The Kali Yuga, in Hinduism, is the fourth and worst of the four yugas (world ages) in a Yuga Cycle , preceded by Dvapara Yuga and followed by the next cycle's Krita (Satya) Yuga . It is believed to be the present age, which is full of conflict and sin.
The "Kali" of Kali Yuga means "strife", "discord", "quarrel" or "contention" and Kali Yuga is associated with the demon Kali (not to be confused with the goddess Kālī).[ citation needed ]
According to Puranic sources, BCE. Lasting for 432,000 years (1200 divine years), Kali Yuga began 5,122 years ago and has 426,878 years left as of 2021 CE. Kali Yuga will end in the year 428,899 CE.Krishna's departure marks the end of Dvapara Yuga and the start of Kali Yuga, which is dated to 17/18 February 3102
Yuga (Sanskrit : युग), in this context, means "an age of the world", where its archaic spelling is yug, with other forms of yugam, yugānāṃ, and yuge, derived from yuj (Sanskrit : युज्, lit. 'to join or yoke'), believed derived from *yeug- (Proto-Indo-European: lit. 'to join or unite').
Kali Yuga (Sanskrit : कलियुग, romanized: kaliyuga or kali-yuga) means "the age of Kali (demon)", "the age of darkness", "the age of vice and misery", or "the age of quarrel and hypocrisy".
Kali Yuga is described in the Mahabharata , Manusmriti , Surya Siddhanta , Vishnu Smriti , and various Puranas.
According to P. V. Kane, one of the earliest inscriptions with one of the four yugas named is the Pikira grant of Pallava Simhavarman (mid-5th century CE):
Who was ever ready to extricate dharma that had become sunk owing to the evil effects of Kaliyuga.— Pikira grant of Pallava Simhavarman, line 10 (3rd plate, front)
Other epigraphs exist with named yugas in the Old Mysore region of India, published in Epigraphia Carnatica .
According to the Surya Siddhanta , Kali Yuga began at midnight (00:00) on 18 February 3102 BCE.This is also considered the date on which Krishna left the earth to return to Vaikuntha. This information is placed at the temple of Bhalka, the place of this incident (see photo).
According to the astronomer and mathematician Aryabhata, Kali Yuga started in 3102 BCE. He finished his book Aryabhattiyam in 499 CE, in which he gave the exact year of the beginning of Kali Yuga. He writes that he wrote the book in the "year 3600 of the Kali Age" at the age of 23. As it was the 3600th year of the Kali Age when he was 23 years old, and given that Aryabhata was born in 476 CE, the beginning of the Kali Yuga would come to (3600 - (476 + 23) + 1 (One year from 1 BCE to 1 CE)) = 3102 BCE.
According to K. D. Abhyankar, the starting point of Kali Yuga is an extremely rare planetary alignment, which is depicted in the Mohenjo-daro seals. [ better source needed ]Going by this alignment, the year 3102 BCE is slightly off. The actual date for this alignment is 7 February 3104 BCE. There is also sufficient proof to believe that Vrdhha Garga knew of precessions at least by 500 BCE. Garga had calculated the rate of precession to within 30% of what the modern scholars estimate.
Hindu texts describe four yugas (world ages) in a Yuga Cycle , where, starting in order from the first age of Krita (Satya) Yuga , each yuga's length decreases by one-fourth (25%), giving proportions of 4:3:2:1. Each yuga is described as having a main period (a.k.a.yuga proper) preceded by its yuga-sandhyā (dawn) and followed by its yuga-sandhyāṃśa (dusk), where each twilight (dawn/dusk) lasts for one-tenth (10%) of its main period. Lengths are given in divine years (years of the gods), each lasting for 360 solar (human) years.
Kali Yuga, the fourth age in a cycle, lasts for 432,000 years (1,200 divine years), where its main period lasts for 360,000 years (1,000 divine years) and its two twilights each lasts for 36,000 years (100 divine years). The current cycle's Kali Yuga, the present age, has the following dates based on it starting in 3102 BCE:
|Part||Start (– End)||Length|
|Kali-yuga-sandhya (dawn)*||3102 BCE||36,000 (100)|
|Kali-yuga (proper)||32,899 CE||360,000 (1,000)|
|Kali-yuga-sandhyamsa (dusk)||392,899 CE –428,899 CE||36,000 (100)|
|Years: 432,000 solar (1,200 divine)|
Mahabharata , Book 12 (Shanti Parva), Ch. 231:
(17) A year (of men) is equal to a day and night of the gods ... (19) I shall, in their order, tell you the number of years that are for different purposes calculated differently, in the Krita, the Treta, the Dwapara, and the Kali yugas. (20) Four thousand celestial years is the duration of the first or Krita age. The morning of that cycle consists of four hundred years and its evening is of four hundred years. (21) Regarding the other cycles, the duration of each gradually decreases by a quarter in respect of both the principal period with the minor portion and the conjoining portion itself.
