This is an attempt to awaken curiosity to read the holy Gita. I am sharing a few nuggets verbatim from the chapters of the book, with the hope that this gets you started at your own pace. There are many commentaries on the Gita. This version is based on “The Scripture of Mankind” Translation by Swami Tapasyananda.
Manifestation of Divine Glory
Meaning of the word Vibhuti
Vibhuti means special manifestation of divine majesty, power & glory. The word arises from Vi + Bhu, meaning “arise, expand, appear”. The whole of Nature, including the mighty universe and what is experienced in it is a declaration of the power & majesty of the Creator.
In the next Chapter Lord reveals His cosmic form. In this chapter He tries to explain that he is the seed of everything. Without Him nothing can exist. There is no end to His manifestation.
Whenever you see anything powerful, good & glorious, know that to be a manifestation of an atom of My power. With an atom of My being, I pervade and sustain everything.
This chapter has two sections
1. Contemplation on Divine Excellence
2. The Vibhutis – Arjuna wants to know about the Lord’s glorious manifestations in life & nature.
Contemplation on Divine Excellence
As an aid to devotion & self-surrender Lord explains the Divine majesties and excellence by contemplating on which the devotional mood is reinforced.
- No person however great knows Me – For I pre-exist all
- Neither the host of Gods or Maharishis know my origin – for I am myself the origin of all those gods and great sages
- When man knows Me as the un-originated and eternal Lord, he becomes sinless and free from delusions
- All the higher faculties of man are but a faint reflection of My excellence
- All great men, saints & saviors are indeed projections of My thoughts
Intelligence, knowledge, sanity, patience, truth, sense control, mind control, pleasure, pain, birth, death, fear and fearlessness, non-injury, same sightedness, contentment, austerity, benevolence, fame, and obloquy – all these diverse modes of mind seen in all beings proceed from Me alone, their ultimate sanctioner.
Those who contemplate on Him and recognize Him as the essence in all that is glorious and impressive will be thrilled with devotional experience and attain perpetual communion with Him.
All those whose vital energy is drawn to Him through devotion receive the illumination of spiritual insight. The lamp of wisdom is lit within them, and the Lord reveals Himself as the Soul of their Soul.
Lord explains that He is the seed of everything. Without Him nothing can exist. There is no end to his manifestations. With an atom of His being, he pervades and sustains everything.
When Arjuna requests Lord Krishna to tell him his divine powers and majesties – He says “I shall declare to you what my divine self-manifestations are, but I shall mention only the chief of them, for there is no end to their detail”
- I am the Self residing in every being. I am their beginning, lifespan & end.
- Of the 12 Aditya’s I am Vishnu, among the luminaries I am the Sun, among the seven Maruts I am Marichi and of the Nakshatras I am the Moon.
- Of the Vedas I am Sama Veda, among the Devas I am Indra, of the senses I am the Mind, and of living beings I am Intelligence
- Of the 11 Rudra’s I am Shankara, among the demigod’s I am Kubera, of the 8 Vasus I am Agni, among mountains I am Meru
- I am the chief of priests Brihaspati, among the war lords I am Skanda, among the water reservoirs I am the Ocean
- Among the great sages I am Bhrigu, I am the mono syllabled Om, among holy offerings I am the Japa, among immovable objects I am the Himalayas.
- Of all the trees I am the holy Fig tree, among divine sages I am Narada, among perfect souls I am Kapila the sage
- Among horses I am Uccaisravas, among elephants Airavat, among weapons I am the Thunderbolt, I am Kamdhenu the celestial cow and Kama the God of love. Among serpents I am Vasuki & Ananta.
- I am Varuna, and among enforcers of law I am Yama. Among daityas I am Prahalad.
- I am Time, I am the Lion amongst animals and Garuda among the birds, among rivers I am Ganga, among fishes I am the shark, among warriors I am Rama. Among purifying agents I am the Wind.
Of all created objects I am the beginning, middle and end.
- Among the sciences I am the science of Spirits, and of debaters I am the power of correct reasoning.
- I am all destroying Death. I am also the Origin of all that to come to. Among virtues I am fame, fortune, speech, memory, intelligence, constancy, and patience.
- Among Sama Hymns I am the great chant Brhatsaman, among Vedic metres I am Gayatri. Among months
- I am Margashirsha. Among seasons I am the flower bearing Spring.
- I am victory, determination, and constancy too.
- I am the rod of chastisement in the disciplinarian, I am silence in the art of secrecy, and I am wisdom in the wise
He concludes by saying
Of all the beings I am the seed O Arjuna. Whatever exists in the world, living or non-living, none of them can be if I were not. There is no end to my divine manifestation. What I have expounded forms only a few of them by way of example.
And finally, the last verse is a question to Arjuna
Of what avail is this detailed understanding of my manifestation to you O Arjuna! Supporting this mighty universe with but one single fragment of My self, I remain unchanged and transcendent.
- Three attitudes are possible regarding things expressed in Nature. Sri Ramakrishna expounds these attitudes in a simple analogy of a beautiful garden.
- A common sight seer goes there and sees the beautiful flowers. His interest is only to pluck some flowers and carry them home. He is exploiting Nature for his enjoyment.
- A Botanist is interested in the scientific study of the plants. For him nature is something to be investigated and studied upon.
- A man of devotional and philosophical mind goes there. The garden charms him – but he looks for the designer of the garden whose wisdom is reflected on it. For this man the power revealed in Nature is a pointer to Natures Creator or God. This is the view that the Hindu Scriptures take.
End of Chapter 10
To be continued ……..