Lord Krishna tells Arjuna that very few try to know Him.
And among those who strive to know Him, few understand
Him. “I am the means and the end,” says Krishna. “There is
nothing higher than Me. There is none superior to Me.”
The Lord clarifies to Arjuna, that all animate and inanimate things are like gems strung on a thread, the thread
here being the Lord Himself. Just as one string holds all the
beads together, so does the Lord uphold the entire universe.
Once beads have been strung together, the string is no longer visible. But that does not mean that the string is not there, or that it is inferior to the beads, explained Valayapet Ramachariar in a discourse. However, while the string is present only inside the beads, the Lord is present in all of us and outside us too. To clarify things to Arjuna further, the Lord says in the next verses, that He is the One who imparts to water its special quality; He is the light that the Sun and Moon emit; He is the sacred Pranava; He is the burning nature of fire; He is the One who sustains all living things: He is the intelligence of the intelligent; He is the strength of the mighty. All entities constitute His body.
And now the Lord says, “But I am not in them.” This may
seem contradictory, but is not. What is meant is that the Lord derives no benefit from these entities that are His body. The atma derives some pleasures because of the body, like the pleasure of eating, for example. But the Lord gets no benefits from what constitutes His body. Creating and dissolving the world are just a sport to Him.