Please share some of the points which make us strongly convinced how the supreme absolute truth is both personal and impersonal and that the personal form is the source of the impersonal.

Quotes from Prabhupada books/lecs, Sri Vaishnava sampradaya quotes, other vedic quotes with shlokas are very much appreciated.

For example: 
The BG 7.8 says ..... brahmano hi pratishtaham which means I'm the source of the impersonal brahman.
Sri Brahma samhita: Isvarah parama Krishnah saccindanada vigrah........meaning the supreme controller is Sri Krishna who has a personal form which is eternal, full of knowledge and bliss.

This discussion would definitely benefit us in preaching the pure message of Godhead.

Thank you very much in advance......


Your servant,


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  • Volunteer
    God appears, and God is light,
    To those poor souls who dwell in night;
    But does a human form display
    To those who dwell in realms of day.

    William Blake "Auguries of Innocence"

    These were the points i got it from H.G Radheshyam prb's book..


    Whether God is Personal or Impersonal has been a subject of raging controversy throughout the ages.
    You are a Person, I am a Person, even the Butterfly is a person. In fact every living entity is a person. When all of us are persons, then how can God, the 1 from whom all of us have originated, not be a Person?? Your father is a person, his father is a person, his father is also person, then how can the supreme father not be a Person??

    By definition God is perfect and complete. Being the complete whole, He must contain every thing both within and beyond our experience, otherwise He cannot be complete. Therefore, to be perfect and complete, God must be both personal and impersonal.

    When we are all Persons, why should someone consider that the Absolute Truth in the ultimate sense is not a person? The mentality that leads to this sort of impersonal conception is mentioned in the Bhagavad gita 4th chapter 10th verse..

    It is very difficult for a person who is too materially affected to understand the Personal nature of the Supreme Absolute Truth. Generally people who are too attached to the bodily conception of life cannot understand that there is a transcendental body, which is imperishable, full of knowledge, and eternal bliss. In the materialistic concept, the body is perishable, full of ignorance, and completely miserable. Therefore, people in generally keep this same bodily idea in mind when they are informed of the personal form of Lord. Consequently they feel that the supreme can not be personal.

    And because they are to materially absorbed, the conception of retaining the personality after liberation from matter frightens them. When they are informed that spiritual life is so individual and personal, they become afraid of becoming person again, and so they naturally prefer a kind of merging into the impersonal void.

    The truth that God is a person whose bodily effulgence is the impersonal brahmajyoti can be well understood from several scriptural statements.

    According to the Shrimad Bhagavatam,1.2.11, God exists in three aspects:
    Brahman, Paramatma and Bhagavan.

    Vadanti tat tatva vidas tattvam yaj jnanam advayam
    Brahmeti paramatmeti bhagavan iti shadyate.

    “The Absolute Truth is realized in three phases of understanding by the knower of the Absolute Truth, and all of then are identical. Such phases of the Absolute Truth are expressed as Brahman, Paramatma, Bhagavan.”

    These are the divine aspect can be compared to the Sun, which also has three different aspects, namely the sunshine, the sun’s surface and the sun planet itself.

    Brahman: is the impersonal all pervading brahmajyoti which is actually the effulgence emanating from the transcendental body of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. It can be compared to the sunshine or the sun energy of the sun. in trying to understand the sun the ordinary students are satisfied by simply understanding the sunshine- its universal pervasiveness and the glaring effulgence of its impersonal nature. Such students can be compares to the jnanis or the mental speculator who can realize only this Brahman feature of the Absolute Truth.

    The conclusion of the vedic scriptures is crystal clear: God is person.

    This conclusion is the most confidential knowledge taught by the Vedas. And it was revealed to the world by His Divine Grace A C Bhakthi Vedanta Swami Prabhupad, who thus opened the lid of they honey bottle of love of Krishna and made it available for anyone and every one throughout the world to drink and relish To make the subject free from all ambiguity, he would always refer to the Absolute Truth , not just as God but as the “the Supreme Personality of Godhead”. This is the English equivalent of the Sanskrit word Bhagavan, which refers to the ultimate aspect of the Absolute Truth. When the Lord is addressed as “the Supreme Personality of Godhead”, it is clearly understood that He has a form and a personality. And the word Godhead signifies that He is the Supreme God (God with a capital G) heading all the other gods
    (god with a small g).

    Hare krsna these were the points i collected it from Radheshyam prb’s book.
    I hope these points will clearly clarify between the Personal and Impersonal aspect of Lord.

