What is Pralayam?

We know that Bhagavan is the creator and the vedantas say that the souls have to meditate upon Him to attain Mukti. He does all the three works of creation, maintenance, and destruction. When we say destruction it does not mean that the matter will be totally destroyed and it will cease to exist after that. There is only a change in the form of that matter. The inanimate things change into another form. When we say Pralayam, the great deluge, in that Layam means the change of status of a matter from its present form back to its original state. For example, there is a clay pot. If I were to break it, it goes back to its original state which is mud. When an ornament is melted it becomes plain gold. In both the cases, we see that the matter is not destroyed but it just changes back to its original state.

In the same manner, the universe is created and again brought back to its initial status.

Our scriptures talk about 4 types of Pralaya

  1. Nitya Pralaya – Birth and death happens every day in this world and this is called as Nitya pralaya
  2. Naimityika Pralaya – When one day of Bramha gets over which is 1000 chaturyugam (one chaturyugam is about 43,20000 years.) three of the worlds, the Bhu, Bhuva and Suva. get destroyed. Nimittam means reason. From it stems the word Naimityika. As this destruction happens because of the reason that Bramha’s one day is over, it is called Naimityika Pralaya
  3. Adyantika Pralaya – This is also related to individual’s birth and death but here the difference is the soul attains Moksha and is not born again.
  4. PrAkrita Pralaya – In this case the entire creation is absorbed into the parabramham. And there will be total stillness until Bhagavan begins the work of creation again.

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