99. Sarvādiḥ सर्वादिः
The creation begins from Him.
Kṛṣṇa says in Bhagavad Gītā (X.39), “I am the seed of all beings and none can be mobile or torpid without Me.”
From this Seed sprouts Prakṛti, where the entire evolution takes place.
He is the Ultimate Cause of All Causes.
Sarva means everything and Aadi means the beginning. He is the root cause of everything. He is the Ultimate Cause of all Causes. He is the beginning of all beginnings.
“SarveshAm purushArtAnAm Adih sarvAdih or sarva bhUtAnAm AdikAraNatvAt sarvAdih.” One who is the very beginning of all; One, who was in existence earlier than anything else.
In the Bhagavad Gita Chapter 10 Verse 8, Lord Krishna says “Aham Sarvasya Prabhavah Mattas Sarvam Pravartate – I am the source of all things; all things proceed from me.”
अहं सर्वस्य प्रभवो मत्त: सर्वं प्रवर्तते |
इति मत्वा भजन्ते मां बुधा भावसमन्विता: || 8||
ahaṁ sarvasya prabhavo mattaḥ sarvaṁ pravartate
iti matvā bhajante māṁ budhā bhāva-samanvitāḥ
BG 10.8: I am the origin of all creation. Everything proceeds from me. The wise who know this perfectly worship me with great faith and devotion.
Shree Krishna begins the verse by saying ahaṁ sarvasya prabhavo, meaning “I am the Supreme Ultimate Truth and the cause of all causes.” He has repeated this multiple times in the Bhagavad Gita, in verses 7.7, 7.12, 10.5, and 15.15. It is also strongly proclaimed in all the other scriptures. The Rig Veda states:
yaṁ kāmaye taṁ taṁ ugraṁ kṛiṣhṇomi taṁ brahmāṇaṁ taṁ ṛiṣhiṁ taṁ sumedhsam (10.125.5)[v4]
“I make the persons I love exceedingly mighty; I make them men or women; I make them wise sages; I make a soul empowered for the seat of Brahma.” The wise who comprehend this truth develop firm faith and worship him with loving devotion.
Thus, Shree Krishna is the Supreme Lord of both the material and spiritual creations. However, administering creation is not the primary work of God. Chaitanya Mahaprabhu states:
swayaṁ bhagavānera karma nahe bhāra-haraṇa
(Chaitanya Charitāmṛit, Ādi Leela 4.8)[v5]
“Shree Krishna does not directly involve himself in the works of creating, maintaining, and dissolving the material universes.” Shree Krishna’s primary activity is to engage in eternal loving pastimes with the liberated souls in Golok, his divine abode. For the purpose of material creation, he expands himself as Karanodakshayi Vishnu, who is also called Maha Vishnu.
Maha Vishnu is thus the form of the Lord that presides over the material realm, consisting of infinite material universes. Maha Vishnu is also known as Pratham Puruṣh (first expansion of God in the material realm). He resides in the divine water of the kāraṇ (causal) ocean and manifests innumerable material universes from the pores of his body. He then expands himself to reside at the bottom of each universe as Garbhodakshayi Vishnu, who is called Dwitīya Puruṣh (second expansion of God in the material realm).
From Garbhodakshayi Vishnu, Brahma is born. He guides the process of creation—creating the various gross and subtle elements of the universe, the laws of nature, the galaxies and planetary systems, the forms of life residing in them, etc. Hence, Brahma is often referred to as the creator of the universe. However, he is actually the secondary creator.
Garbhodakashayi Vishnu further expands himself as Kshirodakshayi Vishnu, and resides at the top of each universe, in a place called Kṣhīra Sāgar. Kshirodakshayi Vishnu is also known as Tṛitīya Puruṣh (third expansion of God in the material realm). He resides at the top of the universe, but he also resides as the Supreme soul, in the heart of all living beings in the universe, noting their karmas, keeping an account, and giving the results at the appropriate time. He is thus known as the maintainer of the universe.
All the three forms of Lord Vishnu mentioned here are non-different from Shree Krishna. Thus, in this verse, Shree Krishna states that all spiritual and material creation emanate from him. Shree Krishna is also called the Avatārī (the source of all the Avatārs). The Śhrīmad Bhāgvatam states: ete chāṁśha kalāḥ puṁsaḥ kṛiṣhṇas tu bhagavān svayam (1.3.28)[v6] “All the forms of God are the expansions, or the expansions of the expansions of Shree Krishna, who is the primordial form of God.” And so, the secondary creator Brahma prays to Shree Krishna:
jīvanti lomavilajā jagadaṇḍanāthāḥ
viṣhṇurmahān saihayasya kalāviśheṣho
govindamādi puruṣaṁ tamahaṁ bhajāmi (Brahma Samhitā 5.48)[v7]
“Infinite universes—each having Shankar, Brahma, and Vishnu—manifest from the pores of Maha Vishnu’s body when he breathes in, and again dissolve into him when he breathes out. I worship Shree Krishna of whom Maha Vishnu is an expansion.” Shree Krishna now goes on to explain how devotees worship him.
