What Caused Ishvara? And How To ‘See' God in All People/Objects? (58)
What Caused Ishvara (God)? And How To See Divinity in All People/Objects? (58)

Summary:

Lesson 58 finishes with final physical stage of creation. Then explains that Ishvara is not caused by anything. Ishvara is beginningless. Thereafter we are shown how to recognize Ishvara (God) everywhere – and not by mere belief. What will such vision do for us? Cultivates wisest human trait, humility, which sustains our peace amidst life's thorns. And jealously instantly falls away, meaning the worst mental disease is destroyed.

Source: Srimad Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 7 – verse 6, 7, 8, 9, 10


REVISION:

  • Topic is Īśvara svarūpam (nature of ultimate cause of creation).
  • Īśvara defined cause of universe (jagat kāraṇam). Cause means BOTH intelligent & material. Meaning this manifest universe is none other then Īśvara. And when one LEARNS to look at world a manifestation of Īśvara, such vision called: visvarūpa darṣanam (to see God in all forms. Title of CH11.)
    • Visvarūpa requires understanding of teaching (viveka/vairyāgyam) AND inner maturity to learn to look the very world as Īśvara's manifestation.
  • Until we study middle portion, our assumption being: Īśvara is a person and Īśvara darṣanam is about coming in contact with a personal God.
    • Krishna wants to remove this idea from our mind and present that very creation is Īśvara. He is preparing our mind, so by chapter CH11 (Vision of Cosmic Person), we do NOT ASK for arrival of God. But understand God has already ARRIVED in form of 5 elements.
    • Therefore 2 things are being asked of student: (1) UNDERSTAND Īśvara (2) REORIENT mind to see very world AS Īśvara.
  • Otherwise to see Īśvara as person is: eka rūpa īśvaraḥ (personal God in ONE form).
    • Krishna is asking us to change VIEW to: aneka rūpa īśvaraḥ (God as ALL forms). In fact entire B.Gītā is aiming at: aneka / visvarūpa īśvara darśanam.
      • Why is he asking us this change? Because eka/personal God is subject to arrival/departure. Happiness when perceived. Unhappiness upon separation. However with aneka/visvarūpa, no question of disappearance. Īśvara always IS. Peace.
  • How does Īśvara evolve into the universe? TWO stages.
    • Stage 1: ONE parā (Reflected Consciousness principle), ONE aparā-prakṛti (inert matter principle).
    • Stage 2: Intermediary stage: ONE aparā DIVIDES into 8-fold (makes up gross/subtle world. Unmanifested matter. All jīvas, minds, intellects, aham kāra, saṃskāras). While parā continues ONE and SAME.
    • Stage 3: Final: 8-fold aparā > becomes manifold creation. While parā-prakṛti continues ONE and SAME.
      • All the while, Īśvara NEVER undergoes any changes. EG: Cotton not changed to become shirt. Thus Īśvara pervades & is beyond creation.
  • Therefore wherever you see changing matter at any time, appreciate it as aparā-prakṛti of Īśvara.
    • And what is parā-prakṛti? THAT because of which you are AWARE of aparā experiences. Invisible CHANGELESS awareness principle.
  • Krishna also says whatever is OTHER THEN parā/aparā, belongs to YOUR avidyā.
    • Meaning nothing is left, except aham kāra.
      • Separate “I” who agrees with parā/aparā, EXCEPT does NOT put itself under EITHER.
      • Thus there is: parā/aparā AND aham kāra (3rd witness yet to surrender ITSELF to both).
    • Gītā also helps us remove this FINAL avidyā trace (I-ness). AFTER removal final understanding is: There is neither shirt nor sleeves. Cotton alone IS.
      • There is neither jīva nor jagat. Īśvara alone IS. Hence: jīva/jagat are products/effects of their CAUSE.
      • World is a product. Remove “l” = WORD. A mere name/form without substance.