Manusmriti , Ch. 1:
(67) A year is a day and a night of the gods ... (68) But hear now the brief (description of) the duration of a night and a day of Brahman and of the several ages (of the world, yuga) according to their order. (69) They declare that the Krita age (consists of) four thousand years (of the gods); the twilight preceding it consists of as many hundreds, and the twilight following it of the same number. (70) In the other three ages with their twilights preceding and following, the thousands and hundreds are diminished by one (in each).
Surya Siddhanta , Ch. 1:
(13) ... twelve months make a year. This is called a day of the gods. (14) ... Six times sixty  of them are a year of the gods ... (15) Twelve thousand of these divine years are denominated a Quadruple Age (caturyuga); of ten thousand times four hundred and thirty-two [4,320,000] solar years (16) Is composed that Quadruple Age, with its dawn and twilight. The difference of the Golden and the other Ages, as measured by the difference in the number of the feet of Virtue in each, is as follows : (17) The tenth part of an Age, multiplied successively by four, three, two, and one, gives the length of the Golden and the other Ages, in order : the sixth part of each belongs to its dawn and twilight.
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Hindus believe that human civilization degenerates spiritually during the Kali Yuga.
Hinduism often symbolically represents morality ( dharma ) as an Indian bull. In Satya Yuga, the first stage of development, the bull has four legs, which is reduced by one in each age that follows. By the age of Kali, morality is reduced to only a quarter of that of the golden age, so that the bull of Dharma has only one leg.
The demon Kali (not to be confused with the goddess Kālī) is the reigning lord of Kali Yuga and his nemesis is Kalki, the tenth and final Avatar of Vishnu.[ citation needed ]
The Kurukshetra War and the decimation of Kauravas thus happened at the Yuga-Sandhi, the point of transition from one yuga to another. [ citation needed ]The scriptures mention Narada as having momentarily intercepted the demon Kali on his way to the Earth when Duryodhana was about to be born in order to make him an embodiment of arishadvargas and adharma in preparation of the era of decay in values and the consequent havoc.
This section needs additional citations for verification .(June 2021)
A discourse by Markandeya in the Mahabharata identifies some of the attributes of Kali Yuga.
In relation to rulers, it lists:
With regard to human relationships, Markandeya's discourse says:
This section needs additional citations for verification .(November 2020)
The Brahma Vaivarta Purana (related to Rathantara kalpa) mentions a ten thousand-year period, starting from the traditional dating of the Kali Yuga epoch, during which bhakti yogis will be present.Krishna foretold that Kali Yuga will be full of extreme hardships for people with ideals and values.
The Brahma-vaivarta Purana has words spoken by Krishna to Mother Ganga just before the beginning of the Kali Yuga (the age of quarrel and strife). The Kali Yuga began approximately five thousand years ago; that golden age is being described below by Krishna. Predicted in Brahma-vaivarta Purana 4.129, the fourth part of the Brahma-vaivarta is called Kṛṣṇa-janma-khanda. Chapter 129 is called Golokarohanam, because it describes how Krishna returns to His abode. This specific dialogue is between Krishna and Mother Ganga. Verse 49 is a question by Ganga, verses 50–60 are Krishna's answer.
This text is taken from the Brahma-vaivarta Purana  Text 59:
madbhaktāḥ santi bhūtale
madbhakteṣu gateṣu ca
For 10,000 years of Kali such devotees of Mine will be present on earth. After the departure of My devotees there will be only one varna.
The above is supported in 4.90.32–33:
haris tiṣṭhati medinī
devānām pratimā pūjyā
śāstrāni ca purāṇakam
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (June 2021)
Guru Granth Sahib on Ang:1185 says:
Now, the Dark Age of Kali Yuga has come. Plant the Naam, the Name of the One Lord. It is not the season to plant other seeds. Do not wander lost in doubt and delusion.
The Kali Yuga is an important concept in both Theosophy and Anthroposophy,and in the writings of Helena Blavatsky, W.Q. Judge, Rudolf Steiner, and Traditionalist philosophers such as René Guénon and Julius Evola, among others. Rudolf Steiner believed that the Kali Yuga ended in 1900.
Kalki, also called Kalkin, is the prophesied tenth avatar of Hindu god Vishnu to end the Kali Yuga, one of the four periods in the endless cycle of existence (krita) in Vaishnavism cosmology. The end of Kali Yuga, states Hindu eschatology, will harbinger in the new epoch of Satya Yuga in the endless cycle of existence.
A yuga, in Hinduism, is generally used to indicate an age of time.
