January 26, 2011 on 11:00 am
Dear Spiritual Explorer: Can you talk about the symbol of Om? Robin Goodwaite, Mexico City, Mexico
Dear Robin: I can not only talk about OM, but I can wear it in the Om Blouse Indian Mantra Shirt at Ma’s India, appearing in blue, black, and red colors with many Om’s written upon it. It is a veritable Om experience just to wear this shirt. But let’s talk about some of the history of Om.
Originally a three-letter word, Aum, the other spelling of Om, in Hinduism represents the trinity Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva, the Creator, Preserver and Destroyer. So just saying the one word Aum is an all encompassing experience. It’s like traversing the whole universe by saying three syllables. I know that in mediation groups I have been in, we sometimes utilize the three syllabic pronunciation of Aum in a different rendition of Om. But it can be used both ways and is often done that way.
An interesting variation is in the Hindu Upanishads, sacred texts, where Aum is mentioned and set forth as the object of profound religious meditation. In those texts, the highest spiritual worth is attributed not only to the whole words but also to the three sounds. “A” means form of shape like earth, trees or any other object; “U” means formless or shapeless like water, air or fire and “M” exists like the dark energy content of the universe. All of these combine to make the word “Aum.”
Hereafter using the spelling “Om,” when referring to the symbol, I can tell you that in Hindu art and throughout India and Nepal, “Om” is seen everywhere, a common sign for Hinduism and its philosophy. The best explanation I have heard for the origin of Om is that before creation began, there was an emptiness or void because everything existed in a latent state of potentiality. The vibration of Om, symbolized the manifestation of God in form, and the mantra Om is the name of God, or the vibration of the Supreme.
Whatever the explanation, I know that chanting Om brings to everyone a feeling of peace, content and connection to the mysteries of the world. Thanks for your question. Spiritual Explorer.
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