 

Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 7 – Verse 6:

etadyonīni bhūtāni sarvāṇītyupadhāraya |
ahaṃ kṛtsnasya jagataḥ prabhavaḥ pralayastathā ||

Ascertain that all things and beings have these two prakritis as their material cause. (Therefore) I am the source as well as the ground of dissolution of this entire universe.

 

  • Krishna talks CONVERSION of intermediary stage > final cosmos. In verse 4/5, talked about intermediary/plant stage (1x parā, 8x aparā).
  • From the plant stage, a huge tree of cosmos comes. Consists of (A) gross elements and (B) elementals.
    • Gross elements (bhūtam): Physical 5 elements.
    • Elementals (bhautikam): Products formed by combinations of physical 5 elements.
      • EG 1: Earth + Water = Clay/Mud. Dried with Air = functional product; cup.
      • EG 2: Body is basically:
        • Refined MUD. Mostly WATER and rest is food (EARTH).
        • Fire: Including fire (heat). EG: Preserves heat despite cold.
        • Air: Inside blood.
        • Space: Stomach
      • EG 3: Hydrogen (Air) + Fire = Dihydrogen oxide (Water)
    • How do we convert subtle (S2: subtle 5 elements) to gross (S3: gross 5 elements)?
      • EG: Gas (subtle form) > Condensation (C) > Liquid (gross form).
        • Gas: Compared to Stage 2: Subtle Air
        • Liquid: Compared to Stage 3: Gross Air
        • Condensation: Thought. EG: Some can make their bodies hot/cold just by thought.
          • Subtle Thought > Gross manifestation in body.
  • etadhyonīni bhūtāni sarvāṇī: All things/beings, from smallest mirco-organism to most evolved human body, has it’s cause in Me (parā/aparā prakṛti OR nirguṇa saguṇa Īśvara).
    • So parā/aparā mixture alone is source of entire creation. Mixture called Īśvara (God).
    • Meaning Īśvara has EVOLVED in form of this creation (without undergoing changes).
      • So Krishna is redefining our concept of God.
        • EG: God is powerful person LOCATED beyond clouds. Keeps creating and dumping down. This IDEA is beginning stage and valid. Why? Because impure mind can NOT appreciate Īśvara in true nature.
      • Therefore śāstra introduce Īśvara in 3 levels:
        1. Īśvara = person. (Since humans relate most to people.)
        2. Īśvara = ENTIRE universe wherever you look. (parā/aparā OR nirguṇa saguṇa)
        3. Īśvara = nirguṇa caitanyam (Brahman). Property-less consciousness. Abstract Truth. Few people can appreciate #3, therefore it’s never presented at start.
    • SUMMARY: LEARN to look at everything as My own manifestation. PRACTICE!
  • Therefore sarvāṇī iti upadhāraya, assert/digest that whole UNIVERSE evolves out of Me, and rests in Me.
    • Then what is fate of the UNIVERSE?
      • Scientists postulate big-bang > big-crunch. Singularity. Then again expand.
      • According to scriptures, evolution of jagat will be REVERSED.
        • Meaning: Sṛṣṭi (creation) & sthiti (preservation) > pralaya (dissolution) goes back to 1x parā/aparā.
      • Related CH2.28: Everything goes back to unmanifest condition. From Unmanifest comes manifestation.
    • Sample of mini creation-dissolution:
      • Moment we wake up in morning, ALL our dormant actions/thoughts EVOLVE out of us.
        • Person (puruṣa) continues from yesterday (last creation). Today = new creation.
      • During deep SLEEP, everything withdrawn into ourselves. But not permanently.
        • Next morning, the withdrawn potential… CONVERTS into actions/thoughts.
        • For actions/thoughts to express, we need a FIELD supplied.
          • Who supplies the field? Īśvara (Parā/aparā).
      • Waking/sleep is CYCLIC. Thus can’t ask “When did it all start?”
        • Cycle has no beginning/end. It’s eternal (anādi). Cycle will not end.
      • Only way to GET OUT of cycle is mokṣa. EG: Merry-go-around has no off-button. After few fun rounds, get SICK. How to come out? Only way, deliberately jump off.
  • 2nd line: ahaṃ kṛtsnasya jagataḥ prabhavaḥ pralayastathā: I am origin of entire universe. Resolution ground AND graveyard of this creation. I throw out and I resolve.
    • Scripture compares this to OUR projection of dream universe…
      • Out of your mind spontaneously EMERGES vast dream world. Many loka/creations.
      • Time/space also generated out of mind. Different time from waking. Scientists estimate dream lasts 1-½ min. Measure by REM.
        • So ½ min: school, married, children, grandchildren.
      • Who created dream time/space/objects? My mind. When wake up, I SWALLOW the whole thing.
        • Thus I AM creation (Sṛṣṭi) / preservation (sthiti) / dissolution (laya) CAUSE (kāraṇam) of my dream Universe.
    • Similarly Īśvara is Sṛṣṭi / sthiti / laya kāraṇam of WHOLE COSMOS.

