Bhagavadgita Pages, Chapters 1 to 18

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Creation and Dissolution
Creation part one :  Samkhya philosophy of dualism    

Creation Part two: The Creation according to Aitareya Upanishad

Creation Part three:  Brahma and the body of evidence

Creation Part four: Creation according to Bhagavatam, Vishnu Puranas et al

Creation Part five: Creation (Projection), Chaos, Cosmos, and order

Creation Part six: Linga (Tamasa) Purana             

Panchadasi (6.183-186):
Creation is unrolling of painted canvas.

The painted canvas is rolled up at the end of the day.

Lord's day is to roll out the canvas and His night is rolling back the canvas.

His day and night is one wink of the eyes.

Maya's darkness creates objects.

His Supreme Intelligence creates the Jivas.

Your deeds dictate the nature of your rebirth.


  Creation part one 08/30/2014


Creation:  Samkhya philosophy of dualism: Purusa is Consciousness and Supreme Unparalleled Intelligence and Prakrti [Pra (before) krti (creation)] is matter, unconscious, indiscriminate, and insentient. The Primeval Matter is called upper Prakrti and is undifferentiated, and the manifest world is called lower Prakrti. The cosmic process facilitated by Consciousness mutates upper Prakrti into lower Prakrti. This lower Prakrti is the manifest matter in the world and the universe. Also from Prakrti evolves Mahat (the Great principle) and from Mahat comes buddhi, and from the latter develops ahankāra, I-ness, or individuation. Mahat and buddhi are the cosmic and individual aspects of intellect.

According to Katha Upanishad 1.3.10-11, Mahat, Avyakta, and Purusa are the progressively subtler entities. Avyakta is Prakrti, also known as Pradhāna, principal matter, first cause, matter in motion, and the Unmanifest. Avyakta needs an agent to put it in motion. That agent is the Spirit or Purusa. There is nothing beyond Purusa; that is the final goal; that is the end of the journey-- more correctly, the beginning of the journey. When the light of Purusa falls on Prakrti or avyakta, transformational changes take place and manifestations come into existence. 

  (True Sankhyas believe that Pradhana undergoes manifestations and modifications independent of Purusa: no agent is necessary to induce or restrict Pradhana or Prakrti. The Sankhyas advance the milk theory, which states that the milk flows spontaneously from the udder of a cow, so also manifestations and modifications of matter take place. There are many arguments against it. My argument is that cow gives milk under influence of hormones, while the bull, though it has the mammary glands in a rudimentary state, does not produce milk, for the bull does not have the right hormones to induce lactation. An agent is necessary to induce manifestation. For Sankhyas, Purusa and Prakrti are equally important [coordinate] principles.)

Sankara says that the first manifestation of Avyakta (the Unmanifest) is the Great Soul (Atma Mahan) of the universe. Rg Veda says that Hiranyagarbha (the golden embryo) is the firstborn, the progenitor of all other beings.  He calls Avyakta avidya-maya, energy (Maya-sakti) that is responsible for the manifestation of the whole universe, gods, and other beings. Purusa and Prakrti are subject and object in that the light of Purusa effects the transformational change on Prakrti. Maya is unmanifest like Avyakta. To Sankara, Avyakta is not Prakrti of the Sankhyas. Sankara asserts that avidya (ignorance) is the cause of subtle body.

Ramanuja has a different view: the atma Mahan is the individual soul and the doer, and the Great Soul (Paramatman) resides inside the individual soul. Ramanuja claims that avyakta is the subtle body and compares it to the chariot. The subtle body, when clothed with kosas, becomes the gross body. R says that Avyakta is Brahman in his causal slumber, when names and forms remain latent and unmanifest. When Brahman undergoes transformation (Parināma), the universe unfolds (Prakāra).


Sixteen entities derive from ahankāra: manas, five faculties of action, five faculties of sense, and five tanmātras namely the sound, touch, color, taste, and smell. This totipotent Prakrti consists of gunas: Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas which are inseparable and form a complex (Sattva-Rajas-Tamas complex), which is inert, if it is in a state of equilibrium. Only one of the three constituents is dominant in a person or entity at any particular moment. Sattva is knowledge, intellect, light and balanced emotion; Rajas is the motor behind Sattva and Tamas; without Rajas, Sattva and Tamas are inert; hence, dominance of Rajas naturally means revved-up emotions; Tamas is darkness, passivity, or negativity. These three gunas, strands, and complex condition the manifest world, both animate and inanimate. The force behind this complex or strands is Purusa, which agitates these strands or gunas and causes disequilibrium (imbalance) and subsequently heterogeneity and polymorphism. This evolution of the Prakrti and its involution in this alternate process take many years (kalpa) to complete; according to Ramanuja, this whole process is play activity of Lord Nārāyana. The cycle of births and rebirths continue for the jiva, until the jiva realizes its own intrinsic nature and becomes aware of other jivas (selves) and Isvara.  

According to Kurma Purana (Book two, chapter seven), Siva says that all souls in this world are Pasus, souls associated with filth (mala) and fetters (Pāsa). The souls are pure by their true nature but are called Pasus when they are burdened with filth, fetters, finiteness, and limitations (Upādhi). Siva, the Lord of Pasus (the Lord of the souls), binds these Pasus with the noose of Maya, and that is His play activity. The twenty-four principles derived from Prakrti, the Maya, the Karman (action) and the three gunas (Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas) are the noose and the fetters of Pasupati, who only can liberate the Pasus from fetters, which are ignorance, egotism, desire, aversion, attachment to mundane existence (Avidya, Asmita, Raga, Dvesa, Abhinivesa).



Once the actions are dedicated to Siva, liberation is assured.  Pasu also means a four-legged animal.


Garuda Purana has a more detailed view of creation.




Prakrta Sarga




Mahat 1

Bhuta-sarga 2

Vaikarika sarga 3


Mukhyasarga 4

Tiryaksrotas 5

Udhavasrotas 6

Arvaksrotas 7

Anugraha-sarga 8



Prakrta and Vaikrta





Kaumara 9





Garuda Purana (Book one, chapter four) tells us in the words of Lord Hari the details of creation as narrated to Rudra. Nara-Narayana is the Supreme soul.  The visible universe with the manifest and the unmanifest abide in Spirit (Purusa) and Time. The Lord has no beginning and no end (death). He created Avyakta, the Unmanifest from which the Soul was born.  In a cascade fashion, entities started evolving from the Soul: Mahat or Intellect, mind, firmament, air, fire, water, and earth. He creates a cosmic golden egg (Hiranyagarbha), which is infertile until he penetrates it.  The four-faced Brahma in Rajas mode becomes busy with creation of the movable and the immovable.  The whole universe and beings emerge from the golden egg. At the end of the kalpa, the Lord in the form of Rudra dissolves the universe.  The first creation is Mahat, cosmic Intellect from Brahman himself.  The second creation is Bhuta sarga, the subtle elements (Tanmatras).  The third creation is Vaikarika sarga (transformational creation). It is also known as Aindriyaka sarga (creation of sense organs). These three preceding creations are called Prakrta sarga (elemental, natural, or original creation – building blocks).  The fourth creation is Mukhya sarga (chief or principal creation). Insentients and immobile objects belong to this category. The fifth creation is Tiryak-yonasyah or Triyaksrotas.  (Tiryak=oblique, horizontal + yonasyah=womb) = animals. (Tiryak=oblique, horizontal + srotas=canal) = animals, whose propulsion of nutrients go horizontally or have horizontal canals (intestines). Srotas means canal and therefore, it is natural to think that they (birds and beasts) have intestines that run parallel to the ground in their standing position.  Some other explanations are offered. They are called Tiryaksrotas, not because their bodies move obliquely, but because their nature is full of ignorance (Ajnabahula) and ego and their ways are wrong. The sixth creation is Urdhvasrotas, the gods who have canals going up or whose nutrients go upwards. The seventh creation is Arvaksrotas, the human beings whose flow of nutrients goes downwards. Though the literal meaning says that their canal and nutrients go downward, another explanation is given: They live below the heaven; they are full of brilliance, but are contaminated with darkness (Tamas) and stimulated by Rajas. They are enlightened both inside and outside. The eighth creation is Anugraha sarga, meaning creation of mental conditions like Sattva and Tamasa gunas. It is of four types: Viparyaya, Sakti, Siddha, and Mukhya. The immobile creation such as mountain is viparyaya, meaning it is unconscious. The last five creations from the fourth to the eighth are called Vaikrta sarga, transformational creation.  Vaikrta sarga is a product of meditation by Brahma. The ninth creation is Kaumara, belonging to both Prakrta and Vaikrta creations.

In all living beings, the Lord exists in four forms: Viparyaya, Sakti, Buddhi, and Siddhi.

Viparyaya in this context means that the lower principal creation such as trees and plants is deprived of consciousness. In animals, the dominant mode of his presence is sakti or physical power. In human beings, he exists as buddhi or intelligence. In realized souls like yogis, he exists as Siddhi or spiritual attainment.  Mountains and other immobile objects belong to this opaque, principal creation (Mukhya sarga) because of the cover of avidyam (ignorance).

            Coming to the Kaumara or Kumaras (Sanatkumara, Sanandana, Sanaka, Sanatana and Rbhu), that is the ninth creation. These are the mind-born sons of Brahma, who refused to raise a family,  remained bachelors and enjoyed youth (kumara). This story is continued in "Creation Part Three."


Dissolution sequence: Time reigns supreme in involution of the manifest universe and the gunas into undifferentiated matter (Mula Prakrti, or undifferentiated primordial matter) Avyakta. Mula Prakrti means original germ or root substance. 


First let us look into partial dissolution before we go to total dissolution. After a thousand MahaYugas, Brahma laya (Naimitika laya, occasional, partial, periodic, kalpal dissolution) takes place. (Varaha is the present kalpa preceded by padma kalpa.)  It will be one hundred years of no rains. Seven blazing suns will light up the sky, turn everything in the path of their rays dry and burn the three worlds, the earth, Bhuvah and Svah, and Mahar loka. The nether worlds will undergo incineration at the sight of Rudra, Vishnu’s form.  Mysterious clouds emanate from the mouth of Lord Visnu, which, for 100 years, will pour down rains that flood the whole world. Fire and floods will destroy all mobile and immobile things. This dissolution coincides with the onset of Brahma’s sleep. The primary creation remains intact and only secondary creation has undergone dissolution.

It would be raining, not cats and dogs, but “elephants' trunks” meaning that each drop would be the size of an elephant's trunk. There is water everywhere, fire subsides, wind dies down, there is no light, and there is total darkness. Brahma with his thousand eyes, thousand feet, thousand heads, thousand mouths and thousand arms presides over this watery grave of cosmic size.  He is learned in three Vedas. He has the radiance and the color of the sun. He is Virat, he is Hiranyagarbha, and he is beyond thought and imagination. All created beings, now dead, are wrapped in darkness. In Maharloka the sages see Time sleeping. The survivors of this great deluge are the Time, Saptarishis and Satya in Maharloka; Sri, Bhu, Siva, and Sanatkumara in Janaloka; Brahma and Sankarsana in Satyaloka; Narayana and his devotees in Vaikuntha; Krishna, Radha and Sridhama in Goloka. Vishnu sleeps on the coils of serpent Ananda taking the form of supreme Brahman. Visnu wakes up from Yoganidra after a thousand divine years and will create the universe once again in the form of Brahma, who creates the world and beings again and again at the beginning of each Kalpa. He is both Vyakta (manifest) and Avyakta (unmanifest).  

