त्वं ब्रह्म परमं साक्षादनाद्यन्तमपावृतम् ।
सर्वेषामपि भावानां त्राणस्थित्यप्ययोद्भव: ॥ १ ॥
tvaṁ brahma paramaṁ sākṣād
sarveṣām api bhāvānāṁ
śrī-uddhavaḥ uvāca — Śrī Uddhava said; tvam — You are; brahma — the greatest; paramam — the supreme; sākṣāt — Himself; anādi — without beginning; antam — without end; apāvṛtam — unlimited by anything else; sarveṣām — of all; api — indeed; bhāvānām — things which exist; trāṇa — the protector; sthiti — the life-giver; apyaya — the destruction; udbhavaḥ — and the creation.
Śrī Uddhava said: My dear Lord, You are beginningless and endless, the Absolute Truth Himself, unlimited by anything else. You are the protector and life-giver, the destruction and creation of all things that exist.
Brahma means the greatest of all and the cause of everything. Uddhava here addresses the Lord as the paramam, or supreme brahma, because in His feature as Bhagavān the Lord is the highest feature of the Absolute Truth and the shelter of unlimited spiritual opulences. Unlike those of ordinary living entities, the Lord’s opulences cannot be restricted by time, and thus the Lord is anādy-antam, without beginning or end, and apāvṛtam, unhindered by any superior or equal potency. The opulence of the material world is also resting within the Lord, who alone can protect, maintain, create and destroy the material world. In this chapter, Śrī Uddhava inquires from the Lord about His spiritual and material opulences in order to refine his appreciation of the Lord’s position as the Absolute Truth. Even Lord Viṣṇu, the ultimate creator of the material world, is an expansion of Lord Kṛṣṇa, and thus Śrī Uddhava wishes to fully appreciate the unique status of his personal friend.