The Origin of the Universe-the Vedic Version of Creation
The origin of the universe is vividly narrated in Hindu scriptures. Every 311 trillion years God generates countless universes from His skinpores by His exhalation. After 311 trillion years all these universes are sucked back into the body of Maha-vishnu, when He inhales.
Because the Supreme sees, we can see; because He talks, we can talk; because He tastes, we can taste; because He feels, we can feel, and so on. Note how the Vedic version of creation makes sense. The atheistic idea, that first there was a bunch of chemicals, and then these chemicals developed into a being that could talk, hear, see, taste, feel, smell and touch, makes no sense. One really has to be desperate to get away from God, to come up with a nonsensical idea like that.
Here is a short summary of the creation process as described in the Puranas by the Vedic sages.
Creation always goes from subtle to gross, or from psychic to physical. Like, if a human being wants to create a sky-scraper or a fighter-jet, it begins with an idea in the mind. It begins with the most subtle – thinking – then calculations and planning, then drawings, and then the most gross (ie. physical) takes place, when the ingredients are being collected and assembled.
In the same way the Lord creates the material world. Actually Krishna Himself doesn’t deal in the petty details of creating, maintaining, and destroying the material world. First Krishna expands as Balarama, then Balarama expands as Vishnu, and then Vishnu expands as Maha-Vishnu, and it is that form of Vishnu who generates the universes through His breathing.
Vishnu then enters into each and every one of the universes, and creates Brahma, the first created living being, who is a soul like you and I, and Lord Brahma then creates all the varieties of bodies, oceans, mountains, trees, insects, plants, etc. in the universe. So Vishnu provides the ingredients, then Brahma assembles them. The soul is an atomic particle of Krishna’s consciousness. It is not created, It has always been an emanation from God, like rays emanating from the sun. Vishnu animates the creation of Brahma by glancing over it, and infusing it with living sparks – souls.
So first of all there is pradhana – the un-manifested material energy of God. Then, when Krishna agitates the pradhana in His form as Time, matter is produced. The first element of matter is ahankara, false ego, the most subtle of the 8 material elements. False ego produces ether or space, and from that comes sound – the inherent quality of space. Space then produces air and its qualities – touch and sound. Air then generates fire and its qualities of form, touch and sound. Fire generates water and its qualities of taste, form, touch, and sound, and then the final element of earth and its qualities of aroma, taste, form, touch, and sound is created.
In this way the world and its elements are created from the touch of God in the form of time on the un-manifested material energy – pradhana. But none of all this is animated before Maha-vishnu infuses the creation with souls – living sparks.
The manifested world is comprised of 24 elements. The 24 elements are: space, air, fire, water, and earth. The five objects of the senses – sound, touch, form, taste, and smell. The five knowledge acquiring senses – ears, skin, eyes, tongue, and nose. The five working senses – hands, legs, speech, anus, and genitals. And then the three subtle or psychic elements – mind, intelligence, and false ego. That makes 23 elements, and the final element, totaling 24, is the jiva or the soul.
Then there are also 3 energies or qualities that agitate matter, and they are sattva-guna, the quality of goodness; raja-guna – the quality of passion, and tama-guna – the quality of ignorance. Goodness produces maintenance, passion produces creation, and ignorance produces destruction.
All living entities have bodies that are a mixture of these 3 modes of nature. Every material manifestation is a mixture of the three modes of nature. Just like all colors and shades of colors are produced from three primary colors – red, yellow and blue – so any situation, result, body, mentality, place, or any manifestation at all, are produced from the 3 modes of material nature.
Knowledge of how the modes of nature work, and their manifestations are elaborately explained by Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita and the Bhagavat Purana.
This knowledge is scientific and will enable a student to correctly discern, understand, and predict anyone’s nature, actions, and fate.
Know that all states of being—be they of goodness, passion or ignorance—are manifested by My energy. I am, in one sense, everything, but I am independent. I am not under the modes of material nature, for they, on the contrary, are within Me. (Bg. 7.12)
Deluded by the three modes [goodness, passion and ignorance], the whole world does not know Me, who am above the modes and inexhaustible. (Bg. 7.13)