Putana, etc. Is there any story/evidence where both of the Avatars of Shriman Narayana kept their adversaries alive after defeating them?

  • Yeah, Krishna spared Rukmini's brother Rukmi, and he spared Jarasandha numerous times during the course of Jarasandha's repeated failed attempts to attack Mathura. Sep 9, 2016 at 16:58
  • @KeshavSrinivasan But Jarasandha was ultimately killed inderictly.
    – Yogi
    Sep 9, 2016 at 17:02
  • Yeah, but at least in those moments Krishna spared him. Sep 9, 2016 at 17:51
  • @KeshavSrinivasan I am talking about completely forgiving.
    – Yogi
    Sep 9, 2016 at 17:52

1 Answer 1


Yes, Sri Rama and Krishna spared the lives of their opponents on some occasions.

First incident is from Ramayana, Bala Kanda where Sri Rama spared the life of Mareecha in at sage Vishwamitra yajna.

Lakshmana, I am reluctant to eliminate this kind of these ill-behaved and raw flesh eating demons, but no doubt, they will be puffed out with Manava missile like a gust puffing thick clouds, you may see." Thus Rama said to Lakshmana. [1-30-15, 16a]

Cleanly hit with that great missile Maanava, demon Maareecha is pitched for a hundred yojana lengths in full, and flung down into an ocean rocking with tidewaters. [1-30-18]

On seeing him highly whirling, rendered insensate and thrown out when rammed away with the strength of that Cold arrow Rama said this to Lakshmana. [1-30-19]

Lakshmana, see the Cold arrow belonging to Maanava missile expounded by Manu which is taking him away on baffling, but without taking away his life. [1-30-20]

Though later Mareecha was killed by Sri Rama when he was in form of golden deer.

Lord Rama has also spared the life of Jayanta (son of Indra) when he was trying to do harm to Devi Sita.

That Rama, who affords protection, was compassionate and protected that crow, which fell on the ground (in salutation to Rama) and sought for protection, eventhough it was apt to be killed.

Sri Krishna has also spared the life of Banasura. This story is mentioned in Srimada Bhagavatam, Canto 10.

SB 10.63.46 — The Supreme Lord said: My dear lord, for your pleasure We must certainly do what you have requested of Us. I fully agree with your conclusion.

SB 10.63.47 — I will not kill this demonic son of Vairocani, for I gave Prahlāda Mahārāja the benediction that I would not kill any of his descendants.

SB 10.63.48 — It was to subdue Bāṇāsura’s false pride that I severed his arms. And I slew his mighty army because it had become a burden upon the earth.

SB 10.63.49 — This demon, who still has four arms, will be immune to old age and death, and he will serve as one of your principal attendants. Thus he will have nothing to fear on any account.

  • Well in the example of mareecha ultimately he is slain. I am talking about the cases where the opponents were spared without further slaying in any form. Do you have any more examples if yes then just quote the names of the spared jeevas. This question came to my mind because Shastras instruct Kshatriyas to show mercy and compassion to their enemies.
    – Yogi
    Sep 9, 2016 at 16:32
  • Yes Banasura's example for Sri Krishna is correct and according to my perception there are two primary reasons to save banasura 1) Interference of Rudra 2) Will of Shriman Narayana (for marriage of Banasura's Daughter Usha with his Grandson Anniruddha).
    – Yogi
    Sep 9, 2016 at 16:48
  • 1
    @Yogi one more reason is Sri Narayana has promised to Prahlada not to kill anyone of his dynasty. Sep 9, 2016 at 16:53
  • 3
    @Yogi The form of Vamana after expanding himself to the entire universe and conquering the worlds by measuring them with his feet is called Trivikrama. Vamana and Trivikrama go together. Vamana is the short form. Trivikrama is the all-expansive form. Vikrama also means "foot" in Sanskrit.
    – user1195
    Sep 10, 2016 at 2:05
  • 1
    @Yogi - Trivikrama avatara is extolled by Alwars wonderfully. In Thirukkovilur, one of the 108 Divya dreams in Villupuram District, the Lord appears in Trivikrama form. This shrine is associated with the first three Alwars. The deity is magnificent and can't be described in words. One needs to see it to believe it. Check this link templeadvisor.com/temples-in-india/hindu-temples/…. Also, there is one more Trivikrama temple one of the 108 Divya dreams in kanchi, ulagalandha perumal. The deity is majestic.
    – user808
    Sep 10, 2016 at 10:09

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