Bhagavad Gita: Chapter 7, Verse 24

अव्यक्तं व्यक्तिमापन्नं मन्यन्ते मामबुद्धय: |
परं भावमजानन्तो ममाव्ययमनुत्तमम् || 24||

avyaktaṁ vyaktim āpannaṁ manyante mām abuddhayaḥ
paraṁ bhāvam ajānanto mamāvyayam anuttamam

avyaktamformless; vyaktimpossessing a personality; āpannamto have assumed; manyantethink; māmme; abuddhayaḥless intelligent; paramSupreme; bhāvamnature; ajānantaḥnot understanding; mamamy; avyayamimperishable; anuttamamexcellent


BG 7.24: The less intelligent think that I, the Supreme Lord Shree Krishna, was formless earlier and have now assumed this personality. They do not understand the imperishable exalted nature of my personal form.


Some people emphatically claim that God is only formless, while others assert equally vehemently that the Supreme Lord only exists in a personal form. Both these points of view are restricting and incomplete. God is perfect and complete, and therefore, he is both formless and with a form. This has also been discussed in the commentary to verses 4.5 and 4.6.

Amongst the people who accept both aspects of God’s personality, the debate sometimes ensues regarding which of these is the original form. Did the formless manifest from the personal form of God, or vice versa? Shree Krishna resolves this debate here by stating that the divine personality is primordial—it has not manifested from the formless Brahman. God exists eternally in his divine form in the spiritual realm. The formless Brahman is the light that emanates from his transcendental body.

The Padma Purāṇ states:

yannakhenduruchir brahma dhyeyaṁ brahmādibhiḥ suraiḥ

guṇatrayamatītaṁ taṁ vande vṛindāvaneśhvaram (Patal Khand 77.60)[v21]

“The light that emanates from the toe nails of God’s personality is worshipped as Brahman by the jñānīs.”

Actually, there is no difference between his personal and formless aspects. It is not that one is big and the other is small. In the formless Brahman aspect, all of God’s energies and potencies do exist, but they are unmanifest. In his personal aspect, his name, form, pastimes, virtues, abode, and associates are all manifest by his divine energy.

Then why do people think of the Lord as an ordinary human? The answer to this question is explained in the next verse.