aksharaanaamakaarosmi dvandvaha saamasikasya cha |
ahamevaakshyaha kaalo dhaataaham vishvatomukham || 33 ||

 
Among the alphabets I am “A” and among grammatical compounds I am Dvandva. I only am the inexhaustible time. I am the provider facing all directions.
 
aksharaanaam : among the alphabets
akaaraha : “a”
asmi : I am
dvandvaha : Dvandva
saamasikasya : among grammatical compounds
cha : and
aham : I am
eva : only
akshyaha : inexhaustible
kaalaha : time
dhaataaham : provider
vishvatomukhaha : facing all directions
 
The word “akshara” means letter, but also means imperishable. Shri Krishna says that among the aksharas, the imperishable letters, Ishvara is manifested foremost in the letter “a”. No letter can be pronounced without the support of “a”. For example, the consonant “k” cannot be pronounced without adding an “a” to make it “ka”. It is said that each letter has a presiding deity, and Lord Brahma is the presiding deity of “a”. Given its importance, it is Ishvara’s manifestation.
 
Next, we delve into Sanskrit grammar. It has four types of compounds called avyavi, tatpurusha, bahuvreehee and dvandva. A compound joins two words. The dvandva compound gives equal importance to both words that are joined. For example: Raamalakshmanau is a dvandva compound. The other three compounds assign different levels of importance to the words that are joined. Since Dvandva, like Ishvara, maintains sameness between two objects, it is the foremost expression of Ishvara.
 
Previously, time was mentioned as the ultimate counter. Here, time is taken up in its infinite nature. It is that infinite time, “kaala”, which is prevalent before, during and after the creation of the universe. Ishvara, as the manifestation of infinite time, is the controller of Prakriti who is the provider of fruits of everyone’s action. His omnipresence and omniscience, indicated by the phrase “facing all directions”, ensures that everyone gets exactly what they deserve.
 
So whenever we read literature in both prose and poetry form, or when we contemplate the results of our actions, we should always realize that it is Ishvara working through all of them.

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