Supreme Soul

A little boy once asked his Grandma, what happened to people after they were dead? She said, “You see son, the body is made up of five elements i.e. Air, Water, Fire, Earth and Space. When the Atma i.e. the soul leaves the body, each of these elements returns to its own source.” “How is that Grandma?” asked the boy.

“Well, when we consign the body to sacred flames, the air in it escapes into the air around. Water evaporates and escapes as moisture into the air. The heat of the body i.e. the fire element in it, escapes to merge with the heat of the atmosphere. The space is enveloped into the ‘all enveloping space’ around. What ever mass is left merges into the earth.”

“Grandma, you said that this happens after the soul leaves the body. Where does the soul go?”

“Son, the soul or Atma is a very, very minute part of the Param-Atma i.e. God who is the Supreme Soul. The Atma merges back into the Param-Atma.”

“Grandma, with so many people dying everyday, the number of Atmas going back would be huge, so I guess the Param-Atma would be a big one!”

“Not really son, the Param-Atma is so tiny that it can fit into the smallest of the small and at the same time it is so huge that it cannot fit into the largest of the large.”

Seeing the puzzled look on the boy’s face, Grandma lit a big candle and fixed it on a table. She proceeded to light six small candles, taking the light from the big candle and stood them one by one around it. She said, “The Param-Atma is like the big candle. Do you see the size of its flame? Now, I have lit the other six candles one by one taking the light from the ‘God’ Candle. All forms of life are like the small candles. They are a part of the big flame. Did the size of its flame increase or decrease?”

“It’s the same Grandma.”

“Now look at the flames of all the six candles, if the original flame is not diminished, wherefrom did these came forth?”

Then, she picked up one small candle and pressed its wick, at the edge of the flame of the big candle. The smaller one got extinguished. Similarly, she put out all the small candles. “Tell me, where do you think the flames have gone? … Similar is the case of our souls and God. However many souls God sends to the Earth, God never diminishes. However, many He calls back to Him, He never grows bigger.”