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Where Does Man Disappears To After Samadhi?

What then is this universe? Where has it come from and where does it go when it disappears in the state of Samadhi?

The universe is an illusive creation. Maya is the great magician who produces all these worlds, as the magician produces illusive sights of persons and objects when we come under his hypnotic spell. But even this is a vision very hard to attain, and a consciousness so grand, so sublime that only the most spiritual can attain it. As from one lump of clay, many various objects can be made, and every one of those objects is only clay, not different from the original lump except for name and form, even so from our Atman, from our Spirit, has emerged this whole universe.

It is not different from the Atman except for name and form. The Atman seen through maya, caught as it were in the net of name and form, becomes the universe. God, the Spirit, our own true Self, enclosed in name and form, becomes man, beast and all that exists. Name and form are but ignorance, only a dream, but we do not realize that fact so long as we are asleep and dreaming.

From our present standpoint, therefore, the world exists. We exist; everything exists. All rests on Brahman, who is the real basis of all. Brahman, God, is the ocean. The universe and everything in it are so many waves. God is the cause of all. There could be no wave without the ocean. But He Himself is without any cause. He remains always Himself, glorious and blissful. He is the gold and the universe contains the different ornaments made of the gold. But the gold never changes. It always remains pure gold, no matter how it appears through name and form. It undergoes no real change. The change is only apparent. When we see the gold we see the reality. When we see the ornaments, we see the changeable, the unreal.

And just as the ornaments come from the unchangeable gold, just as the ornaments are only gold with an apparent difference, caused by name and form, the entire creation is Brahman alone, appearing as split up and divided through the power of maya, called name and form.

Source Reflections on the Bhagavad Gita by Swami Atulananda published in August 2004 issue of Prabuddha Bharata magazine.