"Such a person must factually know the greatest of all, the Personality of Godhead, who is unembodied, omniscient, beyond reproach, without veins, pure and uncontaminated, the self-sufficient philosopher who has been fulfilling everyone's desire since time immemorial." ..............Isa Upanishad, Verse 8
Ever since the time our forefathers became aware of their surroundings and the unfathomable processes that happened around them, the primal causation was assigned to an exterior supreme power. The thinking, rational man moved away more and more as his ego dominated the proceedings involved in his interaction with his ambiance and he started witnessing a perceived success resulting in survival and control. The ascendance of this ego dominated and reductionist mental mode reached its pinnacle with the onset of the age of enlightenment and success of rational and scientific thinking resulting in breakdown of religious diktats and regression of the divine into a remote corner of human existence. It was only when classical Newtonian thinking started to fail in grasping reality, with the advent of better instrumentation, both at the macro-cosmic and the microcosmic level, that the power of the unknown started to re-emerge.
The verse 8 is a continuation of the previous verse about which I wrote in my earlier blog article. The qualification of the words "such a person" at the beginning of this verse denotes one who has transcended to a level of seeing the underlying strata of all creation as the Divine essence.
The clear difference between the physical forms that we witness around us and the form of the Divine is the limitation of space-time background. All physical forms that we perceive exists within the four dimensions of space-time but today we understand, through science, that reality extends beyond this four dimensions. Even today, science is struggling with such advance theories as M-Thoery, to grasp the fundamental nature of reality.
In Śrī Brahma-saḿhitā 5.1., it is said; "Lord Krishna who is known as Govinda is the Supreme Godhead. He has an eternal blissful spiritual body. He is the origin of all. He has no other origin and He is the prime cause of all causes."
In the above verse, the form that is assigned to the supreme Divine is 'sac-cid-ānanda-vigrahaḥ'. Vigrahah means form and this comprises of three different qualities rather than quantities. They are sat (comprising eternal existence), cit (absolute knowledge) and ānanda (absolute bliss). We can grasp this concept only through a deeper appreciation of the limitation of our own rational and purely scientific thinking. I am not condemning scientific thinking but it is not the end in a process but only a way. The destination has to be a transcendental process which is the eye that Lord Krishna bestows upon his devotee, Arjuna, when he exposes his cosmic form.
The Pure space, pure mind and pure state of the Divine Godhead is explained in the concluding part of this verse. "........ unembodied, omniscient, beyond reproach, without veins, pure and uncontaminated, the self-sufficient philosopher who has been fulfilling everyone's desire since time immemorial."
Though in traditional interpretation of this verse the use of imagery is validated, through a process of iconic matter being transformed into spirit in true worship, this true worship can only come with the deeper wisdom of the absolute nature of the Godhead. It is impossible for the human mind to reach this level except through transcendence and that requires a Jńana marga.