The other dissolution is Prakrtika Pralaya (total, natural dissolution; retrograde involution; elemental involution, Brahma’s dissolution). When Brahma dies after one hundred Brahma years (311.04 Trillion man years), Lord Hari destroys the universe and absorbs into his body the creator, Brahma. The significance of this is that Brahma who was responsible for secondary creation of the universe from the elements supplied by Lord Visnu is no more, and the universe has reverted back to its primordial state in Visnu.  

According to Saiva belief, Mahadeva (Supreme Siva) destroys the universe, beings, gods including Brahma, Vishnu and Siva (adjunct status of the same Gods). Saiva Siddhantists consider Supreme Siva, Paraparam (Beyond the Beyond, Supreme Supreme) as their God of gods; Siva, one of the Holy Triumvirate, is a mere god of the triad. The students from the west believe that Saiva Siddhantists selectively elevated the status of Siva of the earlier Triad to the Super-supreme status. Supreme Siva stays while Brahma and Vishnu come and go in this and many other countless universes.

Henotheists of Hindu religion are of the belief that Siva and Vishnu are of equal status, though Siva and Vishnu may stride up and down the parallel hierarchal ladders of their respective sects; Siva and Vishnu do not knock each other's ladder for supremacy; they switch their relative vertical positions with amity.

MahaVishnu is superior to Vishnu and is equal to Sadasiva, the revealer of Grace and the third Consciousness in Suddha Tattvas. Lord Siva performs his Tandava (wild dance) wearing a garland of skulls. The universe undergoes retrograde involution; each substance (like earth) or element falls back into its previous state until the state of Mahat is reached, when Mahat and Devi (Siva's spouse) merge into the body of Siva. Pradhana (Primary essential progenitor substance, matter) and Purusa (Spirit) exist separately in him and the gunas are inert.

At the onset of Prakrtika Pralaya, there will be a drought followed by scorching sun, which will be followed by heavy downpour for one hundred years. Now the egg of the universe will rupture and dissolve in water, which marks the death of Brahma.


Sankarsana, Vishnu’s manifestation, sends forth the poison-fire from below. The egg of the universe catches fire on all its sides. The wind blows violently for one hundred years. The universe is reduced to dust and smoke. The universe and beings vaporize to a subtle state of smell.  


Smell from conflagration dissolves in water. Involution takes place from the gross to subtle elements until it reaches the element sound. In a linear retrograde fashion the earth dissolves (or involutes into) in the water, the water in the fire, the fire in the air, the air in the ether, the ether in the senses, the senses in the subtle elements, the subtle elements in their subtle sources, the latter in Mahat, and Mahat in three gunas. The sensory and motor organs (Indreyas) merge into their respective deities. The deities merge with their inner controller. The mind merges with Sattvika ahankara, sound with Tamasa ahankara. Ahankara itself merges into Mahat, which dissolves in three gunas, which dissolve in the unmanifest Prakrti, the latter in the imperishable and the latter in the darkness. Darkness becomes one with the transcendent, which is neither existing nor nonexisting. Joseph Campbell explains what transcendent is. In Occidental theology, the word transcendent is used to mean outside of the world. In the East, it means outside of thought. Brahma, the creator merges or involutes into avyakta or Mula Prakrti. The earth, the fire, and all other elements lose their intrinsic properties and merge or fall into Mula Prakrti. As you see, the universe is created from the undifferentiated (Unmanifest) Mula Prakrti; and on dissolution, it retraces its steps backwards. Mula Prakrti merges with Time-Spirit, which stops all its functions. Time-spirit merges with the final repository and the wielder of Maya, the Atman also known as Purusa. The Lord refers to Eternal Atman as Me.



Bhagavata Purana states in Book twelve, Chapter four that the Unmanifest Primordial matter is Pradhāna (Mula Prakrti), which is the progenitor unmanifest substance, not subject to Time, modification, death, and decay; it has no beginning, no end and is the cause of everything. It has no form and all elements are present in a potential state.


Sankara's view: Between the Brahman and the Universe, there is Brahman's māyā (time, space, and causation) as the divine mysterious driving or projecting force.


Here is a table of the Indriyas and the respective presiding deities
































QTR*: The quarters of the world.


When Perialvar sings the praise of Baby Krishna in verse 40 of Divyaprabhandam, he describes the pralaya or dissolution:  “You swallow the earth, the mountains, the oceans, and the seven worlds and keep them in your protective custody.” 

According to Samkhya theory, the evolution and involution are linear starting from the Transcendent and ending in the world and vice versa. In involution, the world burns up. Dissolution (retrograde involution) takes place until the stage of the Transcendent. The next cycle of evolution starts.



The Creation according to Aitareya Upanishad

Creation Part two



In the beginning, if there were ever any such period, there was only One. That was Intelligence. It neither winked nor blinked nor budged. Then He created these worlds: light, death, and water. Heaven supported the waters, the light rays were the atmosphere, and the Death was the earth. It earned the name death, because people die on earth. The water was below the earth’s crest and He (the Lord) fashioned a person from the water and gave him a form. (That is why the water is the major constituent of the body.) He brooded over him; He separated the mouth, the nostrils, the eyes, the ears, the skin, the heart, the navel, and the generative organ. And along with them came the speech and the fire, the breath and the air, the sight and the sun, the hearing and the space, the tactile sense, the hairs, the plants and the trees, the mind and the moon, the out-breath, and the semen. (My note: This should remind us of the development of fetus in utero and the differentiation of the primordial germ cells into ectoderm, mesoderm and endoderm and their respective organs.) It is worthwhile to remember that according to the Upanishads, the stem substance for the whole universe and the living beings is ether. Ether is totipotent and can transform into any substance. You heard the expression that we are carbon-based. According to Upanishads, we are ether-based.

A deity or divinity presides over each organ and sense. They (the senses and the organs) fell into the ocean (of Samsāra or birth and rebirth), and became hungry and thirsty. The person and the divinities beseeched for an abode ― a body, wherein they can eat.

Instead, the creator or Intelligence sent forth a cow and another person. The hunger and the thirst wanted a house for themselves. The creator said that he would make them partakers and beneficiaries of offerings made to the divinities: the mouth, the nostrils, eyes and the like. That is how an offering or an oblation made to the divinities also satisfied the hunger and thirst. Now something is missing: That is food to sustain the divinities and satisfy the hunger and thirst. He brooded over the waters: Food issued forth from waters in a form and wanted to run away. (This means that the food’s main ingredient is water and depends on it for its existence). The person tried to hold the food by speech, breath, sight, hearing, skin, mind, generative organ, and out-breath. Now we have the body, the indreyas (organs and senses), and the food. The body is considered as a city; speech, breath and the like are the servants waiting on the body (serving the body). Who is the master of this body? Who is the enjoyer of the senses? So far, there is none. What is the portal of entry for this enjoyer? Where are the gates by which the enjoyer can enter, animate, and spiritualize this body? (The nine gates of the body are the two eyes, the two ears, the two nostrils, one mouth, one generative, and one reproductive organ). There are two portals in the body for entry, namely the crown and the forefoot. In the crown, it is Vidrti, the opening (brahma-randhra) in the sagittal suture of the skull, also known as anterior fontanel―the area corresponding to the soft spot on the top of the baby’s head. It is sahasrara, the highest center of spiritual consciousness in Kundalini yoga and the seat of the thousand-petalled lotus. By this portal, the self enters the body; the self from the time of entry into the body moves among three abodes of residence according to the level of consciousness: wakefulness, dream sleep, and deep sleep; Turiya is the fourth state experienced only by yogis. The right eye is the abode during the wakefulness, the inner mind during dream sleep, and the space in the heart during deep sleep.   

The self is said to have three births: The first birth is at the time of insemination and not fertilization. (You would guess that the first birth is fertilization of the maternal egg, but it is not so here.) The second birth is at the time of embryo’s development in the womb of the mother. The natal and postnatal period until death is not a consideration here. He is the substitute for or the recipient of the father’s pious deeds. After doing his work, having grown old, and departing this world, he is born again: That is his third birth. Who is this self, which animates and spiritualizes this body? He is Brahmā, Indrā, Prajāpati, the five elements namely earth, air, ether, water, light, that which is part of the fire, and any being that breathes. They make the self and such a collective entity is the prime mover. He is the Intelligence and the final Reality. This intelligent self rises from this world at the time of death, goes to heaven and becomes immortal. The self that entered by the anterior fontanel exits from the same portal. That is briefly the story of the transformation of water and other elements into a physical body with its organs and senses and their respective presiding deities and the soul.




Brahma and the body of evidence




Brahma in the first flush of creation created mind-born sages by name Sanaka, Sanandana, Sanātana and Sanatkumāra and (Rbhu) and asked them to proliferate. (Sanaka, Sanatana and Sanatkumara were triplets (born simultaneously!), devoid of three types of miseries, according to Linga Purana 20.85-87.) Those sages, named as Urdhvaretās* (he whose vital fluid ascends facilitating the Bramacharin to attain complete mastery over his generative and recreational impulses), refused to comply, and began worshipping Lord Vāsudeva. Thus disappointed, insulted, and angry, Brahma tried hard to contain his anger, but His anger broke forth as a red-colored boy from his forehead between the eyebrows. He was named Rudra, who cried, demanded, and received control of heart, senses, vital air, ether, air, fire, water, earth, sun, moon, and penance as places of his residence. Rudra means “Red and flashing One.” (Rudra = [Ru = to cry] + [dru = to move] = to cry and move.) When an infant is born it cries and moves indicating life and breath and the need for food.  The glabella-born Lord Rudra was half male and half female, the former developed into eleven Vyuhas (manifestations).  Rudra received many adulatory names and many adoring wives: eleven in all, collectively known as Rudranis.  Vayu Purana (Chapter 27) lists only eight such manifestations (Astamurti) of Rudra.  Glabella = Trikuuti = bone of the forehead or protuberance.

    Urdhvaretās*: Vital fluid, according to Hindu beliefs, exists in a subtle state throughout the body. Sukra = White, Silver, Vital fluid, Essence, Semen. When sexual urge finds expression, the subtle substance gathers at the gonads and prostate and assumes a gross form. To rise to the level of Urdhvaretas is to prevent emission and facilitate reabsorption into the body of the stored seeds for in the perfected one it remains subtle for ever with atrophy of the gonads and involution of phallus -- signs of Urdhvaretas. Because of the subtle nature of Sukra and its pervasion throughout the chaste body in Urdhvaretas and lack of it in the gonadal and prostatic fluid, he smells like a lotus. (On the other hand, ordinary mortals (men) smell like goats for obvious reasons.) In perfect ones, the seminal energy rises to become the nectar (Amrta) of Siva Sakti, according to Tantric Texts. This diffuse radiant energy (Tejas) circulating in the body of the perfected ones, it is said, they, when cut, bleed not blood but tejas in the form of semen.

Bhagavatam: Rudra and his eleven names, and eleven Rudranis, first the male names and later the names of his wives: (Bhagavatam, third Canto, Chapter 12) Manyu, Manu, Mahinasa, Mahān, Siva, Rtadhwaja, Ugrareta, Bhava, Kāla, Vāmadeva, Dhrtavrata. The wives are Dhi, Vrrti, Usana, Uma, Niyut, Sarpi, Ila, Ambika, Iravati, Sudha, and Diksa. 

