Bhagavad Gita- Chap 9(Part-1) Raajavidyaa Raajaguhya Yogah- Yoga of Royal Knowledge and Royal Secret


mayaa tatamidam sarvam  jagadavyaktamoortinaa
    matstaani sarvabhootani na chaaham  teshvavasthitah // 9.4 //

All  things in this universe are pervaded by Me in My unmanifest aspect; all beings  exist in Me but I do not exist in them.

na cha matsthaani bhootaani pashya me  yogamaishwaram
    bhootabhrinna cha bhootastho mamaatmaa  bhootabhaavanah // 9.5 //

And  yet the beings do not exist in Me; behold, that is My Divine mystery. My Spirit  which is the support of all beings and the source of all things does not dwell  in them.

These  two verse are very popular but yet difficult for easy comprehension. They  require considerable reflection.

As  we have seen earlier whenever Bhagavan uses the word ‘ME’ it does not refer to  him as any individual but it means the Supreme Lord, the Ultimate Cause of All,  the Uncaused Cause. His unmanifested form is Consciousness, Atman which is  imperceptible to the senses. All things in the universe denote from the highest  Brahma, the cosmic Spirit, to a blade of grass. Nothing can exist in this world  unless the Lord, the Spirit, forms its substratum. Upanishads declare that the  Lord, after creating the objects entered them as their indwelling consciousness  to enliven them. Brahman, God, exists as the unmanifest Reality and pervades  everywhere. Nothing exists other than Brahman. Yet because of delusion we see  only the manifested world of beings and not it’s underlying Reality. We  superimpose the illusory world on the eternal Reality, Brahman.

This  is like a deluded person misunderstanding a post as a ghost in darkness. He is  said to superimpose the figure of ghost on the post on account of his wrong  perception. The post is the substratum of the ghost; the post pervades every  part of the ghost; the ghost cannot exist unless there is the post but the post  can survive in spite of the absence of the ghost. Similarly Brahman exists  without the world, but the world’s existence depends upon Brahman.

Hence  Krishna declares this truth in Verse 4 above that All things in this universe  are pervaded by Him in His unmanifest aspect  and that all beings exist in Him but He does not  exist in them. This is just like saying that the ghost exists in the post but  the post does not exist in the ghost. The post remains the source of the ghost.  There can be no ghost without the post, but the post can remain without the  ghost.

A  thing devoid of inner reality cannot exist or be an object of experience. The  Lord is the inner reality of everything. The reality of the Lord makes real  everything in this world. But the reality of the Lord does not depend upon the  world. He always exists whether the universe of names and forms exists or not.

The  Lord is incorporeal and therefore has no real contact with the material world.  He cannot be contained in any object. He is self-existent and self-luminous.  Only a fraction of His majesty illumines the sun, the moon and the universe.  But He himself is transcendental.

Having  said that, the Lord further declares in the Verse 5 that “All beings do not  dwell in Me; My spirit which is the support of all beings and the source of all  things, does not dwell in them”. On the face of it, this verse seems to  contradict what was stated in the previous verse. Verse 4 admits the existence  of beings in Brahman while Verse 5 denies the existence of beings in Brahman. A  little critical analysis will remove this apparent mismatch of ideas.

Applying  the same previous example of the post and the ghost to this verse, it is like  the post telling that ‘The ghost is not in me nor I am in the ghost. In fact,  there never was a ghost. The ghost you perceive is only your imagination and  not based on any fact or reality. The only reality is I, the post. I was, I am  and I will be (the post only). This is the only truth from my standpoint’.

Thus  the contradiction between these two verses is reconciled if we understand that  there is no real existence of the universe and the beings. The existence of  beings admitted in Verse 4 has only an illusory appearance to the eyes of the  deluded. Beings do not actually exist, Brahman alone exists. Those who are  fortunate to have wisdom clearly perceive and experience this truth. They see  Brahman alone supporting the illusory phenomenon of this universe.

While  in dream state we do not see the connection between the dream world and our  mind. Only on waking up we understand such connection. Our mind alone projected  the dream world which on waking up disappeared. Similarly, on tuning to  God-consciousness, upon realizing the Self, we see the relation between the  universe and God, Brahman.

