Baghawat Geeta, Chapter 10: Verses 1 to 5


Starting the chapter Swamiji said from Chapter # 7 Sri Krishna has been dealing with the nature of God. It is a progressive topic; chapters 7 through 12 all deal with nature of God. In preceding three chapters he described God as Jagat Karanam. He talked about nature of God consisting of Para Prakriti (PP), the higher nature and Apara prkriti (AP) the lower nature. We saw PP is Consciousness and AP is matter. Thus basic Matter principle with basic Consciousness principle is God. We saw their common features and uncommon features as well.

Common features: Consciousness is beginning less. Matter is also beginning less; consciousness therefore cannot be created; matter also cannot be also created. This uncreated-beginingless-consciousness-matter-unit or composite is called Ishvara.

Uncommon features:  Para prakrti or consciousness is not subject to change; it is changeless principle, whereas the matter principle is subject to change; is subject to evolution to become this universe, Matter is capable of evolving; and not only it is subject to evolution; after sometime it is subject to involution also;

Involution means folding back into again the fundamental form. Thus matter expands and contracts; it is subject to change; therefore apara prakrti, the matter is savikaram; the para prakrti, the consciousness is nirvikaram; Para prakrti the consciousness is nirgunam; free from all attributes or properties and therefore not available for any type of study; all scientific studies are based on attributes and properties; consciousness is free from all attributes; therefore it is not available for an instrument of experimentation; it is Nirgunam; whereas matter, the apara prakrti is full of attributes; therefore it is saguna satvam.

And then finally, we made one more point; which is not very much relevant here; but an aside note, that is consciousness is satyam; having independence; svatantram; whereas matter is mithya; it is para tantram, depending on consciousness. Thus chetanam-achetanam; nirvikaram-savikaram; nirgunam-sagunam; satyam-mithya; such consciousness-matter mixture is called God.

This mixture is called god. This is symbolically presented as father and mother principle. This god is jagat karanam. He is responsible for emergence of universe. And the understanding of karanam status is generally done in three stages, depending on the maturity of the student. For a beginner, God as the cause is Karanam is understood in three stages.

Stage one:

For level one student: God creates this world; like a carpenter creates furniture or gold smith creates n ornament. This is nimitha karanam god. Here student sees god as a person or human being. Student wants details, such as address etc., of god. He is present in Vykunta, say Scriptures. This creator is Vishnu who in turn created Brahmaji. Brahmaji then created the universe. This is God for a beginner; it is good for meditation as well.

Stage two:

Second level: Once mind matures, next stage of understanding is that God, the creator, is God himself manifesting. To create god has no material to use. He finds the material in himself. Like a spider, God finds material in his own body; after all He is Consciousness and matter. So God manifests as the world.  Here Ishwara is Parinami Upadana Karanam.  Now, I will never ask where is God as God himself is available as creator. Akasha, Vayu etc are all creations of God. Sunlight is manifestation of God, says Rudram. This darshanam of Sun is available to all people even without going to a temple, even for a dvijaha. His darshanam is always available. Cosmos is avatara of God; there is no queue to stand in to see him. This is Vishwa rupa Ishwara. Second stage is elaborated in chapters 7, 9, 10 and 11, god as vishwa rupam. If one stays in stage 2 long enough one eventually comes to stage 3.

Stage three:

In stage three, God does not become universe; here god apparently appears as the universe; meaning universe is unreal; connoting Brahma Satyam, jagan mithya. This is seen in chapter 13 on-wards. So, here, we are seeing God as Universe, the second stage. Once I see vishwarupa, divination of world happens to us. In the first stage God is elsewhere; He is sitting there; world is elsewhere; both are in different places. And God is sacred and the world is secular or still worse; so we have a sacred-secular-dichotomy in the beginning stage; once you have come to the middle stage; I do not separate God and world; because God alone is in the form of world; just as Gold alone is in the form of ornaments; wood alone is in the form of furniture; I cannot say God and world; when you use “and” two things should be separate; “gold and ornaments” can you say: No. because there are no ornaments other than gold, you cannot say “wood and furniture” because there is no furniture other than wood. Similarly I cannot say God and world, because there is no world separate from, other than God.

