Here’s a couple of recent inquiries from devotees in the CIS about Lord Visnu and the situation of the souls in the universe.  


1) Who and how impregnates the material nature?

 It is stated that this is Lord Maha Visnu who is always sleeping in yoga-nidra. But also stated that Lord impregnated material nature with a glance. On a painting by Jadurani dasi (Trancendental art, painting 47)
 Lord Maha Visnu is not sleeping. Is it means that He awakes? Or may be this a picture of Lord’s dream?



Lord Visnu’s dreaming, sleeping and waking are all the same. It is not like our transformations of consciousness whereby we forget ourselves when we sleep (and when we are awake). The various stages of consciousness for the materially conditioned souls are all stages of ignorance of the real self. But different manifestations of consciousness exhibited by the Lord are all manifestations of supreme cognition. Thus whether He is ‘sleeping’ or ‘awake’ He is perfectly aware. Whether His eyes are open or closed, it is the same thing.

We sing every morning the Brahma-samhita prayer, ‘angani yasya sa kalendriya vrtti manti’. What does it mean? It means that He has unlimited utility of His senses and limbs. He can do all the functions of any sense, with any other sense. He can eat with His eyes; he can taste with His skin, he can speak through His feet, or whatever. He is not limited like we are. Therefore the question of His eyes being open or shut in reference to His impregnating the material substance with His glance, is mute.

Q2: 8-component cover of the universe:

 It is stated that material universe is covered by 5 maha bhuta elements. Is there any spirit soul (or only Paramatma) inside that paramanus (atoms) that make up the cover? Plus there is mind, intelligent and false ego. Are there any souls at that subtle coverings?


Individual souls are all-pervasive. That means they exist everywhere, in every element and in every manifestation of the Lord’s energies, both material and spiritual. The entire brahman is comprised of living souls in spark-like substance. If that is so then certainly all the material manifestations are also pervaded by jiva-tattva.

Srila Prabhupada expresses this nicely in his purport to BG 2.24:

“The word sarva-gata (“all-pervading”) is significant because there is no doubt that living entities are all over God’s creation. They live on the land, in the water, in the air, within the earth and even within fire. The belief that they are sterilized in fire is not acceptable, because it is clearly stated here that the soul cannot be burned by fire. Therefore, there is no doubt that there are living entities also in the sun planet with suitable bodies to live there. If the sun globe is uninhabited, then the word sarva-gata—”living everywhere”—becomes meaningless.”

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