Ishavasyam idagam sarvam.
Following this, the Teacher declares, ‘This entire world is pervaded by the Lord’ (Ishavasyam idagam sarvam.). The world is already pervaded by God who is everywhere, but we do not see Him. We need to look at the world and see it as pervaded by God; if we are not able to do so, our sorrows will not end.
Thus, in the very first statement the Guru tells the shishya that your sorrow is not because of any action, person or the world, it is because of how you are looking at this world. The Upanishads say God is everywhere; see Him everywhere. However, we tend to see and focus our attention on corruption and the many other acts of wrong doing that take place around us, not on the fact that everything in this entire world is pervaded by the Lord alone.
Whatever is there in this world, however insignificant it may be (yat kincit), it is pervaded by the Lord. Intellectually, we may accept that God is everywhere, but we are not able to see Him in everything, especially in those whom we dislike. However, He is in all – as all. Look at the world with God-vision and your sorrows will end. Ishavasyam idagam sarvam.
This world, idam jagat, is pervaded by the Lord. What falls under this term ‘jagat’?
Whatever is known to us as ‘This’ is the world. Whatever becomes the object of our senses, mind and awareness, is defined as ‘jagat’ – the world. The very word ‘jagat’ itself opens up and indicates the nature of the world. That which appears and disappears, comes and goes; only, in between, it gives an illusion that it is steady – that is jagat.
A good illustration are the Mumbai local trains. A train arrives, stops at the station for a short time. Then in an instant, it picks up speed and is gone! The very nature of the world is that which comes and goes. Since the world is an object of consciousness, it is also inert and perishing.
When we do not have the vision of the one Lord alone pervading everywhere, then what we will see is multiplicity, diversity – the world of names and forms. We do not see the underlying Reality, its substratum, which pervades in and through the entire universe.
So look at the world as pervaded by the Lord. Know that there is only One Lord that pervades this world and have the vision of Oneness. When one sees only diverse names and forms and perceives them as different from oneself, then notions of ‘I and my’, ‘you and yours’, likes and dislikes arise. The moment we lose sight of the One and see only the many, we are caught up in the world of plurality. Greed, jealousy and other negative emotions arise to create strong likes and dislikes, resulting in divisions and conflicts.
The Author is the Head of Chinmaya Mission Worldwide. This is Blog 2 in the Ishavasyopanishad Series.