    Hare krsna ,
    Thank you :)
    Yours servant:)
    • Hare Krishnna mtg,

      Very nice points. Thank u very much. I am unqualified to comment on these completely bonafide points, but can add few points whatever I recollected after reading through these explanations.

      It is a request for all the devs who read the next not to be misled , these are just to glorify the supremacy of Lord Sri Chaitanya as the most merciful form of Krishna. That is the whole and sole reason for it and beginners like me can take guidance to understand these points which are authorized but have to be understood properly.

      1. Lord Krishna did not understand how his devotees were getting so much pleasure in worshipping him. So, he decided to experience the mellows of his own devotional service. This is one of the 3 internal reasons why Lord Chaitanya appeared. Thus Krishna is the incompletely complete supreme personality of Godhead whereas Lord Chaitanya is the completely complete supreme personality of Godhead.

      2. There is an analogy Srila Prabhupada explains in this regard....The mountain analogy wherein, a person who sees a mountain from a distance just sees a big stone, but when he moves closer he sees the vegetation, trees, still if he continues to move, he sees people, animals, houses etc. Similarly God realization exists in brahman, paramatma and bhagavan realization.

      3. Also, we could draw one more important point from the sun analogy,(btw, mtg is it sun's energy, sun and sun planet or the sunshine, sundisc and sunGod) Anyways, no much difference between both and we easily observe that the sun is the source of the sun shine, similarly the personality of Godhead is the source of the impersonal effulgence of the lord. Thus God is both personal and impersonal but the personal feature is the source of impersonal light.

      Thank you once again.
      • Hare Krsna prb,
        its given in the book as sunshine, sun's surface and sun palnet

        i couldnt understand this point from your posting,
        "Thus Krishna is the incompletely complete supreme personality of Godhead whereas Lord Chaitanya is the completely complete supreme personality of Godhead."
        could you pls expalin it further,

        thank u :)
        yours servant,:)
        • Hare Krishna mtg,

          Ok, I understand what it means, but the latter one also I have heard in one of the Prabhupada lectures.

          Well, coming to the second point, one of the devotees was explaining this, because Krishna did not know how his devotees get so much rasa by worshipping him........means he doesn't know something.......which means that he is the incompletely complete supreme personality of Godhead and when he came as Lord Chaitanya that unknowingness was no he is the completely complete supreme personality of Godhead. So, please dont ask me what it means by 'incompletey complete' and 'completely complete'. I dont know what this essentially means in English but I think I have understood what it means in principle.

          I am very sorry I have confused you and the other devotees with this point, but I could just explain only to this extent to show that Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is Krishna himself in his most merciful form.

          Please forgive me for my inabilities to glorify the lord properly and Thank you for asking frankly, but submissively.

  • Hare krsna prbji.

    im posting Srila prabhupad's purport from BG abt the Personalism and impersonalism feature.

    In BG :7.26 he says

    Here the question of personality and impersonality is clearly stated. If Kṛṣṇa, the form of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is considered by the impersonalists to be māyā, to be material, then He would, like the living entity, change His body and forget everything in His past life. Anyone with a material body cannot remember his past life, nor can he foretell his future life, nor can he predict the outcome of his present life; therefore he cannot know what is happening in past, present and future. Unless one is liberated from material contamination, he cannot know past, present and future.

    In BG:7.7 he says:

    There is a common controversy over whether the Supreme Absolute Truth is personal or impersonal. As far as Bhagavad-gītā is concerned, the Absolute Truth is the Personality of Godhead Śrī Kṛṣṇa, and this is confirmed in every step. In this verse, in particular, it is stressed that the Absolute Truth is a person. That the Personality of Godhead is the Supreme Absolute Truth is also the affirmation of the Brahma-saṁhitā: īśvaraḥ paramaḥ kṛṣṇaḥ sac-cid-ānanda-vigrahaḥ; that is, the Supreme Absolute Truth Personality of Godhead is Lord Kṛṣṇa, who is the primeval Lord, the reservoir of all pleasure, Govinda, and the eternal form of complete bliss and knowledge. These authorities leave no doubt that the Absolute Truth is the Supreme Person, the cause of all causes. The impersonalist, however, argues on the strength of the Vedic version given in the Śvetāśvatara Upaniṣad: tato yad uttarataraṁ tad arūpam anāmayaṁ ya etad vidur amṛtās te bhavanti athetare duḥkham evāpi yanti. “In the material world Brahmā, the primeval living entity within the universe, is understood to be the supreme amongst the demigods, human beings and lower animals. But beyond Brahmā there is the Transcendence who has no material form and is free from all material contaminations. Anyone who can know Him also becomes transcendental, but those who do not know Him suffer the miseries of the material world.”

