Brahma’s inspiration for creation


Brahma’s inspiration

Once Brahma was thinking about the ways to create but he could not get any clue to proceed further. While thus contemplating within himself, he heard a divine sound from among the cosmic waters surrounding him. He heard a sound ‘tapa,tapa’  meaning concentrate, concentrate on your nature as the spirit. He knew that this instruction must have come from a divine source and in that very place he started to engage himself in austere meditation.

Brahma performed his austerities for a thousand divine years and the Lord revealed his highest spiritual realm to Brahma. Brahma saw Him whose face is illumined with a gracious smile, with his ear ornaments, yellow cloth, four arms, Kousthuba and Sri adorning his chest. He saw the Lord surrounded by twenty five expressions of His creative power.

Brahma was bathed in bliss within which overflowed as torrential tears from his eyes and prostrated at His holy feet.

The Lord was highly satisfied by Brahma’s continuous and concentrated meditation on Him and was willing to grant any boon. Brahma requested to know the Supreme Being, who is formless, gross and subtle and the Atma Maya. Brahma, as the Lord’s servant will continuously discharge his duty of creation, and he requested that he does not develop any pride in it.

The Lord explained the supreme knowledge to Brahma being extremely pleased by his yogic meditation on Him. The basic substances of nature combine and constitute various objects. These elements do not lose their material nature but also takes on the qualities of the combinations. Similarly, the Lord constitutes all beings and is in each of them, yet the Lord’s pristine nature is not affected by the nature and experience of the combinations that make up the bodies of beings. A seeker of truth has to grasp the fact that the basic nature does not suffer any diminution and always exists as itself despite any set of combinations it undergoes. The supreme spirit is that ultimate substance. Concentrated absorption on the supreme self is the only way to get liberation.  Saying as much, Sri Hari disappeared from Brahma’s view and then Brahma proceeded towards the activity of creation.

Bhagavatam Lineage

Bhagavatam Lineage

The twenty questions of Parikshit


Parikshit submissively asked the following questions to Sage Suka after hearing about the Yajna Purusha.

The twenty questions of Parikshit

1)      To whom and in what manner did Narada impart the knowledge of Bhagavata?

2)      The Atman is spirit and non-material. How does it come to have a body that is material? Is there any cause for this or is it purely accidental?

3)      Man has many distinct organs and limbs. The supreme Virat purusha also has the same as per your description. What then differentiates God from man?

4)      In what does the Supreme Being remain when he disassociates himself from the Atma – Maya?

5)      We have heard that the world and their protectors are formed from his limbs and the world and their protectors constitute His limbs. Which of these contradictions are true?

6)      What are the lengths of time involved in a Kalpa, Vikalpa. How do we understand time with its division of past, present and future? What is the span of different types of beings like man, devas etc.

What are the actions of time in its micro and macro aspects?

7)      What realms can man attain through his actions?

What is the origin of different worlds like Bhu, Patala etc?

8)      What are the internal dimensions of Brahmananda, what is beyond it?

9)      What are the stipulations of Varnashrama society?

10)   What are the incarnations of the Lord?

What are Yugas and what are duties pertaining to particular Yugas?

11)   What are common duties of man and what are their special duties? What duties are to be followed by people following different trades, by Rajarshis and by people facing emergencies?

12)   The number of categories like Mahatattwa etc, their nature, effects

13)   How to worship the supreme being and how to do yoga with eight steps?

14)   How do the yogis destroy the linga sarira?

15)   What are the nature of scriptures like vedas, subsidiary vedas and dharma shastras, itihasas and puranas?

16)   What is Dharma, Artha, Kama?

17)   How do Jivas emerge from the Lord?

18)   What is the origin of atheism?

19)   Explain about the bondage and liberation of Atman.

20)   How the Lord does limit himself in Maya and how does he disassociate from it?

Sage Suka was mightily pleased by these questions and answered all these questions one by one in the course of his exposition of Bhagavatam.

