In the Ganapathyopanishad Ganesha is described as the form of Turiya indicated by 'omkara' (form of 'OM') abiding in the Muladharam. This is an abstract metaphysical statement. We have studied something about Muladharam and now we have to study something about 'OMKARA' to appreciate the description of Ganesha given in the Ganapathyopanishad.

Mandukyopanishad speaks about 'OM' as follows:

"OM Ithiekaksharamitham sarvam, thasyopa vyakyanam, butham bavath bavishyabhithi sarva omkara mevachanyath thrikalathitham thadpyomkara eva.

The gist of the above verse is as follows:
All this world is of the form 'OM'. In further explanation, the past, present and future are all 'OM'. And whatever transcends the three divisions of time, is also 'OM'. This upanishad identifies 'OM' as brahman or atman which manifests itself in four states, viz, (1) the waking state (2) the dreaming state (3) the state of deep sleep and (4) the state of super consciousness. 'OM' is universally accepted by Hindus and even by Buddhists as the sound symbol of the supreme power which can be analysed into three sound elements viz., 'A' 'U' and 'M'.

The sound element 'A' is indicative of the waking state, 'U' of the dream state and 'M' of the deep sleep state.

The waking state represented by the sound element 'A' is the outwardly cognitive world, which is ephemeral and which is sustained by the ego. The dream state represented by the sound element 'U' is also a world but inwardly cognitive which is also ephemeral and sustained by the ego. The events in the world of dream state appear as much realistic as they appear in the world of the waking state. The feeling that the dream events appear to be lasting only for a short time, while events in the waking state appear to last longer is brought about by confounding the standard of time in the waking state with the standard of time in the dream state which differ from each other.