The Mandukya Upanishad with Gaudapada’s Karika and Shankara’s Commentary
Kārikā, verse 2.13
विकरोत्यपरान्भावानन्तश्चित्ते व्यवस्थितान् ।
नियतांश्च बहिश्चित्त एवं कल्पयते प्रभुः ॥ १३ ॥
vikarotyaparānbhāvānantaścitte vyavasthitān |
niyatāṃśca bahiścitta evaṃ kalpayate prabhuḥ || 13 ||
13. The Lord (Ātman), with his mind turned outward, variously imagines the diverse objects (such as sound, etc.), which are already in his mind (in the form of Vāsanas or Saṅkalpas or desires). The Ātman again (with his mind turned within), imagines in his mind various (objects of) ideas.
How does he imagine the ideas? It is described thus:—The word “Vikaroti” means creates or imagines, i.e., manifests in multiple forms. Lord, i.e., Ātman,. with1 his mind turned outward, imagines in diverse forms various objects, perceived in the (outside) world, such as sound, etc., as well as other objects,2 and also various objects permanent (such as earth, etc.), and impermanent,3 i.e., which exist only for the moment, i.e., as long as that imagination lasts—all being of the nature of subtle ideas (Vāsanas) in his mind and not yet fully manifested. Similarly, turning his mind within, the Lord imagines various ideas which are subjective. “Prabhu” in the text means the Lord (Īśvara), i.e., the Ātman.
Ānandagiri’s Ṭīkā (glossary):
1 With his, etc.— The distinction of objects as internal and external is due to the association of the two organs of perception, namely, mind and sense-organs. When mind alone is concerned we cognize internal objects, when sense-organs are associated with mind we perceive external objects; or in other words, the Ātman with the association of sense-organs externalises the internal ideas, i.e., makes them appear as gross physical objects. This division of externality and internality is not true.
2 Other, etc.—Such as heavenly worlds, etc., mentioned in the Scriptures.
As a patter or a weaver, in order to produce a pot or a doth, first of all, imagines these in his mind and subsequently manifests them outside, associating them with appropriate names and forms, so also the great Lord, first of all, conceives in his mind, as an idea, the external world to be and then projects it outside associating it with suitable means and forms.
The world that is seen extended in time and space, with its permanent and impermanent objects as well as the various ideas which are distinguished from matter, are all nothing but the ideas in the mind of the Creator, i.e., Ātman as Īśvara. This Ātman or the causal Self creates by his imagination the ego and the non-ego as well as their mutual relationship.
The word ‘Imagination’ is used as the equivalent of ‘Kalpanā’. The English term is generally used to denote the mental construction of the individual soul or self. The Sanskrit term applies to both Īśvara (the Ātman) and the individual soul.