Meaning and Definition of upanishads | Concept and What is.

What are the upanishads?

These Hindus make up the Scriptures or sacred writings, and treat about the nature of God and the universe, meditation and philosophy. The upanishads, written in Sanskrit, are part of the Vedas, or major Hindu texts written in ancient India (around two thousand years before Christ); they have transmitted by the time through oral tradition, as it used to be in antiquity, from master to disciple. Tradition speaks of the Vedas were not precisely composed that were revealed to the Rishis or Vedic seers. Many scholars consider them to be the set of more ancient writings that is known, is among those who have survived the passage of time.

It stands to the upanishads of the rest of the writings since these are rather mystical reflections or spiritual of the Vedas, a discussion in-depth about their most intimate meaning, and for this reason they are also known as Vedanta, meaning the end or culmination of the Vedas". Given its depth and elevated philosophical tone that they are based on the hindu religion, and disciplines such as yoga, meditation, and other forms of contemplative practices (spoken School of philosophy "Vedanta").

According to tradition, there are more than two hundred Upanishads, but are considered only eleven as the main ones, since these are the commented by Shankara, teacher and philosopher responsible for consolidating the bases of the non-dualistic thinking Vedanta, or Advaita Vedanta school (a monist system of thought, which refers to the identity between the individual self), Atman, and the universal Brahman. Dual is not to recognize the same and only universal principle in all phenomena and manifestations.)

To get an idea of what they try these writings, we briefly expose the Mandukya Upanishad (in the Muktikipanishad, which says above all others, it is said that if not possible an individual study all the Upanishads, it will be enough the Mandukya).

This, one of the principal Upanishads, explains the ultimate meaning of the mantra OM, a sacred syllable representing the root of the entire universe and its manifestations, which is also used for meditation. It is said that this consists in turn of after mantras, "a-u - M", covering the entire range of experiences in the three States of reality. "a" refers to the waking state, where you perceive material objects, using our minds and senses. The "u" refers to the State of sleep, where are available mental impressions perceived by a subtle, or also mental body with their subtle bodies. The "m" refers to the State of deep sleep, where there are no experience or object of perception, neither material nor subtle. He is running even in the State of deep sleep persists, the transcendental consciousness that "observes" this and all the other States. The silence that follows the mantra represents this transcendental consciousness, to the fourth State called "turiya", that is the conscience pure, the last observer, the origin and the end of all things, being transcendent present before and after the time. This is Brahman.

The upanishads have served as inspiration for philosophers and stargazers both East and West, and its influence on characters like Ramana Maharishi, Sri Aurobindo, Carl Gustav Jung and Ken Wilber, among many others is clear. It is important to emphasize that Wilber has been of great influence in regards to the study of consciousness in the West.
Translated for educational purposes.
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