समन्वेत्येष सत्त्वानां भगवानात्ममायया ॥ १८ ॥
kāla-rūpeṇa yo bahiḥ
samanvety eṣa sattvānāṁ
By exhibiting His potencies, the Supreme Personality of Godhead adjusts all these different elements, keeping Himself within as the Supersoul and without as time.
Here it is stated that within the heart the Supreme Personality of Godhead resides as the Supersoul. This situation is also explained in Bhagavad-gītā: the Supersoul rests beside the individual soul and acts as a witness. This is also confirmed elsewhere in the Vedic literature: two birds are sitting on the same tree of the body; one is witnessing, and the other is eating the fruits of the tree. This puruṣa, or Paramātmā, who resides within the body of the individual soul, is described in Bhagavad-gītā (13.23) as the upadraṣṭā, witness, and the anumantā, sanctioning authority. The conditioned soul engages in the happiness and distress of the particular body given him by the arrangement of the external energy of the Supreme Lord. But the supreme living being, or the Paramātmā, is different from the conditioned soul. He is described in Bhagavad-gītā as maheśvara, or the Supreme Lord. He is Paramātmā, not jīvātmā. Paramātmā means the Supersoul, who is sitting by the side of the conditioned soul just to sanction his activities. The conditioned soul comes to this material world in order to lord it over material nature. Since one cannot do anything without the sanction of the Supreme Lord, He lives with the jīva soul as witness and sanction-giver. He is also bhoktā; He gives maintenance and sustenance to the conditioned soul.
Since the living entity is constitutionally part and parcel of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the Lord is very affectionate to the living entities. Unfortunately, when the living entity is bewildered or illusioned by the external energy, he becomes forgetful of his eternal relationship with the Lord, but as soon as he becomes aware of his constitutional position, he is liberated. The minute independence of the conditioned soul is exhibited by his marginal position. If he likes, he can forget the Supreme Personality of Godhead and come into the material existence with a false ego to lord it over material nature, but if he likes he can turn his face to the service of the Lord. The individual living entity is given that independence. His conditional life is ended and his life becomes successful as soon as he turns his face to the Lord, but by misusing his independence he enters into material existence. Yet the Lord is so kind that, as Supersoul, He always remains with the conditioned soul. The concern of the Lord is neither to enjoy nor to suffer from the material body. He remains with the jīva simply as sanction-giver and witness so that the living entity can receive the results of his activities, good or bad.
Outside the body of the conditioned soul, the Supreme Personality of Godhead remains as the time factor. According to the Sāṅkhya system of philosophy, there are twenty-five elements. The twenty-four elements already described plus the time factor make twenty-five. According to some learned philosophers, the Supersoul is included to make a total of twenty-six elements.