Four Negations In Sanskrit To Explain God

[Sita-Rama]“The theory of the asuras is that the living entities are born of material nature, or prakriti, in touch with the purusha. This theory also cannot be accepted because both the material nature and the Supreme Personality of Godhead are eternally existing. Neither the material nature nor the Supreme Personality of Godhead can be born. The Supreme Lord is known as aja, or unborn.” (Krishna, The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vol 2, Ch 32)

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1. Aja

His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada explains that the Supreme Personality of Godhead is eternal. Therefore, the theory that everything gets created through sex interaction alone does not hold water.

There is the illusion of birth in that matter, with the mixture of prakriti and purusha. These are the material energy and the individual life force, which is the enjoyer. There have to be outside factors for the combination to work. It is not guaranteed for every mixture to produce life.

The Supreme Lord is without birth. He is aja, which means that no one can trace His origin. He is not produced of any chemical combination, even from the external point of view. We celebrate His appearances in reference to janma, such as Janmashtami, but that is simply for our understanding, as birth and death form the boundaries of our understanding with respect to time.

2. Advaita

This Sanskrit word means “non-dual.” Through the advaita feature, God is everywhere. In the connected state, the hands and legs are part of me. I don’t even have to contemplate what to do; it is as if they move automatically.

In the same way, the Supreme Lord pervades the entire space. This is known as the unmanifest form, or the avyakta-murtina. God can never be absent from a place. The tree that falls in the forest does make a sound precisely because the advaita Almighty is there to witness.

3. Anama

When a child enters this world, they receive a name. They have the option to change it later on. They may go by a different name based on something they have done, through an honor they have received or an achievement of excellence.

Bhagavan is without a name. He cannot be tied down to anything. He is not limited by the words that others use. He does not have to wait in line to be called, since He is present in everyone and everything.

4. Alakha

हम लखि लखहि हमार लखि हम हमार के बीच
तुलसी अलखहि का लखहि राम नाम जप नीच ॥

hama lakhi lakhahi hamāra lakhi hama hamāra ke bīca
tulasī alakhahi kā lakhahi rāma nāma japa nīca ॥

“[O mystic] First know yourself, then realize the Supreme Absolute Truth, and then see the material nature standing in between. O wretch, without seeing these how can you understand what the unmanifested [invisible] feature of the Absolute Truth [alakh] actually is? Chant Shri Rama’s holy name instead, says Tulsi.” (Dohavali, 19)

Goswami Tulsidas uses this word to describe God as invisible. This is one of His features. We lack the eyes to notice Him, though He is everywhere. Just as the furniture remains in the room after the light is turned off, whether we perceive or not makes no difference on the actual position of the Almighty.

Despite the different negations, God is so kind as to give a glimpse in the opposite direction. Though He is aja, He appears as the beloved eldest son of Maharaja Dasharatha. Though He is advaita, He appears as the deity, to give a position of separation. I worship Him, and He accepts the offerings.

Though He is without a name, He kindly agrees to be addressed by thousands of names. These are offered by the devotees, who lovingly chant those names within mantras: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.

Though He is alakha, He gives visible evidence of His existence from time to time. The lowest among men, the naradhamas, will not believe even when directly witnessing the form and greatness. They try their best to remove the transcendental features [gunas] when overwhelmed by them.

[Shri Rama]Though He is every negation we can think of, He is the final destination on the furthest positive direction. The meaning is that this human life is ideally the last stop on the train of evolution, where I can surrender fully, marveling at the multifarious ways Bhagavan can be understood and reached.

In Closing:

With Sanskrit words to teach,
Many ways God to reach.

Through negation known,
That despite appearances shown.

Beyond the realm of visual sight,
And of incomprehensible might.

Through bhakti-yoga connection,
Succeed on positive direction.

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1 reply

  1. Radhe Radhe ❤️ oshriRadhekrishnaBole ❤️ Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
    Jay Jay Shree Siya Ram

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