Aum and Swastika
The ancient tradition of AUM.
The lovliest explanation of OM is found within the ancient Vedic and Sanskrit traditions. We can read about AUM in the marvelous Manduka Upanishad which explains the four elements of AUM as an allegory of the four planes of onsciousness. Pronounced "AH" as in "father resonates in the center of the mouth. It represents normal waking consciousness, in which subject and object exist as separate entities. This is the level of mechanics, science, logical reason, the lower three chakras. Matter exists on a gross level, is stable and slow to change. Then the sound "U" (pronounced as in "who") transfers the sense of vibration to the back of the mouth, and shifts the allegory to the level of dream consciousness. Here, object and subject become intertwined in awareness. Both are contained within us. Matter becomes subtle, more fluid, rapidly changing. This is the realm of dreams, divinities, imagination, the inner world. "M" is the third element, humming with lips gently closed. This sound resonates forward in the mouth and buzzes throughout the head.
This sound represents the realm of deep, dreamless sleep. There is neither observing subject nor observed object. All are one, and nothing. Only pure consciousness exists, unseen, pristine,latent, covered with darkness.
India is a land of innumerable beliefs, rituals and religious symbols. These beliefs and symbols are highly respected and revered. The origin of the syllable OM is lost in the misty past. Its not being specific to any one country or civilization is indicative of its being an universally perceptible sound for the human race. This reason for this universal perceptibility possibly lies in the fact that AAAH is the most natural sound that issues from the human larynx. This is evident when a man cries out naturally in extreme pain, anger or fear. When emotions reach an extreme pitch the articulate sounds evolved by man are not the ones that are heard, but the syllable natural to man which is AAAH. The syllable OM is quite familiar to a Hindu. It occurs in every prayer. Invocation to most gods begin with this syllable. For instance we have Om Namaha Shivaya, Hari Om, Om Shanti etc. OM is also pronounced as AUM.
Swatika is also revered by the Hindus and ranks second only to OM The word Swastika is normally believed to be an amalgam of the words Su and Asati. Su means 'good' and Asati meant 'to exist'.
As per Sanskrit grammer the words Su and Asati when amalgamated into one word become Swasti,If this derivation of the word Swastika is true, then the literal meaning of the term Swastika would be 'let good-prevail'.
There exist many types of signs which stand for the Swastika. Even the standard version has two forms the one facing the right also called the symbol of the right hand path and the one facing the left called the symbol of the left hand path. These two Swastikas are also considered to represent the male and female. There is also a Swastika which is an amalgam of these two types.
Hindus draw the swastika in vermillion on usiness documents and bridal cloth for good luck.
The auspious Swastika is always dedicated to the spring time sun.