mayaadhyakshena prakritihi sooyate sacharaacharam |
hetunaanena kaunteya jagadviparivartate || 10 ||

Under my supervision, Prakriti generates this universe of moving and motionless (beings). With that purpose, O Kaunteya, the universe revolves.
mayaa : my
adhyakshena : supervision
prakritihi : Prakriti
sooyate : generates
sacharaacharam : moving and motionless universe
hetu : purpose
anena : in this manner
kaunteya : O Kaunteya
jagat : universe
viparivartate : revolves
Shri Krishna concludes the topic of Prakriti and its mechanisms by re-asserting that Prakriti is subservient to Ishvara. He describes Ishvara as the supervisor, the “adhyaksha”. He says that Ishvara does not physically have to “do” anything in order to create, sustain and dissolve the universe. Ishvara’s mere presence enables Prakriti to function, just like electricity enables a television to function. Without his presence, Prakriti remains inert and is incapable of doing anything whatsoever.
From Ishvara’s standpoint, there is no notion of “doing work” or “obtaining the result”; he knows that ultimately it is Prakriti that runs the show, and therefore he remains detached. He is like the owner of a theatre that has employed a magician to perform a show. The owner is unconcerned whether the magician cuts a woman in half with a saw, or pulls a rabbit out of a hat.
Let us now look at the practical implication this shloka. If we substitute the word Ishvara in the previous statement with the word “jeeva” or individual, we come to the same conclusion from the previous chapters on karma yoga. Only through disassociation with the notion that “I am the doer” and “I obtain the result” can we truly be liberated from the cycle of creation and dissolution.
The key question is : who controls whom? If we let Prakriti control us, if we let our lower nature drag us towards sense pleasure, we can never be liberated. We should re-assert our control of our lower self through our higher self.
Furthermore, Shri Krishna also gives us a technique to deal with life’s ups and downs with this shloka. Whenever we encounter a sorrowful or hurtful situation, all we need to do is to know that (a) we have obtained this situation through our own actions and (b) it is yet another name and form that Prakriti has created.
Once we know that something is a name and form, we will immediately know that it is Prakriti’s handiwork, just like we know that something is an April fool’s joke or a magician’s trick. This will enable us to pierce through Prakriti’s pranks and to know that Ishvara the supervisor is behind everything.
So then, Shri Krishna has explained to us “how the universe revolves”, in other words, how the magic trick works. This is how we should develop our vision of the world. However, instead of trying to see Ishvara behind everything, many people still try to box Ishvara into a finite concept. More on this is taken up in the next shloka.