 

Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 7 – Verse 7:

mattaḥ parātaraṃ nānyat kiñcidasti dhanañjaya |
mayi sarvamidaṃ protaṃ sūtre maṇigaṇā iva ||

Oh, Arjuna, there is no other cause at all apart from Me. All this is strung in Me like beads in a string.

 

  • Normally we observe ONE law. Every CAUSE got it’s own CAUSE.
    • EG: Child is a PRODUCT/effect of parent’s CAUSE. But parents ALSO have cause, in reference to their parents. So parents become EFFECT.
  • Provokes question: Who is CAUSE of Īśvara?
    • Krishna says: I am parent-less parent of this creation. Causeless-cause. Nothing caused Me. I am never an EFFECT of anything.
      • Reason why parā/aparā are beginingless. Nothing caused them. Nothing caused Īśvara.
  • Therefore, mattaḥ parataram nānyat kiñcidasti: There is no other cause for Me. I am the ULTIMATE cause. I am the ABSOLUTE cause of creation.
  • To explain 2nd line: Īśvara is material cause of creation. Meaning material cause is inherent in all PRODUCTS/EFFECTS.
    • EG 1: All earth-ware pots exist because of clay. Clay inheres all beautiful/ugly, rich/poor pots.
    • EG 2: Ornaments exist only because of inherent gold. Remove gold, no ornaments.
    • EG 3: Remove wood, no furniture.
  • So Krishna will say: I am inherent cause because of which whole world is HELD TOGETHER. He gives eg: Māla has inherent thread keeping it’s beads together.
    • When look at māla, beads are visible.
    • But you ALSO KNOW within visible beads, there is an invisible thread (sūtram). Because of thread, māla IS. No thread, no māla.
  • Therefore, sūtre maṇigaṇā iva: Just as beads are threaded together by string… similarly WHOLE UNIVERSE (laws, orders, matter) is threaded together because of UNSEEN string called Īśvara (parā: string | aparā: beads).
    • Value of necklace/beads easily appreciated. But thread value, rarely!
    • So if asked “Where is God?”… how to answer? Counter question “Where is He NOT?”

 

Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 7 – Verse 8:

raso'hamapsu kaunteya prabhā'smi śaśisūryayoḥ |
praṇavaḥ sarvavedeṣu śabdaḥ khe pauruṣaṃ nṛṣu ||

Oh! Arjuna, I am the taste in water. I am the radiance in the moon and sun; I am the Omkara in all the Vēdās; (I am) the sound in space; (I am) the manliness in men.