    The impersonalist puts more stress on the word arūpam. But this arūpam is not impersonal. It indicates the transcendental form of eternity, bliss and knowledge as described in the Brahma-saṁhitā quoted above.

    In BG: 4.35 he says that:
    The result of receiving knowledge from a self-realized soul, or one who knows things as they are, is learning that all living beings are parts and parcels of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa. The sense of a separated existence from Kṛṣṇa is called māyā (mā—not, yā—this). Some think that we have nothing to do with Kṛṣṇa, that Kṛṣṇa is only a great historical personality and that the Absolute is the impersonal Brahman. Factually, as it is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā, this impersonal Brahman is the personal effulgence of Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa, as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the cause of everything. In the Brahma-saṁhitā it is clearly stated that Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the cause of all causes. Even the millions of incarnations are only His different expansions. Similarly, the living entities are also expansions of Kṛṣṇa. The Māyāvādī philosophers wrongly think that Kṛṣṇa loses His own separate existence in His many expansions. This thought is material in nature. We have experience in the material world that a thing, when fragmentally distributed, loses its own original identity. But the Māyāvādī philosophers fail to understand that Absolute means that one plus one is equal to one, and that one minus one is also equal to one. This is the case in the absolute world.

    these were the points i got it from BG. if there is any wrong in this posting pls correct me

    thank u :)
    yours servant:)
  • Chaitanya Prabhu Dandabat Pranam!
    The topic of our discussion is going on since past thousand year.Some schools of thoughts tries to prove that God is impersonal and vice versa.Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Sarashwati Thakur has said in this world 99% of the people are followers of impersonal brahma.And now the situation is far complicated due to the mushrooming cults and organisations,the impersonalist believe God is impersonal and their Guru is personal manifestation of God.
    So the realization of god as a person with out any doubt is impossible with out the mercy of Krishna.We may give thousands of argument in for or against the motion that is all mental speculations not the conclusion.
    There are two school of thoughts;top to down(abaroha)and down to top(aroha).The material science follows the top to down approach;all theories hypothesis are contradictory and full of assumption and presumptions.Our modern science is premature than vedic science.Vedic science and calculations are faultless.Vedic science follows the down to top approach through PARAMPARA,with out any confusion or contradiction.Americanns were not fools that they followed Prabhupad's injuctions.Prabhupad said to them bravely :u don't have your God and Iam saying Krishna is GOD why don't u follow it ? and they abandoned the NIRVISESABAD and became the high class vaisnavs ,(Prabhupad says my dancing white elephants).
    If we start proving it ,than gita, ramayana, bhagbat ,purans,and CHAITANYA CHARIRAMRITA at large have all the answer to this. If u want more information plz listen to our Gurumaharaj( HH Radhagovinddas Goswami)class:1st canto,1st verse,Kanpur katha.
    Prabhupad says we see through ears not eyes.(PRABISYA KARNA RANDHRENA)God enters in to our heart through our ear holes when we listen from a pure devotee the glory of God.Prabhupad say's :in a gathering when one say's here is a serpent , listening from him people start running not they stand to see the serpent.
    Lastly a layman conclusion:we are persons, our fore fathers are persons than who is the grant father of all(pitamahasya jagato)is also person(adipurus).As the general process of reproduction PURUS implant the seeds in form of Mahatatwa in to the PRAKRITI for cosmic creation. When one confuse seeing the development with in the universe what to say of the cosmic creation.Let us glorify the holy name.. .HARE KRISHNA HARE KRISHNA KRISHNA KRISHNA HARE HARE HARE RAMA HARE RAMA RAMA RAMA HARE HARE.
    • Hare Krishna prabhuji,

      Firstly, accept my humble obesciences at your feet.

      It is interesting to see your answer, but I wished that this discussion would continue in some other direction. Anyways pr, let me try to serve you by replying to your message.

