अहमात्मा गुडाकेश सर्वभूताशयस्थित: |
अहमादिश्च मध्यं च भूतानामन्त एव च || 20||
aham ātmā guḍākeśha sarva-bhūtāśhaya-sthitaḥ
aham ādiśh cha madhyaṁ cha bhūtānām anta eva cha
aham—I; ātmā—soul; —Arjun, the conqueror of sleep; sarva-bhūta—of all living entities; āśhaya-sthitaḥ—seated in the heart; aham—I; ādiḥ—the beginning; cha—and; madhyam—middle; cha—and; bhūtānām—of all beings; antaḥ—end; eva—even; cha—also
I am the Self, O Guḍākeśha, seated in the hearts of all creatures. I am the beginning, the middle, and the end of all beings.
In the very first declaration, the Lord states that He is Atma dwelling in the hearts of all beings.
The Pratyagatma seated in the heart of every being is the Lord Himself. As Atma, he is the eternal witness (Sakshi) of the functions of the body, mind, and buddhi (reason). Atma, the witness is no other than Jivatma (Pratyagatma) who is no other than Paramatma. The Mahavakya that embodies the highest Truth is here stated. The Jiva, by ignorance, has identified himself with the extraneous body and mind, and thus he has forgotten his divine nature. When knowledge dawns, this very Jiva comes to realise in a flash that he is Paramatma Himself, and there the quest for Truth comes to an end, for he has now discovered that he is the all-pervading all-blissful, omniscient Self of all. All ideas of littleness and separateness are mere superstitions and hallucinations. They should be rejected once and for all, and the Divinity of the Self should be clearly understood, firmly held, and definitely realised.
The Lord is present in every being. So, love and friendly feelings towards all, non-injury and service, should be cultivated by the seeker in the true spirit that he is serving the Lord Himself.
As the world is super-imposed on the Lord who is the basis and foundation, and as what is super-imposed (like the snake in the rope) cannot be different from the orginal, the Lord is Himself the universe. Therefore He is its origin, its middle and its end.
Let all the aspirants think of the grand and lofty truth that they are veritably the Pratyagatma, and certainly not the little ego caught in the cage of flesh. So thinking and meditating, the Truth is permanently realised in proper season. Then is man released from all dreams of pain, sorrow and delusion. Thus Arise, awake, and stop not till the goal is reached.
Gudakesa: Guddka + isa – One who has conquered sleep (i.e) who has risen above the Tamasic plane. Food and sleep, are stealing the treasure of life. So it is man’s first duty to see that they do not ransack his spiritual treasure.
Question: Who is that Pratyagatma dwelling in the hearts of all beings?
Answer: He is Paramatma Himself.
Question: What further is His nature?
Answer: He is the origin, the middle, and the end of all beings.