Soham (Sanskrit)

A Balinese Hindu family after puja at Bratan temple in Bali, Indonesia

Hindu mantra, meaning "I am He/She/That" in Sanskrit.

- Soham (Sanskrit)

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Sacred utterance, a numinous sound, a syllable, word or phonemes, or group of words in Sanskrit, Pali and other languages believed by practitioners to have religious, magical or spiritual powers.

The Om syllable is considered a mantra in its own right in the Vedanta school of Hinduism.
Om Mani Padme Hum, a Buddhist Mantra written in Tibetan Script with Mandala Style
Mantras written on a rock near Namche Bazaar Nepal
Mantra of the Hare Krishna bhakti school of Hinduism
Om mani padme hum on the Gangpori (photo 1938–1939 German expedition to Tibet.
Hare Krishna devotees in Amsterdam carrying a poster with the Hare Krishna Mantra
A personification of the Gayatri Mantra
Japanese Mandala of the Mantra of Light, an important mantra of the Shingon and Kegon sects
A Japanese depiction of the Amida Triad as Seed Syllables (in Siddham Script). Visualizing deities in the form of seed mantras is a common Vajrayana meditation. In Shingon, one of the most common practices is Ajikan (阿字觀), meditating on the mantric syllable A.
The mantra of Padmasambhava (Om Āḥ Hūṁ Vajra Guru Padma Siddhi Hūṁ), in Lanydza (Ranjana) and Tibetan script.

So'ham (I am He or I am That)

Kashmir Shaivism

Nondualist tradition of Shaiva-Shakta Tantra which originated sometime after 850 CE.

The trident (triśūlābija maṇḍalam) symbol and yantra of Parama Shiva, representing the triadic energies of the supreme goddess Parā, Parā-aparā and Aparā śakti.
Shiva and Parvati (which is associated with Shakti), Kashmir, 10 or 11th century.
Tantric initiation (diksa) is necessary for undertaking the tantric practices of Trika Saivism.
Schist statue of Shiva Mahadeva, Northern India, Kashmir, 8th century. Cleveland Museum of Art.
A painting of goddess Kali from Jammu and Kashmir, c. 1660-70
Sri Yantra diagram with the Ten Mahavidyas. The triangles represent Shiva and Shakti, the snake represents Spanda and Kundalini.
Kali, ca. 9th century, from Andhra Pradesh. The Trika synthesis of Abhinavagupta also adopted the doctrines of the Krama school of Shakta Tantra, whose main goddess was Kali.

The Diksottara tantra for example, teaches the intonation of the 'haṃsá' mantra, beginning in the heart region.


1) Tat Tvam Asi (तत् त्वम् असि) - traditionally rendered as "That Thou Art" (that you are), (Chandogya Upanishad 6.8.7 of the Sama Veda, with tat in Ch.U.6.8.7 referring to sat, "the Existent"); alternatively translated as "That's how [thus] you are," with tat in Ch.U.6.12.3 referring to "the very nature of all existence as permeated by [the finest essence]"

The phrase "Tat Tvam Asi" in the Malayalam and Devanagari scripts, displayed outside the sanctum sanctorum of the Sabarimala Temple in Kerala, India. The sacred syllable "Om" is the glyph in the middle.
The Poetic Form of an Alternate Version of the Mahavakyas

so 'ham - I am that (Isha Upanishad)


Idealistic, monistic, and theistic school of philosophy in Kashmir Shaivism which originated in the ninth century CE.

Detail of Plato in The School of Athens, by Raphael

Those moments are targeted with the mental recitation of the two syllables of the ajapa mantra so-'ham or ham-sa.

Nanua Bairagi

Renowned mystic, humanitarian and Sikh warrior of Punjab.

Nanua Bairagi, renowned mystic, humanitarian and Sikh warrior. He was a mystic poet and close associate of sikh gurus. Bhagat Nanua was a reputed Saini of the 17th century

Sohang is apabransha of Upnishadic Soham (Sanskrit) which means "I am He".

Mark Griffin (spiritual teacher)

American spiritual teacher in the lineage of Bhagawan Nityananda.

The sadhana practices that Griffin teaches include meditation, repetition of the lineage mantra (Om Namah Shivaya or So-Ham), service, study, darshan, satsang, and recitation of the Guru Gita.

Pancabrahma Upanishad

Medieval era Sanskrit text and is one of the minor Upanishads of Hinduism.

The text glorifies five faced Shiva
Five-faced Shiva from 10th century Cambodia. The Ishana face is at the top.

The verse 23 of the manuscript asserts that one must meditate on Shiva within, with "So'ham" or "I am He, He am I" to achieve moksha, the union with Brahman.

Pashupatabrahma Upanishad

Minor Upanishadic text written in Sanskrit.

Soul is a Hamsa, it migrates states the text.

The realization of "hamsa-so'ham" (I am he, he is I), is equivalent to completing all yajna, and this realization destroys "anger, self deception, hatred, infatuation" states the Upanishad.

Mahavakya Upanishad

Sanskrit text and one of the minor Upanishads of Hinduism.

The soul is like radiant sun, states the text.

This, states the text, is why yoga is started with Gayatri mantra and yogins assert "hamsa-so'ham" (I am he, he is I).

Trishikhibrahmana Upanishad

One of the minor Upanishads of Hinduism and a Sanskrit text.

Shiva is realizable with yoga, states the Upanishad.
The text describes over a dozen asanas, including Dhanurasana (above).

Dhyana, the text defines as the perfect reflection of self as absolute consciousness and "Soham", while Samadhi is when this too is dissolved within.