[Advaita-l] Are the Lord's bodies too ephemeral?

S Jayanarayanan sjayana at yahoo.com
Wed Aug 16 23:33:38 EDT 2017

Simply put: Yes. If they weren't ephemeral, we could actually see Rama and Krishna walking around today :-)
Seriously, the Mahabharata speaks of Krishna letting go of his physical body using "Maha-Yoga"!
The difference between the Jivas' and Ishvara's bodies is that the former is born via Karma, whereas the latter via Yoga.

      From: V Subrahmanian via Advaita-l <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org>
 To: A discussion group for Advaita Vedanta <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org>; Advaitin <advaitin at yahoogroups.com> 
Cc: V Subrahmanian <v.subrahmanian at gmail.com>
 Sent: Monday, August 14, 2017 8:02 PM
 Subject: [Advaita-l] Are the Lord's bodies too ephemeral?
In the BG 2.12 the Lord says:

न त्वेवाहं जातु नासं न त्वं नेमे जनाधिपाः ।
न चैव न भविष्यामः सर्वे वयमतः परम् ॥ १२ ॥
2.12 But certainly (it is) not (a fact) that I did not exist at any time;
nor you, nor these rulers of men. And surely it is not that we all shall
cease to exist after this.
न तु एव जातु कदाचित् अहं नासम् , किं तु आसमेव ।
* अतीतेषु देहोत्पत्तिविनाशेषु घटादिषु वियदिव नित्य एव अहमासमित्यभिप्रायः ।*
तथा न त्वं न आसीः, किं तु आसीरेव । तथा न इमेजनाधिपाः न आसन् , किं तु आसन्नेव
 । तथा न च एव न भविष्यामः, किं तु भविष्याम एव, सर्वे वयम् अतः अस्मात् दे
हविनाशात् परम् उत्तरकाले अपि । त्रिष्वपि कालेषु नित्याआत्मस्वरूपेण इत्यर्थः
 । देहभेदानुवृत्त्या बहुवचनम् , नात्मभेदाभिप्रायेण ॥ १२ ॥
*English Translation Of Sri Shankaracharya's Sanskrit Commentary By Swami

2.12 Why are they not to be grieved for? Because they are eternal. How? Na
tu eva, but certainly it is not (a fact); that jatu, at any time; aham, I ;
na āsam, did not exist; on the contrary, I did exist. *The idea is that
when the bodies were born or died in the past, I existed eternally*. [Here
Ast. adds ghatadisu viyadiva, like Space in pot etc.-Tr.] Similarly, na
tvam, nor is it that you did not exist; but you surely existed.

In BG 4.5 too the Lord says:

बहूनि मे व्यतीतानि जन्मानि तव चार्जुन ।
तान्यहं वेद सर्वाणि न त्वं वेत्थ परन्तप ॥ ५ ॥

4.5 The Blessed Lord said O Arjuna, many lives of Mine have passed, and so
have yours. I know them all, (but) you know not, O scorcher of enemies!

Shankara says:  बहूनि मे मम व्यतीतानि अतिक्रान्तानि जन्मानि तव च हे अर्जुन ।
[Many births of mine have gone by.] Anandagiri says:

अतीतानेकजन्मवत्त्वं ममैव नासाधारणं, किन्तु सर्वप्राणिसाधारणमित्याह - तव
चेति ।  [That many births have gone by is not unique to Me, but it is
common to all jīva-s.]
>From the above we know that Shankara holds the bodies of Bhagavān too to be
subject to utpatti - birth and vināśa - destruction. He gives the example
of the pot-space for the bodies of Bhagavān as well. That is, the pot is
akin to the bodies and the space that does not get affected by the birth
and destruction of the pot, is likened to the Ātmā, Pure Consciousness.
Om Tat Sat
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