All Names Are Names of Lord Krishna

From the Govinda Bhasya commentary on Vedanta by Acharya Srila Baldeva Vidyabhushana:

Some may quote several passages of the scriptures to identify the Supreme Brahman as someone else than Lord Visnu, or to prove that the creation can have a cause different than Him. Here are some examples:

[From Adhikarana 8 of 4th pada of 1st chapter of Govinda Bhasya:]

The Śvetāśvatara Upaniṣad explains:

kṣaraṁ pradhānam amṛtākṣaraḥ haraḥ

“Material nature is in constant flux and the Supreme, Lord Hara is eternal and unchanging.” [1.10]

eko rudro na dvitīyāya tasthuḥ

“Lord Rudra is the Supreme. He has no rival.” [3.2]
yo devānāṁ prabhavaś codbhavaś ca
viśvādhiko rudraḥ śivo maharṣiḥ

“Lord Śiva, who is known as Rudra, is the omniscient ruler of the universe. He is the father of all the demigods. He gives the demigods all their powers and opulences.” [3.4]
yadā tamas tan na divā na rātrir
na san na cāsac chiva eva kevalaḥ

“When the final darkness comes and there is no longer day or night, when there is no longer being and non-being, then only Lord Śiva exists.” [4.18]


The scriptures also explain:

pradhānād idam utpannam
pradhānam adhigacchati
pradhāne layam abhyeti
na hy anyat kāranaṁ matam

“From pradhāna this material world was born. This world knows only pradhāna. This world merges into pradhāna at the time of annihilation. Nothing else is the cause of this world.”
jīvād bhavanti bhūtāni
jīve tiṣṭhanty acañcalāḥ
jīve ca layam icchanti
na jīvāt kāraṇaṁ param

“From the jīva all the elements of this world have come. In the jīva they rest without moving, and they finally merge into the jīva. Nothing else is the cause of this world.”


Should Hara and the other names given in these quotes be understood in their ordinary senses, as names of Lord Śiva, pradhāna, and jīva, or should they all be understood to be names of the Supreme Brahman?


The names should all be understood in their ordinary senses, as names of Lord Śiva, pradhāna, and jīva.

Siddhānta: The conclusion follows.

Sūtra 1.4.28

etena sarve vyākhyātā vyākhyātāḥ

etena – in this way; sarve – all; vyākhyātāḥ – explained; vyākhyātāḥ – explained.

All [words in the scriptures] should be interpreted to agree with the explanation [that the Supreme Brahman is the original cause].

In this sūtra the word etena means “according to the explanations already given,” sarve means “Hara and the other names,” and vyākhyātāḥ means “should be understood to be names of the Supreme Brahman because all names are originally names of the Supreme Brahman.”
The Bhālvaveya-śruti explains:

nāmāni viśvāni na santi loke
yad āvirāsīt puruṣasya sarvam
nāmāni sarvāṇi yam āviśanti
taṁ vai viṣṇuṁ paramam udāharanti

“The names of this world are not different from Him. All names in this world are names of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. All names refer to Him, Lord Viṣṇu, whom the wise declare is the Supreme Personality of Godhead.”

Vaiśampāyana Muni explains that all these names are names of Lord Kṛṣṇa. The Skanda Purāṇa also explains:

śrī-nārāyaṇādīni nāmāni vinānyāni rudrādibhyo harir dattavān

“Except for Nārāyaṇa and some other names, Lord Hari gave away His names to Lord Śiva and the other demigods.”

This is the rule that should be followed: When the ordinary sense of these names does not contradict the essential teaching of the Vedas, the ordinary meaning should be accepted. When the ordinary sense of these names does contradict the teaching of the Vedas, these names should be understood to be names of Lord Viṣṇu.

The repetition of the last word [vyākyātāḥ] here indicates the end of the Adhyāya.

sarve vedāḥ paryavasyanti yasmin
satyānantācintya-śaktau pareśe
nityaṁ tasmin nas tu kṛṣṇe matir naḥ

“May we always fix our hearts on Lord Kṛṣṇa, who is the final goal taught by all the Vedas, who is the master of unlimited and inconceivable transcendental potencies, who is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and who in His own pastimes creates, maintains and destroys the material universes.”

Thus ends the Fourth Pāda of the First Adhyāya of Vedānta-sūtra. All glories to Śrīla Prabhupāda

Hare Krishna 


↑ Govinda Bhasya Adhyaya (chapter) 1 translated by Kusakratha Dasa



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