Yuga is a time scale widely popular in Indian subcontinents. As we refer to one century as a hundred years, hundreds of centuries become one Yuga. Hindu texts say there are four yugas which equal one Maha Yuga.
There are different theories regarding the total number of years comprising four yugas. Based on astrological data and research, most scholars today believe that we already passed the dark age of Kali about 300 years ago. This was first mentioned In the book “The Holy Science” by Swami Sri Yukteswar Giri.
Modern science says time is relative and is also considered an illusion. One can live in Kali Yuga while others in Dwapara Yuga or any other Yuga. Ancient Hindu texts also support what modern philosophers and spiritual guru says about this scale of time and the traits of people living in various Yugas.
Whatever age or Yuga we live in, we wanted to look into one of the most popular Puranas of Hindu dharma, Srimad Bhagavatam.
Chapter Two of Canto Twelve of Srimad Bhagavatam or Srimad Bhagavata Purana Talks about the Kali Yuga of 864000 solar years. In this chapter, you can find the list of predictions and prophecies about the dark times of the Kali Yuga.
The last avatar of Lord Vishnu will descend as Kalki to destroy the effects of Kali, and Satya Yuga will begin, according to Srimad Bhagavata Purana.
In the order of Satya, Treta, Dvapara, and Kali, the cycle of four ages rotates in the society of living entities in this universe. The chapter ends with a brief description and predictions of the future dynasties of the sun and moon coming from Vaivasvata Manu in the next Satya-yuga.
11 Symptoms of Kali Yuga
In the 12th canto of the 2nd chapter of Srimad Bhagavatam, there is the chapter named ‘The symptoms of Kali Yuga’. Kali Yuga started when Asur Kali (Kali Purush) went inside the golden crown of King Parikshit.
sri-suka uvacaSB 12.2.1
tatas canu-dinam dharmah
satyam saucam ksama daya
kalena balina rajan
nanksyaty ayur balam smrtih
Sukadeva Gosvami said: Then, O King, religion, truthfulness, cleanliness, tolerance, mercy, duration of life, physical strength, and memory will all diminish day by day because of the powerful influence of the age of Kali.
vittam eva kalau nrnamSB 12.2.2
karanam balam eva hi
In Kali-yuga, wealth alone will be considered the sign of a man’s good birth, proper behavior, and fine qualities. And law and justice will be applied only based on one’s power.
dampatye ’bhirucir heturSB 12.2.3
stritve pumstve ca hi ratir
vipratve sutram eva hi
Men and women will live together merely because of superficial attraction, and success in business will depend on deceit. Womanliness and manliness will be judged according to one’s expertise in sex, and a man will be known as a brahmana just by his wearing a thread.
lingam evasrama-khyatavSB 12.2.4
panditye capalam vacah
A person’s spiritual position will be ascertained merely according to external symbols, and on that same basis, people will change from one spiritual order to the next. A person’s propriety will be seriously questioned if he does not earn a good living. And one who is very clever at juggling words will be considered a learned scholar.
sadhutve dambha eva tu
svikara eva codvahe
snanam eva prasadhanam
A person will be judged unholy if he does not have money, and hypocrisy will be accepted as a virtue. Marriage will be arranged simply by verbal agreement, and a person will think he is fit to appear in public if he has merely taken a bath.
dure vary-ayanam tirtham
satyatve dharstyam eva
hidaksyam kutumba-bharanamSB 12.2.6
yaso ’rthe dharma-sevanam
A sacred place will be taken to consist of no more than a reservoir of water located at a distance, and beauty will be thought to depend on one’s hairstyle. Filling the belly will become the goal of life, and one who is audacious will be accepted as truthful. He who can maintain a family will be regarded as an expert man, and the principles of religion will be observed only for the sake of reputation.
evam prajabhir dustabhirSB 12.2.7
yo bali bhavita nrpah
As the earth thus becomes crowded with a corrupt population, whoever among any of the social classes shows himself to be the strongest will gain political power.
praja hi lubdhai rajanyairSB 12.2.8
Losing their wives and properties to such avaricious and merciless rulers, who will behave no better than ordinary thieves, the citizens will flee to the mountains and forests.
Harassed by famine and excessive taxes, people will resort to eating leaves, roots, flesh, wild honey, fruits, flowers, and seeds. Struck by drought, they will become completely ruined.
himair anyonyatah prajah
ksut-trdbhyam vyadhibhis caiva
santapsyante ca cintaya
The citizens will suffer greatly from cold, wind, heat, rain, and snow. They will be further tormented by quarrels, hunger, thirst, disease, and severe anxiety.
trimsad vimsati varsaniSB 12.2.11
paramayuh kalau nrnam
The maximum duration of life for human beings in Kali-yuga will become fifty years.
