TROTA | CHAPTER 4 | SEL0458 | SWAMI KRISHNANANDA
|| 4.05 | BRAHMAN AS GOD OR ISHVARA | CONT ||
The accidental attributes , the tatastha-lakshanas of the Absolute , make It appear as Ishvara , whose existence is in relation to the manifested Universe .
" The sun rises in Self and sets again in Self . " " The shining region of the heavens is The Head , the sun and the moon are The Eyes , the quarters of space are The Ears , the Vedas full of knowledge are The Speech , the air is The Vital Energy , the Universe is The Heart , the earth is The Feet — This is the inmost Self of all beings . " ( Mund . Up . II . 1 . 4 ) .
All reality known to us is limited to this Self .
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We love and possess things , we speak , act and think , because we are the Self of that which is loved , possessed , spoken , done and thought .
The world subsists in our Consciousness which is the Great Self of all .
Aught else than our Self is nothing ; the Self is the " Vaishvanara " , GOD of all , and all are , because GOD is .
Our Self the Great Self are one ; whatever is outside us , is also inside us :
" In reality , great as this external space is , so great is this space within the heart ; in it are contained both the heaven and the earth , both fire and air , both sun and moon , lightning and stars , whatever is here , and whatever is not here — everything thereof is contained within it . " ( Chh . Up . VIII . 1 . 3 ) .
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A declaration is made in this , which strikes terror into the worldly ; the individual and the cosmos , the soul and GOD are one ! " That thou art , O Svetaketu ! "
This may not be easy to accept , but only this can be the truth .
This alone removes all contradictions in life , this truth alone stands unsublated .
" The Purusha is what is and what is not . " " Who dwells in all beings , and is other than all beings , whom all beings do not know , whose body are all beings , who controls all beings from within — This is thy Self , the Inner Ruler , the Immortal " ( Brih . Up . III . 7 . 15 ) .
" In the space within the heart lies the Ruler of all , the Lord of all , the Sovereign of all . . . It is the Overlord of all beings , the Ruler of all beings , the Protector of all beings " ( Brih . Up . IV . 4 . 22 ) .
" Etad vai tat — This , verily , is That . "
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The Supreme Lord is the Power of powers .
" Agni cannot burn even a piece of straw ; Vayu cannot blow even a piece of straw , apart from the Will of the Supreme " ( Kena . Up . III ) .
All beings , even the gods , even the greatest powers , execute their functions properly due to their dread for this Supreme .
The Great Lord can do or undo or otherwise do the whole Universe in the quick flash of a fraction of a single moment ! It is also the boundless ocean of Knowledge .
Even the gods cannot see It .
It cannot be known even through penance and sacrifice .
" This Atman is not to be comprehended through mere discourse , intellectuality or extensive hearing ; It is obtained only by one ( to ) whom It chooses ( to reveal Its Nature ) " ( Katha . Up . I . 2 . 23 ) .
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This does not mean that GOD is an autocratic despot acting as GOD likes , regardless of the feelings and grievances of others .
This would be a very poor interpretation of the sentence .
GOD chooses all and excludes none who looks up to GOD ; GOD helps even those who do not know GOD ! Even a villain and an outcaste reaches GOD through GOD's grace .
GOD is the ocean of compassion .
GOD is the justest Ruler , the most beloved Parent of all .
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The condition " whom It chooses " exalts the supreme factor of self-sacrifice and self-abnegation and a flowing of oneself with the Divine Force , as against the egoistic undertakings of the individual , viz , scholarship , etc , which lead to self-conceit and inordinate pride .
The passage also means that it is to be obtained only by that which one seeks to obtain , ie , the Seeker is oneself the Supreme Object which is the Sought .
The subject and the object are one in Truth .
No separate independence should be asserted with good as its effect .
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We are also cautioned to have the consciousness of the sole existence of the One Purusha , even when we offer sacrifices to different deities .