 

  • Krishna asking for attitude change, based on our new understandings. For example…
    • We love and have reverential feelings for parents because we KNOW what they have done for us.
      • So proportion of my knowledge of their sacrifices, I DEVELOP attitude of reverence.
      • Same case with any person.
        • When meet unknown person, attitude is NEUTRAL. Neither rāga/dveṣa.
        • After come to discover their values, sacrifices, read biography… we DEVELOP knowledge about them… we develop reverence/admiration.
  • In same way, proportional to understanding world, my attitude changes towards it.
    • For example, when see world as world, attitude is: rāga/dveṣa. Persecutes. Fear. Disturbs.
    • However when understand world as visvarūpa (many manifestations of God), then attitude is of reverence.
      • EG: Rudram supposed to be most potent prayer. What is it? Expressing visvarūpa darśanam.
        • EG 1: One does namaskāra to Lord Śiva, who is in form of mud.
        • EG 2: One does namaskāra to Sun, which is not matter alone. It is aparā-prakṛti (Īśvara).
  • How to apply in daily life?
    • Knowledge can be gathered immediately. But attitudinal change takes time. EG: Eating immediate, digestion (most important) for hours.
    • Similarly, student has 2 fold job:
      1. Understanding teaching (knowledge).
      2. Deliberately bringing about attitudinal / perspective change. Divinisation of world.
    • Conclusion:
      • See world as world = UNREST/saṃsāra. But SAME world seen as Īśvara = no saṃsāra.
      • 1st verse Īśa Upaniṣad: Īśāvāsyam idagum sarvam: Learn to see world as Īśvara svarūpa.
  • How does Krishna tells us to change attitude? 1st line: raso'hamapsu kaunteya prabhā'smi śaśisūryayoḥ
    • Arjuna, when drink water, do not look as JUST water. But essence of water (keeping your BMI alive) is essence of Me (Īśvara). This applies to everything. Ultimate goal in life is looking everything as God.
    • I am LIGHT, radiance, brilliance in the sun & moon.
      • Light of sun is worshipped in Gāyatri, considered pinnacle of all Vedas.
        • Symbolizes conscious principle (para-prakriti). THAT which makes inert brain into a live KNOWING instrument. Therefore see sunlight as Bhagavān also.
  • praṇavaḥ sarva vedeṣu: I am praṇava. The sacred OM/omkāra (3 states) – considered essence of all Vedas.
    • OM is like condensed Juice. When diluted = each page of Vedas.
    • OM is Īśvara also.
  • śabdaḥ khe: I am essence of all pervading space, which makes sound possible. Both I am.
  • pauruṣaṃ nṛṣu: Humanness in every human being. To claim “I am a human being”, that privilege is possible because of Ishvara.

 

Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 7 – Verse 9:

puṇyo gandhaḥ pṛthivyāṃ ca tejaścāsmi vibhāvasau |
jīvanaṃ sarvabhūteṣu tapaścāsmi tapasviṣu ||

O Arjuna! Moreover I am the fragrance in earth; I am the heat in fire: I am the life in all beings and I am the austerity in ascetics.

 

  • Puṇyaḥ gandhaḥ pṛthivyām: Essential nature of earth is fragrance/smell. I am THAT also. Can smell after fresh rain on mud
  • Tejaścāsmi vibhāvasau:
    • tejaḥ: heat principle in fire.
    • Even without form/color, heat is felt. Sun, hot water, kettle. I am that HEAT.
  • jīvanaṃ sarvabhūteṣu: I AM life principle, because of which a living being is LIVING. Without which, it is dead corpse.
    • Reason why basic principle in Vedic tradition is – respect all life.
    • Opposed to some religions: Other living beings meant for one purpose: CONSUMPTION. Animals/plants = no soul. God created them for human consumption.
    • Every plant/animal/human has life: ātma tattvam
  • tapaścāsmi tapasviṣu:
    • Amongst human beings, some are more evolved. Called ascetics. Because of their tapas (disciplines), perseverance, commitment… they have accomplished something (material/spiritual).
      • I AM those tapas (disciplines) which produced accomplishment.
      • I am saintliness in saintly people.
  • SUMMARY: Learn to look all 5 elements (make up the world) as Īśvara manifestation. Results? PRODUCES attitude change.

 

Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 7 – Verse 10:

bījaṃ māṃ sarvabhūtānāṃ viddhi pārtha sanātanam |
buddhirbuddhimatāmasmi tejastejasvināmaham ||

Oh! Arjuna, Know Me to be the eternal seed of all beings. I am the intelligence of the intelligent. I am the boldness of the bold.

