April 30, 2014: Isavasyam idam sarvam yat kim ca jagatyam jagat, tena tyaktena bhunjitha, ma gridhah kasyasvid dhanam is the first mantra of the Isavasya Upanishad. This mantra says: "All this is enveloped by the Supreme Being." The word 'enveloped' has to be understood in its proper connotation. I am enveloped here by this piece of cloth. You are enveloped by a shirt. Is it in this sense that the Creator envelops the universe, or is there any other meaning implied in this great statement? The philosophies, or Darshanas as they are called, have many things to tell us about this matter.
The Creator, Whom we call God, manifests this universe, creates this universe. In what manner does He create the universe? There are instances of someone creating something in this world. A carpenter creates a table or a chair. A potter creates a mud pot. Is this the way in which God creates the world? Some say that this is not the way in which God creates, because a carpenter requires some tool and some material out of which and through which he can manufacture a table or some furniture. But, where is the instrument or tool, and where is the material for God? If we say that there is some material outside God, then there will be another difficult question: "Who created this material?" If God created the world out of some existent material, someone must have created that material also. Is God Himself the creator of that material wood or furniture of this cosmos? The question is a vicious one; it is what is called 'begging the question'. Hence, problems connected with the creation of the world do not seem to be easily solvable by merely assuming that there was some material before God at the time of the creation of this universe. Though there are some thinkers and philosophers who hold this opinion that there is an eternally existing material out of which God fashions this universe, there are others who feel that this is not the proper way of visualizing the fact of creation.
---Excerpts from Sri Paripurnananda Swami’s preaching