Gita Daily Readings

June 1st
Chapter Seven: 8-9
I am the sapidity in water, Oh Arjuna; I am the light in the moon and the sun; I am the syllable Om in all the Vedas, sound in ether and virility in men.

I am the sweet fragrance in earth and the brilliance in the fire, the life in all beings, and I am the austerity in ascetics.

Commentary

Here we are "lured" from the gross to the subtle. The sense of taste is associated with water. It is "housed" in the watery portion of all tasteful objects; and when it is brought into contact with our tongue, too, the first reaction is salivation. What actually is that essence (rasa) in that liquid or watery portion which we refer to as taste? It is God's manifestation; something which is beyond the reach (at least, yet) of the modern scientist. Water and even the water-element in sugar, salt, vinegar, and pepper, are but the carriers, vehicles or abodes of this innermost essence, which is the real secret of taste. The nature of these vehicles can be altered: if you add pepper-water to a lump of sugar, it will not be sweet any longer! But there is an unalterable essence within that vehicle called sugar which is so subtle that no sense or instrument can discover it. That is the reality or manifestation of God. It is that which gives the distinctive quality to these vehicles.

Scientists have been asking themselves, "What makes the grass green?" Chlorophyll. "How is that formed?" The ultimate principle in this quest is the manifestation of God - not God himself, yet! That is the "life principle" in all beings. Its existence can be guessed, experienced, but not grasped by the senses or the mind. We ought to be grateful to God that his divine power is gently leading even the most atheistic and materialistic of scientists of today towards this penultimate step of sheer wonderment.

Wonderment gives rise to quest, inquiry. Without the latter the wonderment may degenerate into sensuality, emotional exhibitionism or materialism. Inquiry is discovery.

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