Jain teaching focusses attention on the core issue ‘Who am I? (Ko Ahum?)  The answer is So Alum  ‘I am That – That I am.’  One who constantly struggles for a place under the sun and faces crisis in life in the process of seeking contentment, happiness and a sense of achievement must look unto oneself to grasp the depth of the concept of so Alum.”

Abhai Banow has brought this out in a highly inspiring and rhythmic poem:

Song of "So Hum"

So means life, Ahum means I
Realized by this inner eye
Which opens with light, as the heart does with love
Which joins my below to my All above
So means That,
Ahum means I
This here my ground, That there my sky. 

So-hum that can set me free
Sings of that higher life in me
hum,  sanskrit of old, telling a tale that must be retold

"This Mantra ‘So Ahum’ is in Sanskrit but when we meditate it becomes compound and united word that is So Hum."

That I am I, which I see without
That beauty, that life I can’t live without.

One not two, this message implies
It’s there to be found by the seeker who tries
So-hum breath in (and) breath out
It’s one not two, some day you will shout.
With words of love to all who can hear
With songs of silence ever so clear

So Ahum, I am I.
If others have known this, surely can I
I am, I can, I will it sings
So hum this message of unity brings
Of head, hands and heart of love and of will
This ancient message is with us still

Stilling the heart, calming the mind
Bringing that peace that’s so hard to find
That peace beyond emotion and thought
That priceless pearl  that can’t be bought,
But found within the waves of our breath
Chanting-So – hum ends our fear of death

 Glory be to That which I am
So-hum I am that I am
So-hum I am that I am….

The process of awakening towards  So Hum is beautifully described by the learned Balabhadra in a very rich literary style:

“The sun is about to rise and its brilliant presence is displayed on the clouds above.  The train is gliding along its journey in a masterful way with periodic bumps, indicating effort and will.  There is a fine, firm layer of frost uniting the yet to be activated animate and inanimate forms.  In many ways the scene from the train window resembles an early morning train ride in rural India.  In many ways this temporary, transient early morning scene resembles life.  The fragile rigidity of human conscience lies somewhat cold and barren, lifeless and awaiting the height and activating warmth of the great soul energy; transforming all that it  touches.  But the human situation does not rely totally on cosmic, mechanical function.  The Soul, Will, Atma can influence and change the mechanical and repetitious   habits which inhibit the joyful experience of existence.  The sun has now risen, beckoning all consciousness to Awake.”

Realisation of so Hum requires shedding of one’s ego.  Prabha Morkan writes about ‘the death of my ego’ in the process of the discovery of the self.  “Is it due to good Karma or whatever it is?” She asks.

Jenene shares a deep inspiring thought thus:  “Into this world we come, insecure and scared not wanting to face the inevitable reality of who we are, and wondering why we could no longer nestle forever safely in the soft, hidden, protective womb.  From that moment of birth on, self-discovery has been to inch forward slowly and ever-so-painfully to the point where many of us choose to avoid the awakening altogether.  This is life’s greatest tragedy!  What a loss we suffer when we go through each new day with our blunders, clinging to our degrading and anchoring limitations… and choosing to see only that which the living ego paints as what we cannot do and cannot be.  I weep with begging desire for us all to open our eyes to who we are and rise, in reverence and humble dignity to the Truth of who we are”.

In another letter Jenene analyses the thought process further:  “I am trying to remember that I am not the role I am playing right now i.e., (1) the role of a mother, (2) the role of a wife, (3) the role of an artist, and (4) the role a teacher.  These are all roles I play, and they are all very important roles.  But they are not me.  They are only roles and roles change with time and circumstance.  It’s the ‘me’ that I need to get more in tune with, through meditation and self-love.  I will not be free to love unconditionally and freely all others until I have completely come into Oneness with myself.  Isn’t that what enlightenment is all about?”

Cheryl Bhagwati excpresses the inner revelation due to impact of His teaching in a lucid saying ‘I want my inner light gain intensity or a little more breathing room, a little more distance from this EGO’.

