Nature of Paramatma

June 09, 2016 09:28 pm | Updated October 18, 2016 02:24 pm IST

In the Bhagavad Gita, Lord Krishna tells Arjuna that certain essential qualities help us to identify something. These are known as svarupa-nirupaka dharma, elaborated Valayapet Ramachariar in a discourse. Once we come to know an entity, the qualities that we thereafter come to know about are called nirupita-svarupa viseshana. In the case of Paramatma, the essential attributes are satyatva, jnanatva, anantatva, anandatva and amalatva. Once we realise the essential nature of the Supreme One, we come to know about His other attributes like daya, sauseelya, saulabhya etc. So to understand the nature of Paramatma, the basic five attributes have to be understood first.

Sentient and non-sentient beings change. But the Lord is unchanging. He is the embodiment of jnana. He is not limited by time, space or object. It is possible that something that existed in the past no longer exists. But in the case of the Lord, there is no such time limitation. Something may be present here, but not somewhere else. But the Lord is Omnipresent. So He is not limited by space. One object cannot be taken to be another. But since everything constitutes the body of the Lord, we can say that everything is Brahman. He is without blemish and removes our blemishes. A person who cannot distinguish between a buffalo and an elephant lacks the basic knowledge about the two. Knowing what an elephant is constitutes svarupa-nirupaka dharma. But once a person knows what an elephant is like and can identify one easily, then he can begin to think about other characteristics of an elephant — whether it is wild or has been trained, whether it has been trained to follow commands in a particular language etc. This is nirupita-svarupa viseshana.

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