In middle stage God is in form of world. Here I see everything as God; as in god is universe. Once you have this vision, all glories of creation like sun belong to God himself.

What about my glory? Sri Krishna says that too belongs to God. You are also PP plus AP. So give all glories to God. So seeing God as all Vibhuti is called Vibhuti darshanam. This makes you humble. When I see glory in another person I see glory of God in it. Thus, there is no comparison of egos. For such a bhakta arrogance never rises. This transformation is what Sri Krishna wants to bring in all us; seeing God everywhere.  Hence this chapter is called Vibhuti Yoga. 

Shloka # 1:

श्री भगवानुवाच
भूय एव महाबाहो श्रृणु मे परमं वचः
यत्तेऽहं प्रीयमाणाय वक्ष्यामि हितकाम्यया।।10.1।।

Once more, O hero! Listen to My supreme word which, seeking your good, I shall speak to you who delight in it.

In this chapter there are no questions from Arjuna. So, Sri Krishna, himself, talks. He says, Arjuna, you are a dear student to Me. Gurus are also interested in the good of shishya; they inspire the shishya. In Katho Upanishad Yamadharmaraja offers prayers to the Lord: Oh Lord; May I get more disciples like Nachiketas. Similarly Sri Krishna has got a wonderful disciple in Arjuna and therefore Sri Krishna says, Arjuna, I am inspired; therefore I am going to continue; may you once again listen to my supreme words; words dealing with God. I see you as a disciple with shradha. This knowledge will help you get liberation for your own benefit. The idea is Sri Krishna is not going to get any benefit out of it; because Krishna does not require any benefit. Remember third chapter where he says, I have nothing to accomplish in this universe; still out of compassion for you, I am going to teach you more.

Shloka # 2:

मे विदुः सुरगणाः प्रभवं महर्षयः
अहमादिर्हि देवानां महर्षीणां सर्वशः।।10.2।।

The hosts of gods know not My origin; neither do great seers; for in all respects, I am the origin of gods and seers.

So these verses are introductory verses; wherein the subject matter is introduced from shloka #1 to # 3. So Ishvara svarupa Gyanam or Ishvara vibuthi Gyanam is the subject that is being introduced. And in this shloka, Sri Krishna points out to Arjuna: Do not tell me that you will learn the same topic from other gurus; as nobody else knows My glory in its entirety; I alone can know the glory in its full measure.

Nobody else can know, because all others were born later; and all others are finite in nature; and how can a finite mind ever know the glory of the infinite Lord.

Therefore Arjuna, you have to learn from only one source, only I know and therefore you have to learn from Me. So better continue to listen, as even Gods do not know my full glory. So There is a story in Kenopanishad that points out that story that even devathas cannot know the full nature of God. Even Rishis don’t know my glory.

Giving the reason, Sri Krishna says I am their cause; I am their creator; they have come much later; and not only they have come later, they have got limited mind, limited intellect, limited instruments of knowledge.

Citing story of Brahmaji in the puranas, when Brahmaji appears from the navel, he sees darkness everywhere; He does not see a second thing; He does not know anything including his own nature; imagine suddenly you find yourselves surrounded by darkness; nothing is there; and Brahmaji got frightened; so he did tapas, as a result of tapas, He acquires knowledge given by Vishnu, the original creator; Brahmaji is ignorant initially; then Vishnu himself sends him all the knowledge; and therefore how can anybody talk about My glory; because they themselves do not know; so I am the karanam of everyone including Brahmaji; I am the karanam behind all the Rishis as well.

Shloka # 3:

यो मामजमनादिं वेत्ति लोकमहेश्वरम्
असम्मूढः मर्त्येषु सर्वपापैः प्रमुच्यते।।10.3।।

Whoso knows Me as unborn and beginning less and as the great Lord of all the worlds is released from all sins; for he is undeluded among men.

