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What's with the OMming?

The sound OM - pronounced like the 'om' in the word 'home', with the 'O' sound twice as long as the 'M' sound - is said to be the representation of the sound of the universe. In yoga philosophy OM is the past, present and future, it is in the universe, of the universe and contains the universe all at the same time. It is said that if all you ever chant is OM then you will surely attain moksha, or freedom from suffering and ignorance.

The narayana upanishat, from the ancient Indian texts, the Veda-s, tells us that OM is that which is within us, which gives us eternal joy, that which is known as brahma is the nature of pranava. The word brahma is a big word to unpack but here we can use the explanation 'bruhi vridhau iti brahma', or 'that which is constantly expanding is brahma'. The word pranava - pra = special and nava = new - tells us that every time we chant OM it is special and new meaning will arise. Therefore, OM, the pranava, is within us, bringing us eternal joy, and will continue to expand and renew our knowledge and understanding each time we utter it.

ओं प्रत्यगानन्दं ब्रह्मपुरुषं प्रणवस्वरूपम् |

That which is within us, which gives us eternal joy, that which is known as brahma, is the nature of pranava (OM)

~from Nārāyaṇa-upaniṣat

Thank you to my teachers and their teachers, especially Radha Sundararajan. गुरुवे नमः 🙏

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