Vayu Prana (Chapter 27) lists only eight manifestations of Rudra (Nila-lohita/dark-blue and red).




Progeny (sons)

1. Rudra

The Sun


Sanaiscara (Saturn)

2. Bhava

The Waters


Usanas (Venus)

3. Siva/Sarva

The Earth


Angaraka (Mars)

4. Isana

The Wind



5. Pasupati

The Fire


Skanda (god of war)

6. Bhima

The Ether


Svarga (heaven)

7. Ugra

The Sacrifices



8. Mahadeva

The Moon


Budha (Mercury)


Brahma enjoined him to have as many children as he can.

(According to Brahmanda Purana (, Rudra [Nila-lohita: Blue and Red = Rudra and Fire] was given only eight names: Rudra, Bhava, Sarva, Isana, Pasupati, Bhima, Ugra, and Mahadeva in the bodies of sun (heat or Prana), the water, the earth, the wind, the fire, the Ether, and the Moon (Apana or cold) with respective consorts, Suvarcala, Dhatri, Vikesi, Siva, Svaha, Quarters, Diksa, and Rohini. His sons were the Saturn, the Venus, the Mars, Manojava and Avijnatagati (from consort Siva), Skanda, Svarga, Sanatana, and Budha. Lord Siva is in charge of five gross elements; two vital airs, Prana and Apana; and mind, which constitute Siva’s body.)  You may notice some discrepancies here (Usa and Dhatri).

Nilalohita: Blue and Red God

        Rudra (Siva) drank the poisonous by-product (Halahala), that came out of the churned milk ocean, burned the sages, gods and other beings into ash and turned Lord Vishnu’s reddish white body black in complexion.  Lord Vishnu, gods, Brahma and sages begged Lord Siva to retain the poison in his neck as proof of protection he gave to all beings. The poison made his throat look blue and that is why Siva was named Nilakantan, One with blue throat. Another version tells that Siva received a black and blue mark on his neck from a fight with Vishnu. The popular version is the drinking of the poison. The fight between Vishnu and Siva is played down by some because Siva always tells his devotees that whosoever insults, disrespects, or does not worship Vishnu could not ever be his devotee.

       When Rudra was born from the glabellar locus of Brahma, he was red in color, hence the name Rudra.

Rudra had many children, bearing the same qualities of Rudra, who went ahead and did what they knew best: that is executing to the letter, the tenets of their portfolio of destruction of all beings around them. Brahma realized the unintended consequence of unleashing Rudra and his progeny on other created beings. Brahma, shaking in fear, begged the God of gods Lord Narāyana to help him; he pleaded with his own glabella-born Rudra and His progeny to stop this programmed destruction and forgo having any more children. Brahma advised Rudra and his progeny to sublimate and divert their energy to penance. Rudra and the progeny complied and paid obeisance to Brahma by circumambulating him. As an aside, it is worthwhile to mention that Rudra is born again and again with the onset of each kalpa in the same manner as said earlier.

         In Linga Purana, Siva is the dominant Primordial God, as Visnu is the dominant God in Visnu Purana. He was androgynous (Ardhanari), right half male, and left half female. Ardhanari represents fusion of male and female principles in One and forms the basis for passion.  Man is genetically XY, meaning he is half female and half male, while woman is XX, meaning that she is homozygous for the X chromosome.  It is conjectured that hermaphroditism was the order of the day before the species, subjected to many factors, differentiated into male and female.

        The halves of the Lord split; the male impregnates the female; this creative energy is Brahma himself; Vishnu is the product. Thus, Ardhanari form of the Lord is both the efficient and the material cause of the universe of beings and matter. In the western culture and religion, there is a dichotomy between God and man; there is a separation; man did not originate from God. There is a gulf between God and man (and other beings). The son of God, Jesus Christ, bridges that gap. In the Indian mind God is the flesh and blood of man and animals; in the belief of western mind, man eats the flesh and blood of the son of God. Here eating flesh and drinking blood of Jesus Christ is not something physical. It is spiritual nourishment coming from Jesus Christ. His words are his flesh and blood. Following them confers eternity. He who follows his words abides in him and Jesus Christ in turn abides in his follower.


        Brahma went ahead and created ten more sons namely Marici, Atri, Angira, Pulastya, Pulaha, Kratu, Bhrgu, Vasistha, Daksa, and Narada. Brahma's creative energy was bursting forth on his body and mind, since he was in the mode of Rajas (passion, motion, action, and creation). Brahma created out of his mind seven sons, collectively called Saptarishis, seven Rishis who are the primary Rishis or sages: Kasyapa, Atri, Vasistha, Viswamitra, Gautama, Jamadagni, and Bharadwāja. These seven sons individually created seven sons out of their minds.

Bhagavatam 8.13.5:  As I said earlier, Brahma’s creative energy was showing on his body and mind. Narada popped out from the lap, Daksa trotted out of his thumb, Vasistha spiraled out of his breath, Bhrgu crawled out of his skin, Kratu muscled his way out of his hand, Pulaha sprouted out of his navel, Pulastya wriggled out of his ear, Angira gushed out of his mouth, Atri brimmed over the eyelid, Marici dawned out of his mind, Dharma burst out of his right breast, Adharma scratched his way out of his back, the god of love (Kāma) blossomed out of his heart, Anger bounced off his brow, Greed gyrated on his upper lip, the goddess of Speech (Vak) vaulted out his of mouth with the aid of a pole of nimble wit, the oceans rained down from his phallus, Nirrti plunked out of his anus, and the sage Kardama stepped out of his shadow. Dharma was Lord Narāyana Himself. Thus, Brahma's creations came out of his body and mind. 

Nirrti is Calamity personified as the goddess of death and is the wife of Adharma, Unrighteousness. Bhagavatam states that Nirrti and Adharma had three sons, Bhaya and Maha-Bhaya and Myrtyu:  Bhaya is fear himself; Mahabhaya, great Fear; and Mrityu, death incarnate. Another version states that Nirrti is a daughter of Adharma and Himsa, unrighteousness and violence (or injury) and mother of Bhaya and Naraka (Fear and Hell). As you see, all the basic emotions are personified.

Kardama is the husband of Devahūti and the father of Kapila. Kapila is the founder of Sankya system of philosophy. See Chapter two for details on Samkhya system. 

Brahma, in order to hasten the pace of creation, fell in love with his own daughter Vac (speech), who did not have even one iota of carnal desire in her. His sons, Marici and others pleaded with him and pointed out the unrighteousness of his intentions. They brought to his attention the historical precedent and virtue set by previous Brahmas and the moral precedent he would set for the future Brahmas. Brahma was ashamed of his intent, immediately gave up his body, which became a dark fog.

Brahma brought out the four Vedas from the mouths of his four heads:  Ayurveda, medical sciences; Danurveda, the art and science of Archery; Gandarvaveda, the art of music; and Sthāpatyaveda, the science of Architecture. The Ithihasas and puranas collectively are the fifth Veda. Vidya, knowledge; Danam, charity; Tapah, penance; and Satyam, truth are created as the four legs of Dharma or righteousness. Varnasrama Dharma (the Hindu system of division of labor) was established. Brahma created all human endeavors including three Rs.


Even with all the serious efforts, the population was sparse. He worried about it. When he was engaged in contemplation, his body assumed a form that looked like two bodies in one. This twin body had for one side a female body and another side had a male body. This twin body or two-bodies-in-one goes by the name of Kāya: The male part was Swayambhuva Manu and the female part was Satarupa. The bodies separated as two fully formed individuals, one male and one female and later united in conjugal embrace. With Satarupa, Manu fathered five children, who were two sons, Priyavrata and Uttanapada, and three daughters, Akuti, Devahuti, and Prasuti. Akuti was married to sage Ruci, Devahuti to sage Kardama, and Prasuti to Daksa. The population increased because of these unions. Brahmanda Purana ( states Manu took Satarupa as his wife because she was not a product of sexual union and so sported with her in conjugal bliss (Rati). In Sankhya terms, Manu was Purusa and Satarupa was Prakrti.

One Brahma's day is one Kalpa made up of one thousand Yugas or periods. One night of Brahma is one Kalpa made up of one thousand Yugas or periods. Therefore, there are two thousand Yugas in one Brahma's day and night. In earthly terms, these two thousand Yugas are 8,640,000,000 years long (8.64 billion man-years.) There are four kinds of Yugas: Krta or Satya, Treta, Dvāpara, and Kali. According to Srimad Bhagavatam Book three, Krita Yuga had the highest Dharma (righteousness), which diminished progressively by a quarter in the subsequent Yugas with proportional increase in Adharma (unrighteousness). Dharma consists of four limbs: austere penance, internal and external purity, compassion, and truthfulness ― note slight variation from the earlier description.


Table: The Characteristics of Yugas


Dharma was dominant. No Varna (caste) system. Long life span, 100,000 yrs. Golden age- White color. No sexual reproduction. A mere wish is the begetter of progeny. One Veda only. Presiding deity is Brahma. Meditation and penance were work-a-day routine. The residents were young, beautiful and kindly to one another.


Lifespan 10K yrs. Silver age – red color of Nārāyana. Knowledge more than Dharma is the operating principle. Reproduction by palpation or touch. One Veda became four Vedas. The presiding deity is sun-god. All personal needs were provided by wish-trees. Varnasrama system was introduced by Brahma. Fire-worship without animal sacrifice was practiced.


Lifespan 1K yrs. Yellow color of Nārāyana. Human miseries abound. Varna system operative. Sexual reproduction is the norm. Puranas are popular. Vishnu is the presiding deity. Rajas and Tamas dominate people. Intellectual deterioration prompted division of Vedas into four parts. Brahmanas, Sastras, Puranas, Sutras, Itihasas were composed.


Lifespan 100 yrs. Black color of Nārāyana.. 1/4th Dharma and 3/4th Adharma. Perversion in all fields common. Siva is the presiding deity.


            In Krta Yuga, virtue stood on four feet: truth, charity, penance, and mercy. There was no social class; all were equal. There were no castes.  They got along well with one another. There were no houses, for they all lived in natural surroundings like seashores and mountains with good climate. They were Sattvic and sorrow was unheard of. Happiness was the norm and they lived in their minds. There were no animals, rodents, birds, reptiles or plants. There was neither drunkenness, nor angry people, nor mad people. They ate flowers, fruits and roots, which gave them good complexion and youth, cured their illness, and prevented old age. Every one practiced meditation. A mere thought was the begetter of progeny. There was no thieving, and they entertained no desire or hatred towards one another.

They were all equal in beauty, features and longevity of life. They knew neither gain nor loss, neither friends nor enemies, neither likes nor dislikes, neither violence nor favoritism. Knowledge was valued most.

In Treta Yuga, virtue stood on three feet: truth, charity and mercy. There was only one Veda.  People built houses by the river and on the mountains, thus establishing villages and towns. They lived on fruits and vegetables. people exploited the trees (food, clothing and trinkets) so much, they ran out of trees.  Brahma advised them to resort to agriculture. Varnasrama dharma was instituted.  A new social order under the Brahmanas and kings was established along with rituals and sacrifices, which were the most important aspect of their life.  Weights and measures were introduced. Women for the first time started having menstruation in this Yuga.  Saptarishis laid down dharma.

