Question and Answer

Q. What is OM?

A.  Before there was creation, there was emptiness but GOD was still there. OM symbolizes the first manifestation of GOD in the form of sound or vibration. It is the first Saguna manifestation of GOD. Saguna is the one that can be experienced by the senses. In Hinduism we therefore equate OM as a symbol of GOD or supreme divinity. It is important to realize that it is the sound of OM that we mean here and not the written word OM, although in practice for the sake of simplicity we write it to be able to denote it in the readable and speakable form. That is why before any mantra we recite OM. For example Gayatri mantra starts with OM Bhur Bhuva Swaha..., Mahamrityunjaya mantra starts with OM Trayambakam Yajamahe.... etc. When we see OM written on the hands of Murtis of Devatas and God, it is to signify their divinity.