 

  • 2nd line: buddhiḥ buddhi matām asmi: I am intelligence principle BEHIND intelligent people.
    • Some folks have extra-ordinary intelligence, and enjoy glorifying their cleverness… THAT Intelligence, I AM.
      • Meaning because of My blessing alone, intelligent people are enjoying the intelligence.
  • Similarly, asmi tejastejasvinām: I am boldness in bold. Valour in valorous.
    • Boldness? Capacity which person is able to overcome obstacles (human/non-human).
    • Some people withdrawn upon slightest confrontation/challenge. While others have capacity to conquer and move forward. That capacity, I AM.
  • What is BENEFIT of changing my attitude per 7.8-10?
    • First understand: Nature of everything is Īśvara.
      • Meaning any virtues like boldness, intelligence, austerity, knowledge… DO NOT belong to me. But are manifestation of their CAUSE. So credit does NOT go to me, but Lord. This means the more one appreciates Īśvara… more HUMBLE one becomes.
      • What does humbleness do? Establishes peace. Antidote to annoyances. Conqueror of rāga/dveṣa slavery. Cure for saṃsāra.
      • How does humility come?
        1. Born of knowledge. Stays.
        2. Without understanding = flattery. Fake. Reinforces saṃsāra. EG: Some salesman/waitress/politician who show fake humility for future agenda, as Duryodhana did. (NOTE: We’re not referring to all of course.)
      • Example HOW humility comes:
        • In Kena Upaniṣad, there is story of Devās who become arrogant over their victory of asurās. Bhagavān comes in form of mysterious yakṣa (spirit). To discover who yakṣa was, Bhagavān places blade of grass, infront of Devās.
        • Agni-devata (God of fire) told to burn it. Couldn’t burn it. Recognized it’s heat principle is Bhagavān’s glory.
        • Vāyu-devata (God of Air) told to blow. Failed.
        • Thus the devās realized their power is not theirs. They become humble.
      • CONCLUSION: IF get any degree, honour, compliment, reward… better remember Īśvara. Place it front of Lord.
        • Īśvara understanding gives true humility.
        • Ignorance of Īśvara leads to arrogance.
  • SECOND advantage besides humility is:
    • When SEE glory of Īśvara in any person, NEVER again become JEALOUS.
    • When does jealousy come?
      • COMPARING my glory (which is NOT mine), to another person’s glory. EG: “Society is glorifying that person more then me! He has more appreciation, love, respect, skills!”
    • Therefore when I appreciate God, I can never experience jealousy. Because all glories belong to ONE Cause.
      • EG: If we both sing well, we won’t compare. Because both capacities belong to one Īśvara.
      • We have NO GLORY of our own. For example, story of the jealous pipe…
        • One is thin. Another thick. Thin pipe is JEALOUS how thicker can handle more water (blessings). Thicker is PROUD.
        • Pipe ācāryah says: Water you fight over belongs to one same water tank! Water is not yours.
        • Similarly, humans are like pipes. And all glories traveling THROUGH us, belongs to one same Īśvara.
        • Therefore learn to congratulate when see glories of others.
  • BENEFIT SUMMARY of Īśvara jñānam: Humility (leads to undisturbed peace in challenges) / Non-jealousy (appreciating others).
  • 1st line: bījam mām sarvabhūtānāṃ viddhi pārtha sanātanam:
    • Bījam: seed, ultimate/absolute cause. For clarity, there are 2 definitions of causes:
      1. Intermediary/relative cause:
        • Parent is cause of son. But not ultimate cause, because parent too is caused by another cause.
        • Īśvara is NOT this category: āpekṣika kāraṇam
      2. Ultimate/Absolute Cause:
        • Cause of everything. But which is not caused by anyone. Causeless cause.
        • Thus Īśvara is parentless parent. Fatherless father. Motherless mother of creation.
    • Meaning, Īśvara does not have a beginning.
      • Krishna mentions because knows question will be asked “What is cause of God?”. I AM the eternal causeless cause of creation.

