“Besides this inferior nature, O mighty-armed Arjuna, there is a superior energy of Mine, which are all living entities who are struggling with material nature and are sustaining the universe.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 7.5)
अपरेयम् इतस् त्व् अन्यां
प्रकृतिं विद्धि मे पराम्
ययेदं धार्यते जगत्
apareyam itas tv anyāṁ
prakṛtiṁ viddhi me parām
yayedaṁ dhāryate jagat
The “experts” say this. According to the “experts,” we must do that. We are force-fed information in a manner intended to shut off the brain. Throw away whatever common sense you have and simply obey. Follow the people with credentials. If you are not in the same category, then be quiet. You don’t have a right to object.
The human being is intelligent for a reason. The Sanskrit aphorism of athato brahma-jijnasa supports the claim. The human birth has an accompanying urgency. “Now is the time for inquiring into spiritual matters.” By extension, now is not the time for obeying what others command, simply because they say so. Now is not the time for suppressing intelligence.
But to whom do we turn? Who is the expert? Should we follow blindly, which goes against our instincts? Or should this be somewhat of an intellectual pursuit? Jijnasa implies approaching an authority source and posing questions.
Based on His explanations found in Bhagavad-gita and Shrimad Bhagavatam, Shri Krishna proves to have the highest credentials. We can accept that He has expert status based on the word of saints like Vyasa and Narada. We can confirm based on the principles presented in a question-and-answer session.
1. He explains how the creation comes to be
Not merely a guess. Not speculation. Even if we had forensic evidence available, there is always the ability to cast doubt. Did someone tamper with the recording? What was there moments prior? How to authenticate that this is actually from the beginning, since we know time to be infinite?
It is precisely because of this principle that we know the Vedas are on to something. They explain how time and space are both infinite. The way of living, the nature of the existence, dharma, is without beginning and without end, or sanatana.
We receive word on what happened at the time of creation, in terms of the current timeline. In other words, this is for our understanding only. The mind is incapable of fully grasping infinity, how again and again the world gets created and annihilated.
भूत-ग्रामः स एवायं
भूत्वा भूत्वा प्रलीयते
रात्र्य्-आगमे ऽवशः पार्थ
bhūta-grāmaḥ sa evāyaṁ
bhūtvā bhūtvā pralīyate
rātry-āgame ‘vaśaḥ pārtha
“Again and again the day comes, and this host of beings is active; and again the night falls, O Partha, and they are helplessly dissolved.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 8.19)
Shri Krishna, in His four-handed form of Vishnu, lies down to rest in the Vaikuntha planetary system. From His breathing the universes emerge. One breath out and one breath in. In an instant, without effort almost, this amazing creation manifests, remains for a duration, and then vanishes back into the source of everything.
2. He explains how that creation is populated
Again and again the host of beings is active. With every creation there is a subsequent step of population. This isn’t necessarily generating living entities, since every spark of spirit is as eternal as Krishna Himself.
There is the self-born, Lord Brahma, to whom falls the task to get the details of the creation in order. He sets up the various vessels, the body types, also known as species. The sparks of spirit then populate those vessels.
As explained in Bhagavad-gita, the living entities are part of the superior, spiritual energy. In ignorance, they struggle in the material world. They are unaware of their true origin. They take the temporary place, crafted by Brahma and sourced in Vishnu, to be permanent.
3. He explains how the inhabitants fall into illusion
The process of birth is so traumatic that memory gets erased. Amnesia to last a lifetime. Only until the reawakening occurs, through the chance meeting with the spiritual master, can the potential for revival be realized. Without such connection to authority, the parampara system, I move from one interest to the next, desperately seeking transcendence.
4. He explains how we can be rescued
There are many options available, and a few of them are quite simple and straightforward. Understand the transcendental nature to the birth and activities of Shri Krishna. His janma and karma are not like ours. He is not bound to this world, for He is the origin.
जन्म कर्म च मे दिव्यम्
एवं यो वेत्ति तत्त्वतः
त्यक्त्वा देहं पुनर् जन्म
नैति माम् एति सो ऽर्जुन
janma karma ca me divyam
evaṁ yo vetti tattvataḥ
tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma
naiti mām eti so ‘rjuna
“One who knows the transcendental nature of My appearance and activities does not, upon leaving the body, take his birth again in this material world, but attains My eternal abode, O Arjuna.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 4.9)
Krishna has the highest credentials, but even in the presentation to Arjuna there is no insistence on blind allegiance. Arjuna should deliberate on what he has heard and then act accordingly. The Supreme Lord offers the same choice to us, and the wise take hold of the chance and never let go: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.
As supreme authority to call,
Explaining how to this world fall.
Universe appearing where,
Then suddenly not there.
How populated with beings,
Brahma process overseeing.
Critical escaping plan,
Potential to understand.
Categories: the four