Brahma, The Creator

This part is taken from Yoga Vasishtam in “Spiritual Stories” as Told by Ramana Maharshi

In the course of a conversation a devotee queried, “In Vasishtam it is stated that everything comes upon a person by the desires of the mind and that it is the mind that creates them all. But how is it possible, Bhagavan?”

“You ask how! Is this not stated in the story about the ten brahmins? That story is also in the Vasishtam,” said Bhagavan. When asked about it, Sri Bhagavan cheerfully began telling the devotees the story.

Once upon a time Brahma, the creator, after performing his duties the whole day, went to sleep at nightfall. When the night was over, he woke up. After completing his morning ablutions, he looked at the sky before beginning his day’s work of creation, and he saw that there were several other worlds. His work of creation was being performed properly so there was no justification for the other worlds to come into existence. “What! The worlds that should remain dormant until I created them have come into existence! How have these worlds come into existence?” Greatly surprised at this, with the power of his mind he summoned one of the suns in those worlds and asked “Sir, how have these worlds come into existence?”

The sun replied, “Oh, my Lord, you are the Brahma. What is there that you do not know? Even so, if you want to hear from me, I will tell you.” So saying, he began relating as follows: “Swami, a brahmin living in a city under Mount Kailas, with his wife prayed to Parameswara for children as he had none. In course of time they begot ten children. The children in due course grew up and studied the Sastras. After some time, the parents passed away and the boys were filled with grief. They had no near relatives and consequently could not continue to live in that house. They climbed Mount Kailas and decided to do tapas there. They then began considering what exactly they should do to get rid of their sorrows. At first they thought wealth would give them happiness but dismissed the idea as there would always be wealthier people than them. It would be the same thing with regard to kingship or even the Lordship of Mahendra. They therefore felt that there was no fulfilment in any of those things. Finally the eldest amongst them said, ‘He who creates all these is Brahma and so Brahma is the greatest of them all.’ They all felt happy at the suggestion and said, ‘What is the way to achieve Brahma-hood (Brahmatvam)?’ After thinking for a while, the eldest said, ‘It is not so difficult. Mind is the basic cause of everything. So let us all sit in a lonely place and practice concentration for attaining Brahmatvam, giving up thoughts on all other matters, including the body. Continuously feel that you are seated on a lotus, that you are lustrous and that you are creating this world and destroying it. I will also do likewise.’ All of them felt happy at the idea ‘I am Brahma with four faces.’ The idea became firmly fixed in their minds and they forgot completely about their bodies. Subsequently those bodies fell off like dry leaves from a tree. On account of the intensity of their desires ten worlds have come into existence as all the ten of them have become Brahmas. The force of their desires is now stationary in the Chit akasa. I am the sun of one of the ten worlds.” So saying, the sun went back to his original place.


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