 

Keywords: acarya, aham kara, ahamkara, aneka rupa, apara-prakriti, avidya, bhagavan, bhuta, darsana, devesha, eka rupa, gayatri, ishvara, ishvara darshanam, karanam, namaskara, nirguna, omkara, para-prakriti, purusha, raga, saguna, samskaras, sanatanam, srishti, srsti, sthiti, svarupam , upanishad, vairagya, vayu devata, vishvarupa darshana, visvarupa darshana

 

Credit for help in Bhagavad Gita teaching given to Chinmaya Int. Foundation, Swami Paramarthananda

Recorded 16 July, 2019

 

12 Comments

  1. James on July 18, 2019 at 9:38 pm

    Could you please clarify the statement that avidya is whatever is not part of paraprakrti/aparaprakrti which is ahamkara. Last week you said that ahamkara was one of the 8-fold aparaprakrti in the 2nd stage of creation.

    • mm Andre V on July 18, 2019 at 10:24 pm

      Analogy: 10 men go on spiritual pilgrimage. All 10 cross river. To check if all made it, one person counts, and only finds 9 left. Next person counts, also 9 left. They all grieve 10th person who drowned in the river.

      Wise person comes and says “You fools, you each forgot to INCLUDE yourself as part of the WHOLE GROUP.”

      Meaning, each counter preserved their separate sense of “I” and forgot to surrender it to the WHOLE. Thus each counter had avidyā. It’s only when wise person told them “You forgot to count yourself”, they then were able to surrender their aham kāra to the WHOLE GROUP.

      In same way, one says “Everything is parā/aparā”. But the aham kāra saying it, still is NOT including itself into parā/aparā.

      The Gītā corrects this. So nothing to worry about.

  2. Ben Simpson on January 28, 2020 at 3:24 pm

    The jiva ben thinks that the only reason “things” and “thoughts” (including the jiva typing this!) “exist” is because of desire.

    The jiva wants something or wishes to avoid something and so it “breaks up” existence into “things/thoughts” to GET or AVOID.

    If the jiva suddenly didn’t need to AVOID or GET anything.

    Would the jiva exist? It seems to me the sole purpose of the jiva is to get stuff or try and run away from stuff.

    The jiva ben feels that as I soften the jivas “desire volume” by identifying (though introspection) satya and mithya the louder the “truth-self volume” becomes.

    • mm Andre V on February 3, 2020 at 8:11 pm

      If the jiva suddenly didn’t need to AVOID or GET anything. Would the jiva exist? > What is life? Moments of avoiding/getting. For whom? Jīva. Since jīva is not separate from life, it will continue avoiding/getting.

      Even jñāni avoids scorching sun and gets nutritious food to support the body and mind. A jñāni who is so detached from his body that he doesn’t take care of it’s need to avoid/get, is clearly a fool and living in denial.

      As long as there is life, avoiding/getting is inescapable.

  3. Ben Simpson on February 5, 2020 at 10:17 am

    Agreed its a “middle way” not an extreme denial like a starving ascetic on the charnel grounds. For the “me” its not so much avoiding necessities but like in alcoholics anonymous i need to start by acknowledge my “needs/wants” mindfully and admit i have a problem with the “I”‘s management/consciousness of those needs. So that the “I” becomes the know-er of the needs rather than the “I” being DEFINED by the needs/wants. The jnani sees things like a playful kind child sees toys. Enjoying them but always ready to share or move on to another thing as it arises. The question is does the “I” not yet i think. The fruit has to be put back on the tree to enter Eden.

  4. Robert Green on November 3, 2020 at 11:09 pm

    Hi Andre.
    Have been listening to your teaching about how we can understand Isvara.
    Previous teaching I have received says that
    “ the Universe is a thought form projected from the mind of God!”
    Q:
    Is this a valid way to understand the true nature of Isvara and the cause of material creation!

