THE BHAGAVAD GITA - XIII:12-18
by Paramahansa Yogananda
(Excerpts from God Talks with Arjuna: The Bhagavad Gita)
I will tell you of That which is to be known, because such knowledge bestows immortality. Hear about the beginningless Supreme Spirit—He who is spoken of as neither existent (sat) nor nonexistent (asat). (12)
He dwells in the world, enveloping all— everywhere, His hands and feet; present on all sides, His eyes and ears, His mouths and heads; (13)
Shining in all the sense faculties, yet transcending the senses; unattached to creation, yet the Mainstay of all; free from the gunas (modes of Nature), yet the Enjoyer of them. (14)
He is within and without all that exists, the animate and the inanimate; near He is, and far; imperceptible because of His subtlety. (15)
He, the Indivisible One, appears as countless beings; He maintains and destroys those forms, then creates them anew. (16)
The Light of All Lights, beyond darkness; Knowledge itself, That which is to be known, the Goal of all learning, He is seated in the hearts of all. (17)
I have briefly described the Field, the nature of wisdom, and the Object of wisdom. Understanding these, My devotee enters My being. (18)
—The Bhagavad Gita XIII:12-18
The unmanifested transcendent Spirit beyond creation is causeless, without attributes, eluding classification; hence not sat or asat nor referable to any other category.
God is described as immanent in creation: Kutastha or the Intelligence that informs the phenomenal worlds. In all men it is He who works through their hands, moves in their feet, sees and hears through their eyes and ears, eats with their mouths, and in all faces gazes at Himself. With unseen vibratory fingers He holds in perfect balance the ideational, causal, and physical universes.
The Lord is not a Person with sense organs, but Consciousness itself; He is therefore aware of the thoughts and sensory perceptions of every being. Jesus referred to this all-embracingness when he said that not a sparrow shall fall on the ground without the knowledge of the Father.
The subtle invisible Spirit is omnipresent, ever before the gaze of the wise but seemingly nowhere to be found by the ignorant. Far from those in delusion, the blessed Lord is near and dear only to the heart of His devotee.
Spirit employs the three modes of Nature to appear as
(1) the Creator or Brahma (rajas, activity),
(2) the Preserver or Vishnu (sattva, the nourishing quality), and
(3) the Destroyer or Shiva (tamas, dissolution).
The motion-picture beam is the light-revealer and the "life" of all scenes on the screen; without the beam the "living" quality of the pictures would disappear.
Similarly, God's immanence as Cosmic Intelligence is called the Light of All Lights because It makes manifest the motion pictures of creation and the multifarious intelligences therein. Without Spirit, sentient beings would lose their consciousness and their bodies; the universe of suns and moons and planets would vanish into nothingness.
The yogi who in ecstasy attains realization of this immanence of Spirit as the Cosmic Intelligence, the Krishna or Christ Consciousness transcending the darkness of relativity, "enters My being"—expands the little self into Omnipresence, sentient intelligence into Infinite Wisdom. (God Talks with Arjuna p.887)