The multiple gods of the Vedas are not the childish imaginations of undeveloped panegyrists who knew but to flatter superhuman powers , but they are the seers' visions , in the overflow of their ecstatic joy , of the Great Purusha who excels in the blissful revelation of Itself in Its universal form .
To the Vedic seers the world appeared as the beatific flooding of the abundance of the richness of GOD .
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This Supreme One is the Object of spiritual love .
All beings have an innate longing , a love to attain It .
" It is called Great Longing — Love — It is to be adored as such , and one who knows this , all beings love and long for " ( Kena . Up . IV . 6 ) .
At the mere transcendental wish of this Great Being , the whole Universe is issued forth systematically , protected justly and destroyed root and branch .
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Ishvara is the Absolute BRAHMAN working through the Universe .
This is the Nature of Reality as appearing to put on all names , all forms and all actions , though these three aspects are the one being , the Self ( Brih . Up . I . 6 ) .
The Upanishads do not make much practical difference between Ishvara and BRAHMAN , and hold that " BRAHMAN is both the Formed and the Formless " ( Brih . Up . II . 3 . 1 ) .
They voice both the Phenomenal and the Absolute points of view .
The proofs for the existence of Ishvara really turn to be proofs for the existence of BRAHMAN .
In fact there cannot be any strictly logical proof for the existence of an Ishvara who is different from BRAHMAN .
The moment we admit something which distinguishes Ishvara from BRAHMAN , we bring forward a reality which is neither Ishvara nor BRAHMAN .
The Absolute which is ever consistent with Itself does not allow in any extraneous principle which would limit Pure Existence .
Ishvara is BRAHMAN defined by the creative will .
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BRAHMAN appears as the supreme Person ( Purusha-vidha ) , and in becoming this It would appear to cease to be what It is , at least temporarily .
Such a conception of BRAHMAN would go against the very grain of the reality of BRAHMAN .
That BRAHMAN BECOMES Ishvara in any way is not a fact , and if it is a fact , the whole of philosophy which posits the existence of the Absolute Reality would become a self-contradiction and absurdity .
To make BRAHMAN pass into another form is to deny BRAHMAN .
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The theory , which holds that Ishvara's creation of individuals which are responsible for the nature of the world manifested is determined by the potentialities of the previous world-cycle , makes Ishvara a creature of time , divests It of omnipotence and freedom and creates an eternal duality of Ishvara and the material stuff called potentiality of creation in addition to a real multiplicity of individuals .
Such an artificial view of Ishvara shows how it is valid only as a practical device for the explanation of the difficulties of the individual , and how it is not possible to conceive of an Ishvara real IN ITSELF .
This view of creation is a regrettable echo of the Sankhya which so audaciously asserts a plurality of realities that it is blind to all the difficulties presented by such an assertion .
An eternal plurality or duality contradicts the Absoluteness of Reality , which is equal to denying Reality altogether .
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If it is said that Ishvara is not directly connected with creation but only helps in the manifestation of the world which is necessitated by the dormant potencies of the unliberated individuals , the question arises ,
" Who created the individuals ? "
It is said that the individuals are only the forms which Ishvara has imagined Itself to be .
If Ishvara is omnipotent , It can at any time cease from imagining thus .
If It is to cause creation every time , after every world-cycle , and work like a clock , Ishvara can only be a machine and does not seem to have freedom of thought and action .
Moreover , Ishvara seems to be working in strict consonance with the rules which It Itself has framed ! If the state of dissolution of the Universe at the end of a cycle is forced upon Ishvara's experience , It is no more an Ishvara , a Lord .
If , on the other hand , Ishvara does it voluntarily , there is no reason why It should go on creating , cycle after cycle , as though it is Its bounden duty .
Freedom and the sense of duty are opposites .
If Ishvara has nothing to do with creation and only the individuals are somehow causing their bondage and liberation through some kind of relation which they have with the Absolute , there is no need for positing an Ishvara who is different from BRAHMAN .
SOURCE | SATYAVEDISM.ORG