    • mm Andre V on November 3, 2020 at 11:27 pm

      There’s many ways to communicate the reality. Regarding the statement, it can be understood just as “Dream is a thought form projected from the mind of you”. So yes it makes sense.

      However Ishvara (as material/intelligent cause) is discussed in greater detail in CH9.

  5. Robert Green on November 4, 2020 at 12:00 am

    Thanks Andre.
    Simple and clear again.

    With respect to the point raised about the universe being founded upon vibration.
    You have actually already answered this.
    Works like the “Law Of Attraction ” ( which I believe leads one down the path of selfishness and self interest “ describe the principle of sympathetic vibration.
    It is a means of manipulating ends.
    I know that you know this:

    At a more foundational level for the material universe, and now entering the world of quantum physics, it talks about how this is a universe that is forever changing and transforming.
    It is a universe where nothing remains as it is; all is momentum. ( except, as you have pointed out, and in accordance with the law of the conservation of energy, nothing is ever destroyed).
    You have alluded to this many times in showing how all names/ forms reduce to more elementary components.

    Finally arriving at string theory, which you have said is at least postulating intelligent vibration!
    But of course, this ultimately resolves into space, which ultimately resolved into consciousness.
    So again can’t be the ultimate cause!

    So this is the boundary condition of empirical investigation.
    The Planck length.
    All of this is Confined to the level of Mitya and does not address or impinge upon the ontology that you are teaching us.
    Vedanta remains unassailable and you have already addressed this concept many times analogically in different forms.
    🙏

    • mm Andre V on November 6, 2020 at 8:02 pm

      Although there is another side to “Law of attraction”. It does have merit. Because it’s taking advantage (although without dharma) of cause-effect.

      Every cause one puts out, in itself is an effect. And there’s no cause without effect.

      For example, whole karma-kanda section of Vedas is about manipulating results in my favour using specific Vedic rituals. The only difference is:

      Vedas: First teaches dharma (universal ethics).

      Law of attraction: skips dharma, and goes straight to “Here’s how to get likes/dislikes fulfilled”. This basically entangles person deeper into samsara.

  6. Robert Green on November 4, 2020 at 2:03 pm

    All Jivas are created during the intermediary stage, when the one apara divides into the eight fold.
    The cycle of creation is without beginning or end.
    When the universe resolves into pralaya, the Jiva must also resolve into pralaya.
    Does the same Jiva manifest again in the next cycle, or are new Jivas created?
    There are a finite number of Jivas in creation at any one time.
    What happens when all of those eventually attain moksha?
    No more Jivas, so no more need for lokas, so no more creation.
    But creation is endless!
    What is the correct way to look at this?

    • mm Andre V on November 6, 2020 at 8:32 pm

      ==========
      “Does the same Jiva manifest again in the next cycle, or are new Jivas created?”
      ==========

      Nothing new can be created. There is only manifest and potential. So when we speak of “new jivas”, what we really mean is “potential jivas”. In that case yes. Just as there were potential jivas (yet to manifest) at time of dinosaurs.

      =========
      What happens when all of those eventually attain moksha?
      =========

      That’ll never happen. Creation has already existed since beginningless. What never began (first time), can never end (last time).

      Question:
      Also, common question is “But what happens to the jīva who is no longer reborn due to mokṣa? If jiva is not reborn, then eventually there will be no more jīvas reborn”.

      Answer:
      What is infinity – 1? Infinity. It’s not like Ishvara creates 1000 jivas. And upon moksha, now it’s down to 999 jivas. 🙂

      Infinite waves in the ocean are nothing but water. Upon death of a realized-wave, nothing changes. Still infinite waves, ocean, water is true. Except water is now identified with entire ocean, instead of just one wave.

  7. Robert Green on November 6, 2020 at 10:43 pm

    Thanks Andre.
    I had been taught in the past that there were a finite number of souls ( Jivas) and that in fact the number is sixty billion.
    Seems preystupid now, but I realise that I had absorbed that belief which has lead to my misunderstanding and therefore my question.
    A bit like how past Samsara clouds present judgement.

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