The ultimate soundless sound, OM
The word OM stands for the eternal sound of existence and is maybe one of the most widely known spiritual expressions on this planet. Just Google ‘om sound’ and you will find 123 million hits to date! Have a search on YouTube and there are 54 million references with a gazillion views in total! From Deva Premal and Miten to Krishna Das, from Tibetan and Hindu chants to Alan Watts, to groups of people chanting – it is all about Om … it surely must be part of our deepest collective unconscious. Yet all those beautiful creations and productions are based on sound.
Osho explains that it is not widely known that by repeating OM as a mantra it actually cannot be heard because the mind is functioning when the word is repeated. To hear the ultimate sound sit in deep silence…and suddenly you may hear humming all around; this is existence humming, this is the sound of the universe…the ultimate and eternal sound…
Asked about the significance of the Tibetan mantra Om Mani Padme Hum, Osho says,
The only country in the world which has devoted all its genius to the inner exploration is Tibet. Its findings are of tremendous value. Om mani padme hum is one of the most beautiful expressions for the ultimate experience. Its meaning is “the sound of silence, the diamond in the lotus.”
Silence also has its sound, its music…although the outer ears cannot hear it, just as the outer eyes cannot see it. We have six outer senses. In the past man knew only that we have five outer senses; the sixth is a new discovery. It is inside your ears; hence people failed to recognize it. It is the sense of balance. When you feel giddy or when you see a drunkard walking, it is the sense of balance that is affected.
Just as these six senses are used to experience the outer, exactly the same six senses exist to experience the inner – to see it, to hear it, to feel its utter balance, its beauty. It is invisible to the outer eyes but not to the inner. You cannot touch it with your outer senses, but the inner senses are absolutely immersed in it.
OM is the sound when everything else disappears from your being – no thought, no dream, no projections, no expectations, not even a single ripple – your whole lake of consciousness is simply silent; it has become just a mirror. In those rare moments you hear the sound of silence. It is the most valuable experience because it not only shows a quality of the inner music – it also shows that the inner is full of harmony, joy, blissfulness. All that is implied in the music of OM.
You are not to say it. If you say it you will miss the real thing. You have to hear it, you have to be utterly calm and quiet and suddenly it is all around you, a very subtle dance. And the moment you are able to hear it, you have entered into the very secrets of existence. You have become so subtle that now you deserve that all the mysteries be exposed to you.
Existence waits till you are ready.
Osho, Om Mani Padme Hum, Ch 1, Q 1
Read the entire answer to the question: OM Is Perhaps the Greatest Symbol in the Whole World