What  is this relation? The infinite Lord cannot be contained in a finite universe.  Then why cannot the universe and the beings dwell in Him? The Lord, in reality,  is neither the container nor the contained. In Him there is not the slightest  trace of duality. In His purest essence He is above the law of cause and  effect. In the final realization, the object and the subject become one; the  whole universe merges in the Lord. In that state the Lord remains as One  without a second, a homogeneous concentration of consciousness. The concepts of  container and contained, cause and effect, apply to the realm of manifestation  or maya. Through maya even though the Lord manifests in the tangible, relative  universe, and appears to be its cause and support, yet He is always One without  a second, transcendental, incorporeal and unattached. This is His eternal  mystery - ‘My Divine Mystery’ as the Lord puts it in the Verse 5.


yathaakaashasthito nityam vaayuh  sarvatrago mahaan
    tathaa sarvaani bhootani  matsthaaneetyupadhaaraya // 9.6 //

As  the mighty wind moving everywhere rests always in space (The Akasa), even so  you know that all beings rest in Me.

It  is really difficult for the ordinary intellect to comprehend the idea that a  substance which exists everywhere, allowing everything to exist in it, but at  the same time it in itself does not get conditioned by the things existing  in it.

Although  the wind moves everywhere in the space, exists in the space and is supported by  the space yet the wind does not put any limitation on the space. Space holds  them all but is touched by none. This illustrates the relationship between the  Self and the Not-Self. When the wind moves the space does not move. None of the  qualities of the wind is the quality of the space. So also, the Real supports  the unreal which seemingly lives in the Real and yet the unreal full of misery  and sorrow can never condition the Real.

On  the same analogy, without affecting the Lord in any way, good and evil, pain  and pleasure, and the other traits of this universe do not touch the Lord  because from His point of view they are illusory. He can never be touched by  anything happening in time and space. As a light cannot be affected by the good  or evil deed done with its help, so the soul, which in its essence is one with  the Lord, cannot be affected by the good and evil action of the body and mind.


sarvabhootaani kaunteya prakritim  yaanti  maamikaam
    kalpakshaye punastaani kalpaadau  visrijaamyaham // 9.7 //

O  son of Kunti, all beings, go back to My nature at the end of a time-cycle (Kalpa);  I send them forth again at the beginning of the next cycle.

prakritim swaamavashtabhya visrijaami  punah punah
    bhootagraamamimam kritsnamavasham  prakritervashaat // 9.8 //

Controlling  My own nature, I again and again send forth all this multitude of beings,  helpless under the sway of maya.
  In  these two verses Sri Krishna describes how His power of maya is instrumental in  the process of creation and dissolution of the universe.

The  whole process of creation, preservation and dissolution is due to the Lord’s  maya, His lower prakriti or nature consisting of the three gunas in  their undifferentiated state and yet He is unaffected by it. Vedanta while  recognizing the fact of creation does not approve of the act of creation. The  Lord does not create the universe from nothing or void, for nothing only can  come out from nothing. Therefore Vedanta believes that the Lord, because of His  power of lower nature, maya, projects out of Himself (manifests) all the names  and forms at the time of creation. Consciousness or His higher nature endows  them with life.

At  the end of the time-cycle, the names and forms of the manifested universe go  back into the seed state and remain merged in Prakriti. At this state the three  gunas of Prakriti remain in equilibrium. When this balance is disturbed, again  creation takes place. This process of creation and dissolution is without  beginning.  Thus the better terms to  indicate creation and dissolution are manifestation or evolution and mergence  or involution. The Lord, in His pure essence, remains unaffected by the  activities of His maya, though the insentient maya is activated because of its  proximity to the Lord.

Verse  8 says that the Lord, with the help of Prakriti manifests the universe. Because  of His very proximity, insentient Nature acts. Maya or Prakriti is under His  control. But Jiva or the created being is under the control of maya.

Living  beings come out of Prakriti which remains dormant at the end of the previous cycle.  Dissolution or the state in which the three gunas remain at perfect balance is  called the sleep (dormant state) of Prakriti.

The  beings at the end of the previous cycle merged in Prakriti are still under the  influence of maya or ignorance. As Prakriti becomes active at the beginning of  the next cycle, the beings also assume appropriate births according to their  past karma.

Since  the creation is falsely superimposed upon the Lord, what is perceived to be the  universe existing in time and space is, from the point of Reality, nothing but  the Lord Himself. Just as in the illusion of a rope appearing as a snake, the  falsely perceived snake is in reality nothing but the rope.

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