९९. ॐ सर्वादये नमः |
99. OM Sarvādaye Namaḥ
Sarvaadih -One who is the very beginning (Aadi) of all; one who was in existence earlier than everything else. Even before effects arise, the Cause. The Infinite which was before creation and from which the created beings had emerged out, as an effect, is naturally the Primary Cause (Moola-Kaarana).
Sarvādissarvabhūtānāmādikāraṇamacyutaḥ / सर्वादिस्सर्वभूतानामादिकारणमच्युतः As He is the primal cause of all beings, the beginning of all.
Bhagavad Gītā – Chapter 11
Kasmācca te na nameranmahātman garīyase brahmaṇo’pyādikartre,
Ananta deveśa jagannivāsa tvamakṣaraṃ sadasattatparaṃ yat. (37)
:: श्रीमद्भगवद्गीता – विश्वरूपसंदर्शन योग::
कस्माच्च ते न नमेरन्महात्मन् गरीयसे ब्रह्मणोऽप्यादिकर्त्रे ।
अनन्त देवेश जगन्निवास त्वमक्षरं सदसत्तत्परं यत् ॥ ३७ ॥
And why should they not bow down to You, O exalted One, who is greater (than all) and who is the first Creator even of Brahmā! O infinite One, supreme God, Abode of the Universe, You the Immutable, being and non-being, (and) that which is Transcendental.
INTERPRETATION GUIDED BY SANT VANI (WORDS OF SAINTS)
Sarvādiḥ – The beginning of all.
The cause precedes the effect. He is sarva-bhūtānā kāraṇa, the cause of all beings. Naturally He is Sarvādi, the beginning of all.
He who is the the beginning, the first and foremost. The beginning of everything and the origin of all beings. He, who is the source of all human aspirations(Śaṅkara). He who is the source of all and the one who fulfills all the desires of his devotees. He who has existed forever – he who is the ’cause’ before the “effects”. He who is symbolic of the “Infinite Wish” that existed before the initiation of the creative process and from whom all beings have emerged(Parāsara Battar).
The Nārāyanīyam which is a poetic rendition of the Śrīmad Bhāgavatam by Melpathur Narayana Bhattathiri, in a matter of few evocative verses captures the eternal and never-ending cycles of creation and destruction even as the one reality behind it all remains the one constant – Viṣhṇu.
सुषुप्तिकामस्त्वयि सन्निलिल्ये ।
जगन्ति च त्वज्जठरं समीयु-
स्तदेदमेकार्णवमास विश्वम् ॥५॥
At the end of his day, that lotus-born one, desirous of entering into the state of deep-sleep, merges himself in you. With him having entered into your cosmic form, so also does the world fold-up into your abdomen leaving only (once again) the causal waters of creation.
तवैव वेषे फणिराजि शेषे
जलैकशेषे भुवने स्म शेषे ।
With the whole Universe reduced to its ‘causal-state’ you, who are the epitome of that state of absolute bliss called Sacchidānanda, entered into Yoganidra reclining on that ancient serpent Ādisesha
प्रबोधयेत्यादिशता किलादौ ।
त्वया प्रसुप्तं परिसुप्तशक्ति-
व्रजेन तत्राखिलजीवधाम्ना ॥७॥
Kāla (Time), that ‘stops’ only for you and over whom you have complete sway – whom you ordered to awaken you at the end of the Pralaya (deluge) and entered into your state of Yoganidra with the manifold energies of the Universe folded within you in latent form (to be activated by you again at the end of the Pralaya).
In the Bhagavad-gītā Bhagavan in the form of Kṛṣṇa says the following which is essentially confirmation of the continuity of the cycles of creation and destruction and the universality of the Supreme Being who is beyond the grasp of even Kāla which is why he alone is SARVĀDIḤ:
न त्वेवाहं जातु नासं न त्वं नेमे जनाधिपा |
न चैव न भविष्याम: सर्वे वयमत: परम् || 2-12||
na tvevāhaṁ jātu nāsaṁ na tvaṁ neme janādhipāḥ
na chaiva na bhaviṣhyāmaḥ sarve vayamataḥ param
Never was there a time when I did not exist, nor a time when you, or all who are assembled here did not exist, or will cease to exist in the future.
It is this knowledge that should tell us how infinitesimal our own existence is, in that mighty arc of Universal existence. This should remove any traces of self-importance and pride that we carry around because in the grand of scheme of things neither we nor what we do matters much but what surely matters is in how we use the knowledge to change ourselves from within and seek that which is the one primary truth of existence.
We under the orb of Maya neither remember the causal factors that lead to our existence nor any of our previous births; and this is exactly how it is meant to be. The only primordial cause of this existence is the lord who runs and sustains this universe.