What is Pradhana?

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What is Pradhana?


In sanskrit the word Pradhana means “ the main or original entity”, which is the material nature. From Pradhana, a product of Maha Visnu’s energy, comes the material world, although not immediately and not directly.

“The material nature in its subtle stage is called Pradhana, the subtle, undifferentiated sum total of all material elements. Although they are undifferentiated, one can understand that the total material elements are contained therein.”

(Srimad-Bhagavatam 3.26.10)

Pradhana is, therefore, the set of undifferentiated and unmanifested material elements. Something similar to what scientists call “cosmic soup”, even before it manifests outside, although more indifferentiated than a cosmic soup.

At that stage all the characteristics (the gunas) are perfectly balanced, none surpasses the other.

Precisely for this reason, material nature is in a latent state and cannot move or activate the mechanism of creation.

To be fit for creation it has to become Prakriti (which becomes manifested although still undifferentiated) and the Mahat-tattva (which is now manifested and differentiated).

At this point the material elements are made available to Brahma, who can begin the creative process.



  • Manonatha Dasa (ACBSP)


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