16. See God in All
The all is something which cannot be intellectually understood.
All is the totality.
The totality is not a conglomeration of the several; unity is not assembled diversity.
But ... but what?
So, the elaboration of the teaching becomes necessary.
God is all, God is everything - not every thing, but everything.
As Gurudev used to say: "God is the all in all."
That is what is meant by the word 'omnipresent'.
Till one is established in perfect moral conduct, till one's heart is pure and the mind is unagitated by love and hate, desire and aversion, it is not possible to realise the truth that 'God is all in all'.
The heart must be pure, and the mind uncluttered and unagitated.
The central teaching of the Bhagavad Gita is to be able to see that the entire universe is pervaded by the omnipresent omniscience, and the universe of diversity is the manifestation of the omnipotence of the omnipresent omniscience.
God fills the entire universe inside out.
One may think that it is clear in a classroom or meditation room, but in what is called 'real life', it is not clear at all.
If you fall into the error of regarding what is socially unacceptable or considered evil as also part of the manifestation of God, then it is possible that you fall into the same trap.
Once you are trapped, you are out of God-consciousness.
How to realise this, not merely to speak or think of it?
In order to do that, one has to experience the presence of God.
As a further aid to the understanding of this truth, and as a sort of restraint to us against the wrong application of these sublime truths, in the tenth chapter, Krsna gives us a list of vibhuti or special manifestations.
Vibhuti is that which reminds you of the truth.
Gurudev Sivananda was very fond of this whole chapter, for the simple reason that it enables you to ascend the ladder of God-consciousness without missing out on anything, and without merely assuming that you are God-conscious.
How he actually lived this is described in 'Sivananda Yoga'.
That which is called omnipresent God is also the guru and it is also the self.
In the Guru, this omnipresence is unveiled - in the disciple, it is veiled.
Once the veil is removed, instantly you see that these three (God, guru, disciple), which were regarded as three, are exactly the same.
Neither the hosts of the gods nor the great sages know my origin. (Even the maharsi do not know me in essence,) because they came after me. I am their creator. (10:2)
Your own physiological faculties are considered to be presided over by the great sages.
In other words, the intellectual faculties are not 'mine'.
They are the sages', the maharsi's.
But even they are incapable of directly perceiving the reality.
Once you are freed from the idea 'This is my mind, this is my intellect, this is my buddhi', then God's light can be reflected even in your intellectual faculties.
The light of God is directly reflected in the buddhi of the Guru, that is why He is able to teach.
His buddhi and His intellect are not considered to be 'mine' (that is, his personal property), they are direct reflections of God.
They can see, but they also do not know the totality of God.
They can have a vision or a glimpse of God, they cannot know the totality of God.
And God is nothing but totality.
Again a tremendous puzzle.
You can look outside the window and see the sky, but you can never see the total sky.
You can go down and sip Ganga water, but you can never drink the whole of Ganga's water.
How would you describe the phenomenon of taking a little bit of Ganga water in your palm and sipping it, feeling quite satisfied that you have drunk Ganga water?
That is called vibhuti.
Intellect, wisdom, non-delusion, forgiveness, truth, self-restraint, calmness, happiness, pain, existence or birth, non-existence or death, fear and also fearlessness, non-injury, equanimity, contentment, austerity, beneficence, fame, ill-fame - these different kinds of natures of beings arise from me alone. (10:4,5)
All these opposites arise in God, in that one - not in 'me'.
Can that be understood?
It is not easy to grasp, but one who lived in that understanding was Swami Sivananda.
If there was great joy, He welcomed it - if there was great sorrow, He welcomed that also - that is also from God.
Till you realise that all experiences arise in God, and because of him, you have not really and truly entered into the spirit of the teaching of the vibhuti yoga.
Till then look for that God-contact in the special manifestations that are mentioned in this chapter - like the Himalaya, the Ganga - so that when you look at these, you train your mind to think of God.
By practising this vibhuti yoga, by drawing closer and closer to this omnipresence, you can be permanently 'hooked on' to God.
This is not a mere dry, intellectual pastime, but one which you love with all your heart and soul.
Suddenly you realise that, even though you are trying to see God in all, somehow the mind keeps what is called 'yourself' as something distinct and separate from this omnipresence.
'I see God in all' - even that excludes yourself.
You are the seer, the observer, and so on.
Can that division disappear?
By what kind of self-effort does the self get eliminated?
Do you understand the beauty of the question?
If you do all sorts of exercises, your limbs grow stronger, so the more you exert yourself, the more adamant will the ego become.
Therefore Gurudev used to say that the samnyas abhiman or the egoism of a samnyasi is terrible.
It is accepted, adored by people, therefore there is no challenge, and it is very difficult to break it.
So, you can go up to where you learn to see God in all, where you learn to talk about God all the time with your peers, friends and comrades, but the self that experiences all this cannot annihilate itself.
It can come to the end of its tether and begin to wonder "If all this is God, who am I?"
If at that point you think, "Oh! I am enlightened" you are finished.
Enlightenment is not an achievement or the end result of self-effort.
Self-effort is needed, self-effort is vital, and without self-effort nothing is gained, but self-effort cannot annihilate the self.
Enlightenment is a gift of God, it is not the end result of any effort put forth by a sincere seeker.
Knocking is important, but the key is with the other person.
Gurudev said, very beautifully: "Ignorance knocked at the door, wisdom opened the door, and ignorance was no more. Darkness knocked at the door, light opened the door, and darkness was no more."
That might be what they call God-realisation.
When the buddhi becomes totally absorbed in God, there is nobody to stand up and say: "I have seen God."
It is not a matter of you deserve or you demand, but it is granted by pure grace, pure divine compassion.
Out of mere compassion for them, I, dwelling within their self, destroy the darkness born of ignorance by the luminous lamp of knowledge. (10:11)
When you think you deserve it, you least deserve it.
When you deserve it, it may be granted unto you.
You may not even know, because the moment that door is open, you cease to be.
The way in which vibhuti yoga is to be practised is described in great detail, but the long and the short of it is given in verse twenty.
I am the self, O Arjuna, seated in the hearts of all beings; I am the beginning, the middle and also the end of all beings. (10:20)
What is this self?
When you enquire into this, do you recognise that you regard this self itself as some kind of an object?
In order to understand what this means, one has to cultivate God consciousness, which is to be able to see God in all.
When this feeling of the presence of God is generated again and again, your whole being becomes saturated with, it and that is the beginning of vibhuti yoga.

The Bhagavad Gita - Introduction | EN

Swami Venkatesananda

The Song of God - Introduction - Swami Venkatesananda - enlarged 4th edition – 1984 - published by The Chiltern Yoga Trust, Cape Town, South Africa
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