This post is somewhat of a detour in my journey through what’ve been called The Seven Stars of Hinduism.
Actually, it’s less of a detour and more just me finishing what I thought I already had. 🙂
So the first Star is Brahman-One God. It’s a huge first star and well beyond the scope of human language, even the Sanskrit. However, if any language ever uttered by humans would come closer to adequately describing The Absolute Reality surely Sanskrit lead the pack. I’ve studied a number of languages for a number of reasons and all are delightful and amazing in their own ways. And, truth be told, I’m not even very proficient at Sanskrit. I can probably recognize 50 or fewer words and know only the absolute very basics of its grammar. Having admitted as much, I can say that even with my super limited knowledge of it, Sanskrit continues to impress both my mind and my heart.
So, even with the full awesomeness of their tongue, the ancient indian rishis found it difficult to describe in words The Truth they experienced. In Thatte’s booklet, on which I’m basing this and other posts about Hinduism’s Seven Stars, he says, “When indian sages realized the Absolute, they felt the need for an adequate symbol to communicate the inexplicable Brahman or Ultimate Truth. Their philosophic investigations led them to believe that at the beginning there was a Sphota(Big Bang!) which made a sound. This sound(shabda or word) was Brahman. Space, time, energy, consciousness, and everything else came out of this over the years. They called it Nada Brahma or Shabda Brahma which means Brahman in the form of sound… No particular letter of the alphabet, neither a consonant nor a vowel could adequately express this sound. This sounds, which is the Brahman, is AUM. AUM is considered the unity of all sounds to which all matter and energy are reduced to their primordial form.”
So there you have it. God’s ultimate-ness in a nutshell…a sonic nutshell.
It’s noteworthy that modern physics has determined that everything is a combination of sound and light and the only difference between me and my table and a tree on the other side of the planet is the difference in our qualitative vibratory rates, and of course varying levels of consciousness.
God, Brahman, The Absolute… first unmanifest, became manifest with the Big Bang event. Everything else afterward is the result of this holy cosmic sound in action. Which leads into another facet of Hinduism, which is that God is everywhere in everything. This belief, found in Hinduism, is one of the differentiating factors separating it from the Abrahamic faiths which are founded on the basis of a separation from God.
Because of this association between Brahman/Om/Creationary Sound this perception of The Absolute(OM) is one of the most potent and peace-instilling prayers a person can utter. It’s always the foundation of any true mantra.
Om Tat Sat Om