God and The Absolute Truth

Who is God? What is the Absolute Truth? Does all God do is work to keep us all in line? What gives?

J Raul C, 12th November 2016

Hare Krishna!!

All Glories to Srila Prabhupada and Gurudeva!!

vancha-kalpa-tarubhyashcha

kripa-sindhubhya eva cha

patitanam pavanebhyo

vaishnavebhyo namo namaha

Dear devotees,

Please help me to understand the conception of God and the conception of Absolute Truth.

I have read and heard so many times in the scriptures and purports that God is Krishna and at the same time we talk about Absolute Truth as the supreme person or param satyam also we know Krishna as the Supreme Person

Please elaborate as God and Absolute Truth are not on the same level.

Thank you kindly,
J Raul C.

Premananda das, 12th November 2016

Hare Krsna Vaisnavas

Please accept my humble obeisances
All glories to Srila Prabhupada

God means controller and Absolute Truth means the source and end of everything and all the energies that exist.

Actually the conception of Absolute Truth is way beyond God.

Absolute Truth actually makes an impression on the mind that it is not just a religious enthusiasm but profound philosophy.
It answers the most important question that He is the origin and destination of everything.

In the Srimad Bhagavatam Canto 1.1.1 it is explained that Krsna is beginning and end of everything and it also defeats the idea that matter is the source of creation which is prominent in today’s modern world.

It is not only om namo bhagavate not vague but it is Vasudevaya son of Vasudeva and Devaki primeval Bhagawan.

This list is check point of whether someone is God and Absolute Truth.

Absolute Truth is Sri Krsna son of Vasudeva and Devaki.

oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya
janmādy asya yato ’nvayād itarataś cārtheṣv abhijñaḥ svarāṭ
 tene brahma hṛdā ya ādi-kavaye muhyanti yat sūrayaḥ
tejo-vāri-mṛdāṁ yathā vinimayo yatra tri-sargo ’mṛṣā
 dhāmnā svena sadā nirasta-kuhakaṁ satyaṁ paraṁ dhīmahi

O my Lord, Śrī Kṛṣṇa, son of Vasudeva, O all-pervading Personality of Godhead, I offer my respectful obeisances unto You. I meditate upon Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa because He is the Absolute Truth and the primeval cause of all causes of the creation, sustenance and destruction of the manifested universes. He is directly and indirectly conscious of all manifestations, and He is independent because there is no other cause beyond Him. It is He only who first imparted the Vedic knowledge unto the heart of Brahmājī, the original living being. By Him even the great sages and demigods are placed into illusion, as one is bewildered by the illusory representations of water seen in fire, or land seen on water. Only because of Him do the material universes, temporarily manifested by the reactions of the three modes of nature, appear factual, although they are unreal. I therefore meditate upon Him, Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, who is eternally existent in the transcendental abode, which is forever free from the illusory representations of the material world. I meditate upon Him, for He is the Absolute Truth.

He is the source and end of everything.
He is supremely conscious and independent.
He is the original source of all knowledge.
He is the original source of bewilderment.
He makes the three worlds appear real like mirage.
He resides in the eternal abode free from illusion.
He is the highest Truth to be mediated upon.(Son of Vasudeva)

your servant

Premananda Das

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 16th November 2016

Dear Sriman Raul,

Hare Krishna!

Please accept my humble obeisances.
All glories to Srila Gurudeva.
All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

Who is “God” – this is the generic name for some kind of administrative and executive function/position in the creation, maintenance, and dissolution of the manifestation. Actually Krishna is greater than “God”, because Krishna is the source of “God”.

It is like saying “Man”, does not identify a specific individual but a class of individual.

This is why Srila Prabhupada used the phrase “Supreme Personality of Godhead” to describe Krishna, though he did call Krishna God in some specific contexts, like when he explained the phrase “krishnas tu bhagavan svayam”.

There are many “gods”, like for example each of us control something in our own and others’ lives… and because Krishna expands Himself unlimitedly in Vishnu Tattva expansions actually one can say that there are also many “Gods”… but the “gods” and “Gods” are all servant Gods, and everyone is ultimately serving Krishna in some way or another.