Impact of Kali Yuga Symptoms (Verse 12-16)
ksiyamanesu dehesuSB 12.2.12
naste veda-pathe nrnam
pasanda-pracure dharmeSB 12.2.13
nana-vrttisu vai nrsu
sudra-prayesu varnesuSB 12.2.14
anu-prayasv osadhisuSB 12.2.15
ittham kalau gata-prayeSB 12.2.16
By the time the age of Kali ends, the bodies of all creatures will be greatly reduced in size, and the religious principles of followers of varnashrama will be ruined. The path of the Vedas will be completely forgotten in human society, and the so-called religion will be mostly atheistic.
The kings will mostly be thieves, the occupations of men will be stealing, lying, and needless violence and all the social classes will be reduced to the lowest level of Sudras. Cows will be like goats, spiritual hermitages will be no different from mundane houses, and family ties will extend no further than the immediate bonds of marriage.
Most plants and herbs will be tiny, and all trees will appear like dwarf sami trees. Clouds will be full of lightning, homes will be devoid of piety, and all human beings will have become like asses. At that time, the Supreme Personality of Godhead will appear on the earth. Acting with the power of pure spiritual goodness, He will rescue eternal religion.
Savior of Humans in Kaliyuga
caracara-guror visnorSB 12.2.17
Lord Visnu—the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the spiritual master of all moving and nonmoving living beings, and the Supreme Soul of all—takes birth to protect the principles of religion and to relieve His saintly devotees from the reactions of material work.
Lord Kalki will appear in the home of the most eminent brahmana of Shambhala village, the great soul Visnuyasa.
Verse 19 – 20
asvam asu-gam aruhyaSB 12.2.19
vicarann asuna ksaunyamSB 12.2.20
Lord Kalki, the Lord of the universe, will mount His swift horse Devadatta and, sword in hand, travel over the earth exhibiting His eight mystic opulence and eight special qualities of Godhead. Displaying His unequaled effulgence and riding with great speed, He will kill the millions of those thieves who have dared dress as kings.
atha tesam bhavisyanti
manamsi visadani vai
paura-janapadanam vaiSB 12.2.21
After all the impostor kings have been killed, the residents of the cities and towns will feel the breezes carrying the most sacred fragrance of the sandalwood paste and other decorations of Lord Vasudeva, and their minds will thereby become transcendentally pure.
tesam praja-visargas caSB 12.2.22
sattva-murtau hrdi sthite
When Lord Vasudeva, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, appears in their hearts in His transcendental form of goodness, the remaining citizens will abundantly repopulate the earth.
Events After Kali Yuga
The Kali Yuga will finish after Lord Kalki slays Kali Purush and it marks the beginning of a new yuga – Satya.
yadavatirno bhagavanSB 12.2.23
kalkir dharma-patir harih
krtam bhavisyati tada
praja-sutis ca sattviki
When the Supreme Lord has appeared on earth as Kalki, the maintainer of religion, Satya-yuga will begin, and human society will bring forth progeny in the mode of goodness.
yada candras ca suryas caSB 12.2.24
bhavisyati tada krtam
When the moon, the sun, and Brihaspati are together in the constellation Karkata, and all three enter simultaneously into the lunar mansion Pusya—at that exact moment the age of Satya, or Krta, will begin.
ye ’tita vartamana yeSB 12.2.25
bhavisyanti ca parthivah
te ta uddesatah prokta
Thus I have described all the kings—past, present, and future—who belong to the dynasties of the sun and the moon.
arabhya bhavato janmaSB 12.2.26
etad varsa-sahasram tu
From your birth up to the coronation of King Nanda, 1,150 years will pass.
saptarsinam tu yau purvauSB 12.2.27
drsyete uditau divi
tayos tu madhye naksatram
drsyate yat samam nisi
tenaiva rsayo yuktasSB 12.2.28
tisthanty abda-satam nrnam
te tvadiye dvijah kala
adhuna casrita maghah
Of the seven stars forming the constellation of the seven sages, Pulaha and Kratu are the first to rise in the night sky. If a line running north and south were drawn through their midpoint, whichever of the lunar mansions this line passes through is said to be the ruling asterism of the constellation for that time.