In Dvapara Yuga virtue stands on two feet. Social fabric starts breaking down. Conflicts, wars, famines and discord abound. Vyasa appears on earth and divides Veda into four parts.

Virtue stands on one foot in Kali Yuga and Tamas is the dominant guna.

People of Krta Yuga were Sattvic, devoted to knowledge and austerity.  People of Treta Yuga, Rajasic by nature, pursued pleasures and fulfilled their desires. People of Dvapara Yuga, Rajasic and Tamasic by nature, were greedy, arrogant, and jealous, and entertained false prestige. They were eager in obtaining desired objects. Krishna was born when Dharma stood on one foot at the end of Dvapara Yuga (GP1.223.24-28).


The Kali Yuga people speak falsehoods, kill and maim, come under the influence of grief, delusion, terror, and wretchedness. They carry lust in the heart, and harsh words on their tongue. The kings (the rulers) beg their subjects or citizens (? election campaign). People’s culture is dominated by their “phalli and paunches,” meaning that their life centered on carnal desires and gluttonous eating (GP 1.223.29).


Table: The Yugas and the duration








1,728,000 Years

Age of Perfection

White (Nārāyana’s color)



1,296,000 Years

Age of Triad




864,000 Years

Age of Doubt




432,000 years

Age of Vice



Maha Yuga (aggregate)

4,320,000 years





Each Yuga is preceded by Sandhya (pre) and succeeded by Sandhyamsa (post). 

As you may notice, there is tapering of the duration of Yugas from Krita to Treta, to Dvapara to Kali Yuga. It is compared to a cow's tapering tail which at its upper end is wide and at  its lower end narrow. In this Great Drama of Cosmic proportions, as the play nears its end in Kali Yuga,  Siva arranges to withdraw all materials in a haste (the Fourth Act) and goes to sleep (Nidra or rest) on the couch of Mahapralaya . In case of Vishnu, it is the couch of snake. Siva will perform his dance at the end of drama.


The details are as follows.

400 divine years of Sandhya + 4000 divine years of KritaYuga + 400 years of Sandhyamsa = Krita Yuga = 4800

300 divine years of Sandhya + 3000divine years of TretaYuga + 300 years of Sandhyamsa = Treta Yuga =3600

200 divine years of Sandhya + 2000divine years of DvaparaYuga + 200 years of Sandhyamsa = Dvapara Yuga =2400

100 divine years of Sandhya +1000divine years of kaliYuga +100 years of Sandhyamsa = Kali Yuga =1200

Total is 12,000 divine years.

360 human years = 1 Divine year

4800X360 = 1,728,000 years --Krita Yuga

3600X360 = 1,296,000 years -- Treta Yuga

2400X360 = 864,000 years --Dvapara Yuga

1200X360 = 432,000 years --Kali Yuga

Maha Yuga = 4,320,000 years with Sandhya and Sandhyamsa (preYuga and postYuga)


Kali Yuga started at midnight of 02/18/3102 BC. These Yugas are cyclical starting from Krita Yuga. Lord Krishna was on the earth by the end of Dvāpara Yuga. As you notice in the table, Krita Yuga is the longest, four times longer than Kali Yuga; next comes Treta Yuga, which is three times longer; and the Dvāpara Yuga is only twice longer.


Brahma's Life and Times. Life Span: 100 Brahma years


Brahma Unit

Kalpa Unit

Solar years

One Day


4,320,000,000 (4.32 Billion)

Day and Night


8,640,000,000 (8.64 Billion)

1 Month


259,200,000,000 (259.2 Billion)

1 Year


3,110,400,000,000  (3.1104 Trillion)

100 Years


311,040,000,000,000 (311.04 Trillion)


Brahma's day precedes night of equal duration. There are two thousand Yugas or periods in Brahma's day and night, which last (4.32 billion years X 2) 8.64 billion man- years. One day in his life (4.32 billion years) is made of one thousand cycles of all four Yugas and there are fourteen  (Manus) Manvantaras in one Kalpa (Brahma's day).  Dissolution of the universe marks the end of each Manvantara. Therefore, one day of Brahma is marked by fourteen dissolutions.


Each Manvantara has its own Manu, Indra, and Rishis. Manvantara means period of Manu. There are 14 Manus in a day, 5040 Manus in one year, and 504,000 Manus in one Brahma's lifetime of 100 Brahma years. Each Manvantra results in partial dissolution meaning that one day of Brahma has 14 partial dissolutions. The next bigger dissolution is the kalpal dissolution following one day in the life of Brahma. Bigger than that is the dissolution when Brahma reaches the age of 100 years. Brahma, the attending Manus and Rishis come and go, but Maha Vishnu (the God of gods) remains forever. To restate these figures in another way, each Manu has his term and power lasting for 71.42857 cycles through a set of four Yugas (Maha Yuga) and in human terms for 306,720,000 years. 306.72 mil or 71.42857 cycles = 4.2941 mil (4.32 mil years per cycle of one Maha Yuga.) Each Manvantara has his own retinue of descendants (sons), seven Rishis (Sapta Rishis), gods, Indra, Visnu incarnation, Ghandharvas and the like. It is like change of administration in Washington, when a new president assumes power. When the day's work is over, Brahma retires for the night with an infinitesimal amount of soporific called Tamas (one of the Gunas or modes). When he retires, the whole universe (the three worlds: Bhu, Bhuvah and Swah) is absorbed into him. Bhu is earth; Bhuva is the space between earth and sun inhabited by Siddhas and Munis; Swah is Indra's heaven that perches above the sun or between it and the polar star.

These worlds are consumed by fire emitted by the serpent God, Lord Sankarsana. The heat is intense and felt in the world above and it gets so hot in the upper Maharloka, the abode of Bhrgu Muni, that he moves to a higher and safer location namely Janaloka. The oceans swell and swallow all three worlds. In the midst of all this devastation, Lord Hari, surrounded and praised by Sri, Bhu, Rudra, Sanatkumara and the rest, the usual residents of Janaloka, is seen reclining on His Snake-bed in the ocean with His eyes closed as if sleeping and unconcerned, but in reality in meditation and full awareness (Yoga-Nidra = sleep meditation with full awareness, one of the Vishnu's Yoga māyās.)  The next kalpa  is the exact duplication of the previous kalpa. 

Brahma is past middle age now. That means Brahma had been around at least 155 trillion years. In Brahma's life, there are two halves: In the beginning of the first half, the kalpa was called  Brahma-kalpa in the first millennium where the Lord and the Vedas appeared. The next kalpa was called Padma-kalpa because the lotus flower grew out of the navel reservoir of water of Bhagavan Vishnu. The first millennium of the second half is known as Varaha-kalpa, because the Lord incarnated as a hog. He (Brahma) is now in the second half of his life. The duration of the two halves of life of Brahma is less than one nimesa (less than one second) for the beginningless Lord, Maha Visnu, the Soul of the Universe. Remember: Brahma lives for 311.04 trillion years.

When Brahma goes to sleep in the (Brahma's) night, all planetary systems below his abode, Brahmaloka, are inundated with water. He dreams about Maha Vishnu who gives him instructions to rejuvenate the universe again.

When Brahma goes to sleep, for the duration of one Kalpa (one night of Brahma, 432 million years) Vishnu goes to sleep with his abdomen full of Jivas, released souls, Brahma, the inmates of hell, the fallen souls, the people caught up in Samsara, and the animals. 

  It is worthwhile to remember that the laws of karma become operative with the onset of new kalpa; in kalpal dissolution, karma, vasanas and samskaras of an individual are in suspended animation, waiting to express themselves once the subtle body acquires kosas or a body. 

When Brahma’s life comes to an end (a full life of 100 Brahma years), the Lord of Lords absorbs all elements and a new Brahma is created at the Lord’s will.

Every soul takes a birth in a body from inorganic entities to the highest earthly human being 8,400,000 times. One, then, would consider that human body is the most difficult to come by. It is mind-boggling to think that we as human beings have gone through possibly around 8.4 million births before we got to this stage. This is the evolution of the soul from the lowliest of 8,400,000 organisms to the highest--human. Devas are intermediate between Isvara, the inner controller and human beings.


 Gods and goddesses take birth among humans: Avatars, Parvati and the rest

Our birth history:

Inorganic births: 3 million births (30 lakhs, 1 lakh = 100,000)

wrigglers (worms): 1 million births (10 lakhs)

Birds: 1.1 million births (11 lakhs)

Beasts: 2.4 million births (24 lakhs)

Human beings: 400,000 births ( 4 lakhs)

The question comes up whether we really went through 8.4 million births. It should be understood that this is revealed wisdom; we are not in a position to accept or refute the revelation with the aid of worldly intelligence.  We are like a newborn infant, who has no capacity to understand its existence before conception, at conception, gestation, birth and postnatal period. In like manner we do not have the Consciousness to know and realize that we went through 8.4 million births. Our physical memory of past lives ceases at death and birth. It is RAM memory. Our ROM is zilch. Our soul retains the ROM memory in its subtle body, which we cannot access.  Rishi's Superconsciousness has received revelations from the Great Self about these events. Human consciousness is several levels below the Pure Consciousness of Brahman; in like manner the sentience of a worm is several levels below the human sentience. Worm has no knowledge of our existence, but we ourselves do of us and the worm.  We are endowed with enough consciousness to think and it cannot leap out of our ambit of understanding and intelligence. We are like the flightless winged bird which sees the eagle soar high into the sky; our clipped consciousness cannot soar high enough to understand the mysteries beyond our vision. If the Sadhaka develops his Ati-indriya (Atīndriya) Tattva during the course of Sadhana (perfection), the inhered vision takes him far beyond worldly wisdom and knowledge. Atīndriya = Ati + Indriya = Beyond + Senses.  Superconsciousness is the tool for understanding extramundane spiritual  knowledge which is beyond reason and argument. That is where Sastras (sacred texts) come. Our world and being is corrupted by Avidya (ignorance) and Maya (illusion). Superconsciousness takes the Sadhaka far beyond the limitations of Avidya and Maya to see what has never been seen, hear what has never been heard, and experience bliss. Our intelligence (consciousness) is like the optical microscope, while Superconsciousness is like the Electron Microscope. Our consciousness is like a pair of eyeglasses, while Superconsciousness is like Chandra X-Ray Observatory.

Karma is the cause and brings the body and soul together in a living being. Good Karma brings body and soul together in good conditions of living; bad karma brings about the reverse; the best karma is zero-sum entity, assuring no rebirth, and liberation (Moksa). Between a loaded karma and a zero-sum status, there are several resolutions: 1) Purna (zero-sum status), 2) Apurna (100% loaded Karma), 3) Purna-apurna (Complete-incomplete), 4) Bhukta (partly "eaten"), Abhukta (partly "uneaten"), Bhukta-abhukta (part, eaten; part, uneaten).





Creation according to Bhagavatam, Vishnu Puranas and other sacred texts
Creation Part Four


            Bhagavatam contains the views on creation in question-answer sessions.

There are ten features: Sarga, Visarga, Vrrti, Raksā, Manvantra, Vamsas, Vamsānucharita, Samsthā, Hetu, and Apāsraya.


