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bhāvān bhūteṣu yena vai
īkṣetāthaikam apy eṣu
taj jñānaṁ mama niścitam
The nine elements are material nature, the living entity, the mahat-tattva, false ego, and the five objects of sense perception, namely sound, touch, form, taste and aroma. The eleven elements are the five working senses (the voice, hands, legs, anus and genitals) plus the five knowledge-acquiring senses (the ears, touch, eyes, tongue and nostrils), along with the coordinative sense, the mind. The five elements are the five physical elements, namely earth, water, fire, air and sky, and the three elements are the three modes of material nature — goodness, passion and ignorance. All living entities, from mighty Lord Brahmā down to an insignificant weed, manifest material bodies composed of these twenty-eight elements. The one element within all twenty-eight is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the Supersoul, who is all-pervading within the material and spiritual worlds.
One can easily understand that the material universe is composed of innumerable causes and effects. Since Lord Kṛṣṇa is the cause of all causes, all secondary causes and their effects are ultimately nondifferent from the Personality of Godhead. This understanding constitutes real knowledge, or jñāna, which is essential for perfecting one’s life.