4. m aya tatam idam sarvam
na ca 'ham tesv avasthitah
The Incarnate Lord as the Supreme Reality
(4) By Me all this universe is pervaded through My unmanifested form. All beings abide in Me but I do not abide in them.
See VII 12.
This whole universe owes its being to the Transcendent Godhead and yet the forms of this universe do not contain or express Him adequately. His absolute reality is far above the appearance of things in space and time.
5. na ca matsthani bhutani
pascya me yogam aisvaram
bhutabhrn na ca bhutas ho
mama 'tma bhutabadvanah
(5) And (yet) the beings do not dwell in Me; behold My divine mystery. My spirit which is the source of all beings sustains the beings but does not abide in them.
yogam aisvaram: divine mystery. The explanation of the rise of the limited phenomenal universe out of the Absolute Godhead is traced to the power of the Divine. The Supreme is the source of all phenomena but is not touched by them. That is the yoga of divine power. Though He creates existences, God transcends them to such a degree that we cannot even say that He dwells in them. Even the idea of immanence of God is, strictly speaking, untenable. All existences are due to His double nature but as His higher proper nature is atman which is unconnected with the work of prakrti, it is also true that beings do not dwell in Him nor He in them. They are one and yet separate.
"The jiva or the embodied self, bearing the body and maintaining it, remains clinging to it by aharkara or self-sense. Unlike the jiva, I, though bearing and maintaining all beings, do not remain in them, since I am free from ahamkara or self-sense." ridhara.
The Gita does not deny the world, which exists through God and has God behind, above and before it. It exists through Him who, without the world, would yet be in Himself no less what He is. Unlike God, the world does not possess its specific existence in itself. It has therefore only limited and not absolute being. The teacher inclines not to pantheism which asserts that everything is God but to panentheism that denotes that every-thing subsists in God. The cosmic process is not a complete manifestation of the Absolute. No finite process can ever finally and fully express the Absolute, though this world is a living manifestation of God.
6. ya'ha 'kasasthito nitya
vayuh sarvatrago mahan
atha sarvani bhutani
matstham 'to upadharaya
(6) As the mighty air, moving everywhere, ever abides in the etheric space (akasa), know thou that in the same manner all existences abide in Me. Space holds them all but is touched by none.
The teacher gives here an analogy. The space is the true universal, all-pervading infinite background on which aerial phenomena take place, but its nature is stable and immutable. So also the Infinite Self is one, not many. Though it is immutable being, it is the support of all that moves. It is not contained in any of the moving entities which are all ultimately dependent on the Self. And yet the Self supports the many. Air exists in space but it does not consist of space and has nothing essentially in common with it. It is only in such a sense that we can say things exist in God
God's utter transcendence, which is later developed by Madhva, comes out here. Even in R.'s account, the universe is the manifestation of the Divine ; but in this verse it is said, that, while God causes things to exist, He does not exist in them. They are there on account of His wondrous power. God so completely transcends the universe that He is separated from all worldly being and is opposed to it as the "wholly other." This is the expression of a profound religious intuition.
7. sarvabhu kaunteya
prakrtim yanti martikam
kallaksaye punas tam
kalpadau visrjamy aham
(7) All beings, 0 Son of Kunti (Arjuna), pass into nature which is My own at the end of the cycle; and at the beginning of the (next) cycle, I send them forth.