Chapter 10 - Vibhuti-Vistara Yoga
Chapter 10, Verse 1
Lord Krishna asks Arjuna to listen to his important instructions once again. Lord Krishna wants that Arjuna should benefit from his teachings. That is why he is again emphasizing the important points so that there will not be any confusion in the mind of Arjuna and others.
Chapter 10, Verse 2
Here Lord Krishna says neither the Gods nor the maharishis are able to comprehend the supreme God. The reason for this incomprehension is because the very gods and great sages are made of that infinite energy of God that it is very difficult to perceive him. People can only perceive with their minds. Even the great sages can perceive with their minds and there are limits to their perception. As human beings, we can only get absorbed in the lord after our illusions go away, but it is difficult to comprehend him. We may have an idea of what he is, but to know him directly how he looks is impossible.
God is beyond reason. That’s why they say to reach God leave out the reason.
Chapter 10, Verse 3
The Person who gives primacy to the God over other material things , the person who knows God as one who does not have a beginning, the person who knows that God controls all human beings, the person who is not deluded from this belief, the person who works for reaching God through all his actions, is delivered from all the sins. Here we can see that knowledge delivers people from sins. Knowledge+ action will make people reach God faster.
Chapter 10, Verse 4 & 5
In these shlokas, Lord Krishna mentions the qualities that originate in human beings because of the presence of God. The intellect of mind (the one which decides what decision to take ) , the knowledge available to human beings, compassion, truthfulness, freedom, happiness, unhappiness, birth, death, fear, fearlessness, nonviolence, equanimity, contentment, austerity, charity, fame, infamy all these different types of qualities emanate from God. I do not understand how unhappiness, fear, and infamy originate in God.
Chapter 10, Verse 6
In this Shloka Lord Krishna mentions the evolution of human beings. He says the 7 great sages Marici, Atri, Angiras, Pulastya, Pulaha, Kratu and Vasistha and the earlier 4 great manu’s are all created from the mental energy of the supreme lord.
The subsequent progeny of human beings are thus all the descendants of these seven great sages. That’s why we should remember that all beings are equal as we all have descended from the same being.
It is also stated that all the beings are derived from the mental impulses (manasa jatah) of the supreme God.
Chapter 10, Verse 7
In this shloka, Lord Krishna reiterates two things.
- That God is supreme and people should keep this in mind for spiritual upliftment during their daily life.
- The knowledge of yoga exists, where human beings can unite their consciousness with the universal consciousness.
- There is a constant interaction between these two beliefs.
- The more the person is in yoga (union of consciousness) the more he can see the existence of supreme God.
- People need not have any doubts about the facts stated in points 1 & 2.
- As doubts keep pulling the person who is practicing yoga down, hence lord Krishna says there should not be any doubts.
Chapter 10, Verse 8
Lord Krishna reiterates that God is the source of everything present in the universe. If he is the source of everything then it is always better to try for the source rather than the by-products. The water at the source is always pure and to drink form the source has its own taste. This fact /truth is known by the realized people and they will not hanker around objects which are derived from God, rather they will hanker around the source of all objects, i.e., God. Thus they worship God with great devotion so that they are fully absorbed in him.
Chapter 10, Verse 9
Those people whose minds are fixed in the God completely, those people who have surrendered their lives totally for God, those people who take delight in discussing about the God and the way to reach him will definitely reach him.
Chapter 10, Verse 10
Those who worship the God with all love and affection for the God and not for objects created by him, in return God will bestow the spiritual intelligence where the individual consciousness unites with the supreme consciousness. God did not say that he will grant boons, money, heaven etc. He is simply saying that the individual consciousness will be united with the ultimate consciousness. The stakes are there for the person to choose, liberation from worldly pleasures/samsara or getting trapped into the worldly pleasures.
Chapter 10, Verse 11
In what way does God accomplish Yoga or benefit the people who love him dearly? He does this by igniting the light of knowledge in the person who is on the quest of yoga. Darkness is dispelled from the person and the person will know what the right path to pursue in the world is.
The biggest takeaway of the Shloka is a person has to do all the effort for his upliftment through free will. He has to make a conscious choice as to which path to follow. As he keeps following the path of yoga then the light of knowledge will ignite in him which will help him to escape samsara.
Chapter 10, Verse 14
Arjuna says that he accepts whatever Krishna is saying as truth. He also adds that the real nature of God cannot be known even by Gods and the opposing forces of the Gods.
Here we have to observe that, Krishna basically wanted Arjuna to believe what he was saying. Belief is the basic thing in the universe. we should first believe something can happen in the universe. Belief is the first basic activity in the universe. It’s the belief that gives us the thoughts and confidence to achieve anything. What Krishna did in the previous chapters and stanzas is give Arjuna a belief that God exists. If Arjuna doesn’t believe at the core of his heart that God does not exist, then all other teachings of Lord Krishna will fail. So that is why it is necessary that Arjuna first believe in God. Now in this para, Arjuna is accepting the fact that there exists a supreme God and it is very difficult to perceive him. Even for celestial Gods it’s difficult to perceive him. So, the question of human beings perceiving him does not arise much.
