What do the Vedas say about God?

What The Vedas Say About Who God Is

Ask who is God to a hundred people, and you'll get a hundred answers. This is where the Vedas get interesting. Let's see what they say.

The Vedic texts say that God is everywhere, but He is also separate from everything. They give the example of how sunlight is everywhere while the sun itself is in one place. Thus the sunlight (the sun's energy)  is everywhere but the sun isn't everywhere.

Are we God? Are the sunlight and the sun the same? In quality, they are the same, but of course, there is a huge difference between sunlight and the sun planet. In the same way, we are one with God qualitatively but not quantitatively (that means we have the same qualities i.e. we are eternal, blissful and full of knowledge).  I cup of water from the ocean is the same as the rest of the ocean water, but at the same time, the cup of ocean water is different from the body of water we call the ocean.

bhakti and the Infinite Soul

a man raises his arms to the higher power

Some traditions teach that we are God and that the goal of spiritual practice is to become God. Actually, this is one stage of God realization, the first stage, in which we realize that we are spiritual and thus have the same qualities as God. But as we spiritually progress, we understand that we are individuals and thus we and God always keep our individual identities. So although some practices emphasize this first step in God realization, oneness with God, as the goal, the Bhaktas ask, "Why do you want to become sugar when you can taste sugar?" bhakti is the exchange of love and relationship between the infinite soul (the Vedas say the soul is one ten-thousandth the size of a hair) and the supreme infinite Soul.

If you were God what would you be and what would you do? Would you prefer to be an infinite and impersonal universal force and energy that cannot personally relate to your sons and daughters and all other living entities? I have asked this question to thousands of people in my seminars and when everyone thinks about it they realize if they were God (meaning they could do and create any reality) they would want to be a person who exchanges love with others. We are reflections of God, so what we find in ourselves exists in Him. So since we want relationships we understand that desire comes from a God who wants a relationship. The Vedas confirm that God wants a loving relationship with all of us.

Anyway, as in life here, bhakti is about the relationship, not only with God, but with others. Bhaktas don't run away from relationships; they embrace them. The great sages teach us that through bhakti our love expands and when it reaches its zenith, we no longer again take birth in this world, but achieve eternally spiritual existence and exchange personally with God.

What will we do when we get there? Sing, dance, play and have fun with God!

By the way, if you were God would you prefer being an old man with a beard or a young beautiful all attractive youthful person? I know your answer. Don't think God is any different in this regards than you.

Learn about bhakti-yoga by taking our Mantra Meditation Course.

"Happiness" - a video by Steve Cutts

This entertaining video illustrates the futility of seeking lasting happiness in material things


Guided chanting with Srila Prabhupada


In the early days of the Hare Krishna Movement, Srila Prabhupada recorded this guided chanting session where he chanted slowly, asking his students to chant along with him.

We invite you to try using this video to guide your own first chanting sessions. You can chant along, either with the eyes open, watching the words on the screen, or closed. Try whatever helps you focus on the sound of the mantra.

This session continues for 108 mantras, the traditional number in a string of chanting beads.

Hare Krishna Mantra - Apple Records

The Maha-Mantra - for printing

Here is a graphic image of the maha-mantra you can download and print as an aid to your meditation.

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna

Krishna Krishna Hare Hare

Hare Rama Hare Rama

Rama Rama Hare Hare

Beginning Chanting Tips

Here are some tips from the first day of the workshop.

  1. Pick a good place.  Yes its possible to meditate anywhere, even at a rock concert.. but it’s easier if you’re in a quiet place where you won’t be bothered and meditation can be your focus for the few minutes you’ll be practicing.
  2. It’s better to meditate earlier in the morning when you are fresh and alert.  The more you let your day go before meditating, the more distractions to deal with.  And the earlier you start the more you get to live the rest of your day with the clarity that came during your practice.
  3. Use a timer on your phone to count down so you’re not looking at the time.
  4. Early morning is best but it’s no big deal to chant later in the day so long as you’re staying consistent with the length of time.
  5. Sit or stand comfortably with your back and neck as straight as you can.
  6. You can keep your eyes open, closed or half closed, whatever helps you stay attentive and not sleepy.
  7. When you’re ready to meditate, take a moment and remind yourself your focus only needs to be with the meditation for the next few minutes.
  8. Don’t worry when your mind wanders. Just let go of those thoughts and bring your focus back to the sound of the mantra.
  9. Remember, this is your time for meditation and nothing else.