A riverhead is the source of a river. A river is a continuously flowing stream of water… even though we say “here is a river”, it is not the same at any two moments – the water in it is different at every moment practically.

Similarly, “God” is a concept that is impossible to explain materially, and is dynamic. Krishna is the source of that infinite dynamism, the source of the power of all powers, all energies, all living entities. If the word Godhead is considered, then that Godhead is the Source of “God”, but that Source of God has many many personalities, like Balarama, Sankarshana, Pradyumna, Aniruddha, and then the second set of those, Maha Vishnu Garbhodakashayi Vishnu, Kshirodakashayi Vishnu, etc.

We read from the Srimad Bhagvatam how Krishna expands “bahu syam” (I shall be many) into different types of expansions, “svamsha” or Vishnu Tattva expansions, and “vibbinamsha” or separated jiva expansions. Then there are the shaktis, the shiva tattva. There are the potencies of hladini, sandhini, samvit, and so many further expansions and so much complexity in the spiritual and material manifestation.

But in the end, Krishna has nothing to do, He simply plays His flute, and enjoys pastimes with His associates, no “duty” to do, like having to keep track of who is doing what, punishment and reward, that is the “God” function which is played by His arrangements in so many elaborate ways.

I hope this helps.

your servant,
Mahabhagavat Das

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Atheism is a religion, the religion of the mind

A little ant wants to map the world… (no ants were hurt in the writing of this post)

There is an ant in a kitchen in my apartment, and he may want to map the city I live in.

Poor little ant! I like him, I gave him a grain of sugar to eat too. He might not live long enough to map out the cupboard he is moving around in, much less get out and map out the kitchen, the living room, the bedrooms, the bathrooms, much less the yard, the driveway, the street I live on, the sub-division. Dangers exist at every step, and the average ant might live for a few weeks or a few months, if he doesn’t get in the way of something bigger than him.

As we continually expand the scale of reference, the probability that an ant might pull it off decreases dramatically. The scale and complexity of our world far outstrip the faculties of an ant, or generations of ants, for millions and billions of years. Remember, change is constant.

Fortunately there is no ant foolish enough. But there are others…

Atheists are trying to map out all of reality based on the meager faculties they possess, a puny little mind, a short lifespan, the work of others similarly puny in their faculties. We do applaud them for their valiant effort, but there’s another way to learn about the complete reality, and that is to turn inwards.

Just like a small insect, he takes birth in the evening, and from evening to morning, his birth, his marriage, his begetting children, everything is done, and in the morning he dies. There are many insects. They are called diwali pokali. At night they will throng together, in India. So for this insect, it is very difficult to understand that there is another animal which is called man, who has got this duration of his lifetime period in only twelve hours of his life. But the insect cannot go beyond that. Just like when we hear from Bhagavad-gītā that Brahmā lives such-and-such, we disbelieve sometimes. But everything is relative. With your relative body, your duration of life, your knowledge, your perception, everything is relative. So you are teeny human being. What is impossible for you is not impossible for others.

A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

I should know. I was an atheist once. Well-educated at the altar of atheistic assumptions right from my childhood, I know these really well.

असत्यमप्रतिष्ठं ते जगदाहुरनीश्वरम् ।
अपरस्परसंभूतं किमन्यत्कामहैतुकम् ॥ १६.८ ॥

asatyam apratiṣṭhaṁ te
jagad āhur anīśvaram
aparaspara-sambhūtaṁ
kim anyat kāma-haitukam


They say that this world is unreal, with no foundation, no God in control. They say it is produced of sex desire and has no cause other than lust.

Bhagavad Gita As It Is, 16.8 (The Divine and Demoniac Natures) https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/16/8/
  1. There was nothing, and then suddenly the singularity / big bang happened and then the Universe came into being
  2. Basic building blocks coalesced into elements, elements combined to form compounds, and basic compounds combined to form organic chemicals, which then somehow combined to form single-celled organisms, which gradually evolved into life as we know it
  3. There’s no creator, no reason for anything at all except it is the way it is
  4. All of the world’s spirituality is basically superstition, created by aboriginal tribal lore to explain phenomena that were beyond their understanding

But as I grew and studied more, I began to discover more about what we didn’t know – we don’t understand much about the Universe at all. Most of what passes for explanations is merely theory, unproven, couched in clever language that implies certainty.

There is no proof that something material can come from nothing.

I also learned that just because we can’t see something or prove its existence doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. Feelings, emotions, thoughts, and the clear sense of consciousness cannot be proven to exist except to take someone’s testimony for them.

“I am feeling sad” said one. “What do you mean you are feeling sad, I can’t see your sadness, so your sadness is imaginary!” said the other.

Just because something is not observable by everyone is not proof for its nonexistence. And so is the reality of God.

God is not so cheap that He can be fully understood by just anyone!

नाहं प्रकाशः सर्वस्य योगमायासमावृतः ।
मूढोऽयं नाभिजानाति लोको मामजमव्ययम् ॥ ७.२५ ॥

nāhaṁ prakāśaḥ sarvasya
yoga-māyā-samāvṛtaḥ
mūḍho ’yaṁ nābhijānāti
loko mām ajam avyayam

I am never manifest to the foolish and unintelligent. For them I am covered by My internal potency, and therefore they do not know that I am unborn and infallible.

Bhagavad Gita As It Is, 7.25 https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/7/25/

It’s a laudable effort for someone to try and understand the world and its mysteries on their own. But the effort is doomed to failure, because Reality far outstrips anyone’s meager faculties. Reality is not so trivial that one can agitate one’s mind and conquer it – one cannot conquer something greater than oneself, and that which can be conquered cannot be said to be greater than oneself.

It’s much better to get a guided tour from The Creator.

The instrument with which we can perceive the spiritual side of reality is a finely honed instrument called “consciousness”. Presently, our consciousness may be covered, like a dust-encrusted mirror, or like that of a consciousness of someone who is drugged, drunk, or just asleep.

But when that consciousness is awake and purified, then such consciousness perceives a vast spectrum of reality untarnished by material crud.

श्रीभगवानुवाच ।
प्रजहाति यदा कामान्सर्वान्पार्थ मनोगतान्
आत्मन्येवात्मना तुष्टः स्थितप्रज्ञस्तदोच्यते ॥ २.५५ ॥

śrī-bhagavān uvāca
prajahāti yadā kāmān
sarvān pārtha mano-gatān
ātmany evātmanā tuṣṭaḥ
sthita-prajñas tadocyate

The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: O Pārtha, when a man gives up all varieties of desire for sense gratification, which arise from mental concoction, and when his mind, thus purified, finds satisfaction in the self alone, then he is said to be in pure transcendental consciousness.

Bhagavad Gita As It Is, 2.55 https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/2/55/

That complete reality is my journey, destination, and experience, so stand aside all you (well-meaning or otherwise) ants!

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The Absolute Truth – how simultaneously one and different

Geetha, 05 March 2013

Hare Krishna,
Please accept my humble obeisances,
All glories to Srila Prabhupad,

I am not able to understand clearly  “The Absolute Truth” is one and different.  Please help me to understand it better.

Thank you,

your servant,
Geetha

Rathin Mandal, 05 March 2013

Hare Krishna Mataji,

Please accept my humble obeisances,
All glories to Srila Prabhupada,
All glories to Srila Gurudeva.

I am not able to find the exact phrase ‘one and different’. But as I have read it before, so I am trying to describe it to you.
It means to say that everything that exists in the material world or the spiritual world are created by energies of Supreme Personality of Godhead Sri Krishna. Hence in a way there is no difference between any entity in either world with Sri Krishna, as it is part and parcel of Sri Krishna only. But at the same time that entity is not in equal position to Supreme Personality. This is explain in the following verse:
BG 9.5: And yet everything that is created does not rest in Me. Behold My mystic opulence! Although I am the maintainer of all living entities and although I am everywhere, I am not a part of this cosmic manifestation, for My Self is the very source of creation.

All the living entities are emanating from the body of Sri Krishna, hence we possess some qualities of Supreme Person, but being very very small particles of the Supreme Person, we cannot equal him quantitatively. When one is able to understand his true identity and his relationship to Supreme Person, he can understand these energies.
BG 10.8: I am the source of all spiritual and material worlds. Everything emanates from Me. The wise who perfectly know this engage in My devotional service and worship Me with all their hearts.

The phrase ‘one and different’ is also emphasized in the following verse:
BG 9.7: O son of Kuntī, at the end of the millennium all material manifestations enter into My nature, and at the beginning of another millennium, by My potency, I create them again.

In this verse Sri Krishna has said that everything in the material world is created by his will and at the end they enter back into him. This means that during the existence of the material world we are existing differently from the Supreme Personality of Godhead but still we are part and parcel of him.

Hence we are one with Krishna and still different from him.

A common example is that, a tree carries so many leaves, fruits etc. From a distance they may look one with the tree but when we come closer we they see each leaf or fruit has its own identity. But there existence depends only on the tree.

your Servant
Rathin

Geetha, 06th March 2013

Hare Krishna,
Please accept my humble obeisances,
All Glories to Srila Prabhupada,

Thank you Rathin Mandal Prabhu for your reply.

Thank you,

your Servant,
Geetha

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 06 March 2013

Hare Krishna Geetha Mataji and Rathin Mandal Prabhu,

Very nice question, and very nice answer. A place where nice questions are being asked and nice answers are being given is a place of purification

The phrase can be written as “Inconceivable simultaneous oneness and difference” from the cosmic manifestation/living entity/living entities/Supreme Absolute Truth.

So, whenever you hear this “The Supreme Absolute Truth is Inconceivably Simultaneously One and Different”, you should ask first “from what/who”? 🙂

This is a core of our philosophy, achintya (inconcievable) bheda (difference abheda (non-difference) tattva (principle/philosophy). Chaitanya Mahaprabhu has very elegantly explained this concept in such way that our Sampradaya includes the core essence of Advaita/Monism (Shankaracharya), Vishishta Advaita / Pure non-dualism, Dvaita/Dualism (Madhvacharya), Vishishta Advaita / non-duality but characterized by attributes (Ramanujacharya), and all bona fide philosophies of the Supreme Absolute Truth.

Some places where you can read more about this:

http://vedabase.com/bg/7/8
http://vedabase.com/sb/7/9/31
http://vedabase.com/cc/madhya/6/163

And Srila Prabhupada spoke this in Perfect Questions Perfect Answers, with Bob Cohen “Śrīla Prabhupāda: But you cannot say that sunshine is not the sun. Without the sun, where is the sunshine? So you cannot say that sunshine is not the sun. But at the same time, it is not the sun. It is the sun and not the sun—both. That is our philosophy. Acintya-bhedābheda—inconceivable. In the material sense, you cannot conceive that a thing is simultaneously positive and negative. That you cannot think of. That is inconceivable energy. And because everything is Kṛṣṇa’s energy, Kṛṣṇa can manifest Himself from any energy. Therefore, when we worship Kṛṣṇa in a form made of something—of earth, water or something like that—that is Kṛṣṇa. You cannot say that it is not Kṛṣṇa. When we worship this metal form of Kṛṣṇa [the Deity form in the temple], that is Kṛṣṇa. That’s a fact, because metal is an energy of Kṛṣṇa. Therefore, it is nondifferent from Kṛṣṇa, and Kṛṣṇa is so powerful that He can present Himself fully in His energy. So this Deity worship is not heathenism. It is actually worship of God, provided you know the process.” (hint, read full book, it is SO sublime!) http://vedabase.com/en/pqpa/

Please note I am not any expert in this. 🙂

Sincerely,
Mahabhagavat Das

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