Clare Rosenfield puts the thought-experience in the following words:

“Every moment of the day is meaningful.  Every moment is lit with the light of Reverence for all life.  Its clarity simplifies and illumines, makes humble and teaches me that I can learn from everyone and everything”.  She concludes describing hereself as ‘One drop of faith in life and light’.  That is So Hum’.


Trupti Otto from Berlin also explains the search for realisation of self and joining inner confidence in the following words:

“I am really missing someone with the same spiritual direction here in Berlin, with whom I could speak over my thoughts and feelings.  But may be this is an illusion that this is possible.  I have to go my way; others can be close or far away, but in the end my way is only for me and I have to go alone.  Every doubt holds the demand to grow; every question is the possibility to get more sure of oneself”.

Gurudev’s teachings have thus, tended to enhance confidence in self in not merely meeting challenges of mundane existence, but it searching for strengthening soul power with a positive and practical way of thinking.

Again and again in the letters the theme emerges that the teaching is helping towards the realisation that ‘So Ahum’ is a positive philosophy which can eliminate negativity and pessimism that permeates our thoughts, emotions, expressions and deeds.  It is the Western way of interpreting the meaning of   SAMYAK DARSHAN, SAMYAK GYAN AND SAMYAK CHARITRA as the key towards grasping the purpose of life and the inspiration that should guide the thoughts and actions in whatever situation a person might be in.

“Wake up, wake up! Let the light melt the hardness of your heart.  Cut through your proud ego-self to that gentle spirit in you that knows no arrogance, condemnation, revenge or punishment.  This gentle spirit carries the mighty power of all inclusive, unconditional love and kindness, pride and self  righteousness feed in your life force and suck you dry.  Oh, wake up my dear brothers and sisters and do not waste your lives once more in anger, frustration, and in the sorrow and tears of self-pity”.

The deep desire to find an answer to Ko Ahum in So Hum has gathered momentum, in the minds and hearts of American as a result of the loving  guidance and teachings of Gurudev Chitrabhanu.  He has succeeded in lifting their reasoning as well as emotions from a ‘narrow-I’ concept to a ‘global-I’ concept.  The message given by him to them during his sojourn to USA in the Year 1980 is so beautifully inspiring and instilling confidence in one’s own soul energy to realise ‘So Hum – I am that—the divine is I’

Here goes the message: from Gurudev Chitrabhanu:

“Each day of the year waits for us – fresh and new.  The pages of a daily calendar diary are plain and blank.  We can fill them—if we so desire – to become a record of a life of fulfilment and joy.  Whether we make them days of brightness, peace, creativity, beauty love, light, and service to others or days of dismal gloom, conflict, inertia ugliness, exploitation and greed, is up to us.  The choice is ours.  We can make or mar our life.

When we remember that each day dawns with the light of the Sun and blessings of the beauty of the Earth, we awaken to the light and are alive to the beauty with all our loving energy.  Let us keep in our heart and mind the illumining flame of Reverence for Life so that each day is a day of radiance and of blessings.

What is God?  God is not a person.  God is a PROCESS OF EVOLUTION!


G         Stands for GENERATOR: to convert mechanical energy into electrical energy in

           order to electrify our spirit with sound of SO HUM.  I AM THAT. THE DIVINE IS I.

O         Stands for ORGANISER OF BODY – MIND – AND HEART for harmonious    living  and  integrated action to experience the ecstasy of  YOGA: UNITY.


D         Stands for DELETER:   OF NEGATIVE THOUGHT, EMOTIONS WORD AND ACTION to enjoy the music of meditation that free our slef from destructive forces to enjoy freedom.


Thus, knowing our real nature of God-self, we realise that our pain and pleasure, bondage and freedom are the result of our ignorance and disobedience to the law of cause and effect.  All that we are is the effect of what we have though and our attribute!  What we did yesterday is today.  What we do today is tomorrow.

In this new light, let us have a deep conviction that by changing ourself, we change the conditions around us and within us.”


The Wave of BlissSo Hun | Ahimsa | Looking up to the Teacher | The Practice of Religion | Through the Eyes of the Camera | A Pioneer Shows the Way