॥ શ્રી સ્વામિનારાયણો વિજયતે ॥


Spiritual Discourses

by Bhagwan Swaminarayan

Gadhada II-31

Associating with Brahma through Contemplation

On Shrāvan sudi 4, Samvat 1880 [10 August 1823], Shriji Mahārāj was sitting upon a cushion with a cylindrical pillow that had been placed on a square platform at His residence in Dādā Khāchar’s darbār in Gadhadā. He was dressed entirely in white clothes. He had also tied a black-bordered cloth around His head. At that time, while He was having the Kapil Gitā - a section of the Shrimad Bhāgwat - read by Prāgji Dave, paramhansas as well as devotees from various places had gathered before Him in an assembly.

Following the reading, Shriji Mahārāj said to the paramhansas, “Vāsudev Bhagwān - who is Purushottam, the cause of all causes and who transcends Akshar - implants virility in mahāmāyā through Mahā-Purush. That Purush is like Akshar, he is a mukta and he is also known as Brahma.1 When that Purush implants virility in māyā, Virāt-Purush is born from māyā via Pradhān-Purush. Thus, that Virāt-Purush is said to be the son of its respective Purush.2 Just as a Brāhmin, a Kshatriya, a Vaishya or another man of this world begets a son from his wife, similarly, Virāt-Purush is also begotten.

“That Virāt-Purush is just like this jiva, and his actions are also similar to the jiva. The lifespan of that Virāt-Purush is two parārdhs. The creation, sustenance and dissolution of this cosmos are his three states, just as waking, dream and deep sleep are the three states of the jiva. Virāt, sutrātmā and avyākrut are the three bodies of that Virāt-Purush. These bodies, which are encircled by the eight barriers, have been produced from the 24 elements comprising of mahattattva, etc.

“The indriyas, antahkaran and their presiding deities entered that Virāt and attempted to awaken him. Despite Virāt’s jiva being inside his body, Virāt still did not rise. Only when Vasudev Bhagwān - the kshetragna - entered within him in the form of Purush did the body of Virāt rise. Only then did Virāt-Purush become capable of performing all his activities.

“To inspire the jiva, that same God - while transcending māyā in the form of deep sleep - resides in the jiva as its witness. The jiva, however, has been associated with the body, the indriyas and the vishays. As a result of this improper association, the jiva has become one with the body, indriyas, etc. After forsaking their association, the jiva realizes, ‘My self is Brahma, which is transcendental and free from māyā.’ If one associates with Brahma through continuous contemplation in this manner, the jiva acquires the virtues of that Brahma. However, it is a great fault of the jiva that even after hearing this fact, it cannot maintain constant remembrance.

“In this way, the inspirer of both the ishwar known as Virāt-Purush and of this jiva is Purushottam - also known as Vāsudev - in the form of Purush. Like the jiva, that Virāt-Purush is also bound, remaining bound until he completes his lifespan of two parārdhs. When he dies, he gets direct contact with that Purush. This is because his father, Purush, is powerful and cares for him appropriately. So, because Virāt-Purush is attached to māyā, he is again produced from māyā at the end of dissolution.

“Moreover, just as the jiva is bound and powerless, in the same way, its father is also bound and powerless. How, then, can the father help his son? Thus the jiva remains continuously attached to māyā in the form of unconsciousness; that attachment, however, is never broken. Only when one constantly associates with one’s inspirer, Brahma, through contemplation - as previously described - is that attachment broken.

“Also, Virāt-Purush worships Sankarshan, Aniruddha and Pradyumna. Specifically, during the state of dissolution, he worships Sankarshan; during the state of sustenance, he worships Pradyumna; and during the state of creation, he worships Aniruddha. In fact, the trio of Sankarshan, Aniruddha and Pradyumna are the sagun forms of Vāsudev Bhagwān, and it is on the strength of his worship of them that Virāt-Purush becomes capable of performing the activities of creation, sustenance and dissolution. Moreover, as long as he worships these three, his association with māyā - in the form of creation, sustenance and dissolution - is not broken. It is when he worships Vāsudev Bhagwān, who is nirgun, that Virāt-Purush forsakes māyā and becomes brahmarup. Similarly, when the jiva worships God in the form of Brahmā and other deities, it attains fruits in the form of dharma, arth and kām. But, when it worships the avatārs of God - Rām, Krishna and others - it becomes brahmarup and attains liberation. The same applies for Virāt-Purush.

“Now, it is said in the scriptures that the avatārs manifest from that Virāt-Purush. This should be understood as follows: When Vāsudevnārāyan - through the form of Purush - comes and resides in Virāt-Purush, he is said to be an avatār. Thus all those avatārs are Vāsudev Bhagwān’s only. When that Vāsudev Bhagwān withdraws Himself and separates from Virāt-Purush, then it is not possible for an avatār to manifest through Virāt-Purush alone. Thus, the descriptions of avatārs manifesting through him are only because of the presence of Vāsudev in him. In fact, when Vāsudev - the kshetragna - had not yet entered him, that Virāt-Purush was not even capable of performing any of his own activities.