And if a person is an intelligent one, he will certainly apply his mind to know the jagat karana Ishvara; it is only the inferior ordinary type of mind, which will be satisfied with knowing a few little things here; sufficient learning for earning food; that is why modern day education is based on a degree will fetch me a job in which I can work the least and get the most. So a developed intellect will certainly ask this question: Is there a cause; if a person is intelligent he will try to know jagat karana Ishwara. Developed intellect will ask where did all this come from? They are looking for a cause that addresses all this. Mature mind is called asammudha. What is the cause of all this? That intelligent person knows Me as the birthless cause of the universe.  Ajam anadim ca means birthless cause. Ultimate cause has to be causeless or beginingless. So, Sri Krishna says, I am birthless.  Puranas show God as father and mother. Parvati does not have a father in law or mother in law, as Shiva is causeless.  Sri Krishna says, “ I am controller of whole universe” as srishti, sthiti, and laya karananam. This intelligent person who knows Me becomes free of papas and is liberated. This is Ishwara as seen in level 2. This person will go to third level and get liberated.

Shloka 4 and 5:

 बुद्धिर्ज्ञानमसंमोहः क्षमा सत्यं दमः शमः
सुखं दुःखं भवोऽभावो भयं चाभयमेव ।।10.4।।

Intelligence, knowledge, non-delusion, endurance, truthfulness, sense control, mind control, pleasure, pain, being, non-being, fear and fearlessness.

अहिंसा समता तुष्टिस्तपो दानं यशोऽयशः
भवन्ति भावा भूतानां मत्त एव पृथग्विधाः।।10.5।।

Non-violence, equanimity, contentment, penance, charity, renown, ill-fame–from Me alone these manifold states accrue to all beings.

Introductory part of chapter is over with shloka # 3. Subject is Ishwara swarupam. Mow Sri Krishna presents the subject matter in shlokas 4 through 11, briefly. Then Arjuna asks for an elaboration.

God has manifested as universe. God and universe are both a mixture of consciousness and matter.  For the sake of convenience, the world is divided into two; one is the external world of objects; and the internal world of thoughts; anthara prapancha; And Sri Krishna says internal world is also born out of Me alone, the external world is also born out of Me alone; which means to see God, you need not look at a special direction. Whether you open the eyes, or close the eyes, God is everywhere.

First the anthara prapancha is enumerated; We have got any number of thoughts. Sri Krishna gives a list of such internal thoughts:

Buddhihi is intelligence;

Gyanam is knowledge;

Asammohah means clarity of thinking; not delusion; Sammohah means delusion;

Kshama means patience,

Satyam means truthfulness,

Dama means sense control. Even though sense control is the property of the sense organs, but to control the sense organs the message should be given by the mind alone; because we have seen in Kathopanishad, sense organs are like the horses, mind is like the reins; and therefore if the sense organs are under control; it is because of the mind’s controlling power; That is called here dama; directing power of the mind;

Sama means mind control;

Sukham means happiness;

Dukham means unhappiness,

Bhava means birth, origin of these thoughts or emotions and

Abhava; means dissolution or resolution of these thoughts,

Bhayam means fear,

Abhayam means fearlessness.

Ahimsa means non-violence;

Samata means equanimity poise, tranquility, any


Tushti means contentment;

Tapa means austerity, discipline or austerity,

Danam means generosity, a charitable disposition; a generous disposition;

Yashah means fame; in thought;

Ayashah means ill-fame.

This is not an exhaustive list; Sri Krishna has just given a list; we can add more.

Bhutanam bhavah; these are all various inner conditions or dispositions of the living beings; so bhutanam means the living beings.

And all these conditions originate from Me.

They all are born out of Me alone; in their own distinct nature;  they are all born out of Me alone; therefore I

am the cause of the inner world of thoughts and later he will point out I am the cause of the outer world also; combining them together I am the cause of everything; and therefore I am everything;

Take away:

This uncreated-beginingless-consciousness-matter-unit or composite is called Ishvara.

Thus, chetanam-achetanam; nirvikaram-savikaram; nirgunam-sagunam; satyam-mithya; such consciousness-matter mixture is called God.

When I see glory in another person I see glory of God in it. Thus, there is no comparison of egos. For such a bhakta arrogance never rises. This transformation is what Sri Krishna wants to bring in all us; seeing God everywhere.


With Best Wishes,


Ram Ramaswamy