The One Supreme, Universal and Individual Godhead

The Isha Upanishad begins with this statement: “All this is for habitation by the Lord, whatsoever is individual universe of movement in the universal motion.” (Sri Aurobindo, The Upanishads, pg. 19, Isha Upanishad, V. 1). This statement sums up the all-pervasive nature of the Supreme. Not only is the Divine transcendent, beyond all the manifested universe, and not only is the Divine immanent in the universal creation, but the Divine resides in each and every being in the universe.

Sri Aurobindo describes the situation further: “Those who are great-souled, who are not shut up in their idea of ego, who open themselves to the indwelling Divinity, know that the secret spirit in man which appears here bounded by the limited human nature, is the same ineffable splendour which we worship beyond as the supreme Godhead. They become aware of the highest status of him in which he is master and lord of all existences and yet see that in each existence he is still the supreme Deity and the indwelling Godhead.”

This leads to a sense of the universal Presence and the natural development of love, devotion, and worship that results: “They see too that as it is his Nature which has become all that is in the universe, everything here is in its inner fact nothing but one Divine, all is Vasudeva, and they worship him not only as the supreme Godhead beyond, but here in the world, in his oneness and in every separate being. They see this truth and in this truth they live and act; him they adore, live, serve both as the Transcendent of things and as God in the world and as the Godhead in all that is, serve him with works of sacrifice, seek him out by knowledge, see nothing else but him everywhere and lift their whole being to him both in its self and in all its inward and outward nature. This they know to be the large and perfect way; for it is the way of the whole truth of the one supreme and universal and individual Godhead.”

Sri Aurobindo, Essays on the Gita, Second Series, Part I, Chapter 5, The Divine Truth and Way, pp. 306-307

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