Chapter 10, Verse 15
Here Arjuna says that only the supreme God can know himself. Any efforts made by people to perceive him will fail the person. We can see how frivolous it is when people fight over God’s when Arjuna is saying that it is difficult to see the manifestation of God. God is the origin of everything.
Now we can understand how difficult it is to love God. we cannot perceive him, there is no form for him. Despite this, if people are willing to get liberated from the material world people should surrender to the God. It’s quite difficult to believe the existence of God in such a scenario. If a person wants to get liberated then he should surrender and worship God.
Chapter 10, Verse 16
Arjuna further describes the divine qualities of Krishna. Having been convinced by the God Arjuna says only God can perceive his own qualities. Arjuna says that God is everywhere and since human beings can see till horizon and hear only in the audible range, the things which are further these domains cannot be comprehended by a human being. The faculties of human being are limited hence it is difficult to take cognizance of God.
Chapter 10, Verse 17
Arjuna asks Krishna how will he know him? Arjuna says he is still in the process of practicing and perfecting yoga. his main question is in what manifestation of God should he meditate upon. It is a well-known practice that people perfecting yoga involve in doing meditation seriously. in meditation people usually involved in taking a form of God and meditate on it. So Arjuna is asking which form he should take for proper meditation.
Chapter 10, Verse 18
In this Shloka Arjuna is requesting again Lord Krishna to describe in detail about God. He is also asking Krishna to describe how devotion can be practiced along with yoga. How devotion can be clubbed with yoga so that through yoga the universal soul can be realized.
Arjuna says he will not be satisfied unless he listens to Lord’s glories.
Chapter 10, Verse 19
Lord Krishna agrees to describe the glories of the God especially the qualities of God that made him the supreme energy of the universe. He says he will only describe the main qualities because there are innumerable qualities that can be described.
Chapter 10, Verse 20
In this shloka, Krishna uses symbols, examples to show what God is. It is easy for a human being to comprehend the qualities of God if God is exemplified with things a man usually sees and hears every day.
First, he says he is Vishnu among Adityas. Taken from Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%82dityas
The Aditya have been described in the Rig Veda as bright and pure as streams of water, free from all guile and falsehood, blameless, perfect. This class of deities has been seen as upholding the movables and immovable Dharma. Adityas are beneficent gods who act as protectors of all beings, who are provident and guard the world of spirits and protect the world.In the form of Mitra-Varuna, the Adityas are true to the eternal Law and act as the exactors of debt.
In present-day usage in Sanskrit, the term Aditya has been made singular in contrast to Vedic Adityas, and are being used synonymously with Surya, the Sun. The twelve Adityas are believed to represent the twelve months in the calendar and the twelve aspects of Sun. Since they are twelve in number, they are referred as Dvadashadityas.
The 12 Adityas are basically the monthly suns which is the ancient word for the earth moon barycenter for lunar month. These are also called as the 12 purushas pertaining to the 12 lunar months of the year. Here the months refer to the lunar months. In astronomy the lunar months with a solar sankranti is said to have a Aditya or purusha. The month without a sankranti is said to be neutar and is said to be extra month or the intercalary lunar month.
Lord Krishna says he is Vishnu among Adityas. he is also Marichi, one of the seven Maruts. Marichi is one of the seven great sages who populated the earth and are thought to be born from the mind of Brahma.
Of all radiant things during the day he can be imagined as the Sun god. There are many radiant things in the sky and of all, sun god is the brightest during the day. Of all radiant objects in the sky during night, he is the moon.
Chapter 10, Verse 21
Lord Krishna continues the qualities of God. He says he is the samaveda of all Veda’s. He is the Indra among demigods. Of all sense organs he is the mind and of all living beings, he is the consciousness. The examples make a person understand well. examples Krishna is taking all are trying to show the primacy of God among many equal things.
Chapter 10, Verse 23
Continuing his analogy, Krishna says the God is equivalent to Shakarah of the Rudra’s. There are ten Rudra and among them, Shankaraa/Shiva is the most important one.
Among the mountains, Meru mountain is treated as the centre of the earth. So God says he is the centre of life and among Rakshasas, he is the Kubera. We can see that even the analogy of Rakshashas is taken to denote that God exists in every living being.
Chapter 10, Verse 24
A teacher usually takes the examples of what the student can understand. Teacher might be able to understand lot of things and may be knowing lot of things, but to make things understandable to a student he should take the examples of what student can understand. Here Lord Krishna is doing the same. he is making Arjuna understand what God is with examples.
In this shloka he says that he is the chief priest of Gods, Brihaspati and among the water bodies God is the mighty ocean. Among the commanders of Army, God is the Kartikeya the supreme commander. There are several water bodies on earth, but nothing matches the mightiness of oceans. So, God is mighty among all other forms people worship.
