Mandukaya Upanishad, Class 15


The aim of the seeker is to grab hold of viśva (attention is on the object I witness), then to chaidhasa (attention to witness of the subtle), then to Pragya (witness of casual universe) and finally to Thuriyum.  In Thuriyum I turn my attention to I the observer, who am continuously there.

In omkara, instead of viśva, chaidha and Pragya we are turning the attention to akara, ukara and makara.  Ultimately I turn my attention to the consciousness which is the witness of the silence.  From sound to silence to the witness of the silence.  Both sound and silence are object but the awareness is not the object, but it is the witness of the silence.  Sound is not in silence and the silence is not in sound, but the witness is in both.  Omkara vichara is from the sound to silence to the witness of the sound and silence.

In the eighth mantra onward the Upanishads equates each mathra to each padha.  The Upanishads prescribes a meditation to assimilate this equation.  The sound Akara is taken as symbol of of virad or viwsa roopa.  By practicing upasana, when we say the sound akara, the whole viśvarũpa should come into mind.

The idols are not piece of arts for us, but Vishnu or Shiva.  Similarly we should train our mind to sound a as viśva.  The two common features of the two are:

  • Virat is the first gross creation; after Virat along all other devatas came.  In the alphabet akara is the first letter.
  • The sound akara alone transforms into all other letters.  Akara is the transformative letter from all other letters are formed.  Similarly Virat is also all pervading.

The benefit of this upasana are:

  1. Worldly benefit; or Attains kamas and pervades in terms of his possessions.  He expands in life also; in terms of children, grandchildren etc.
  2. In life, he will become top most.
  3. The spiritual benefit is his capacity to equate akara to viśva.  This very skill is a spiritual benefit.  When he practices vedantic meditation, as he chants omkara, his mind thinks Virat, to Hiranyagarbha and then to andaryamin then to chaithanya adhirshtanam.  Facility or skill in omkara dhyānam through which he can smoothly land in consciousness.

Mantra 10

Taisaja, whose filed is the dream state, is the second letter “u” due to the similarity of superiority and mindlessness. One who mediates thus extends the range of knowledge and becomes equal to all.  In his family there will be no one who is ignorant of Brahman.

The second pada chaidhasa or Hiranyagarbha representing the subtle universe.  This is equated to the second mathra ukara.  O is a mixture of akara and ukara based on the sandhi rule.  This ukara symbolizes the meditation on the second pada.  Common features of ukara and chidhasa:

The superiority:  Hiranyagarbha is superior to Visva.  Hiranyagarbha is superior because:

  1. Subtle is always superior.
  2. Gross is born out of subtle.  Sukshma is kāraņam (cause) and gross is kariyam (Effect).

Ukara sound is superior to the sound of Akara because ukara comes after akara.  Therefore akara resolves into ukara.  Ukara being the resolution ground, it is superior.  Therefore Hiranyagarbha and ukara are both superior.

Second common feature is that they both are intermediary status.  If you take viśva, chaidhasa and Pragya.  Chaidhsa is in the middle; ukara is the middle between akara and makara.  Train hour mind to see the whole subtle universe or the cosmic mind or cosmic knowledge.

The benefit of this upsana:

You can practice this as a sakama upasana, you will get the following two results:

  1. Because the upasana is on total Jñāna sakthi, it is equal to Saraswathi upasana and the upasaka will become a great learner.  The extent of his knowledge will increase.
  2. He will become a common man to everyone.  He will be accepted by all groups.  His knowledge will influence other members of his family also and they will become more learned person.

Mantra 11

Pragya, whose field is the sleep-state, is the third letter”m” due to the similarity of being a measure and being the ground of dissolution.  One who meditates thus knows the trth of all this and becomes the ground of dissolution.

The third mathra of omkara is makara and should be equated to Pragya otherwise called andharyami or Eeswara.  Pragya should be mediated up on makara.  The two common features:

  1. Mithihi means a measuring vessel.  Pragya and makara are comparable to a measure. Measure (ulakku) disappears in a sack of grains and appears again later.  Pragya is also a measure.  When I go to sleep, the visible world of my knowledge, ignorance they all enter into me.  But they all appear again when I wake up.  This cycle happens every day.  Therefore Pragya is like a measure.  Similarly when you say makara also, we swallow all other sounds.  The speaker when he closes the mouth with the sound ma, all other sound dissolves, but they all come back when I speak again.  So the sound ma is also like a measure where all sounds disappear and appear.
  2. Abithihi:  Means ground of dissolution or merger or disintegration.  This is the common feature between common feature between Pragya and makara.  Pragya stands for one who is in sleep state; one associated with kāraņa prabañca.  As Pragya I dissolve everything into me.  At samshti level, Eeswara dissolves everything into himself.   The sound makara is also the resolution of all other sounds.  When you shut your mouth, it becomes m.  That will be the last sound you will product, when you close the mouth.

Keeping these two common features, one should practice.

The one who practices this upasana he will get two fold benefits:

  1. Because of measure upasana, he will be able to measure everything and everyone properly.
  2. He becomes the ground of resolution; he becomes one with the Eeswara.