Shall We OM???

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Om (or Aum) is a universal sound that represents a connectedness to all that is. We often use it to center ourselves before class or to close a yoga or meditation class.

According to ancient beliefs, all speech and thought originated from the sound of aum. It is often correlated with “The Word” of the Bible, as the Holy Spirit. The sacred word hum of the Tibetans, amin of the Moslems, and amen of the Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, Jews, and Christians all are believed to originate with aum.

Aum is a sound that represents connection. There are many interpretations, including the three sounds A-U-M represent creation, preservation, and destruction. According to B.K.S. Iyengar’s Light on Yoga:

  • The letter A symbolizes the conscious or waking state
  • The letter U the dream state
  • The letter M the dreamless sleep state of the mind and spirit
  • A-U-M in its wholeness represents the “realization of man’s divinity within himself.”

Yoga sutra 1.27 tells us that the sound of OM represents Ishvara (our Divine Source). By chanting OM we dedicate our yoga practice, sensing a bigger connection that both awakens the spirit and calms the mind and emotions. Om reminds us that everything around us, including ourselves contains aspects of the divine. As we make the sound of Om we acknowledge the connection we have to all things.

Below are some examples of OM or AUM chanting that you may enjoy.