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A question

From: L Kumar (lkumar_at_uswest.com)
Date: Fri Dec 31 1999 - 18:15:04 PST

Sri Sita Ramachandra Parabrahmane namah.

My humble namaskarams to all the bhagavata members of the forum.

I have a question regarding the all pervasiveness of Lord Vishnu.The
upanishads declare that Brahman(Narayana) is infinite(satyam jnanam
anantham brahma-Taittriya upanishad). And the objects of the world are
said to be real. So if brahman is infinite, is it not limited by the
objects of the world?(as it cannot occupy the volume or space occupied
by the objects). It is said that Vishnu is the greater than the greatest
(mahato mahiyan).But in the scriptures we see that during the pralaya
vishnu takes the prakriti in its very subtle form inside him and lets it
out during the creation. Also it is said that Lord Brahma was born from
the lotus flower emanating from the navel of Lord Vishnu.This implies
that the created world  and Lord Brahma exists outside vishnu's
transcedental body. Does it not apparently contradict the all
pervasiveness of Vishnu and the fact that he is infinite?(because the
term 'infinite' implies that everything should exist within it and
nothing exists outside it.Also saying a thing infinite means it is not
conditioned by time,space or objects). But here we see that vishnu is
resting in space and space is greater than him(as it contains,Lord
vishnu, Lord Brahma and the material creation). I read one of Madhva's
work regarding the all- pervasiveness of Hari. There he explains by
saying that  the space available is unlimited (as per the vedas) and
Vishnu contracts himself  within the available space though he is
capable of extending himself beyond the space by his power. But it is
not very appealing to me as no scriptural evidences are given for this
point in that work. The advaitins explain this point by saying that the
Nirguna Brahman is the only reality and as it is infinite it cannot
accomodate the existence of many finite individual beings and a real
world both within itself and outside it.So they say that jivas and the
world are illusory.But this is totally contradicting the scriptures.
Would you please give the visishtadvaitic perspective of this point?Also
please explain me how the Lord is all pervading inspite of being a
person? Please forgive me if this question is atheistic and skeptical in
nature.

Trying to be an insignificant servant of the Bhagavatas,
L.Harikumar