Sunday, April 8, 2012

The Place That Sounds Like Aum

For much of my life, I considered the whole concept of sitting cross legged with a few fingers pinched together chanting 'ohm,' or 'aum' to be really rather quite a silly thing altogether. Sometimes tradition can get rather weird and I could see no benefit to making such a pose and speaking such a noise. The concept of meditation itself made some potential sense to me but many of the trappings did not. Therefore, I doubt I had even once seriously considered that the sound 'aum' might have any significance whatsoever. To me, it was just some silly tradition.

Then one night something changed. Sometime in my early 30s I think it was, I had a weird dream experience. In the dream, I was at a place where there was a deep intense vibration. The vibration penetrated everything, and although intense, it was also strangely relaxing. It made you want more of it. In a way, the vibration was the experience but yet it was so much more than just a mere sound. Somehow, it was all the sounds of 'ohm' at once, the 'o' sound and the 'm' sound as well, all at once constantly. And forever and always was/is.

In this place/experience, I somehow just KNEW that this place, this ohm thing, was the foundation, the underneath of everything, it was that which was underlying all things. It was the underpinnings. I saw in my mind a kind of flat plane that goes on forever and a kind of gridwork that spreads out across space. The plane was flat yet it also slightly pulsed and vibrated. But I suspect this was just my conceptualization of it but not particularly how it might actually look, if it even has any real appearance to it such that light waves project to us here on Earth. I saw and experienced this for a while, and then I woke up.

Since that day, I have a new found respect for 'Aum.' Later research on the internet showed me that Aum is sometimes called 'the Primordial Vibration.' That seems a good name for it, although my only quibbling dislike about those words is that they in some ways imply that the Aum is in the past. I am sure that is not right. The Aum place is definitely in the now. I am sure it is down there right now underneath everything. You just can't quite remember it right now, but if you were to shift your consciousness just so, then you would remember it again.

In some traditions, aum is considered symbolic of this or that or whatever. I found I wanted to totally ignore all that talk. To me, Aum is the sound of that place/time/experience that underlies all things. It seems now obvious to me the word Aum is used because that is the sound you hear when you are there. There is so much more to that place/time/experience but perhaps the sound is the easiest for a couple of simple little Earth based brain cells to understand. Most of the rest of the Aum experience/place either can't really be understood well by the Earth brain cells or can't easily be put into words. I am sure that others have gone to that place/experience as well and they heard the same thing as me and Aum is such the obvious name for that place that many of them likely called it the same thing. They knew this sound was important somehow, this primordial vibration called Aum.

Personally, I don't know if actually chanting the sound really has much impact. Making the sound is not the same thing as that place. Or maybe the replicated sound could carry the tiniest little fraction of that place, a tiny influence on the psyche or a tiny reminder of what is underneath. A tiny of fraction of a very powerful thing could actually be more than a tiny thing after all.  In that way, maybe it does have some effect. And maybe you get more of whatever you focus on, even if your focus is dim. And maybe it will work if you believe it will work because belief itself has incredible power. So believe on! , all you folks who believe. Because belief has power and now that I've been there, That Place That Sounds Like Aum is, imo, a pretty darned cool place indeed!
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