Vedas declare that there is only one Ultimate Reality or Supreme Truth which exists eternally, and which is unchanging. It is in the form of a Super Consciousness of cosmic proportions which creates the universe and runs it, while staying on a different plane than that of the universe. Its existence is, therefore, transcendental. It is also referred to as the Universal or the Cosmic Consciousness. Vedas call It the Supreme or Cosmic Soul.
Adjectives ‘Universal’ or ‘Cosmic’, used to describe the Supreme Soul or Supreme Consciousness are in fact only partially correct since Vedas mention that there are countless universes besides ours, and all of them are controlled by this Supreme Consciousness. These adjectives are thus, only symbolic.
Vedas further declare that this Cosmic Consciousness is infinite, all-pervading, all-knowing and is endowed with infinite energy, through which it functions. This Supreme Entity is called Brahman (Pronounced as Brahm). We will depart from the tradition and simply spell It as Brahm to maintain the correctness of the pronunciation. The correct sound of this great Sanskrit word should not be lost in translation of the western scholars.
Let us examine the above Vedic assertion about Brahm using the principles of Science.
Science tells us that the plane in which ours and other universes exist, is bound by time and space, and governed by the law of causation. From the point in time when the universe is created, to the point when it is dissolved, it follows a timeline. Apart from time, the second crucial feature of our universe is space. It is the expanse within which all the universes exist. All the heavenly bodies, whether it is planets, stars or galaxies, are enveloped by it. Any object or event in the universe is located at a given point in space and at a given time. Thus, both time and space together determine its location.
Next let us talk about the Law of causation. It states that behind an effect there is always a cause and that the cause always precedes the effect. In other words, For example, if we shoot an arrow from a bow, it will hit the target. So, shooting of the arrow, or the cause, will happen first on the timeline followed by the arrow hitting the target, which is the effect. The incident of the arrow hitting the target cannot happen before we shoot it. The logic is based on these premises.
Since according to Vedas, Brahm exists on a plane different from that of the universe and so, He is apparently not bound either by the time or space or the law of causation. Since time does not exist in His plane, He is timeless. He has no beginning and no end, i.e., He is living eternally or in other words He is Immortal. As the space also does not exist in His plane, He has no limiting borders and so, is Infinite.
Another thing to be noted here is that since He cannot be located due to the absence of space and time, He is everywhere. That means He is Omnipresent, and exists as a single entity, implying that He is Indivisible. And finally, by virtue of existing in His own non-physical plane, He is Transcendental for humans who live in this universe. Moreover, since the function of logic and enquiry lies only within the realm of time, space and law of causation, and He is beyond that realm, it is difficult for us to understand Him fully only through logic. Vedas declare that He can only be understood by us when our consciousness transcends to His plane from ours through spiritual advancement and we are able to transcend the limits of logic and reasoning.
This provides the scientific approval for all the above Vedic assertion about Brahm or Cosmic Consciousness.
Vedas further declare that Brahm creates the universe out of Himself which means out of the Supreme Consciousness, with the help of His Supreme Power or Shakti. How this is done will be discussed in the next episode on the origin of the universe. The Supreme Consciousness thus, permeates the entire universe including both, the animate and inanimate objects. This has been endorsed by Quantum Mechanics which has shown that even inanimate objects have consciousness at the micro level in the subatomic particles which are the smallest constituents of matter. These elementary particles don’t follow the laws of classical physics, behave randomly and display Quantum Entanglement, which means that the two particles created in a pair seem connected, even when separated from each other. This shows that the consciousness of these tiny particles is interconnected. That is why Vedas declare that Brahm is Omnipresent, which means He is all-pervasive. Since our mind is also permeated by Cosmic Consciousness, Brahm even knows what is going on in our minds and so He is Omniscient, which means knower of everything. And since He is the Bearer of the Supreme Power, He is All-Powerful or Omnipotent.
Brahm runs the universe based on the law of causation. For every effect there is a cause. All phenomena in nature are governed by this law. For example, when we sow a seed in the soil, a plant grows out of it. The plant will not grow, without sowing of the seed. When this law applies to the humans, it is called The Law of Karma. This law implies that a good deed results in a reward and a bad deed entails punishment, either instantly or at a later time in life. For example, if we help a person in need, later in our difficult time suddenly someone may come up unexpectedly to our help. The universe functions according to this law and justice is administered to everyone. So, if bad things happen to us, it is a reaction of our own past bad actions. We reap what we sow. Why would Brham randomly give happiness and miseries to people?
In Vedas Brahm is also called Purush or Cosmic Male and His Shakti is also referred to as Mula Prakriti or Nature in subtle energy form, the Cosmic Female. Purush or Brahm and Prakriti or Shakti, are symbolically considered as husband and wife, as Supreme Consciousness and Supreme Creative Energy paired together. That is why when they together create the universe, He is called the Comic Father of the universe who gives His part to create it, then sustains and runs it like a father, and She is the Cosmic Mother who creates it, figuratively, gives birth to it, supports it and nurtures it by manifesting as the Physical Nature and providing air to breath, water and food to survive. That is why the Physical Nature is also referred as the mother nature.
Here please keep in mind that Brahm and His Shakti are formless entities and have no gender. They are not even separate, which means that they together represent the same transcendental entity. It is only for the sake of making Brahm more comprehensible to human beings that Vedas have visualized It as two separate Entities and humanized Them as male and female, since that is how humans are classified. For the same reason they are portrayed as husband and wife, who together produce the universe and thus, become the father and mother of the universe.
Vedas also mention that Brahm eventually destroys the entire creation with the help of His Shakti when the universe becomes dysfunctional. Everything dissolves and goes back into Him. He then recreates the universe and the cycle of creation thus, goes on incessantly.
Vedas inform us that Brahm uses only one fourth of His existence for creating the universe or the multiverses. This part of Him is called the Golden Egg or Hiranyagarbha. In the remaining three fourth parts He exists unchanged as an infinite ocean of bright light since His actual form of Supreme Consciousness is invisible. He is self-illuminated by His infinite energy. He also produces the transcendental sound vibrations of OM with the help of His energy.
The Supreme Consciousness exists basically as a Living, super-intelligent energy configuration of infinite knowledge, awareness, thoughts and ideas. It is uniform everywhere and infinite in extent. Brahm is bestowed with the Supreme Will Power to translate His thoughts into action with the help of His infinite energy. Apart from his infinite power, He is also endowed with all the unimaginable opulence and grandeur, in subtle energy form.
Here one thing is worth mentioning. Vedas declare that the light of Brahm is not static like normal light of the physical universe. Those advanced spiritual practitioners who had visions of His Bright Illumination, inform that It appears Dazzling, Dynamic, Vibrant, Mystical and Transcendental in nature.
Vedas further tell us that three words define Brahm completely. The first of these words is Sata or the Absolute Truth. Since He is without a beginning or an end, He is the only entity which always exists, rest everything in this world has only temporary existence. He, therefore, is the only real truth. The second word is Chitta meaning the Consciousness, which is His real character, since He is essentially Consciousness which is perfect in all respects and infinite in extent. The third word is Ananda or the perfect Bliss. Let us try to figure out why Brahm is bliss. Remember that the concept of worry, pain, suffering, fear, etc., belong to the universal plane where things are constantly changing for better or worse, the law of causation is working, delivering good and bad results of previous good or bad actions. Brahm, however, resides in a different plane where these things are totally absent. That is why He is endowed with perfect and permanent bliss. This bliss is infused with everlasting peace since there is nothing to disturb Him in His plane. Secondly, since He exists in the ultimate desirable state, which is the final destination of every soul, He is pure, meaning without any flaws. So, His bliss has purity. Thirdly, since everyone is created by Him, He loves everybody and has kindness for all. Therefore, unconditioned love and kindness are other attributes of His Bliss.
In simple language, it is the most desirable, out of this world bliss which lasts forever and is infused with purity, peace, love and kindness. It is this bliss which people experience when their consciousness eventually reaches the level of the Supreme Consciousness through the spiritual progress.
Vedas combine these words Sata, Chitta and Ananda, which results in a new word Sachchidananda, which is another of Brahm’s many names.
You might be wondering as to how can Brahm, a formless entity, do things that require physical organs? How can He see without eyes, listen without ears, talk without mouth, work without hands and walk without legs?
For understanding this you need to keep in mind that all the sensory signals that we receive are recognized by us only when they reach our consciousness through the sensory organs of eyes, ears and nose. To illustrate it consider a scenario in which a man is unconscious, and so, his sensory organs are disconnected from his consciousness. In this situation he cannot hear or smell anything, even though the ears and the nose are open, since the incoming signals are not reaching his consciousness. Similarly, the mechanism of conveying his thoughts to the outside world through the speech from his mouth is not working due to this disconnection.
Thus, whatever we do is actually done by our consciousness. We, however, need sensory organs to receive and send the incoming and outgoing signals, since our consciousness is attached to our physical body. The Consciousness of Brahm is free from any bondage and so He can receive and send any signal directly from his Consciousness without needing any intervening instrument. For sending a signal, however, He converts his thoughts into action with the help of His immense will power.
Suppose He wants to say something to you, He will convert His thoughts into words of whatever language you speak, into whatever voice He chooses, through His will power. All the worldly knowledge is stored in His Consciousness with the help of which He creates this entire universe, so speaking whatever language you speak is not a problem for Him. As regards to the work which requires the use of hands, say lifting a water bottle, He does by executing the thought through His immense Will Power and water bottle gets lifted through the invisible force behind His thought. Now for the work which requires the use of feet, like moving from one place to another, He has no difficulty, since He is everywhere.
Thus, Brahm or the Cosmic Consciousness can do anything without having a physical body.
Here another thing is worth noticing. Since He is infinitely resourceful and so is capable of doing whatever He wants. If He decides to appear in a physical body, He can do that by acquiring a human body through His Will Power, wearing whatever He decides. He can then disappear at will whenever He wants.
He might create a huge kingdom in His realm and be the King there along with a supporting hierarchy of transcendental beings! For Him literally nothing is impossible.