Brahman Is the Source of the Universal Creation and Its Activities

Sri Aurobindo translates Chapter 2, Section 1, Verses 6 and 7 of the Mundaka Upanishad as follows:  “From Him are the hymns of the Rig-veda, the Sama and the Yajur, initiation, and all sacrifices and works of sacrifice, and dues given, the year and the giver of the sacrifice and the worlds, on which the moon shines and the sun.  And from Him have issued many gods, and demi-gods and men and beasts and birds, the main breath and the downward breath, and rice and barley, and askesis and faith and Truth, and chastity and rule of right practice.”

Not only the works of dedication and religious or spiritual practice, but the very existence of the sun, the moon and the action of universal forces in the world, as well as all beings, stem from the divine Source.  The Rishi in the Mundaka Upanishad is providing this review so that the disciple does not make the mistake of creating an artificial duality where none in fact exists.  People tend in most cases to imagine God as some external person who has created the universe out of some other substance.  The image of the potter and the formation of a pot from clay is one that illustrates this approach.  In the West, there is a clear distinction between God and His creatures.  The Bible holds that God created each of the plants and animals and then created Adam, and from Adam, Eve.  God holds concourse with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden.  There is a clear separation between them.  God is “other”.

In the Mundaka Upanishad, as well as other Upanishads and eventually in the Bhagavad Gita, the unity of all creation is emphasized and the concept of “One without a second” is the underlying Truth that is being brought forward.  God (however described or with whatever language) and the creation are One.  All the forms and forces in the universe, all the actions that take place, everything that represents the energy of human endeavour, all come from and are created from, this divine Existent.

Sri Aurobindo, The Upanishads, Mundaka Upanishad, pp. 193-210