Bhagavadgita -Radhakrishnan 173

The Bhagavadgita -S. Radhakrishnan

God and the World

19. bahiinam janmanam ante
jnanavan main prapadyate
vasudevah sarvam iti
sa mahatma sudurlabhah
(19) At the end of many lives, the man of wisdom resorts to Me, knowing that Vasudeva (the Supreme) is all that is. Such a great soul is very difficult to find.
bahunam janmanam ante: at the end of many lives. The realization of the truth is a work of ages. One cannot expect to obtain the reward until one has sounded well the depths of experience in Its varied complexity, and all this takes time. God lets the plant grow at its own pace. It takes nine months to make a natural baby and it will take a much longer time to make a spiritual one. The total transformation of nature is a long process.
vasudevah sarvam: Vasudeva is all. Vasudeva is the lord of the life which dwells in all [1] God is all in virtue of His two natures.
R. means by this phrase that "Vasudeva is my all." It refers to God's imperishable majesty felt by the devotee who is humble and trustful. God is all while we are nothing. Like everything else, man cannot exist without God also existing at the same time. We trustfully resign ourselves to His hands confessing that He is all. It is a consciousness of humility towards God who is every-thing and who truly is.
"Vasudeva is the cause of all." 'Madhva.
Other forms of entreaty and prayer are not without their value. They have their reward.

20. keimais tais-tair hrtajnanah
prapadyante 'nyadevatah
tam-tam niyamam asthaya
prakrtya niyatah svaya
(20) But those whose minds are distorted by desires resort to other gods, observing various rites, constrained by their own natures

21. yo yo yam yam tanum
bhaktah sraddhaya 'rcitum
icchati tasya-tasya 'calam
sraddham tam eva vidadhamy aham
(21) Whatever form any devotee with faith wishes to worship, I make that faith of his steady.
The Supreme Lord confirms the faith of each and grants the rewards each seeks. Exactly as far as the soul has risen in its
struggle does God stoop to meet it. Even seers who were so profoundly contemplative as Gautama the Buddha and 8. did not repudiate the popular belief in gods. They were conscious of the inexpressibility of the Supreme Godhead as well as the infinite number of possible manifestations. Every surface derives its soil from the depths even as every shadow reflects the nature of the substance. Besides, all worship elevates. No matter what we revere, so long as our reverence is serious, it helps progress.

22 sa taya sraddhaya
yuktas tasya 'radhanam ihate
labhate ca tatala kaman
mayai 'va vihitã?i hi tan
(22) Endowed with that faith, he seeks the propitiation of such a one and from him he obtains his desires, the benefits being decreed by Me alone All forms are forms of the One Supreme; their worship is the worship of the Supreme ; the giver of all rewards is the Supreme.[2] Sridhara.


References and Context

  1. vasati sarvasminn iti vasuh, tasya devah.
  2. Marva api devote namaiva murtaya~i tadãrãdhanam api vasiulo namaradhanan eva, tat tat phaladatapi ca 'hanteva.