“This word [Om] indicates the coexistence of the articulate and the inarticulate sounds – of the heard and unheard melodies – of the sound that is struck and the sound that is unstruck, the Anahata Nada. Sound may be described by its three-fold nature – the Audible sound, the Inaudible sound, and the Imperishable sound. The audible sound is the one which the human ear can hear. The inaudible sound is one which belongs to such octaves as either too high or too low for the human ear to respond to. But there is a third category of sound which is imperishable. Sound obviously consists of vibrations, and all vibrations have a beginning and an end. But if there could be a sound which is unstruck – the Anahata Nada – then surely there could be no end to it as there is no beginning to it. To talk of a vibration-less sound is indeed to indulge in a paradox. In the sacred word Om, there is such a paradox. It is both heard and unheard, struck as well as unstruck. It is both perishable and imperishable.”

— Rohit Mehta, Call of the Upanishads




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