108 Ways of Glorifying the Lord - Part 9

Hare Krishna Prabhujis and Matajis,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev!

We have been meditating on glorifying the Lord in the offerings titled, "108 Ways of Glorifying the Lord". In the last few offerings, we were seeing few of the glories of Lord mentioned in verse 8 of Isopanishad,

sa paryagāc chukram akāyam avraṇam
asnāviraḿ śuddham apāpa-viddham
kavir manīṣī paribhūḥ svayambhūr
yāthātathyato ’rthān vyadadhāc chāśvatībhyaḥ samābhyaḥ

Such a person must factually know the greatest of all, the Personality of Godhead, who is unembodied, omniscient, beyond reproach, without veins, pure and uncontaminated, the self-sufficient philosopher who has been fulfilling everyone's desire since time immemorial.

In this offering let us meditate on the following two qualities - unembodied and without veins. 

Glorification 12 - The Lord is unembodied: The word akaayam in the above verse means unembodied. This means the Supreme Lord doesn't need a material body like any other spirit soul. His body and soul are of the same spiritual nature. The Supreme Lord is not formless. He has His own transcendental form, which is not like the forms of the mundane world. The forms of the living entities in this world are embodied in material nature, and they work like any material machine. It is clearly stated here that He is unembodied, which means that there is no difference between His body and His soul. Nor is He forced to accept a body according to the laws of nature, as we are. In materially conditioned life, the soul is different from the gross embodiment and subtle mind. For the Supreme Lord, however, there is never any such difference between Him and His body and mind. He is the complete Whole, and His mind, body and He Himself are all one and the same.

Glorification 13 - The Lord is without veinsAsnaaviram means, that there are no veins in the body of God. Veins are present in material bodies. The anatomy of a material body must have a mechanical construction with veins and so forth, but the transcendental body of the Supreme Lord has nothing like veins. The material body is maintained under certain material conditions. The food we eat is transformed into secretion, then through the veins this comes to the heart, and heart it becomes red corpuscle, the blood, the blood is diffused. Therefore there are so many channels, veins. And these things are pushed on with the air, and if there is shortage of air circulation, the man becomes paralyzed. This is scientific. So these things are required for the material body, not for the spiritual body.Therefore one who misunderstands Krishna as having a material body, has been described in the Bhagavad-gita as mudha, avajānanti māṁ mūḍhā mānuṣīṁ tanum āśritam, Bg 9.11.

Some people argue that if Krishna is really Supreme Lord and His body is spiritual, how come He took birth and how come He left His body on the earth? This is explained very nicely by the previous acharyas and Srila Prabhupada.

Appearance - The appearance of the Lord is not like any ordinary child. He did not take birth like any other child. The Lord appeared from the heart of Devaki and He appeared as a child with four arms. And if that was not extraordinary enough, He also came with a head full of hair, He came fully clothed and with all the ornaments and He did not come out crying, but He was smiling. The Lord appeared in His original form and His body was not at all material, but it was transcendental. Also, upon the request of mother Devaki He transformed Himself into a two handed form like any ordinary child. If the Lord's body was material this wasn't possible at all.

Disappearance - The popular known story regarding the Lord's disappearance is that - when Krishna was hurt in the toe by Jara hunter's arrow in a forest, He sat at once and it looked as though He passed away leaving His body behind. Vaishnava acharyas have explained this question very beautifully. This was a pastime enacted by the Lord's illusory energy in order to bewilder the non-believers or faithless since Krishna wants only His faithful devotees to understand Him truthfully. The power of death only exists in the material world. The material world is always under the control of the Lord. Death is only an expansion of the material potency of the Lord. So how can death affect Krishna? As per 11th Canto 31st Chapter of Srimad Bhagavatam, the disappearance of Lord Krishna from this world was in fact very extraordinary. All the demigods came to pay their obeisances before the impending disappearance of Lord Krishna. Each of them were hoping that Krishna will come to their respective planets on His way back to the spiritual planet. But only few of the demigods like Lord Siva and Lord Brahma could actually see Lord Krishna departing, for all others it was just a flash of lightning. They could not understand how this happened and how He flashed back to His eternal kingdom. Krishna simply departed along with all auspicious things like dharma, knowledge etc. The body that was so called hit by Jara Hunter was illusory body generated by the illusory potency of the Lord. Whereas actually Krishna departed to His own abode in His original spiritual body.

In purport to Srimad Bhagavatam verse 11.31.11, the story narrated by Srila Vishvanatha Cakravarati Thakura is mentioned. Srila Vishvanatha Cakravarati explains in the story about a expert magician who went to a king and was able to show his talent of making a stack of valuable garments, jewels, coins disappear. In a similar manner the magician made seven thousand horses disappear. Then the magician created an the illusion that the king's children, grandchildren, brothers and other family members have attacked each other and that nearly all are dead from the violent quarrel. Then he told the king that just like how he had learnt magic, so also, by the mercy of the lotus feet of his guru, he had learnt the mystic meditation of yoga. He said that he desired to leave his body. Thus speaking, the magician sat down in the proper yoga posture, fixed himself in praanaayaama, pratyaahaara, dharana, dhyaana and samaadhi and became silent. A moment later, a fire generated from his trance blazed forth out of his body and burnt it to ashes. Then all the wives of the magician, distraught with lamentation, entered into that fire. Three or four days later, after the magician had returned to his own province, he sent one of his daughters to the king who told him that she had just come to his palace, bringing along with her, invisibly, all her sons, grandsons and brothers in good health along with all the jewels and other items given by him. She informed the king that it was just a magic trick and the magician, his family and the king's family are still alive. In this way, even by ordinary magic one can simulate birth and death.

Then what to speak of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna who is Yogeshwara - the master of all mystics. He is definitely transcendental to the laws of nature. So He just exhibited His illusory potency so that ordinary fools will think the Lord has left His body like a human being. Actually, Lord Krishna returned to His abode in His own eternal body, as confirmed throughout the Vedic literature. So we should always remember that His appearance, disappearance and His body are all transcendental and glorious.

Krishna willing, we shall continue our journey of glorifying the Lord in the upcoming offerings.

Thank you very much.
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev,
Anand Patil
Wellington, Newzealand.