Sarga is primary elemental creation. Another descriptive name for it is subtle creation. The principal product is Maha-tattva, the Great Principle also known as Cosmic Intelligence, created by the disturbance in the equilibrium of Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas, the three modes of matter or Prakrti. This is the first part of the primary creation; the will (Iccha) of the Lord provides the fillip. In all, Mahat, Ahankara, five tanmatras, five gross elements, five janendriyas, Sattva, Rajas, Tamas, ten presiding deities of five motor and five sensory functions, mind and its presiding deity, moon, and Time make sarga. These 33 elements form the building blocks for launching the secondary creation (Visarga).


Five gross elements (pancha Bhutas).

Five Tanmatras.

Five Janendriyas.

Earth, Fire, Water, Air, and Ether.

Sound, Vision, Taste, Smell and Touch.

Ears, Eyes, Tongue, Nose, and Skin.



From the Cosmic Intelligence proceeds Aham or ego, the second element, in a downstream fashion. The third is the evolution of Bhūta sarga (matter). The fourth is the evolution of knowledge and work (Sarga – jnāna and kriya). The fifth is the appearance of divinities in the mode of Sattva (goodness), and the mind. The sixth is the assertion of Tamas (darkness) of ego, resulting in abuddhi (lack of judgment).



Visarga: This secondary creation is an act of Brahma under the direction of the Lord of lords, Nārāyana or Vishnu, who created all the elements and the mind in primary creation. Brahma’s other name is Virat (manifestation) Purusa. In reality, Virat Purusa is the Lord himself in the form of Brahma. Brahma’s assignment is to assemble the elements with the help of Sattva, Rajas and Tamas, which help the elements undergo combination, recombination, mutation, and permutation in so many ways that the whole universe appears as many objects and beings. Another name for it is gross creation. “Internatal” (from birth to birth) Karma clinging to the subtle body is the invisible entity that gives form, character, and destiny to living beings. Neither Brahma nor the Lord of the lords normally interferes with Karma or Time, though the Lord of the lords can expunge karma by His grace.

The seventh creation is that of plants and trees, which have feeling of touch but are wanting in mental function. The eighth is the creation of animals and birds. The ninth is the creation of humankind (Nri or Nuri). Here all the living beings come to life out of elements made by the Supreme Purusa in the primary creation.

According to Sākta-Sānkhya theory, the Parā Sakti (the Supreme Power) of the Lord MahāVisnu is the force behind creation. The power has three components: Prakrti, Purusa, and Kāla (Time). When the equilibrium of Prakrti becomes unstable from glance of Time-Spirit, a cascade of events and products takes place in a linear fashion, where the preceding product is the substrate for the next substance or entity: Prakrti, Mahat, Ahamkāra, Tanmātras, Mahā Bhūtas, Ākāsa (Ether), Vāyu (Air), Agni (Fire), Jala (Water), and Bhūmi (Earth). Once the basic elements are in place, Brahma goes to work using guna, which is of three types: Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas. Tamoguna (darkness, delusion, and ignorance) becomes the basic quality of the winged creatures like insects and birds, quadrupeds, and worms. Sattvaguna (Virtue and Truthfulness) is the basic quality of the gods. Rajoguna (motion and passion) is the basic quality of the bipeds (humans). Progenitors, created by Brahma, populated the world and contributed in increasing the population.

According to Kurma Purana Book two, chapter three, Kāla manifests from the union of Purusa with Pradhāna, matter or Prakrti. Brahman is the repository of Purusa, Pradhāna and Time, which have no beginning or end.  Time is the begetter and the destroyer of living beings. Siva admits that he owns Tamasi (also known as Time), the annihilator of the world, having taken the form of Rudra. No one controls Time except Brahman, who owns it, and is beyond its effects.  Time controls all animate and inanimate, mobile and immobile entities, and all products of Mahat including mind, matter, moods, and modes. Brahman is an entity, claimed by both Vaisnavites and Sivites.  Brahman accordingly manifests as a personal God in the form of Narayana and Siva for the respective sects.  That is his Maya (illusion).


Vrtti or Sthana: Mode of life, and means of sustaining life. The ontological hierarchy is described. This describes the various planets and its inhabitants.


Raksā: Protection and preservation. This depicts all the descents and incarnations of the Lord for the benefit of humanity, including sinners. It talks about the eternal and endless grace of the Lord.


Manvantara: The reign of the Manus, and the life and times of  gods, rishis, and sages are discussed with reference to the benefit they offered to all living creatures.


Vamsa: Genealogy or lineage. Brahma and the saptarishis (seven sages) and their disciples, the royalty and the genealogy tree starting from Brahma are described along with their achievements and service to humanity.


Vamsānucharita (Vamsa + Charita means genealogy or dynastic history of the pious kings and rulers who served God and their subjects.


Samsthā: Dissolution or sublation details

Some details are duplicated because they are from different sources (Puranas).

Naimittika (Brahma laya) and Prakrtika dissolutions destroy the whole universe, while Atyantika and Nitya layas (dissolution) involve individual lives. In Atyantika laya or dissolution, the individual soul is liberated forever from the shackles of samsara and stays close to Brahman.  Atyantika means “staying close.”  Nitya laya or dissolution is ordinary death and the individual soul has not attained liberation and will take on a body depending on its karmic load. So is the case with individual souls who undergo Naimittika dissolution or Brahma laya.




Atyantika (Moksa)



Occasional, accidental, special,

Kalpal dissolution.

Brahma's day begins with the Vi-Shristi and the night of Brahma sees the advent of Naimittika Pralaya. Thus Brahma's days and nights alternate between Vi-Shristi and destruction.

Involution or resolution of the elements into their primitive repository, Prakriti.

Marks the end of Brahma's life, 72,000 Kalpas, 100 Brahma years or 311.04 Trillion mortal years.

Involving primordial matter.

SRISHTI takes place at the end of Prakrtika Pralaya only.   Brand new creation.

Everlasting, Absolute, unbroken, final.

Absolute, final individual annihilation. 

Eternal or constant, everyday occurrence

Partial dissolution

Total Final sublation

Liberation of Jiva

Daily occurrence

Periodic with clock-work precision: day of life; night of death.




Accompanies sleep cycle of Brahma. Brahma’s dissolution. Occurs by onset of Brahma’s sleep.

Final retrograde involution of all elements

An acquired phenomenon. The Rishi and the Supreme Spirit  become one.

Perpetual destruction or Constant dissolution of living beings.

Occasional, special, accidental. Periodic occurrence as in sleep–wake cycle. Brahma’s sleep is death of the universe. Being awake is life for the universe.

Elemental. Relating to Prakrti, or the original element, material


Liberation is final and absolute. Jiva merges with Para Brahman

Perpetual or Eternal

This takes place after every Brahma's day and when Brahma sleeps. All living creatures die. The substance  physical world stays intact.

 Universe traces back to its original nature, elements.

Attainment of Supreme knowledge

Extinction of individual lives.

Brahma’s sleep phenomenon

Primordial Elemental state of the world

Death as a constant

Transient came life as a constant

Lord Nārāyana swallows the universe, and sleeps on a bed of serpent in the causal ocean

Linear involution of all elements into primordial matter

The absolute non-existence of the world in the experience of the Rishi who merges with the Supreme Spirit.

(Bimodal appearance and) disappearance of life and death, day and night.

Bhu, Bhuvah and Swah (this world, the space and beyond (heaven). worlds are consumed by fire emitted by the serpent god, Sankarsana. Since it gets too hot, Bhrgu muni moves from Maharloka to Janaloka.

The egg retraces its steps back into its constituent elements, from which it formed. Prakrti stays hidden in the Lord. The Lord is alone by himself.

The liberation of a human being after the dissolution of the gross and subtle bodies and the karma reaches a zero-sum status.


Gunas repose in equilibrium.

Brahma dies.With him Devas, Asuras, all beings, the mobile and immobile die. 




Laya: is the dissolution of the universe at the end of MahāYuga, an aggregate of four Yugas. Physical world is destroyed by flood and fire. This is followed by creation (Sristi), preservation (Sthiti) and dissolution (Laya).  (Laya and Lysis are cognate words.)

Pralaya is the dissolution at the end of a kalpa. Mahāpralaya is the dissolution at the end of a mahākalpa. Physical, subtle, and causal worlds are destroyed or absorbed. All existence, time, space and individual consciousness, all the lokas (worlds), and their inhabitants return to God as waters of rivers return to the ocean.


Hetu: Hetu means cause, motive, or purpose. The cause is the individual soul (jiva). Discussion centers on the “whys” of creation, the Greater and the lesser souls, the impact of avidya, māyā and karma on samsāra, the causeless grace of God, and the ways and means of removing obstacles to attain liberation.


Apasraya: Apasraya means (Absolute and Ultimate) support or prop. The message of Bhagavad Gita and Puranas is that the Lord of creation, support, and sublation is the Ultimate Authority, the Supreme Being; the Omniscient, the Omnipotent and the Omnipresent; and a fountainhead of grace and love.


Vishnu creates Brahma who is responsible for secondary creation.

In the very beginning, there was no existence, no movement, nothing to see or hear, and nothing to feel or experience. All elements including māyā and gunas involute into a repose and latency in the impalpable body and spirit of the One without a second, the all-devouring Being, Bliss, and Consciousness.

Brahma, the creator performed penance for a hundred divine years with his mind focused on the Lord Nārāyana, the creator of Brahma. Brahma was sitting on the lotus flower sprouting from the navel of Lord Nārāyana in the cosmic ocean  buffeted by winds, whose force and tenacity did not die down but actually augmented many times since the dissolution of the universe. Brahma was looking around to locate the origin of the stem. As he looked around, he developed four faces, eight eyes, which were as beautiful as the lotus petals.  To find the origin of the stem, he bored through the stem of the flower to no avail. Exhausted and disappointed, he came to the corolla and sat on it for a hundred divine years. His penance paid off at last; the Lord of lords relented; and with his inner eye, he saw the Lord of the lords, Lord Nārāyana Himself seated on Adisesha (bed of coiled snake) in the causal ocean. Nārāyana revealed His wonderful form. His powers increased as his penance ended and were so great that he drew the wind and the water into his body. The wind and the water are the two vital elements in the life of a being and Brahma had a plentiful supply of them in Him. The Lotus seat started rising by the buoyancy provided by the swallowed air and touched the worlds up above, which were destroyed in the previous Kalpa. The corolla grew and grew until it covered the whole universe. All the ingredients for dissemination of beings were in place in that one giant lotus flower. He entered the whorl and divided the lotus flower into three parts namely Bhūh, Bhuvah, and Svah (the earth, atmosphere, and heaven) and later into fourteen parts. Now all the planetary systems were in place. These three worlds are the regions where the jivas (the embodied souls) reside.


Vishnu is the all-pervading and awe-inspiring ruler of matter and spirit. He is the God of all gods. For fear of the Lord, the sun shines; the wind blows; the fire burns; the rains pour; the stars twinkle; and the sun, the moon, the stars, and the earth move and hold their relative positions in the firmament. Such is the power of His Rta, the cosmic law, which He wrote. He remains unseen, unknown and beyond comprehension but is felt everywhere. His signature is seen in chaos, cosmos, and creation. He holds in Him Time, Death and māyā.


