Story How Sri Krishna Got the Name Giridhar


One of the names of Sri Krishna is Giridhar. Giri means mountain and Giridhar means one who lifted the mountain. The mountain that Sri Krishna lifted was the Govardhana. He lifted it on his finger. Story of Sri Krishna lifting the Govardhan Mountain is associated with Indra’s false pride.

Indra, the god of rains, was propitiated by the villagers of Gokul under the leadership of Nanda, the foster father of Sri Krishna. Indra was a fierce God and used his power of thunder and rain to make people worship him. People worshipped him out of fear. Instead of doing his duty, Indra used his powers for selfish ends.

Sri Krishna, who realized that Indra was a power monger,  argued that instead of worshipping Indra, the village should worship Govardhana as he was the one who was protecting us from natural calamities and he also blocked the clouds and thus brought rain in Vrindavan.

The people found this logic to be true and started performing Govardhana puja. This infuriated Indra, who brought torrential rain in Braj region.

The villagers accused Sri Krishna for this ordeal. Sri Krishna asked to take refuge at Govardhana. As we had worshipped it, the holy mount would protect us.

On approaching the mountain, Sri Krishna lifted it with his little finger and gave refuge to all living beings in Braj under the mount. This holy act earned Sri Krishna the name Giridhar. Indra was humbled and people stopped worshipping Indra from the day.

This holy act symbolically extols humans to not to surrender before calamities.