Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh
Dadashri: Who created this world?
Questioner: Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh; these three collectively created the world. Brahma is the creator, Vishnu is the administrator and Mahesh is the destroyer.
Dadashri: Then who is the father of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh?
Questioner: Shankar is the father.
Dadashri: Then who is the mother?
Questioner: He himself is the mother.
Dadashri: Then why did he create only three and not five?
Questioner: Because there are three qualities (gunas).
Dadashri: There is no individual by the name of Brahma, Vishnu or Mahesh. These names represent the three natural attributes (gunas). In the process of learning about the three gunas, people misused the information and hence created these three idols. What was meant to be said was that we need to get rid of these three gunas of the prakruti (characteristics traits of the complex of the non-self) in order to become pure.
Questioner: By getting rid of these three gunas?
Dadashri: Yes. Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh are symbolic representations of the three gunas and you have to transcend them. Bliss exists within you but why can you not find it? You cannot experience it because of obstacles. Who created these obstacles? Did God create them? No, you yourself created the obstacles. And these obstacles are such that even when happiness comes to you, they will not let you experience it. Otherwise, you are the supreme Lord, but alas you have created the obstacles, no one else. Only you have created whatever suffering you have to experience. If there were someone else who was responsible for creating all the suffering, people would have caught him and destroyed him by now!
Reference: Book Name: Aptavani 2 (Page #4 – Paragraph #4 to #10, Page #5 – Paragraph #1 to #4)
These are metaphors
Questioner: When people speak about God as G-O-D, generator, operator and destroyer; and about Brahma, Vishnu, Mahesh, where one is called the protector, one is called the creator, and one is called the destroyer; is there some similarity between these two?
Dadashri: The main thing is the Soul (Atma). Now, besides the main attributes (guna) of the Soul, it is its phases that have creation and destruction whereas the Soul itself is indeed dhruv (permanent; steady) by nature. That is why these three things have been arranged in this way. This non-Self complex (pudgal) that exists, it is that which is born and is destroyed. The inanimate matter (jada) is permanent by nature. So based on this, all this was arranged.
Who are these Brahma, Vishnu, and Mahesh? The state in which there is birth, there our people placed Brahma; where there is creation. Then, where destruction takes place, to become destroyed, there we placed Mahesh. And the state that remained permanent or steadiness, there we placed Vishnu. Thus, Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh. Then idols of the three were established. And, thereafter our people took it to such an extent that, ‘Worship these idols, as they represent the three attributes within us [of the non-Self]; pitta (bilious component), vayu (airy component) and kapha (phlegm component); that is sattva (goodness), rajas (passion inciting), tamas (darkness) respectively. It was placed very scientifically. It is not haphazard; it has been arranged with a lot of depth.
It has then been made very confusing! Where will you find Brahma if you were to look for him? Will you find Brahma anywhere in the world? Go find Vishnu. Then they would respond, ‘Can Vishnu be found?’ And what about Maheshwar! If we were to ask, ‘What work does he do? What is his business?’ Then they would say, ‘Brahma creates, Vishnu runs all of this, he nurtures it, and that death giver, Mahesh, he destroys everything.’ Hey you fool (mooah), should one pay obeisance to one who causes destruction?
Questioner: But Dada, what kind of imagination (kalpana) have they put in place, that this imagination has continued for so many years?
Dadashri: The real thing [Self] cannot be found, so I discovered it, and now I am starting to ‘place’ that in people [help them realise the Self]!
It’s like this, the six elements that exist in the world, within them their phases (avastha) undergo creation and destruction, and by their intrinsic nature (swabhaav) they have permanence (dhruvta). This is just its nature, but people have given it a metaphor (roopak), for a good discovery. They meant to do good, but after a long time it would verily go awry, would it not? Who would then help figure out the truth?
The proximity of two elements with each other gave rise to vishesh bhaav (extra attribute; identification with that which is not real, the non-Self), and in the process this world came into existence. Brahma does not exist, no one has sculpted the world, nor has there been a need for someone to sculpt it. How far has all of this gone in the wrong direction? But people have walked millions of miles away from the main thing [the Self]. Therefore, as soon as one enters (spiritual) college, the elemental vision (tattvadarshan) begins, ‘What is the fact? What is the reality of this world?’ Those books [scriptures] will have to be set aside, after that everything will sort itself out.
It is much needed. The world is asking for it. It is seeking something new. The books are not wrong. People found the books difficult to understand and so that did not work. But one good thing that happened is that a new kind of generation came about; they eradicated the whole seed, the whole faith such that this is all verily blind faith, it is wrong. In this case, it is better to cut it all off. It is rotting from here, so cut if off from that point, so that it stops spreading further.
If one wants to attain liberation (moksha), then one must know the elements and their attributes. One must understand them. Otherwise, as long as one wants to remain in this worldly life, then one needs to know and understand the nature (dharma), the phases (paryay) and the states (avastha) of the elements.
Reference: Book Name: Aptavani 14 Part-1 (Page - #246)