I read from Shiva Purana that Kailasa and Vaikunta are free from KARMA. But when Vishnu incarnated on Earth he suffered his karma (Vali as hunter killed Krishna in next birth).

Though I am not sure about this, I saw this in a Telugu Movie. In that movie, Brahma says that Venkateswara was hit by rock oozing out his blood because Krishna stole the garments of Gopis.

So no matter who he is, Karma applies to him. But will karma only apply to living beings on Earth? I understand that karma applies to Devas from story of "Indra, Ants and Brahmin boy".

But what about people who live in Satya loka, Vaikunta and kailasa?

But Sage Bhrigu cursed Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva in their respective Lokas, according to Venkatachala Mahatya. How do boons and curses differ from good and bad karma?

Even if the Vishnu is subjected to Karma, who actually controls the Law of Karma? Is the law of Karma a body independent from all Devas (including Shiva and Vishnu)?

  • 1
    When Krishna was conveying his Gita, he says to Arjuna that like me you have taken many births, but unlike you I am not born out of karma but purely because of my wish. Sita when she was in the captivity laments that it is due to her sins she suffers the separation and none else has to be blamed. These are the sankalp of the Lord himself to execute certain tasks - just like an excellent artist who deceive or immerse the audience in illusion.
    – Narayanan
    Commented Oct 28, 2015 at 6:23
  • @Narayanan you say karma won't apply to Vishnu no matter where he is or in which form he is. Right?
    – The Destroyer
    Commented Oct 28, 2015 at 6:26
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    It depends on whether you accept the supreme Bramham as Vishnu or not - except in case Rama where he was intentionally born to as a human. In my view, karma will not apply to that supreme Bramham as like it applies to us where we can't avoid. In the case of that supreme Bramham, it can apply at its will.
    – Narayanan
    Commented Oct 28, 2015 at 6:50
  • 3
    Karma only applies to those who are unaware of their true nature.
    – Pinakin
    Commented Oct 28, 2015 at 11:37
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    Vali as hunter killed Krishna in next birth. Can you cite the source for the foregoing statement? Commented Dec 24, 2015 at 3:06

1 Answer 1


We all have to agree that Karma is within the Maya. Its applicable to those who are bound by maya.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 3, Verse 17: One who remains ecstatic within the self; self illuminated and fully satisfied within the self only; activities do not exist for him.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 3, Verse 18: In this world for him no purpose is gained by discharge of actions neither is any sin incurred by non-discharge of actions and among all living beings never needs to depend upon anyone.

If this is the case with Yogis and Rushis we can understand about the yogishwara Krishna and Rushiraj Rama. I would like to mention Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa's quote here:

"The snake itself is not affected by the poison in its fangs; but when it bites, the poison kills the creature bitten. Likewise Maya is in the Lord but does not affect Him, while the same Maya deludes the whole world."

Then why the Lord (You may call him/her/it Siva, Vishnu, Devi) involves all his activities?

First of all the activities of jeevas are called Karma, but the Lords activities are called Leela. We cant call our activities as leeva, as we don't have control over them. Why does he perform leela then? Lets refer Bhagavad Geetha once again.

Chapter 3, Verse 21: Whichever and however a great personality conducts himself common men do also; whatever he accepts as authority that and that alone certainly all the world will follow.

Chapter 3, Verse 22: O Arjuna, in the three worlds, the heavenly worlds and the material worlds there is no prescribed duty for me, neither anything to be obtained or unobtained; yet still I am engaged in prescribed activities.

Chapter 3, Verse 23: O Arjuna if ever I would not engage in prescribed activities certainly all men would follow My path in all respects.

Chapter 3, Verse 24: If I cease to perform prescribed actions the inhabitants of all the worlds would be put into ruin and I would be the cause of unvirtuous population and would destroy all these living entities.

Chapter 3, Verse 25: O Arjuna, just as the ignorant act attached to activities; even so the wise being unattached should act desiring to benefit the welfare of the world.

Even though they are out of Karma and Maya they need some kind of reasons to come to earth and perform certain things and fulfill certain wishes.

If you read carefully all the avatara's actions will justify above references by Lord Krishna.

Regarding referring Telugu movies, I really like them but they are not 100% authentic according to shastras/Puranas, You can understand this looking at movies where Ravana and Dhuryodhana are in the main roles. To make the these characters heroic they have degraded the counterparts. In fact the pride of Telugu people NTR is famous for acting not only in positive characters of Puranas but in negative roles like Ravana, Dhuryodhana, Karna etc.

  • So you say those acts as just Leelas. BTW, i didn't see that scene in old mythological movie. It was latest movie "Brahmalokam to Yamalokam via Bhulokam". I do know these movies contain artistic licence. What about curses? Do you again say that Curses too are part of Leela and it doesn't matter the Loka where they are cursed?
    – The Destroyer
    Commented Dec 24, 2015 at 14:35
  • Yes. They are not bound by curses but they do perform the things in the curse out of "anugraham" infact this creation its self is called "anugraham". Commented Dec 25, 2015 at 10:18
  • Also, You assumed here Krishna as Brahman. But Brahma, Narayana (incarnated here as Krishna) and Rudra (not Shiva) are trimurties and doesn't Karma apply to these aspects of Brahman?. They cease their lives and mingle with Parmatma. Are Trimurthi fully realized of their self? Do they have all powers of Brahman? They are not equal in all aspects of Brahman. They are just aspects of Brahman and i think they don't have all powers of Brahman.
    – The Destroyer
    Commented Dec 26, 2015 at 6:00
  • I read that Brahma has certain life span. But not about Vishnu and Shiva. If you read Vishnu sahasranama you will find that Vishnu is Brahman itself. Bhishma recited this keeping Krishna in mind. That means there is no difference between Vishnu and his avatars. They have to leave the bodies which they got here. But they are eternal. That's why we still worship Rama and Krishna. Commented Dec 26, 2015 at 10:58
  • పూతాత్మా "పరమాత్మా" చ "ముక్తానాంపరమాగతిః" | అవ్యయః పురుషః సాక్షీ క్షేత్రజ్ఞోఽక్షర ఏవ చ || ౨ || Commented Dec 26, 2015 at 10:59

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