Balarama also known as Baladeva, is the elder brother of Krishna (an avatar of the god Vishnu) and is regarded generally as an avatar of Shesha. Balarama was a son of Vasudeva. Balarama spent his childhood as a cow herder with his brother Krishna.
He killed Dhenuka, an asura sent by Kansa, as well as Pralamba and Mushtika wrestlers sent by the king. After the evil king died, Balarama and Krishna went to the ashrama of sage Sandipani`s at Ujjayini for study. He later married Revati, the daughter of King Kakudmi, ruler of Kushasthali or Anarta.
Balarama taught both Duryodhana of the Kauravas and Bhima of the Pandavas the art of fighting with a mace. When war broke between the Kauravas and the Pandavas, Balarama cared for both sides, and so remained neutral.
In the Bhagavata Purana, it is described that after Balarama took part in the battle causing the destruction of the remainder of the Yadu dynasty, and witnessing the disappearance of Krishna, he sat down in a meditative state and departed from this world. Some scriptures describe a great white snake that left the mouth of Balarama, in reference to his identity as Ananta-Sesha. The place where he departed is situated near Somnath Temple in Gujarat.
Narratives of Balarama are found in the Mahabharata, Harivamsha, Bhagavata Purana and other Puranas. The Bhagavata Purana suggests Balarama as incarnation of Vishnu. He is classified in the vyuha avathar Sankarshana, of Vishnu where in Adishesha and Lakshmana is part of. The most revered temple of Balarama is in Kendrapada and in Puri in Odisha.