Why does Lord Krishna have a peacock feather?

Our beloved Lord Krishna, the butter thief, the cow herder of Gokul.  A very popular Hindu god worshipped by millions across the world. Lord Krishna has been charmer since he was young.  Winning the hearts of everyone he crossed paths with. Lord Krishna is said to have been born over 5200 years ago and he is the most popular and also the most powerful incarnation of Lord Vishnu. It is said he was born to free the Earth from all evil. 

Dressed in a yellow loin-cloth, with a flute to his lips, Lord Krishna is compassionate, all-knowing and the embodiment of dharma or righteousness. One of the most defining symbols of Lord Krishna is the peacock feather on his head. There have been many tales surrounding the reason Lord Krishna wears a peacock feather, let’s explore why the Jai Jais way.

When one day Lord Krishna woke from a rest in the forest with his cowherd friends. He decided to wake everyone and call the cows grazing at a distance by playing his flute. All the animals of the forest were completely enchanted. This wonderful vibration enchanted the peacocks in and around the Govardhan Hills. So harmonic was his music and vibrations that the peacocks were spell bound and began to dance to his melody.

As the peacocks danced, the kings of peacocks made his way to Lord Krishna’s feet to take his blessings, he made a sound and Lord Krishna understood the meaning. The peacock asked Lord Krishna to dance with them. Lord Krishna accepted and danced among them. The excitement of the peacocks increased when Lord Krishna danced with them. It was so overwhelming, that some peacocks even fainted. All the animals and cowherds of the Govardhan Hills were unable to move their eyes away from the dance of Lord Krishna.

The peacocks danced till they became tired, but Lord Krishna went on dancing for days. Finally, when he stopped dancing, there was an enchanting silence. The peacocks were so full of happiness and appreciation. The king of peacocks approached Lord Krishna with great humility, bowed down his head and said, “You have created a festival of bliss for which we remain eternally indebted to you. It is our duty to offer you ‘Gurudakshina’ and as sign of gratitude”. The king asked Lord Krishna to accept his feathers, this was his most treasured possession. “Wear them on your crown as a decoration.” With large tears of happiness he dropped some feathers on the ground and Lord Krishna accepted his humble offering. Since then, Lord Krishna always wears a peacock feather on his head to show respect for the peacock. The feather was filled with so much significance of love and gratitude.

Lesson: “This story shows how we should offer the best thing we have to Lord Krishna. Not just things we don’t need. Also this is story of appreciation. When we get something from others we should be very thankful even if it is very insignificant. It is sign of love and therefore have great value. Lord Krishna has put on his head plumage from peacocks to show his gratitude for service they have done for him by dancing”. (Ref: Bhagvatam Katha)


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