The Nyaya Sastra defines the soul thus: “Atma Dvidha, Jeevatma Paramatma Bhetath”. There are two kinds of souls – the individual soul (Jeevatma) and the Supreme Soul (Paramatma). Life is an evolutionary journey of the Jeevatma, the atomic soul through many lives before finding rest with its origin – the Paramatma, which is called Mukti or Liberation. Therefore, Jeevatma and Paramatma should not be equated as identical because of the differences in their existential and qualitative nature. A drop of water separated from the ocean shares the same quality as that of the ocean, but the drop itself cannot become the ocean.
Jeevatma is the end product of a long process of creation. It began in the form of a ‘Sankalpa’. That was the first kinetic movement in the still and silent ocean of Truth. ‘Let Me become many’, ‘Let Me create the world’, Let Me create a protector for the world’ – these words in the Vedas and Upanishads relate to this Sankalpa. Why did God create the Jeevatma? If there is no Jeevatma nobody else would be there to know that Paramatma exists. The existence of a thing is known only when it is related to something else, separate from itself or when there is something else to perceive it. When there is nothing else to perceive except itself, that is the state of non-duality. In this state, the Paramatma is described as Nirguna and Nirakara, equal to the state of Zero. So consider Paramatma as the point of origin equal to Zero (0). And imagine Jeevatma as Number One (1). Its existence is relational to the neutral (0), that from which (1) originated. In an act of self-expression (Sankalpa), the neutral Zero becomes kinetic at some point of time and generates a series of kinetic movements. Thus we have the numbers beginning from (1). The Number (1) splits itself and doubles to become the number (2). The Number (2) adds one more (1) to it and becomes (3). Thus it goes on until (9). After 9 there is a point of rest or merger. Further numbers can be possible only if (1) merges with the (0). Thus from the merger of (1) and (0), there arises the Number (10). This evolution of (1) from the (0) and its dissolution in (0) repeats itself to make any number of such series making the measurement of time and space possible. It goes on ad infinitum. That is the basis of the Indian concept of time.
What is described here is the mathematics of creation, evolution, and dissolution, the Srishti, Sthithi Samhara concept of Sanatana Dharma. God (0) is formless (Arupi). However, God becomes a Swarupam (a qualitative and quantitative entity bound with time and space) to make its existence known through a physical world, said Navajyoti Sri Karunakara Guru. Now, the stages from (1) to (9) are the stages of the spiritual evolution of the Jeevatma (1) until its union with the Paramatma (1+0), the state of fullness. A child spends nine months in the womb of its mother before it gets evolved into a full human. Similarly, all Jeevatmas in the solar system evolves through the nine planets to complete the cycle of evolution. A Manvantara is related to this period of cyclical evolution through the nine planets. Evolution is not possible without the medium of time. The units of measurement of cosmic time are referred to in terms of Yuga and Manvantara.
The soul passes through an evolutionary cycle through nine astral fields or mandalas. These are called Bhuta Mandalam, Pitru Mandalam, Deva Mandalam, Trimurti Mandalam, Rishi Mandalam, Parashakti Mandalam, Ishwara Mandalam, Daiva Mandalam, Brahma Mandalam, and Parabrahma Mandalam in Hinduism. We know that the Lokas, as mentioned in Bhagavata Purana and Vishnu Purana relate to these spiritual planes. So unless and until the Jeevatma evolves through these nine mandalas, it cannot get Mukti or liberation. It takes several births to attain this state of perfection. So the Vedantic idea of achieving the non-dual state without passing through these spiritual stages is an erroneous one. The process of spiritual evolution is helped by a spiritual master who has himself evolved through the Nine Mandalas. Navajyoti Sri Karunakara Guru is the only Mahatma who has transcended these spiritual stages in this age, by which He has become the instrument of God or the manifestation of God. The path of ultimate spiritual evolution can be attainable by following the footstep of the Guru in devotion. The above idea has been elaborated in the book ‘The Riddle of Manu, Manvantara Avatars, and World Teacher Prophecies’. Buy this book online at https://universalculturetrust.org/product/the-riddle-of-manu-manvantara-avatars-and-world-teacher-prophecies/