Virat roop, is an iconographical form and theophany of the Hindu god Krishna. Â In the climactic war in the Mahabharata, the Pandava prince Arjuna and his brothers fight against their cousins, the Kauravas with Krishna as his charioteer. Faced with moral dilemma that whether or not to fight against and kill his own or for dharma (duty), Krishna discourses him about life and death and reveals his Vishvarupa as a theophany. Krishna reveals himself as the Supreme Being and finally displays his Vishvarupa / Virat Roop to Arjuna. Arjuna experiences the vision of the Vishvarupa with divine vision endowed to him by Krishna.
Vishvarupa has innumerable forms, eyes, faces, mouths and arms. All creatures of the universe are part of him. He is the infinite universe, without a beginning or an end. He contains peaceful as well as wrathful forms. Unable to bear the scale of the sight and gripped with fear, Arjuna requests Krishna to return to his four-armed Vishnu form, which he can bear to see. Fully encouraged by the teachings and darshan of Krishna in his full form, Arjuna continued the Mahabharata War.
Madhubani, which by one account means Forest of Honey, (â€˜Madhuâ€™-honey, â€˜Banâ€™-forest or woods) is a region in Mithila region of Nepal and the northern part (Madhubani district)Â of Bihar.Â The Madhubani paintings is an ancient style of painting that originates 2500 years ago. Legend has it that The King of Mithila ( a region now in modern Nepal and with its capital Janakpur) had first commissioned rural artists to paint the palace walls. The occasion was his daughterâ€™s wedding. The name of his daughter was Sita and the bride groom was Lord Rama.
Following the age old methods of painting, artist, till date, mixes cow-dung and rock-salt glue to the paints. While cow dung is used for the shine it imparts to the colored patches, glue helps the paint to bind well with the special handmade paper used for these paintings.
Vidyanath Jha portray the scene in exquisite detail in the ancient Madhubani style onÂ handmade paper with natural colors using pen nibs and brushes.