Another speciality maintained of Divine Incarnations is that while we find that they have struggled to attain to God and may approach God or talk about Him as if they were ordinary devotees seeking His mercy crying for Him, feeling their separation from Him all those things are only playacting on their part; actually speaking, they are always conscious that they are God Himself.
Further, it is thought that from their very birth Divine Incarnations are aware that they are born for a certain purpose. For instance, it is said of Buddha that as soon as he was born he at once recognized that his mother would not live long enough to hear the message of enlightenment that he had come to give to mankind; so then and there he preached to her the Dharma, the Law. Now, you might say that’s a legend. Well, it may be a legend, but at least it indicates the underlying idea of a Divine Incarnation as maintained by the faithful. It indicates that even as a newborn baby, the Divine Incarnation knows he is God, and baby or no baby, he behaves like the omniscient and omnipotent Person that God is considered to be. Of Sri Krishna, also, we find a similar story. When he was born in a prison cell he at once became luminous and began to give teachings to his parents. You know the story of how Krishna’s uncle had been told that one of the children of his own sister would kill him; so immediately after his sister’s marriage he put both her and her husband in prison. As children were born to them, he took infant after infant and killed it. Now, when the Lord Himself was born, the parents felt immeasurably attracted to Him. Wherever there is anything of God we feel attracted; that’s the idea. So the parents felt a particularly great attraction for this child and were very much frightened that he, too, would be killed; therefore he assumed his divine form to reassure them. We find these stories again and again in connection with those who have been looked upon as Incarnations of God.
There is another special mark: when Divine
Incarnations begin to function they are capable of granting anything they want; there is no limit to it. One thing specifically they grant to men is forgiveness of sin. In the Jewish tradition forgiveness was a special function of God, and so the Jews at least those who considered Christ to be only a man and not the promised Messiah were scandalized when they heard that he would forgive the sins of others. In India we seldom use the word sin; more often we say that a Divine Incarnation can break the bonds of karma. He can say to someone, All right, your karmas are broken now; you have become free.’