Chapter 28. Lucid exposition of the supreme sovereignty the Lord and the total dependence of the Jiva on the Lord. The nature of phenomenal world – which is real and a means of liberation, and which appears as independent due to the deluded mind.

The 28th chapter is a lucid exposition of the Supreme Sovereignty of the Lord, the total dependence of the jiva who experiences the transmigration being bound by the Gunas which are under the control of the Lord, and the manifested world.

The Lord exhorts Uddhava neither to praise the sinful acts of the vile, nor to condemn the acts of the Lord’s devotees, carried out as per their respective nature. For, Sri Hari alone permeates everywhere and being present in some people moves them into acts, which evoke praise while in some others, moves them into actions, which evoke condemnation, as per their desserts. One who realizes that this phenomenal world of Prakriti and Purusha (Saraswati and Brahma ) is permeated throughout by Sri Hari is the true Jnani. The Almighty Lord alone is the One who creates, protects and dissolves this universe.

Also He willingly undergoes those changes from Himself. One who realizes that Sri Hari alone is the prompter of all actions and causes such acts to be performed by the jivas as per their desserts would neither extol nor revile anyone as above and would move about the world free from prejudice. Uddhava now wants to know, who-the jiva, the body or Sri Hari-is it that undergoes transmigration. The Lord replies that it is the jiva due to its relationship with body, senses and the prana through the false ego-who experiences transmigration consisting of pleasure and pain. Even though samsara is of no use, it does not cease for the fool who is always thinking of sense pleasures.

The Jnani however is like the person who has woken up from a dream and is no longer afflicted by the pleasures/pains experienced in the dream. Grief, delight, fear, anger, infatuation, craving etc as well as birth and death are experienced by the jiva only due to its relationship with the false ego (ahankara) and not otherwise. The person who is able to have continuous remembrance of Sri Vishnu and who with the knowledge generated through the conditioning of his mind, senses, prana and body cuts asunder the false knowledge (generated and put over the jiva in the first place by the Lord Himself) roams about the globe, free from cravings till the falling of his body.

This manifested world as it has a beginning and an end can be independent neither prior to its creation nor also after its dissolution. So also it is nonindependendent during the intervening period viz sustenance. This world owes its existence to Sri Hari alone, who alone is the Ultimate Truth, the all Independent Sovereign. This manifested world is under His control at all times (past, present and future). The world of modification appears to be independent only to the ignorant due to delusion.

Sri Hari (present along with the jiva in the body), who has no material body, is not subject to happiness arising out of favorable sense objects or sorrows arising out of unfavorable sense objects. The joys and sorrows are experienced by the jiva alone, who is subject to the false ego, not Sri Hari who is free of all faults at all times. Prior to the onset of knowledge, the jiva is ignorant about the form, attributes and deeds of Sri Hari. The phenomenal world is seen to be independent as a result of such ignorance. That ignorance is driven away by the knowledge generated through devotional service.

One who acquires such knowledge does not regard the phenomenal world as independent. It is due to the delusion of the mind that one conceives contrarian theories of oneness of the jiva and paramatman. Such people do not have firm conviction that jiva is totally dependent on the paramatman. The phenomenal world of five fold differences is real; the world, which is a means of acquiring knowledge leading to liberation; the world which is forever under the control of Sri Vishnu. The yogi who depending on the Lord, diligently carries on the practice of this yoga, without being baffled by the obstacles in his path, is in course of time, rid of all hankerings and enjoys the bliss of self realization. Thus ends the twenty eighth chapter.

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