Om in the Gītā: Meaning and Significance

How to Cite

Steven Tsoukalas. (2022). Om in the Gītā: Meaning and Significance: Journal of Vaishnava Studies. Journal of Vaishnava Studies, 24(2), 43–67. Retrieved from


In this essay I examine the meaning and significance of Om1 in the Bhagavadgītā (Gītā, henceforward) by way of exegesis and commentary. Additionally, for the comparative venture I will include and interact with comments from three great early ācārya-s within the Vedānta tradition (Śaṅkara,2 Rāmānuja,3 and Madhva4). I will also include comments from A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda’s Gaudiya Vaishnava tradition5 and from certain well-known western scholars.6 This comparative aspect will not only evidence the differences and some similarities between the ācārya-s but will demonstrate to readers how important ontology is toward apprehending the meaning and significance of Om as a mantra.

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