Chapter 10, Verse 25
Continuing the earlier shloka, Krishna says God is the ultimate sound Om among all sounds, he is the rishi Bhrigu among all sages, of all yagnas he is the japa yagna ( chanting of God’s names). And he is the mighty himalayas. we can see that now people can understand what God is if explained with local examples.
Continuing the earlier shloka, Krishna says God is the ultimate sound Om among all sounds, he is the rishi Bhrigu among all sages, of all yagnas he is the japa yagna ( chanting of God’s names). And he is the mighty Himalayas. we can see that now people can understand what God is if explained with local examples.
Chapter 10, Verse 26, 27, 28 & 29
Shri Krishna continues to give examples to make Arjuna understand the position of God. He says among the trees God is the banyan tree, among the Muni’s he is Narada muni, among the perfected persons he is the kapila deva ( Who responsible for Sankhya yoga) , among the gandharvas God is chitrartha. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chitrasena_(Mahabharata))
Among the Horses he is Uchisrava, the horse that originated during the churning of the oceans, (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uchchaihshravas) among the elephants God is airavata, the animal of Lord Indra, and among human beings God is the king.
Among all the weapons God is a thunderbolt, and among cows God is Kamadhenu, and among poisonous serpents God is vasuki, (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vasuki)
of the many non-poisonous snakes God is Anantha, and among water bodies God is the demigod varuna, among administrators of Justice God is yamaraja.
Chapter 10, Verse 30
In this shloka, Lord Krishna says God is like “lion” among the animals. Among birds, God is like an eagle. Among the demons, he is like Prahlada. Among all measurements, he is like “time”. Also interpreted as, among time he is death. Death is one which subjugates everything else.
Chapter 10, Verse 31
Among the rivers, God is the Ganga, among the moving things God is the wind. Of the wielder of weapons he is Lord Ramah, and among fishes, God is like Shark.
Chapter 10, Verse 32
In this shloka Lord Krishna explains that God is the creator, destroyer and does maintenance of all the creation in the universe.it can also be read as God is the starting point, middle point and end point of all the material existence in the universe. He also says that of all know God is the spiritual knowledge (knowledge of self). OF all arguments in debate or any arguments, God is the logical conclusion that sets everything to rest. the logical conclusions are usually facts based on truths for which no more arguments exist.
Chapter 10, Verse 33
In this shloka, Lord Krishna describes that God is the letter ‘A” in which all other sounds are embedded. He also describes God as the ever-flowing time and the four-faced Brahma who can see in all directions.
Chapter 10, Verse 33
In this shloka, it is said that of all physical transformations God is the birth. He is the originator of all physical things. Also of al destruction, God is the death, where everything ultimately ends. Of all the attributes, God the attribute of Fame, Good speech, attribute of beauty, attribute of compassion, the attribute of patience, intellect and memory. These attributes if found in any person we say God-like qualities. Like Mother Teresa had compassion. We also have to strive to develop these God-like qualities.
Chapter 10, Verse 35
In the sama Veda , God is like the Brihat sama , in the mantras composed in metre God is the Gayatri, of the months God is the month of Margasira (December 16-January-16) and among the seasons God is like the spring season where all the flowers bloom.
Chapter 10, Verse 36
Lord Krishna says that the special quality of God that affects deceivers. Those who deceive others will ultimately get deceived in Gambling. Also, God’s special quality is perseverance in business and victory in business. Among the noble, God’s special quality is nobility.
Chapter 10, Verse 37
Lord Krishna says the example of special qualities of God are depicted in Vasudeva in the descendants of Vrishni, among Pandavas Arjuna, among the sages Veda Vyasa, and among the poets sukracharya.
Chapter 10, Verse 38
Lord Krishna explains that when punishment is given then the power of God is like the lightning rod. For people who want to be successful, God is the strategy to be successful. It is clearly given that to be successful there has to be a strategy. relying purely on luck will not get us results. Among the secrets, God’s qualities are like silence. when there is silence no secret can go out. Among knowledge, God is like wisdom.
Chapter 10, Verse 39
Here Lord Krishna makes the profound statement that God is the root cause for all the living entities. He also says that all the things (both natural and physical)that exist in the universe are all because of the existence of God.
Chapter 10, Verse 40
In this Shloka Lord Krishna says there are no limits for the special powers of Gods and the examples taken to explain them are limited. Gods’ special powers are unlimited. It is difficult to explain the powers, so that a human being can comprehend those powers.
Chapter 10, Verse 41
Whatever is magnificent and best in the world should be attributed to the powers of the God. The excellent products are the manifestations of the divine spirit in the people. The divine spirit propels them to achieve great things. Even these special powers of GOD are only a fraction of the special powers of God.
Chapter 10, Verse 42
Lord Krishna says to Arjuna that there is no necessity for all the examples he has just talked about the special qualities of God. God is everywhere and he is the root cause of the manifestation of the universe and this entire universe is just a fraction of the God.