Krishna Dvaipayana, better known as Vyasa or Veda Vyasa, was a legendary sage portrayed in the Hindu epic Mahabharata, and regarded by Hindu-tradition as the compiler of that work. As a Shaktyavesha Avatar (śaktyāveśa-avatāra) of Vishnu, he is also regarded by tradition as the arranger of the mantras of the Vedas, as well as the author of the eighteen Puranas and the Brahma Sutras.
Chiranjivi are, in Hinduism, eight immortals or long lived ones who are to remain alive on Earth until the end of the current Kali Yuga.
Itihasa refers to the collection of written descriptions of important events in Hinduism. It includes the Mahabharata, the Puranas and the Ramayana. The Mahabharata includes the story of the Kurukshetra War and preserves the traditions of the Lunar dynasty in the form of embedded tales. The Puranas narrate universal history as perceived by Hindus – the books discuss in depth the topics of cosmogony, myth, legend and history. The Ramayana contains the story of Rama and is incidentally related to the legends of the Solar dynasty. A story is considered to be itihasa only when the author of the story has himself witnessed or is part of the story. Vyasa, who wrote the Mahabharata, is himself a character in the story. Similarly, Valmiki, who wrote the Ramayana, was also a character in the story. Many classical Indian poets derive the plots of their poetry and drama from the Itihasa.
The Treta Yuga, in Hinduism, is the second and second best of the four yugas in a Yuga Cycle, preceded by Krita (Satya) Yuga and followed by Dvapara Yuga.
Hindu eschatology is linked in the Vaishnavite tradition to the figure of Kalki, or the tenth and last avatar of Vishnu names of the Supreme Being in Hinduism and before the age draws to a close, and Harihara simultaneously dissolves and regenerates the universe.
The Satya Yuga, in Hinduism, is the first and best of the four yugas in a Yuga Cycle, preceded by Kali Yuga of the previous cycle and followed by Treta Yuga.
The Dvapara Yuga, in Hinduism, is the third and third best of the four yugas in a Yuga Cycle, preceded by Treta Yuga and followed by Kali Yuga.
Hindu cosmology is the description of the universe and its states of matter, cycles within time, physical structure, and effects on living entities according to Hindu texts.
The Saptarishi are the seven rishis in ancient India, who are extolled at many places in the Vedas and other Hindu literature. The Vedic Samhitas never enumerate these rishis by name, though later Vedic texts such as the Brahmanas and Upanisads do so. They are regarded in the Vedas as the patriarchs of the Vedic religion.
Pralaya, in Hindu cosmology, is an aeonic term for dissolution.
− The Kalki Purana is a Vaishnavism-tradition Hindu text about the tenth avatar of Vishnu named Kalki. The myth-genre Sanskrit text was likely composed in Bengal during an era when the region was being ruled by the Bengal Sultanate or the Mughal Empire. Wendy Doniger dates it to sometime between 1500 CE and 1700 CE. It has a floruit of 1726 CE based on a manuscript discovered in Dacca, Bangladesh.
A kalpa is a long period of time (aeon) in Hindu and Buddhist cosmology, generally between the creation and recreation of a world or universe.
A manvantara, in Hindu cosmology, is a cyclic period of time identifying the duration, reign, or age of a Manu, the progenitor of mankind. In each manvantara, seven Rishis, certain deities, an Indra, a Manu, and kings are created and perish. Each manvantara is distinguished by the Manu who rules/reigns over it, of which we are currently in the seventh manvantara of fourteen, which is ruled by Vaivasvata Manu.
Hindu units of time are described in Hindu texts ranging from microseconds to trillions of years, including cycles of cosmic time that repeat general events in Hindu cosmology. Time is described as eternal. Various fragments of time are described in the Vedas, Manusmriti, Bhagavata Purana, Vishnu Purana, Mahabharata, Surya Siddhanta etc.
The Puranic chronology is a timeline of Hindu history based on the Mahabharata, the Ramayana, and the Puranas. Two central dates are the Mahabharata War, which according to this chronology happened at 3534 BCE, and the start of the Kali Yuga, which according to this chronology started at 3508 BCE. The Puranic chronology is referred to by proponents of Indigenous Aryans to propose an earlier dating of the Vedic period, and the spread of Indo-European languages out of India, arguing that "the Indian civilization must be viewed as an unbroken tradition that goes back to the earliest period of the Sindhu-Sarasvati tradition ."