The Seven Sages will remain connected with that particular lunar mansion for one hundred human years. Currently, during your lifetime, they are situated in the nakshatra called Magha.
visnor bhagavato bhanuhSB 12.2.29
krsnakhyo ’sau divam gatah
tadavisat kalir lokam
pape yad ramate janah
The Supreme Lord, Visnu, is brilliant like the sun and is known as Krsna. When He returned to the spiritual sky, Kali entered this world, and people then began to take pleasure in sinful activities.
yavat sa pada-padmabhyamSB 12.2.30
sprsan aste rama-patih
tavat kalir vai prthivim
parakrantum na casakat
As long as Lord Sri Krishna, the husband of the goddess of fortune, touched the earth with His lotus feet, Kali was powerless to subdue this planet.
yada devarsayah saptaSB 12.2.31
maghasu vicaranti hi
tada pravrttas tu kalir
When the constellation of the seven sages passes through the lunar mansion Magha, the age of Kali begins. It comprises twelve hundred years of the demigods.
yada maghabhyo yasyantiSB 12.2.32
tada nandat prabhrty esa
kalir vrddhim gamisyati
When the great sages of the Saptarsi constellation pass from Magha to Purvasadha, Kali will have full strength, beginning with King Nanda and his dynasty.
yasmin krsno divam yatasSB 12.2.33
tasminn eva tadahani
iti prahuh pura-vidah
Those who scientifically understand the past declare that on the day that Lord Sri Krishna departed for the spiritual world, the influence of the age of Kali began.
divyabdanam sahasranteSB 12.2.34
caturthe tu punah krtam
bhavisyati tada nrnam
After the one thousand celestial years of Kali-yuga, the Satya-yuga will manifest again. At that time the minds of all men will become self-effulgent.
ity esa manavo vamsoSB 12.2.35
yatha sankhyayate bhuvi
tas ta jneya yuge yuge
Thus I have described the royal dynasty of Manu as it is known on this earth. One can similarly study the history of the Vaisyas, sudras, and Brahmanas living in various ages.
etesam nama-linganamSB 12.2.36
kirtir eva sthita bhuvi
These personalities, who were great souls, are now known only by their names. They exist only in accounts from the past, and only their fame remains on the earth.
devapih santanor bhrataSB 12.2.37
Devapi, the brother of Maharaja Santanu, and Maru, the descendant of Iksvaku, both possess great mystic strength and live even now in the village of Kalapa.
tav ihaitya kaler anteSB 12.2.38
At the end of the age of Kali, these two kings, having received instruction directly from the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vasudeva, will return to human society and reestablish the eternal religion of man, characterized by the divisions of varna and ashrama, just as it was before.
krtam treta dvaparam caSB 12.2.39
kalis ceti catur-yugam
bhuvi pranisu vartate
The cycle of four ages—Satya, Treta, Dvapara, and Kali—continues perpetually among living beings on this earth, repeating the same general sequence of events.
rajann ete maya proktaSB 12.2.40
bhumau mamatvam krtvante
hitvemam nidhanam gatah
My dear King Parikshit, all these kings I have described, as well as all other human beings, come to this earth and stake their claims, but ultimately they all must give up this world and meet their destruction.
raja-namno ’pi yasya ca
bhuta-dhruk tat-krte svartham
kim veda nirayo yatah
Even though a person’s body may now have the designation “king,” in the end, its name will be “worms,” “stool” or “ashes.” What can a person who injures other living beings for the sake of his body know about his own self-interest since his activities are simply leading him to hell?
katham seyam akhanda bhuhSB 12.2.42
purvair me purusair dhrta
mat-putrasya ca pautrasya
mat-purva vamsa-jasya va
[The materialistic king thinks:] “This unbounded earth was held by my predecessors and is now under my sovereignty. How can I arrange for it to remain in the hands of my sons, grandsons, and other descendants?”
tejo-’b-anna-mayam kayamSB 12.2.43
mahim mamataya cobhau
hitvante ’darsanam gatah
Although the foolish accept the body made of earth, water, and fire as “me” and this earth as “mine,” in every case, they have ultimately abandoned both their body and the earth and passed away into oblivion.
ye ye bhu-patayo rajanSB 12.2.44
bhunjate bhuvam ojasa
kalena te krtah sarve
katha-matrah kathasu ca
My dear King Parikshit, all these kings who tried to enjoy the earth by their strength were reduced by the force of time to nothing more than historical accounts.
Thus the end of the Twelfth Canto, the Second Chapter of the Srimad-Bhagavatam, entitled “The Symptoms of Kali-yuga.”