|Canto 2: The Cosmic Manifestation||Chapter 4: The Process of Creation|
Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 2.4.7
yathā gopāyati vibhur
yathā saḿyacchate punaḥ
yāḿ yāḿ śaktim upāśritya
puru-śaktiḥ paraḥ pumān
ātmānaḿ krīḍayan krīḍan
karoti vikaroti ca
yathā — as; gopāyati — maintains; vibhuḥ — the great; yathā — as; saḿyacchate — winds up; punaḥ — again; yām yām — as; śaktim — energies; upāśritya — by employing; puru-śaktiḥ — the all-powerful; paraḥ — the Supreme; pumān — Personality of Godhead; ātmānam — plenary expansion; krīḍayan — having engaged them; krīḍan — as also personally being engaged; karoti — does them; vikaroti — and causes to be done; ca — and.
Kindly describe how the Supreme Lord, who is all-powerful, engages His different energies and different expansions in maintaining and again winding up the phenomenal world in the sporting spirit of a player.
In the Kaṭha Upaniṣad (2.2.13) the Supreme Lord is described as the chief eternal being amongst all other eternal individual beings (nityo nityānāḿ cetanaś cetanānām) and the one Supreme Lord who maintains innumerable other individual living beings (eko bahūnāḿ yo vidadhāti kāmān). So all living entities, both in the conditioned state and in the liberated state, are maintained by the Almighty Supreme Lord. Such maintenance is effected by the Lord through His different expansions of Self and three principal energies, namely the internal, external and marginal energies. The living entities are His marginal energies, and some of them, in the confidence of the Lord, are entrusted with the work of creation also, as are Brahmā, Marīci, etc., and the acts of creation are inspired by the Lord unto them (tene brahma hṛdā). The external energy (māyā) is also impregnated with the jīvas, or conditioned souls. The unconditioned marginal potency acts in the spiritual kingdom, and the Lord, by His different plenary expansions, maintains them in different transcendental relations displayed in the spiritual sky. So the one Supreme Personality of Godhead manifests Himself in many (bahu syām), and thus all diversities are in Him, and He is in all diversities, although He is nevertheless different from all of them. That is the inconceivable mystic power of the Lord, and as such everything is simultaneously one with and different from Him by His inconceivable potencies (acintya-bhedābheda-tattva).
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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, Founder Ācārya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness