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Dveshabhakti in Hinduism – Salvation Even To Sinners – Who Hate God

Dveshabhakti is a unique concept in Hinduism in which God gives salvation even to wrong doers or sinners and even to those who hate God. Dvesha means envy or dislike and bhakti means devotion. There are episodes illustrating how such contradictory terms or oxymoron can be reconciled and God’s mercy obtained.

Srimad Bhagavad Purana maintains that those who had hatred toward Bhagavan had also been blessed by him. The person who hates constantly, remembers Bhagavan, though in aversion. Kamsa is a classic example of this kind of devotion. Kamsa was warned that Krishna, his nephew, would bring about his death. He was totally obsessed by that prediction. In other words, he was constantly thinking of Sri Krishna. It is said that when Kamsa was finally killed by Sri Krishna he was absorbed into the divine.

Shishupala, another king in the Mahabharata, right from his childhood was antagonistic towards Bhagavan Sri Krishna. Once, in the assembly of kings in Indraprastha during the Rajasuya Yagna, Sri Krishna was offered the primary honor, but Shishupala objected and reviled Sri Krishna, heaping insults on him. Krishna killed him but shed his grace on him. The reason was that Shishupala’s hatred of Sri Krishna was constant as it was deep. Shishupala was obsessed with Sri Krishna, though in hatred.

The two attendants of Bhagavan in Vaikuntha, Jaya and Vijaya, when expelled from Vaikunta, chose three births with hatred of him, instead of a hundred births loving the Supreme to get back to their former position at the earliest.

They are supposed to have been born as Hiranyakashipu and Hiranyaksha in their first birth, as Ravana and Kumbhakarna in their second birth, and as Shishupala and Dantavakra in their third birth.