“When the previously-mentioned Purush impregnates māyā, a son in the form of Virāt-Purush is produced via Pradhān-Purush. From that same māyā, many brahmānds - in the form of Virāt-Purushes - are produced via countless Pradhān-Purush pairs. Furthermore, that Purush is desire-less, he is a mukta, he is brahmarup and he is the cause of māyā. Although he stays within māyā, he still remains unaffected by māyā. Also, he has no desire to enjoy māyā since he is content due to the bliss of Brahma; thus, he is fulfilled.

“The ishwar known as Virāt-Purush indulges in the pleasures of māyā and then, at the time of dissolution, forsakes māyā.3 The jiva, on the other hand, indulges in the pleasures of māyā and then merges into māyā, remaining miserable.”

Shuk Muni then asked, “Purushottam Vāsudev, in the form of Purush, is the cause of the creation, sustenance and dissolution of countless brahmānds. Consequently, the scriptures generally describe Purushottam as Purush. But what is the extent of the distinction between Purush and Vāsudev?”

Shriji Mahārāj then explained, “Just as there is a difference between the jiva and Virāt-Purush, who is an ishwar; and just as there is also a difference between ishwar and Purush, similarly, there is an immense difference between Purush and Vāsudev Bhagwān - Purushottam. Purushottam Vāsudev Bhagwān is the master of all, whereas there are many such brahmarup, Akshar-like Purushes who worship the holy feet of Vāsudev and who offer praise to Him. In this way, Purushottam, Purush,4 ishwar, jiva and māyā are the five eternal entities.

“I have explained this fact in this way many times, but it is not firmly fixed in one’s heart due to a lack of deep contemplation. As a result, after listening to the words of the scriptures, no stability remains in one’s understanding. If, however, it has been absolutely fixed, then one’s understanding would never falter on listening to such words. Therefore, thoroughly contemplate on this fact and write it down.”5 In this way, the discourse delivered by Shriji Mahārāj has been written.

Vachanamrut ॥ 31 ॥ 164 ॥

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This Vachanamrut took place ago.


1. Here ‘Brahma’ should be understood to mean ‘akshar-mukta.’

2. Here, Purush refers to Pradhān-Purush, which is of the ishwar entity.

3. Vairaj Pusush is an ishwar that, after the creation phase (srushti) of the brahmand, enjoys the happiness related to māyā during the sustenance phase (sthiti). During the dissolution phase (pralay), he abandons his body that was comprised of elements of māyā but he does not become completely free from māyā.

4. ‘Purush’ in this context refers to Aksharbrahman, one of the five eternal entities (not the previously mentioned Purush that implants virility in mahāmāyā - who is brahmarup or Akshar-like as mentioned in the previous sentence).

5. In this narrative, Maharaj uses the word ‘Purush’ to refer to four entities, albeit not eternal entities.

  1. Aksharbrahman: In footnote 3, Maharaj refers to Aksharbrahman as Purush. Aksharbrahman is singular and eternal, a distinct entity. This mention does not refer to the prevoiusly mentioned Purushes in this Vachanamrut.

  2. Maha-Purush: Maha-Purush is an akshar-mukta, a liberated soul. Hence, he is freed of the bondage of māyā. Hence, in this Vachanamrut, Maharaj mentions that this Purush, although unites with māyā to start the creation process, remains free of māyā. The union of Maha-Purush with Prakruti creates countless pairs of Pradhan and Purush.

  3. Pradhan-Purush: this Purush of the ishwar entity joins with Pradhan to create countless Virat-Purushes.

  4. Virat-Purush: this is an ishwar entity - the form of the brahmānd itself.

Based on Shukmuni Swami’s question, it should be noted that the scriptures refer to Maha-Purush as Purushottam because creation began with him. However, the great seers of the past were not able to envision the two higher entities that transcend Maha-Purush: Aksharbrahman and Parabrahman.

Aksharbrahman Gunatitanand Swami mentions in Vat 5/56 that all others are Purushes, whereas Maharaj is Purushottam. Therefore, it is not suitable to refer to Maharaj as Purush.

Prakaran Gadhada I (78) Sarangpur (18) Kariyani (12) Loya (18) Panchala (7) Gadhada II (67) Vartal (20) Amdavad (3) Gadhada III (39) Bhugol-Khagol Additional (11) Additional Info Vachanamrut Study People in the Vachanamrut Vachanamrut Introduction Vachanamrut Principles Vachanamrut Preface Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s Blessings Vachanamrut Calendar Paratharo 4: Auspicious Marks Paratharo 5: Daily Routine Appendices

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