The Primary and the secondary creation

The contents may be offensive to some, but are true to its source ― Bhagavatam

Forces such as Prārabda karma agitate the three gunas: Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas, the qualities of primordial matter; with Bhagavan presiding over the Spirit, the matter, and the (eternal vigilance of) time, Mahat-tattva (the cosmic intellect) is born. Prārabda karma is the frontload of accumulated Vāsanās and samskaras (fragrances and impressions), which are responsible for birth and rebirth and have to be resolved before liberation. In this disequilibrium, Rajas (the force behind change) dominates Mahat-tattva, which again through the intermediate product of ego develops into many groups of five elements. God did what these elements severally and jointly could not do: create the golden egg (Haimam Andam) through the enzymatic daiva-yogena (divine power or energy). For more than one thousand years, this andakosah (the egg with the membranes) was resting in the waters of the Causal Ocean and finally Isvara entered the egg. From the umbilicus of the Lord sprouted a lotus flower that exceeded a thousand suns in brilliance, which was the jiva-nikāya (congregation of souls or jiva), and where Brahma Himself came into being (bhū). When the gracious Lord (Bhagavat) “sleeping” in the causal ocean "entered" into Brahma, He fashioned or created the universe in accordance with the plan executed in the previous kalpas.

At the very beginning, he created from His shadow ignorance (Avidyam) of five kinds:  Tāmisra, Andhatāmisra, Tamas, Moha, and Mahāmoha (Anger, Pitch-darkness of the soul, Ignorance, Delusion, and Gross spiritual darkness). Andhatāmisra is complete darkness of the soul meaning that one views death as the end, not knowing that soul is deathless. Moha (delusion) means that one thinks that he is the body and not the soul. Mahāmoha (grand / great delusion) is insatiable desire for gratification of material kind.

(In the early stage of creation, a mood of Tamas (darkness) pervaded him, giving him “grief and sorrow.”  He willed and pushed out of his body the darkness, which became Himsa (violence) and Soka (grief).  This is the first instance of clinical depression in the universe that Brahma suffered and people suffer now.)

Brahmanda Purana gives a more elaborate account of Avidyam. Avidya has five knots or joints (Parvam): They are Tamas, Moha, Mahamoha, Tamasira and Andhatamsira (darkness, delusion, great delusion, pitch-darkness, and extreme darkness). Avidyam or ignorance is not the ordinary ignorance of knowledge that we all suffer from time to time. This is cosmic in nature and originates in the creator himself, Brahma the great soul.  In yogic context, avidya is undifferentiated consciousness; when the five-jointed avidyam breaks and falls apart, the yogi experiences Superconsciousness.  The plants, being the primary creation of Brahma, are deeply ingrained with avidyam. Brahmanda and Vayu Puranas say that the five-knotted ignorance covers the soul of the plant, as a pot covers a lamp, meaning that though there is light inside, light does not escape the pot, darkness is outside and thus the plants are in eternal ignorance. Mountains and other immobile objects belong to this opaque, principal creation (Mukhya sarga) because of the cover of avidyam.

Brahma was very much displeased with himself looking at His own long, dark, and dangerous shadow of ignorance and creation. He instantly discarded that body of ignorance and shadow. The Yaksas and Raksasas who originated from that shadow took possession of the body of ignorance, which became one long night with thirst and hunger.

Oppressed by thirst and hunger, the asuras (demons: Yaksas and Raksasas) attacked Brahma from all sides and started eating him alive. He pleaded with them, reminding them that he is their father.

In a desperate hurry, Brahma created the shining sattvic Devas (gods) and dropped daytime in front of them, which they quickly took hold of. From Brahma’s dasypygal hemispheres came wights, who were excessively endowed with lust and ran after Brahma seeking libidinous consortium. Brahma laughed it off first and later realizing that they were closing in on him, he took to his heels in fear and shame and landed in the presence of Lord Hari who is the most benevolent giver of boons, refuge and grace to those who seek Him. Having heard an earful of woes from Brahma, attended with supplication and prostration at His feet, the Lord asked Brahma to get rid off his impure body that created the libidinous and Rajasic Asuras. Immediately Brahma cast off his body, which became the twilight between day and night.

dasypygal hemispheres = buttocks. Wight = human being, or any living being.

The Asuras found in that cast-off body at that twilight hour a beautiful lissom lass with lotus feet and tinkling anklets, overwhelming and intoxicating look in her eyes and a shining girdle over her hips scantily covered by a fine piece of cloth. Her breasts were full looking up with no apparent cleavage. She had a beautiful shapely nose with shining teeth, a gorgeous smile dancing on her lips, a dulcet disposition,  and sportive piquant sidelong glances at the Asuras. Her long tresses made her look as if she was hiding herself in the shade of shyness. Upon seeing her, the Asuras were all overcome by the enveloping vespertine fog of passion. In the midst of all this raging passion, the Asuras appreciated her beauty and the blossom of her youth. They could not get over the way she moved dispassionately in the midst of all that simmering passion. (Attributes of beauty: Indian poets and artists have a preference to woman with generous breasts, sometimes compared to elephant's cranial lobes, conical breasts, slender waist that is compared to a vine or sinuous thunderbolt, and an elaborate coiffure. The thigh is the silk-smooth stem of partially stripped plantain tree; the face is the moon; the eyes are those of doe; the eyebrows are the stringless bows; the eyelids are the petals of lotus flower; the bewildered eyes are the two leaping fish; the teeth are  jasmine buds; the breath is sweet which drives the honey bees wild; a good bridge of the nose that rises and separates the eyes well; abundant hips sway at various dynamic angles of flexion at spine; gait is that of an elephant and or a female swan, resembling the swaying or sea-saw movement of hips (the Jiggle)); the pre-menarchial girl sports lotus buds and fish eyes; girl's hips sway like the tender tendril of windswept creeper; she also walks like a baby elephant. (Remember the Grand Tetons of Grand Teton National Park: they are the frontal bilobes of the elephant in the mind of Indian poet; the twin mountain peaks and the frontal bilobes of an elephant appear as mammary mounds in the minds of the French and the Indian. Devotional song of poet Umapati (1300 C.E.) describes in Kuncitanghristava that the mountain peaks are the jutting breasts of Parvati/Gauri (golden pots), consort of Siva. That description may have a bearing that Parvati was the daughter of mountain.) Man and woman own  parrot-beak nose; Vishnu has neck like that of a conch shell; shoulders and waist are those of the lion and bull. A woman's arms are compared to sinuous serpents and creepers.

The lascivious Asuras with wicked intent flying on the wings of imagination in the soft twilight hour shuffled towards her and in a sham show of respect and fondness queried her “ O Rambhoru, O Bhamini, who are you? Whose daughter are you? (Whom do you belong to?) What is the object of your being here? O beautiful, O priceless, why are you tantalizing us?”

Rambhoru:  a woman having smooth and tapering thighs like the stem of a plantain tree, full, round, silken, smooth, and lovely. Bhāmini: passionate woman.


The Asuras considered themselves fortunate in seeing an young lass of such beauty bouncing the ball on the ground, and wondering whether her breasts were weighing down heavy on her lotus-feet, her slim waist was getting fatigued and her vision was growing dim in the twilight hour. They pleaded with her to weave her hair in a braid. Thus, the Asuras came to seize the twilight and regard it as the time for mundane sense pleasures.

Brahma was amused at the infatuation of the Asuras. He went ahead and created Gandharvas and Apsaras, the musicians and the dancers. Music and dance performed in the name of God is liberating and if used for mere pleasure of the senses are regarded as demonic. He gave up his shine in this creation in the form of moonlight, which was quickly picked up by Viswāvasu and Ghandharvas.

Brahma was exhausted, fell into a moment of lassitude from which rose or evolved the Bhūtas and Pisāsas (Ghosts and Fiends), the sight of which he could not bear, and so closed His eyes and yawned. This yawning was the body which the ghosts and fiends took possession of. When impure people are possessed by the above beings, they are driven insane.

Thus one can appreciate that from Brahma evolve under the direction of the Supreme Lord both wholesome and inimical forces in the form of bodies possessed by the created beings. The individual soul can choose one or the other of these qualities on its way to liberation, the attainment of which depends on making right choices.


His lassitude passed; thus, he regained his full energy: From his invisible body he created hosts of Sadhyas and Pitas, who were the invisible forms of the gods and manes. The invisible forms carry the oblations from earth to the Supreme Lord who liberates the individual souls of ancestors.

Brahma later created beings, such as Siddhas and Vidyādharas (the ones who attained spiritual maturity and special knowledge) from his faculty of antardhāna, invisibility. From his own reflection in the water, he created Kimpurusas and Kinnaras (the beings with man-like appearance) who sing the praise of the Lord every morning. From his hair emanated the snakes, and from his mind emanated the Manus, the promoters of the welfare of the universe. By immersing himself in penance, adoration of the Supreme Lord, yoga, dispassion, and meditation, he created the Rishis, the sages. 

This is story of creation of various beings from Brahma's body, mind, shadows, reflections, and moods.


Brahma has many names.



Name of Brahma










Universal Egg






Supreme Mahavishnu is in charge of countless universes like ours.

Karanarnavasayi Vishnu (Karana-arnava = Causal ocean)

MAHAVISHNU, the First Purusa. MahaVisnu, in the Causal Ocean,  is the creator of the aggregate material energy, and is an expansion of Sankarsana.

Karanodakasayi Vishnu

With maya. Karanodakasayi

Visnu is the Supersoul of the collective universes. Causal ocean

Garbhodakasayi Vishnu (Second Purusa) Supersoul of Total living beings. The creator of Brahma living in the Garbho ocean.   Four-handed form. Garbhodakasayi Visnu, is an expansion of Pradyumna.


Ksirodakasayi Visnu is the Supersoul of all individual living entities including demigods. Associated with Maya. Kasira (milk) ocean. The third purusa, Ksirodakasayi Visnu, is an expansion from Aniruddha. He is of goodness –Savatanu. 

Creation, maintenance, and destruction

























Creation (Projection), Chaos, Cosmos, and order



A short note: Brahma divided himself into two parts: male and female. From the female part, came the masculine power, Virāj that produced the first Manu Svāyam-bhuva, the self-existent, which created the ten prajapatis. There are many variations in the history of progeny, starting from Brahma:

(1) Manu and Sata-Rupa are the male and female halves of Brahma. Virāj does not play any role here.

(2) Sata-Rupa unites with Virāj.

(3) Sata-Rupa unites with Virāj or Purusa and later with Manu.

(4) Virāj is a feminine element, sakti, power, or prāna.

(5) Prajapati: Supreme God among Vedic deities. Later he was associated with Vishnu, Siva, Time, sun, and fire. Ten primary progenitors created by Brahma are Prajapatis, namely Marici, Atri, Angiras, Pulastya, Pulaka, Kratu, Vasishtha, Dhaksa, Bhrigu, and Narada.

He created the Self and gave himself the shape of a person. (Brhad Upanishad 1.4.1.) He looked around, there was no body, and he said to himself “I.” He sees and he creates. In the same manner, he sees, creates, and enters into other things. He was alone, he had no happiness, he became as large as man and woman in embrace, and the enlarged self fell into two parts; a female form filled the space and from these two the entire animal kingdom and gods came into existence. He hides (abides) in everything and everybody, “like the razor in a razor case and the fire in the firewood.” Thus, the self became man and woman.