      Firstly, everything is running under the will of the supreme lord Hari. It is very true that one cannot understand Krishna as a person without the Lord's mercy, for bhakti is a path of mercy and God realization is completely possible only here. Ultimately, whatever jnana, yoga one practices, if at all one has to come to the complete understanding of God, one has to come to bhakti. Krishna highlights that Bhakti is topmost yoga in many places in the Gita. You can refer to some SP books like, KC the topmost yoga system etc. if you like to. Also, as I mentioned Bhakti is prominently dependent on mercy and of course, endeavor also has its place whereas in other systems endeavor is prominent and of course without mercy nothing can happen. Thats why it is said "Krishna is BHAKTA VATSALA", not Jnani vatsala or yoga vatsala.........Srila Prabhupada tape.

      Yes, mental speculation is of no use, but when we use of intelligence in the service of the lord by studying scriptures under guidance of a GURU (of course, a Guru is always bonafide, else he is not a Guru at all), then we can acheive perfection in serving through intelligence. I too have heard of these 2 approaches of understanding the absolute truth, but I think that material science of understanding truth follows down-top approach whereas the spiritual way is a top-down approach as knolwdge flows in parampara. Vedic science is flawless, but it also appears confusing or contradictory because the intelligence is not purified/trained enough to understand such things (example of moon landing etc.). I am telling all these things for ordinary souls, but for maha Bhagavat like prabhupada, he may not know how to design a bulb, but because Krishna is present with him, he knows everything and he is clear about everything unlike us which we may not be able to appreciate because of not being completely pure.

      Yes, it absolutely true that as you have mentioned that Veda, Puranas, Upanishads contain answers to all this. But, to purify ourselves and elevate oneself, we need to go through all of these and it is for this purpose that they were written. Also, I had a vision that we provide shastric examples to prove that God is personal so that we can quote immediate references if someone asks us and that we dont blindly follow things. I am eager to listen to the lecture, pls provide me the link and may be we can add more points from such lectures.

      I also understand that the examples in the final paragraph are bonafide and bow down my head to the words of SP. And finally, there is only one solution.....the Mahamantra, it is a prayer to the lord to serve him and if we want to prove the personal supremacy of Lord which is anyways true, all we have to do is sincerely chant Hare Krishna without thinking about anything in the mood of service, then when Krishna is pleased, he provides us with the intelligence to understand the scriptures in the right perspective that the supreme personal nature of him is revealed. In this way, one can really perfect his service and please Krishna (the latter more important).

      Also LCM said to Sarvabhauma Bhattacharya that the Vedanta sutra is clear but his explanations to these are just like clouds covering the clear sun, similarly is our case that we are confused only because of improper understanding (what SP calls as poor fund of knowledge), impure intelligence and when LCM showers his mercy and more importantly, when we accept it, then we can also become a great devotee like Sarvabhauma.

      We have to do our best to serve in the mission of LCM although we are unqualified. So, when my doubts about absolute truth are dispelled by mercy of Lord, I do something to serve him. i.e. preach the pure philosophy by which others can also become happy which is the most pleasing to Lord. And we should always remember that the Vaishnava qualities, if at all others find in us, are present just because of CAUSELESS mercy of lord.

      Please forgive any offences I had committed and kindly pray to Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu that I shall never leave his lotus feet and continue to serve his devotees in this life and eternally.

      All Glories to Bhakta Vrnda and All Glories to Sri Hari Nama Sankirtana. All Glories to Sri Guru and Gauranga.

      Your servant,
      Krishna Chaitanya.
      • Wonderful explanation indeed. Thank you very much.

        My understanding of the reason why people insist on an impersonal God , and in any case the supremacy of the impersonal over personal , is that they confuse form with matter. They have no information of the Sacchithananda form of the Lord that is exclusively revealed to his personal devotees by the Lord. In material world , form implies limitations and existance within the bounds of the formless space(akasha).In fact, application of rationality/mundane logic to the study of spiritual science is common to material scientists and mayavadies and always leads them to criticise and offend bhakthas. Rest assured, any contemplative mayavadhi would harbour some reservations in his heart with regard to creation and purpose of material creation despite the explanations given in the Sankara Bhashya. It is only SP who bowls one over by his ever so beautiful explanations that satisfies the heart and makes one sigh with relief " Thank God that there is God and I am not He!"
        In fact, as a smartha by birth and an avid reader of mayavad literature upto my middle age, (when I entered ISKCON) I was a strong defender of the impersonal . How I got the mercy of vaishnavas and how my dry spiritual life got transformed into one touched by the love of God is still a mystery to me. Al the more it strengthens my faith and resolve to preach to other mayavadies.
        Brahma Samhitha is the best literature when it comes to establishing personalism. But you will hardly find a mayavadhi willimg to listen.
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