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Yajna Purusha – Maya of the Lord

Parikshit’s question regarding Lord’s maya

How does the Lord with the power of his Maya accomplish the creation of this world? With the help of what power does he sustain it and then dissolve it?

Suka’s reply

Suka’s reply is based on a lot of antidotes. First Sage Suka offers salutations to the supreme divine being who is the unseen director of everything. He offers salutations again and again to Him and then to Bhagavan Vyasa whose sweet words consist of divine knowledge for all devotees to imbibe. Narada’s story was recited by the sage to answer Parikshit’s question.

Narada’s question to Brahma

Once sage Narada questioned the divine creator Brahma about the knowledge which reveals truth of the Atman.  His questions were in a similar manner as asked by Parikshit to Sage Suka. The sage Narada tells Brahma that he finds the origin and end to be in Lord Brahma, but then why does Brahma perform great austerities with concentration? Who is more powerful that Brahma?

Brahma’s reply

Brahma replies that He has all the powers that Narada has understood but there is someone superior to him, Bhagavan Vasudeva. It is by his unconquerable Maya that the sage thinks that Brahma is the creator of the world.  The lord created three gunas of Sattva, rajas and tamas out of his Maya for the purposes of redemption, creation and dissolution. The Lord becomes inferable to his devotees through the play of the three Gunas that are controlled and directed by Him alone.


Creation of this Universe            

He was desirous of manifesting his Maya for which he took up Kala (Time), Karma (Efficiencies of work) and swabhava (Nature) that approached Him.

Creation of the universe

All the objects as well as birds, animals, reptiles, cattle, Pitris, Siddhas and other heavenly men and women, planets and galaxies – in short all the things that have, are and will exist form the Purusha Himself.

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Tha Yajna Purusha

Brahma emerged out of the navel of the Lord and he found various parts of the Supreme Being as parts being used for sacrifices like kusa grass, utensils, cereals etc. Brahma offered all these ingredients as sacrifice to the supreme being himself.

Brahma is directed by the supreme power to create the worlds hence there is nothing in this universe that exists independent of the supreme power. Neither Brahma, nor Siva, nor Narada can understand His real nature. Infatuated by His Maya, all our understanding can grasp only this created universe and that to the extent of our intelligence only. He is the spirit, pure and transcendental, the innermost essence, firm and unified, truth, complete, beginning less, non-dual, eternal and above gunas, who is neither a cause nor an effect.

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Some spiritual aspirants will be unable to concentrate on the cosmic form, such people should concentrate on the form of Lord to purify their minds. They should start meditating from the feet of Lord Narayana, and then his yellow cloth which is like the pistil of Kadamba flower, and then on his chest marked by the presence of Goddess Lakshmi, and then on his neck which is adorned by the precious Kausthubha gem and finally on his face which is ever serene, calm and peaceful with eyes like beautiful lotus petals and earrings studded with precious gems.

Sage Suka then explained to King Parikshit how a yogi passes away using his spiritual energy.

yogi passing away.

A yogi will raise his vital energy from the bottom to the crown of his head and merge with the supreme and leave his body. The different centres or chakras through which vital energy passes is illustriated below.

yogi passing away_chakras

A yogi may also desire other superior worlds while leaving the body, below are the different worlds explained by Sage Suka.


To become one in the nature of the self is the supreme place to reach for man and to strive for salvation we should generate intense devotion to Lord Sri Hari.

To pray for specific purposes the following Gods have been prescribed by Sage Suka.

Purpose God
To learn Vedas Brahma
Power of senses Indra
Progeny Prajapatis
Seeker of wealth Sri Devi
Brilliance Agni
Power Rudras
Food stuff Aditi
Heaven Twelve Adityas
Kingdom Viswa Devas, Manus and Devas
Popularity Sadhyas
Longetivity Asvini devas
Strength of body Bhoomi devi
Security Dyo and Bhumi
Beauty Gandharvas
Women Apsaras and Urvasi
Sovereignty over all Brahma
Fame Vishnu
Immense wealth Varuna
Learning Parameshwara
Happy conjugal life Uma
Seeker of Dharma Vishnu as Uttamasloka
Increase of progeny Pitris
Security from ghosts Yakshas
Strengths Maruts
Destruction of enemies by black magic Rakshasa Nirriti
Sexual Satisfaction Soma
No desires Worship the supreme being

A man of supreme intelligence worships the supreme power alone as all deities are manifestation of the supreme power.

