SIVANANDA DAILY READING FOR 29 OCTOBER
BRAHMAN AND MAYA
Like the pot and clay, waves and the sea, ornaments of silver and gold, the universe is non different from Brahman. The cause does not lose its being by appearing as the effect. The world is not an illusion, but it is non different from Brahman. Like heat is inseparable from fire and identical with it, so the universe which is of the nature of Brahman is identical with it.
The world is dependent on Brahman and independently the world is nothing. The play of cit (consciousness) alone shines as this universe. The universe was, is and always will be. There is no beginning or end to creation.
Behind the impermanent material world there is the invisible source of all things, pure, unchanging spirit or Atman. In the presence of God, maya (illusion) creates the world, even as in the presence of the superior officer, the subordinates do their work. Just as a carpenter cannot work without the instruments, and the instruments themselves also cannot do any work without the carpenter, so also, Isvara (God) cannot create the world without maya, nor can maya create the world without Isvara.
This world is an overflow of the love of God. This is the view of a bhakta (devotee). This world is an overflow of the bliss of Brahman. This is the view of a vedantin or sage. Love and bliss are one; God and Brahman are one. This world is nothing but the expression of God’s love for Himself. This world is an expression or manifestation of God. It is the outcome of the spontaneous play of love and joy. God expands Himself and manifests as the world.
Atmic sankalpa (the will of the self) makes this universe shine and constitutes it. Every object is surcharged with divine significance. Everything in this world has got a spiritual message to convey. Learn from everything. All is Brahman. When this truth is intellectually recognised and intuitively realised, then all feelings of differences end forever.