Here is the story on the origin of Tapas or penance. In the beginning, if there were such a period, which is in doubt, there was nothing. It was neither existence nor non-existence, it was neither a Being nor a Non-Being, there was neither life nor death, and there was neither day nor night. It was darkness and from darkness came forth elements in a linear fashion: subtle elements, ether, air, fire, water, and earth. Then came the egg, which underwent incubation for one long year; the egg broke into two parts, one upper, and one lower: The upper became the sky and the lower became the earth. From the egg, clambered out a Being, a divine person (with a thousand heads, a thousand eyes, a thousand arms and a thousand feet), who created a god of death with three heads, three eyes and three feet. Brahma was scared, but proceeded to create out of his mind seven sons, who each created seven sons out of their minds: These were the Prajapatis. Out of Brahma’s mouth came the Brahmins, out of His arms came the Ksatriyas, out of his thighs came the Vaisyas, and out of his feet came the Sudras. His mind gave birth to the moon, his eyes to the sun, and the ears to the air.

out of his thighs came the Vaisyas: Dionysus was the son of Zeus and a mortal woman Semele. Zeus' wife, goddess Hera discovered the extramarital affair of her divine husband, while Semele was pregnant with Dionysus. Hera impersonated a crone or a nurse and befriended Semele, who confided to Hera that Zeus was the father of the baby in the womb. Hera planted seeds of doubt in the mind of Semele that Zeus the god could not be the father. Semele wanting proof of his godhood asked Zeus to reveal to her his divine appearance. Worried that his transfiguration would cause death to his mortal wife, he kept on procrastinating. Her persistence paid off and Zeus appeared to Semele wearing serpentine bolts of lightning (think of god Indra), which promptly brought death to Semele. Transfiguration causes death in the mortal witness. Zeus extracted the fetus from inside the womb of Semele and embedded it in his thigh. A few months latter, Zeus gave birth to Dionysus from his thigh on Mount Pramnos in the Island of Ikaria. Dionysus is thus twice-born of two mothers (Demētōr).


In the very beginning, there was Avyakta, the Unmanifest, and the Imperishable. There was a person above Avyakta. The first-born was the Atma Mahan, the Great Self. He was alone. Then there was water. Hiranyagarbha (the golden egg) was floating in the waters. The Cosmic Golden Egg was surrounded layer upon layer by water, fire, wind, and ether, each layer ten times deeper than the former, and Bhutadi (Ahankara/ego), Mahat, and the Unmanifest Pradhana. Water meant happiness, which did not last long. He was afraid, he had no one to talk to, he uttered the words “ I am.,” he looked around, and there was no one. Then why is he afraid? What is his fear? The fear left him but he was unhappy; he had no delight and wanted company. The self split into two, one-half was Self and the other half was woman; he unites with the woman. How could I unite with my own daughter? He hid, the woman became a cow, and he became a bull, so on and so forth. That is how the entire animal kingdom was created. He is the creator and so is called Prajapati. He created gods, fire, the Soma* and the Moon. It is the Self and It is the Brahman. He pervades everything, he is hidden in everything you see and do not see, he is the name behind all forms, and he is Ākāsa in the heart. (Soma* is claimed to be an extract from a mushroom or fruits of Asvatta tree with inebriating and intoxicating properties, and was used by gods and priests.)

Book of Genesis gives a significant variation from Vedic version which predates Book of Genesis. Sometimes I wonder that the Oriental mythology percolated westward. God puts Adam to sleep, takes his rib and fashions Eve out of the rib. In the Vedic Version, God himself splits, becomes man, woman and animals. He is all-pervasive. In Biblical version, God and man are separate.


Another version of creation.

It was uncreated, it was unborn, and it was Brahman. He has no attributes. It was feeling the loneliness. There was no form, no name, and no breath. It was pulsating and propulsive, it looked upon itself, and it was awareness itself. What am I? Who am I? Let me be something. He created the mind. All that was there was water. Fire or heat is in the water. He said to himself, “Let me take a breath and infuse life into my own self.” “Let me be a person.” Prajapati (Brahma or Brahman) was born out of His own will (Iccha). He was still lonely. Kāma (desire) slowly took hold of Him; this pervasive desire was the first seed, and then there was thought. He performed Tapas (austerity). Brahman uttered three words: Bhū, Bhuvah, and Svah – Earth, Ether, and Sky (earth, atmosphere, and heaven). Brahman creates Prajapati; earth, ether, and sky became the gross form of Prajapati. The head is the sky, the navel is the ether, the feet are the earth, and the eye is the sun. The whole universe is contained in and on the body of Prajapati. This Kāma (desire, passion) and Tapas (austerity and sacrifice) became the driving force behind the creation or projection. Tapas provided fire, energy, and focus backed by desire. This formless awareness, Self, powered by Kāma and Tapas, bursts forth into this universe; the gods, the asuras, the two-footed and the four-footed ones are created; there you see the heaven, the earth, the sun, the moon and the stars and the snowcapped mountains. Let the dawn come as the night departeth. Was it the Big Bang? It was self-sacrifice, and it was self-Immolation: He was torn asunder and the Tapas was the first sacrifice.

Prajapati is exhausted from this creative process, this Big Bang, this self-immolation, this self-sacrifice. He is shattered, he is blown up, and he is powerless from sheer exhaustion. The creatures feel their power, ignore Him, and back away from Him. Prajapati feels the weakness; he feels his powerlessness: The creatures feel the freedom, though Prajapati is their father, creator, and sustainer. And that freedom spells trouble, there is chaos, and there is disorder. God somehow has to reestablish His Supremacy over His creatures and the universe. Even the gods he created abandon him. Is that right? Is not he the Lord of creatures? The creatures behave as if they were self-created. How could they think that? His prānas (life forces) are subsiding; in a weak inaudible whisper, he calls out the prānas: all seven of them. Do they heed? (Not at all.) They quietly slip away from him; He can see his life fade away from him. He feels beaten down, and torn to pieces, with his body parts scattered in every nook and corner of this earth. What fate is this to the creator of this world of creatures, beings, and gods? 

Then he hears hoofs? What could that be? Could that be a horse? Yes, it is. He sees Asva – the horse. That is Haya (power). He remembers that he created the horse from the waters. Is this the early sign of rejuvenation of Prajapati– Lord of creatures? Asva’s muzzle is close to the ground. He is a white horse. Is not that a good omen? Does it not signify the re-creation or rejuvenation of the world? What is that sprouting off from his head? It is the Sāl sapling (Vatica Robusta). Does it mean that life is asserting itself? Asva (horse) means knowledge, power, and sacrifice. The gods were standing idle; they do not have the knowledge to know the greatness of Prajapati. Is Asva an omen that knowledge is dawning on the gods who abandoned Prajapati? The gods do not know that Prajapati holds time and death in him: He cannot simply die. Later on, the gods come to know that Prajapati created death. They hate him for it, for they will never enjoy immortality.

Then Varuna, the lord of the waters and his son, show up. Prajapati is pleased. Prajapati made Asva from waters. Now Varuna is here: It is more than a coincidence. Varuna is the keeper and enforcer of Rta, which is the cosmic law from which all laws or dharma came about. Now it makes sense, things are turning around. Varuna tells the sun when to rise and set, the clouds when to drink up the waters of the ocean and when to rain. He has “his eyes” and spies all over the universe. No infraction of the law of Rta goes unnoticed and he dispenses justice with fairness. Varuna’s wife is Vārunāni and she is ocean herself! His Vāhana (transportation) is Makara, an aquatic animal.

Varuna begs his father Prajapati to teach him for the next one hundred years and confer on him the Supremacy. That request takes him aback. How could that be possible that Varuna is asking for guidance, when all other gods ignore him? Prajapati knows that he is close to Nirguna Brahman, Brahman without attributes. (Here attributes do not connote a moral dimension.) Do gods, men, and creatures know that? They are too arrogant and too ignorant to know that. Do the gods know that he is the first among the thirty-four original gods? He encompasses all of them in his body. Do they know that all living things that emanated from him are only a quarter of his body and the rest three-quarters are Amrtam (Ambrosia)? Prajapati obliges his son (Varuna) and teaches him for one hundred years. His siblings are impressed by his knowledge and pay obeisance to him.

Then the gods become angry because Prajapati created Time and death, which are contained in him but do not affect him. Prajapati tells the gods to take refuge in the sound AUM and the meters: That will give them immortality.

When Prajapati, the Progenitor of all living beings, assembled the gods, the men, and the demons, he gave them a course study in the sacred knowledge. At the end of the course, he uttered the syllable “Da,” and asked, “Do you understand what Da means?” Each group repeated the syllable and said that they did understand the syllable “Da.” For the gods it meant self-control, which they lacked; for the men it meant charity, which they did not have; and for the demons compassion, which they never showed. Dāmyata is for “self-control,” Datta for “give,” and Dayadvam for “be compassionate.” When heavens thunder, it goes Da-Da-Da telling gods, men, and demons to practice self-control, charity, and compassion. (Brhad Upanishad 5.2.1 through 3.) Men fall into three groups according to their behavior patterns as said earlier. The uncontrolled, the greedy, and the cruel will be struck by lightning if they do not listen to the peals of thunder and thunderclaps (Da-Da-Da), the message from heaven.


Then man comes. He is closer to gods in his awareness than any other creature. He is the saving grace, he understands. This is the beginning of God's second coming with the help of man. God has to penetrate all creatures, man, and the world in order to control them and establish order. He does that: He created the Brahmanas, the Ksatriyas, the Vaisyas, and the Sudras. He was not happy because there was no harmony; he created Rta to bind them all in one law. Let there be Rta (the Eternal Law of the Universe), let Rta be the law of man, and let Rta be the basis for Dharma. God becomes all-pervasive. Man by his procreative abilities becomes a helping hand. He is closer to God or Atman than any other creature on this earth. By his tapas, man comes even closer to God: he becomes one with Him. This is the story of how man and God have come closer to each other.

When you read passages from Genesis, It says that creation is not a chance, but a will (Iccha) of God. Initially in Judeo-Christian version of the creation story there was no form, but plenty of chaos existed. There was propulsion in this creating entity, as we believe. There was heat as in Tapas and water. It says that light came into the human beings from Him, as we say that Atman pervaded us. We believe that Atman is light. “In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.” We, Hindus, call that Light as Atman and jivātman. Prakrti (Procreatix or Matter) was undifferentiated to start with and underwent differentiation and evolution. This process was methodical, linear, branching, reactive, and cascading. The reverse process of involution is plain retracement; everything falls back upon its preceding element to become ultimately the primordial matter, Prakrti.  


Part Six

Creation—Linga (Tamasa) Purana

In Linga Purana, Siva is the dominant God, as Visnu is the dominant God in Visnu Purana. He was androgynous (Ardhanari), right half male, and left half female. Ardhanari represents fusion of male and female principles in One and forms the basis for passion and lust.  Man is genetically XY, meaning he is half female and half male, while woman is XX, meaning that she is homozygous for the X chromosome.  The prevailing conjecture is that hermaphroditism was the order of the day before the species, subjected to many factors, differentiated into male and female.

        The halves of the Lord split; the male impregnates the female; this creative energy is Brahma himself; Vishnu is the product. Thus, Ardhanari form of the Lord is both the efficient and the material cause of the universe. The Cosmic Egg comes into existence in the womb of Visnu, when the seed of Siva enters it, and remained in the Cosmic Ocean for thousands of years. (When the sentient seed of Siva enters the womb, it stimulates the insentient Prakrti, matter.) The halves of the egg split open from the force of the wind and become the fourteen worlds including the heaven, and the earth. They are, in ascending order, Bhurloka, Bhuvarloka, Svarloka, Maharloka, Janarloka, Taparloka and Satyaloka; in descending order are the netherworlds, Atala, Vitala, Sutala, Talatala, Rasatala, MahaTala and Patala. For definitions of these terms, please see file “Creation and Dissolution.” The fetus, emerging from the Egg, became the Mount Meru (Visnu). When the Soul of Mahesvara entered the womb, Hiranyagarbha (Brahma) was born.


