This is part IX and concluding part of the series ‘the supreme creation’. Generally, only 25 tatwas or principles alone are referred. When 27 tatwas are referred to, it is called ‘sadakhya’ principle. For better understanding of the principles of creation, we have discussed 27 tatwas. What we have discussed so far is based on the principles of ‘sankhya yoga’. Sankhya yoga has been discoursed at length by Krishna in chapter II of Bhagavad Gita. The word ‘sankhya’ can be explained as the aboriginal distinction between material body and soul. One of the prominent and forgotten ancient treatises ‘Sankhya sutras’ discusses intricately on this yoga. The25 tatwas are broadly categorized into four groups based on their cause and effect on creation. The most important factor is ‘mulaprakriti’ which is the primeval form of ‘prakriti’ which is ‘not an effect’. Mulaprakriti is the primitive matter. Samkhya sutra 61 says “Primitive matter is the state of equipoise of three gunas; from the primitive matter proceeds the ‘great one’ (the capacity of judging); from the great one the ‘egotistical organ’ (delusion); from the egotistical organ the five rudiments (five tanmatras) and the two kinds of senses (faculties of action and faculties of perception); then follow the gross elements (akash, air, fire, water and earth). These together with soul form the series of twenty five (tatwas).” The next is ‘cause and effect’ which includes intellect and ego out of anthakkaranam and five tanmatras or cognitive faculties viz. sound, touch, sight, taste and smell (totaling seven). These are classified as cause and effect because they originated from other causes and they in turn cause other effects. Thus, they become both cause and effect.
For example, intellect is the product of prakriti. Intellect in turn produces ego and ego produces the five cognitive faculties. Thus, they become both cause and effect. The next category comprises only of ‘effects’ (totaling 16). They do not produce anything and they are jnanendriyas or cognitive senses viz. ear, skin, eye, tongue and nose (5), karmendriyas or organs of actions viz. mouth, feet, hands, organs of excretion and organ of procreation (5), five basic elements viz. akash, air, fire, water and earth (5) and the mind (1) (out of anthakkaranam) thus making a total of 16. The third category is ‘no cause and no effect’. Purusha or soul alone comes under this category. We have seen earlier that soul cannot manifest on its own. Soul can function only if it is associated with prakriti. Thus from ‘mulaprakriti’ the rest 24 tatwas originate, thereby unfolding creation. Some are of the view that anthakkaranam includes only mind, intellect and ego thereby excluding consciousness. In that case 25 tatwas is calculated as 20 (five elements, etc) + anthakkaranam 3 + purusha or soul +prakriti. Sankhya Sutras discusses elaborately about the principles of creation. For example, sutra 66 says “Soul from the fact that combined is for the sake of another”. Such aphorisms are very difficult to interpret. The interpretation for the above sutra is ‘the cognition of soul is not from the mulaprakriti or primitive matter, which is eternal and therefore soul which is not eternal cannot be the material cause’. Ultimately, it is the ‘mulaprakriti’ that is the cause for the process of creation as this is the primordial matter. For any creation, two objects (positive and negative energies or prakasha and vimarsha forms of the Brahman, which is also known as Shiva and Shakthi) are generally required and if creation of the universe is to be viewed from this angle, Purusha and Prakriti are to be viewed as the primitive transcendental matters of creation.
Vedanta system does not accept the multitude of the souls and argues that individual soul is nothing but a part of the Brahman or the Brahman Himself. Vedanta system also considers prakriti as maya or illusion and calls it as another aspect of the Brahman. Such differences in opinion are natural because such opinions are based on one’s ability of comprehension and interpretation. The impregnable truth cannot be unraveled entirely because it remains to be an eternal enigma and it is intended to remain that way by the will of the Divine. The enigma of divinity can never be fully researched. What we have attempted to understand through our discussions, is the rudimentary principles of evolution. Such an understanding provides the excogitating knowledge, a prerequisite to pursue the path of spirituality for ultimate emancipation. Without such functional knowledge, the attempts that we make could possibly become futile. Further elaborate studies are possible based on “Sankhya Sutras” which we will take up subsequently.