Retrospection: Nasadiya Sukta – Part 1
In my first article on Nasadiya Sukta, I have described the first three shlokas or subsections. These three out of seven shlokas depicts the pre-creation stage. It is quite hard to visualize the condition of that stage. We cannot use the word time as time was non-existent so as for space.
Our minds; programmed with conditional and relative concepts are not capable to understand or create a holographic image of the situation; described in this sukta.
Modern science has proposed few theories which have tried to explain the process of creation. Quantum theory defined best about the condition of the cradle of this universe. Despite all these propositions, none of them can qualify as a law; they remained as a theory*.
In this sukta of Rigveda, the seekers have given a similar kind of description which expresses the condition before the process of creation initiated. But, we shall see in due course that even those revered seers of that age failed to explain the cause of this creation and leaves it open.
In the last four shlokas, the seers depict the evolution of the subtle forms inside and outside of their mind and intellect. The truth descended onto their “Chitta” or the subtle mind and they finally closed the matter with a polite surrender.
Perhaps some of the nature’s mysteries can’t be solved. Probably the Vedic sages understood it.
kāmas tad agre sam avartatādhi manaso retaḥ prathamaṁ yad āsīt |
sato bandhum asati nir avindan hṛdi pratīṣyā kavayo manīṣā || 4 ||
And then the primordial desire transcended on that entity which evolved from its own creation. This primordial desire was the first seed of the mind that imagined this whole creation and projected as an apparent reality.
This event got reflected first in the mind of the seers and emerged as the wisdom which gave them the understanding to differentiate between the existence and the nonexistence.
This shloka describes the first light of wisdom that fell on the intellect of the seer and makes them realize; how the singularity changed into duality.
“Kavayo” means poet or more clearly those seers who document the truth with an aesthetic language. Vedic language is logical and aesthetic so there is no harm to call these seers as poets.
tiraścīno vitato raśmir eṣām adhaḥ svid āsī3d upari svid āsīt |
retodhā āsan mahimāna āsan svadhā avastāt prayatiḥ parastāt || 5 ||
This shloka depicts a rather interesting process of how the complex network of time and space evolved and how this innate tapestry originated from that “One” entity.
It says that the cord or the connection between the existence and the non-existence was cut or actually diversified and moved to all directions.
These connections moved left and right, up and down, front and back with expanding space-time fabric**.
This expansion of the space-time framework was imagined as the insemination of that entity which shall bring forth the fertility for creation.
The BIG question
ko addhā veda ka iha pra vocat kuta ājātā kuta iyaṁ visṛṣṭiḥ |
arvāg devā asya visarjanenāthā ko veda yata ābab || 6 ||
After all those descriptions and seeking, the seers came to a dead end. A huge opaque wall stood in front of them, beyond which they were unable to see or think.
The descriptions that the sages have documented were their logical and intuitional deductions. But how could that be known with certainty? Who can justify? From where that “One” was born? From where it projected itself?
These are the questions which are still unanswered. The “Devata’s***” or the demi gods came after the whole creation. So, it was not possible for them to answers these questions.
How can be the birth of this whole existence can be known? There was absolutely nobody except that “One” entity pervading. Who knows how this entity arose from nowhere!
These are the questions which have perplexed the modern scientific minds too. We can imagine with logical dedications whatsoever but shall never visualize. The human mind and intellect have limitations and it cannot supersede the creators engineering which created it.
The imperfect conclusion
iyaṁ visṛṣṭir yata ābabhūva yadi vā dadhe yadi vā na |
yo asyādhyakṣaḥ parame vyoman so aṅga veda yadi vā na veda || 7 ||
Logically, all of the creation has some origin. This is the common method of deducing the source of creation. If we see a bowl, there should be a maker of that.
In the last shloka of Nasadiya Sukta, the seers refer to this method of inference and annotate that, it’s now impossible for them to locate the source of creation. Perhaps that single entity has fashioned it or maybe not.
They said that only that “One” entity, which is surveying His creation from above may know about it or maybe even He does not know.
This is a complete surrender, which declares about its limitations to understand the real truth with all the usable intellectual or mental resources.
Rigveda holds this concept of creation at the last chapter. Maybe the sages wanted to disclose our short falls at the last to prevent us from getting demotivated.
Whatever the reasons maybe, there is now way handy to know about the origin of the universe. Nasadiya talks about the evolution of the creator from his creation. It defies the physical laws which are currently driving this universe.
Modern cosmogony is trying hard to unlock the mystery that is shrouding this paradox.
Maybe some time in the future, mankind will be able to decode it.
*Scientifically, when a theory proves to be valid in almost all of the probable situations becomes a law. [Author’s note]
**We have the limitation of senses so we can only perceive the three-dimensional world. The connections, about which the seers of that age have spoken, pervaded multi-dimensions. [Authors note]
*** Devata: It is a Sanskrit term which means “the shining”. Well, apart from our traditional belief of demi gods, we have some interesting theories about ancient aliens. The theory of ancient aliens was successful in explaining various aspects of mythology. But, it also denotes an elevated level of human consciousness. [Author’s note]
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