Chapter One
The Original Person
Srimati Kunti said: O Krsna, I offer my obeisances unto You because You are the original personality and are unaffected by the qualities of the material world. You are existing both within and without everything, yet You are invisible to all.
—Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.8.18
Srimati Kuntidevi was quite aware that Krsna is the original Personality of Godhead, although He was playing the part of her nephew. Such an enlightened lady could not commit a mistake by offering obeisances unto her nephew. Therefore, she addressed Him as the original purusa beyond the material cosmos. Although all living entities are also transcendental, they are neither original nor infallible. The living entities are apt to fall down under the clutches of material nature, but the Lord is never like that. In the Vedas, therefore, He is described as the chief among all living entities (nityo nityanam cetanas cetananam). Then again He is addressed as isvara, or the controller. The living entities or the demigods like Candra and Surya are also to some extent isvara, but none of them is the supreme isvara, or the ultimate controller. Krsna is the paramesvara, or the Supersoul. He is both within and without. Although He was present before Srimati Kunti as her nephew, He was also within her and everyone else. In the Bhagavad-gita (15.15) the Lord says, “I am situated in everyone’s heart, and only due to Me one remembers, forgets, and is cognizant, etc. Through all the Vedas I am to be known because I am the compiler of the Vedas, and I am the teacher of the Vedanta.” Queen Kunti affirms that the Lord, although both within and without all living beings, is still invisible. The Lord is, so to speak, a puzzle for the common man. Queen Kunti experienced personally that Lord Krsna was present before her, yet He entered within the womb of Uttara to save her embryo from the attack of Asvatthama’s brahmastra. Kunti herself was puzzled about whether Sri Krsna is all-pervasive or localized. In fact, He is both, but He reserves the right of not being exposed to persons who are not surrendered souls. This checking curtain is called the maya energy of the Supreme Lord, and it controls the limited vision of the rebellious soul. It is explained as follows.

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