|Chapter 9||Confidential Knowledge of the Ultimate Truth||Verse 7|
Rudra Vaisnava Sampradaya:
Thus Lord Krishna has revealed that although He is the sustenance of all creation He remains unattached by His mysterious potency. That He is also the source of all creation and the cause of its dissolution as well by this same mysterious potency. The words kalpa ksaye means universal devastation at the end of Brahma's lifetime. One year of Brahma equals 27 trillion, 438 billion and 400 million Earth years. Brahma lives for 100 of such years. After this long duration of time all living entities everywhere in creation are dissolved into prakriti or the material substratum. At the time of creation in the beginning of the next kalpa Lord Krishna again manifests all living entities and propels them into being.
Brahma Vaisnava Sampradaya:
For the purpose of imparting detailed knowledge Lord Krishna speaks of the dissolution of all beings at the end of a life of Brahma who is the architect of material creation. This is what is acknowledged by the words kalpa ksaye which means at the time of universal dissolution which occurs every 26 trillion 439 billion and 400 million years on Earth at the end of each Brahma's life.
Sri Vaisnava Sampradaya:
All beings movable and immovable enter into the Supreme Lord external nature know as prakriti or the transitory material substratum which identifies with tamas or nescience which is the non-sentient, undifferentiated vast expanse of mass matter in its indistinct state having no name, no form and no consciousness. The words kalpa-ksaye means at the time time of universal dissolution being the end of a maha-kalpa which is the conclusion of Brahma's lifetime whereby one of his years equals 26 trillion, 439 billion and 400 million human years and his lifetime is 100 of such years. At this time all living entities are dissolved into the prakriti of Lord Krishna by His will alone and subsequently at the dawn of the next kalpa all living entities are projected out of the darkness by Lord Krishna to continue their karma or reactions from their previous actions exactly where they left off. Lord Krishna is willing to produce all the living entities from His own transcendental body. The Vedic scriptures declare: Of whom avyakta or imperceptible energy is His spiritual body. Avyakta merges into aksara or indestructible and aksara merges into tamas darkness. Manu Samhita I.VIII beginning se bhidyaya sarat svat aprakritam meaning it was darkness in the beginning and by darkness all was hidden and indiscernible.
Kumara Vaisnava Sampradaya:
What Lord Krishna states in this verse concerning the cyclic coming and going of all beings is clear; but He must be either an instrumental cause or a material cause of all beings and how can this be? If He is an instrumental cause then He cannot be designated as the substratum of everything in existence like a potter making pots. Yet if He is the material cause being the substratum of all existence is impossible as well because merging oneself into all the forms of material nature creates something which only can revert back to its original condition only after the destruction of that which was created. In this way it could be assumed that all beings abiding within the Supreme Lord will merge with Him and again will be created after He transforms Himself and that would mean the Supreme Lord is subject to modification and attachment. To ward off this misunderstanding Lord Krishna states all beings movable and immovable are subject to prakritam yanti mamakam meaning all beings leave their forms and enter into the material substratum which is under His complete control. This happens during the final dissolution at the end of a life of Brahma and at the dawn of the next creation the Supreme Lord manifests them again into forms. Thus all beings are produced in and from prakriti which is manifested by the potency of the brahman or spiritual substratum pervading all existence which emanates directly from the Supreme Lord. They dwell in it and are manifested and unmanifested by it. So in this way all beings eside in Him. The power and the powerful can never be divided or function separately. To exemplify the inseparable nature of the two, the power and the powerful manifestation is expressed jointly as the powerful.
So the reality is the Supreme Lord is the material cause of all living entities by His potency of prakriti which does it for Him without His ever being subject to any modification or attachment. He is also the instrumental cause as well because He is the creator of all creators. So it is clear that the Supreme Lord is the cause of all causes which includes both the material cause and the instrumental cause. The material substratum known also as primordial matter is insentient and hence cannot be separated by material nature because the modification and transformations into its subdivisions of the three gunas or modes of goodness, passion and ignorance fully depend upon it for their activity but through all the processes the potency of the Supreme Lord is influencing all to act in the way prescribed.
Therefore there is no contradiction and it can be clearly understood that the Supreme Lord through His spiritual potency known as the brahman which manifests prakriti which is the material cause of all existence where unlimited myriad of diverse and variegated forms are seen to manifest. Yet although the Supreme Lord is the ultimate source of all beings He ever remains unattached and untainted by the qualities and attributes of insentient material nature both corporeal and subtle. This is because the Supreme Lord is the sovereign ruler of all including His phenomenal spiritual potencies which are beyond the realm of human thought and intellect.