Linga Purana

Bhagavata Purana



Skanda and Uma loka
















Bhurloka ---Earth plane

















Table points to the difference in the worlds, according to the dominant God.


Matter (Prakrti) consists of 24 elements made of unevolved Primordial Prakrti (Pradhana), intellect (Mahat), ego, Pada (five subtle elements or Tanmatras), Matra (five organs of action, Karmendriyas, or motor organs), Varna (five organs of knowledge, Janendriyas, or sensory organs), five gross elements (Yauvana, Mahabhutas) and the mind. Pradhana is the womb from which other elements take their origin. Linga Purana (20.73) says that Mahesvara owns and sows the seed, Brahma is the seed itself and Vishnu is the eternal womb.

The intellect, ego, consciousness, and the mind form a unit called Kaladvara. These are insentient and cannot come together to a life-form without the three participating sentient principles: Jiva (individual soul), Purusa (the cosmic soul), and the Siva (the Supreme Soul or Paramatman).

The Tattvas are listed here as adopted by the Vaishnavites. 

1. Pradhana (Prakrti); 2. Mahat (Buddhi, intellect); 3. Ahamkara (ego); 4-8. Five Tan Matras; 9-13. Pancha Bhutas--five Gross elements; 14-18. Five Karmendriyas --Motor organs; 19-23. Five Janendriyas--Sensory organs; 24. Manas--Mind; 25. Jivatma; 26. Bhagavan.


The Saivites have a 27th entity--Mahesvara.


    Saivite system: Jiva, the 25th entity, is the knower of the Primordial, undifferentiated, unevolved, and undeveloped Prakrti (Pradhana), the precursor of all 23 insentient elements. Pradhana is the 24th entity. Purusa, the 26th entity, ontologically placed higher, is the knower and the passive witness of Jiva and Pradhana. The preceding knowing entities have an adjunct status to the Supreme Soul, Siva or Mahadeva, the 27th entity, because only Mahadeva can give grace. He is Mahesvara because he is devoid of gunas, Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas.

            Mahesvara manifests himself in three ways: Saptadah (seven forms), Sodasadha (16 forms), and 26 forms. It is a progressive form, going from subtle elements to gross elements to consciousness and to life itself, and ends in the creation of Brahma. Pradhana is the central column of support, around which these forms come into existence, resulting in Linga whose ends and glory are unfathomable. Only Mahesvara (the 27th entity) with 26 forms has the exclusive ability to grant grace.







27 elements

7 forms

16 forms

26 forms


Intellect (Buddhi) (1)





Ego (Ahamkara) (2)





Subtle elements (Tanmatras (3-7)





Five organs of action (8-12)





Five organs of sense (13-17)





Five gross elements (18-22)





Mind (23)





Pradhana (24)





Jiva (25)





Purusa (26)





Mahesvara (27) Bliss (Saptavimsaka)










Mahesvara, the Ultimate Supreme Principle, is Prabuddha, the Supreme Intelligence, Wisdom, All-awareness, the Awakened, All-enlightenment, expanded Consciousness, and the Supreme Pervader. Purusa, one step below Mahesvara is All-awareness and the Awakened.  Jiva is Buddhiman with less awareness and awakening, compared to Purusa. In his male form, he is whole without attributes (Niskala); in his female form he is parts with attributes (Sakala): (Brahma with Rajas and) creative power, (Vishnu with Sattva and) sustaining power, and (Rudra with Tamas and) destructive power. Niskala form is Brahman and transcendent and Sakala form is manifest Brahman and phenomenal.

            Linga is the Universe of beings and matter. It is the skambha (pillar) or Axis Mundi around which all elements, sentient and insentient are supported. Brahma is at the base of the shaft, engaged in creation; Vishnu is at the middle of the shaft, engaged in sustenance; and Rudra is at the top, engaged in destruction at the appointed time. Supreme Siva pervades Linga and provides the fillip for its functions.

Creation consists of primary, secondary, and tertiary phases.  In the primary phase, the building blocks, 24 elements, are formed; in the secondary phase, elements gain functions and bodies with or without life under the aegis of the Lord, with the creation of mobiles, immobiles, insentient objects, living things, animals, humans and gods; and in the tertiary phase, which is a combination of primary and secondary phases, Brahma creates his mind-born sons. The mind-born sons went against the will of Brahma and practiced celibacy. As buds would erupt from the stem, eleven sons erupted from the body of Brahma and blossomed out into full-grown sons. Please go to “Creation part three” for details. Brahma assumes an androgynous status and divides into male and female halves; the male half separates and grows into fully formed man, Manu; the female half grows into a fully formed woman, Satarupa. Manu and Satarupa obey the will of Brahma and help augment the population of the world.  There are some similarities among religions on the appearance of the first man and the first woman.  Adam’s rib became the woman.  According to Koran 4:1, God created a single soul from which he created its mate and through them countless men and women. In ancient Egypt, Hapi was the androgynous god of the marshes with pendulous breasts, flooding the Nile.

The three qualities of the insentient and the sentient, Sattva, Rajas and Tamas assume an ontological status in Brahma, Vishnu, and Rudra under the aegis of Mahesvara for creation, sustenance, and dissolution of the universe. Mahesvara pervades them all, and in their roles, they are called Alinga, Linga, and Lingalinga.  He is Pradhana (primordial unmanifested matter), Bija (the seed), and Yoni (the womb). Prakrti, the unmanifest matter, wakes up to become manifest and fecund upon the glance of the Lord Mahesvara.  This potentially nubile and fecund Aja (the unborn Prakrti) of red, white and black complexion (Rajas, Sattva and Tamas) enjoys the advances of Purusa when it comes of age and gives birth to this universe and beings. This gestation goes through several stages. The gunas of Aja undergo agitation and Mahat springs forth. This creative cascade, starting from Mahat, in a downstream fashion, results in ego (ahamkara) with three colors or gunas: Sattvika (white) ahamkara, Rajasic (red) ahamkara and Tamasic (black) ahamkara. The Sattvika ahamkara gives rise to the mind and the presiding deities of the senses; the Rajasic ahamkara gives rise to the sensory and motor organs; the Tamasika ahamkara gives rise to the subtle elements like sound, touch, color and vision, taste, and odor.

The five subtle elements, upon combination, starting from sound give rise to gross elements with cumulative qualities.      


Resulting product–––>

 Cumulative & Special Quality




Ether –––––––>


Sound and touch

Air and Ether–––>


Sound, touch, and color or form

Air and Fire–––->


Sound, touch, color, and taste

Water and Fire––>


Sound, touch, color, taste, and odor

From the multicolored ego develop 11 senses: Five organs of sense, five organs of action and the mind:  (ears) hearing, (skin) touching, (eyes) seeing, (tongue) tasting, and (nose) smelling; (voice box) speech, (hands) prehension or grasping, (feet) ambulation or movement, (anus) excretion, and (genitalia) generation; and the mind.

The building blocks (from Mahat and ending in indispensable and distinct elements -Visesha/bhutas) make the Cosmic Egg from which Brahma comes forth. This egg is surrounded in layers by water, fire, air, ether, ego, intellect, and Pradhana—seven in all. There are billions and billions of these Cosmic Eggs strewn all over this limitless space. In each Cosmic Egg, there reside four-faced Brahma, Vishnu and Rudra.  Mahesvara’s transformational seed and seeing of Pradhana brought about these Cosmic Eggs. Mahesvara uses Rajas for creation, Sattva for sustenance, and Tamas for destruction; and the entire cycle is repeated in an endless fashion.  Mahesvara is all in One: Brahma, Vishnu, Siva, Sadasiva, and Bhava.

The Lord, through his surrogate god, Brahma, brings about creation during day and dissolution during night. Brahma's day begins with the Vi-Shristi and the night of Brahma sees the advent of Naimittika Pralaya. Thus Brahma's days and nights alternate between creation and destruction.

Much of the information on kalpas is omitted to avoid repetition and only new material is mentioned here.

The night of Brahma is graced by 28 crores (1 crore = 10 million) of gods whose transport is airborne chariot. Their population explodes to 392 crores during daytime of Brahma. Pradhana and Purusa halt and the gunas come to equilibrium, an inert status, when the universe is in the state of dissolution. There is only one Mahesvara, but there are as many Brahmas and Vishnus as there are kalpas and cosmic eggs—numbers beyond human imagination. At nightfall, the worlds of Bhur, Bhuvah, Svar and Mahar meet destruction and the worlds above them escape dissolution. The universe is a watery grave in which sleeps Brahma in the form of Vishnu/Narayana. At the beginning of kalpa, Brahma wakes up, assumes the form of a boar and lifts the earth from the Ekarnava (nothing but one ocean, all oceans and waters joined to form one ocean) Ocean. Vishnu restores all the features on the earth (as before the destruction), mountains, hills, plains, rivers, lakes, oceans.

            Brahma, at the beginning of creation, was affected by five forms ignorance: Tamas, Moha, Mahamoha, Tamasira and Andhatamsira (darkness, delusion, great delusion, pitch-darkness, and extreme darkness). This ignorance resulted in the creation of the immovables, which are afflicted with the same ignorance. Brahma immersed himself in meditation and his neck suddenly assumed a horizontal stance. This resulted in the emergence from his body of Tiryaksrotas, Udhavasrotas, Arvaksrotas, Anugraha, and bhutadi. (See part one for details.) First he created Mahat; second, Tanmatras; third, the sense organs; fourth, the immovables, fifth, animals; sixth, gods; seventh, men; eighth, emotions (anugraha); and ninth, Kaumaras (Sanadana, Sanaka and Sanatana).  The Kaumaras dedicated themselves to yoga and refused to proliferate. Rbhu and Sanatkumara sublimated their sexual urges and did not take part in propagation of the race. From his body and mind he created nine sons: Marici, Bhrgu, Angiras, Pulastya, Pulaha, Kratau, Daksa, Atri, and Vasistha.

According to Linga Purana, Brahma and Vishnu get into an argument and a fight about the superiority of one over the other. Suddenly an effulgent Linga appeared before them. It was a fiery column with no obvious beginning, middle, or end.  Vishnu asked Brahma to find the top of the column, while he went to find the base. Vishnu assumed the form of a black Boar, and Brahma, the form of a swan; they moved at the speed of wind and mind for a thousand years. Brahma could not find the top and came back to the starting point, so also did Lord Visnu. Both of them paid their respects to Lord Siva; a loud sound “AUM” came out of the column. The letter "A" appeared on the right of the column; the letter "U" appeared on the left side; and the letter "M" appeared in the middle. Vibrations rang forth from the column, sounding the syllable OM.

Vishnu saw the sun, the moon, and the refulgent fire; and on top of them, Siva appeared like a pristine crystal, which is devoid of any attributes.  Siva proved to Vishnu and Brahma that he is superior to both of them. Since then, the sakti is the altar for the Linga. It is Linga because, at dissolution, all elements, universe, gods, and beings dissolve in it.