By association with a holy man such Bhakti can be generated in man.

Sage Suka and King Parikshit

The king thus started his fast facing north in the southern bank of Ganga on a bed of Kusa grass. The Devas showered flowers on him and the gathered Rishis were mightily pleased by his words. The king then asked the renowned holy sages on what a man should do when death is imminent.

As the sages were discussing this question of King Parikshit, by chance there arrived Suka, the sixteen year old son of Vyasa who was always merged in the bliss of Atman and wandered aimlessly. The king was very happy that on the threshold of death he got an opportunity to meet a spiritually illumined person like Sage Suka only due to Lord Krishna’s grace.

The king asked the following questions to Sage Suka after paying his respects.

  1. What is the most important duty of a man with imminent death?
  2. What should he hear, repeat and worship?
  3. What should he not do?

Sage Suka whose reputation was not to stay in a home more than the time taken to milk a cow was thus questioned respectfully by Parikshit in sweet words.

What is the most important duty of a man with imminent death?

All worldly men forget the perishable nature of wealth, managing household affairs and sexual pleasures and spend half of their whole lifespan in such mundane things. Hari, the all pervading Lord is to be heard, praised about and remembered always by those who want to attain the state of fearlessness. The ultimate object is the attainment of a birth entirely devoted to the Lord. During the end of the Dwapara Yuga, the sage learnt Bhagavata from his father Veda Vyasa which he was going to explain to the king.

A man who knows that death is imminent should with a fearless mind abandon everything and take bath in the several holy rivers. He should then sit in a solitary spot and contemplate on the sound Om and control his mind and senses. The mind should then be made objectless and merged with the Consciousness-Bliss that is the Lord.  Repeated practice of concentration will strengthen the mind and remove weakness.

The king asked: How is concentration practiced? Where should one concentrate? How does it remove the weakness and impurities in the mind?

The sage replied that man should focus on the gross form of the lord with the help of understanding, Viratpurusha the cosmic divinity. The Viratpurusha’s body parts are described below.

Patala Underside of feet
Rasatala Heels and upper part of feet
Mahatala Ankle
Talatala Foreleg
Two knees Sutala
Two thighs Vitala and Atala
Hips Earth sphere
Deep Navel Sky, Bhuvarloka
Chest Swarga
Neck Maharloka
Face Janaloka
Forehead Tapoloka
Head Satyaloka
Arms Indra and Devas
Ears Quarters
Ears Hearing
Nose Aswins and smelling
Mouth Burning fire
Eye-balls Sky
Eyes Sun and Moon
Eyelids Day and night
Brow Brahma Loka
Four sides Water
Tongue Taste
Brahma-Randhra at his crown Vedas
Molars Yama
Teeth Expression of love
Smile Infactuating Maya
Glance Limitless creation
Upper lip Modesty
Lower lip Greed
Breast Dharma
Back Adharma
Generative organ Prajapati
Testicles Mitra and Varuna
Abdomen Oceans
Bones Mountains
Blood vessels Rivers
Hair Trees
Breath Powerful wind
Movement Evolution of Prakrithi with three gunas
Locks of hair Clouds
Wearing cloth Dusk
Heart Unmanifested Prakrithi
Mind Moon, source of all soft emotions.
Chitta Mahatathwa (Cosmic intelligence)
Ego-sense Rudra
Nails Animals like elephant, camel, horse and mule
Waist Animals like cow , deer. Bhurloka
Craftmanship Birds
Intelligence The first Manu
His Abode Man
His musical tunes Celestial artists like Gandharvas
Prowess Asuras
Face Brahmanas
Arm Kshatriya
Thigh Vaishya
Feet Sudra

A spiritual seeker should concentrate exclusively on this gross cosmic body of the Lord.