Vyasaa.k.a.Veda Vyāsa is the title given to the Rishi (sage) who comes at the end of every Dvapara Yuga to divide and compile the one Veda into four and compile the Puranas and Mahabharata for the benefit of mankind in the degraded age that follows, Kali Yuga. Vyasa is a central and revered figure in most Hindu traditions. In the 28th mahayuga (current), Krishna Dvaipāyana Vyasa was Vyasa, whose name refers to his complexion and birthplace, and who is believed to be a partial incarnation of Vishnu that occurs once in every kalpa. In the upcoming 29th mahayuga, Guru Drona's son Rishi Aswatthama will be born as the next Vyasa. In the previous 27th mahayuga, Veda Vyasa's father was Vyasa.
Bhalka Tirtha, located in the Veraval in Saurashtra on the western coast of Gujarat, India, is the place where Krishna was killed by an arrow shot by a hunter named Jara, after which he worshipped Shiva, an act referred to in the Puranas as Shri Krishna Nijdham Prasthan Leela .
A Yuga Cycle is a cyclic age (epoch) in Hindu cosmology. Each cycle lasts for 4,320,000 years and repeats four yugas : Krita (Satya) Yuga, Treta Yuga, Dvapara Yuga, and Kali Yuga.
On the very day, and at the very moment the Lord [Krishna] left the earth, on that very day this Kali, the source of irreligiousness, (in this world), entered here.
The Parijata tree proceeded to heaven, and on the same day that Hari [Krishna] departed from the earth the dark-bodied Kali age descended.
It was on the day on which Krishna left the Earth and went to heaven that the Kali age, with time for its body set in.
The [Kali yuga] epoch arrived at ... was midnight of February 17/18 in 3102 BC according to the midnight (ardharatika) school, and the sunrise of February 18 (Friday) of the same year according to the sunrise (audayika) school.
* HINDUISM: Myths of time and eternity: ... Each yuga is preceded by an intermediate "dawn" and "dusk." The Krita yuga lasts 4,000 god-years, with a dawn and dusk of 400 god-years each, or a total of 4,800 god-years; Treta a total of 3,600 god-years; Dvapara 2,400 god-years; and Kali (the current yuga) 1,200 god-years. A mahayuga thus lasts 12,000 god-years ... Since each god-year lasts 360 human years, a mahayuga is 4,320,000 years long in human time. Two thousand mahayugas form one kalpa (eon) [and pralaya], which is itself but one day in the life of Brahma, whose full life lasts 100 years; the present is the midpoint of his life. Each kalpa is followed by an equally long period of abeyance (pralaya), in which the universe is asleep. Seemingly the universe will come to an end at the end of Brahma's life, but Brahmas too are innumerable, and a new universe is reborn with each new Brahma.
* YUGA: Each yuga is progressively shorter than the preceding one, corresponding to a decline in the moral and physical state of humanity. Four such yugas (called ... after throws of an Indian game of dice) make up a mahayuga ("great yuga") ... The first yuga (Krita) was an age of perfection, lasting 1,728,000 years. The fourth and most degenerate yuga (Kali) began in 3102 BCE and will last 432,000 years. At the close of the Kali yuga, the world will be destroyed by fire and flood, to be re-created as the cycle resumes. In a partially competing vision of time, Vishnu's 10th and final AVATAR, KALKI, is described as bringing the present cosmic cycle to a close by destroying the evil forces that rule the Kali yuga and ushering in an immediate return to the idyllic Krita yuga.
Paraphrased: Deva day equals solar year. Deva lifespan (36,000 solar years) equals 100 360-day years, each 12 months. Mahayuga equals 12,000 Deva (divine) years (4,320,000 solar years), and is divided into 10 charnas consisting of four Yugas: Satya Yuga (4 charnas of 1,728,000 solar years), Treta Yuga (3 charnas of 1,296,000 solar years), Dvapara Yuga (2 charnas of 864,000 solar years), and Kali Yuga (1 charna of 432,000 solar years). Manvantara equals 71 Mahayugas (306,720,000 solar years). Kalpa (day of Brahma) equals an Adi Sandhya, 14 Manvantaras, and 14 Sandhya Kalas, where 1st Manvantara preceded by Adi Sandhya and each Manvantara followed by Sandhya Kala, each Sandhya lasting same duration as Satya yuga (1,728,000 solar years), during which the entire earth is submerged in water. Day of Brahma equals 1,000 Mahayugas, the same length for a night of Brahma (Bhagavad-gita 8.17). Brahma lifespan (311.04 trillion solar years) equals 100 360-day years, each 12 months. Parardha is 50 Brahma years and we are in the 2nd half of his life. After 100 years of Brahma, the universe starts with a new Brahma. We are currently in the 28th Kali yuga of the first day of the 51st year of the second Parardha in the reign of the 7th (Vaivasvata) Manu. This is the 51st year of the present Brahma and so about 155 trillion years have elapsed. The current Kali Yuga (Iron Age) began at midnight on 17/18 February 3102 BC in the proleptic Julian calendar.
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