Upanishad (from upa, "beneath" or "near;" ni, "in;" and sad, "to sit") is the name of those Sanskrit works belonging to the Vedic literature which contain the mystical doctrine of the Hindi's on the nature of a Supreme Being, its relation to the human soul, and the process of creation. The object of the Upanishads is to impress the mind with a belief in one Supreme Spirit; to show that this Supreme Spirit is the creator of the world; that the world has no reality if thought of besides Brahman; and that the human soul is identical in nature with that same Spirit whence it emanates. They are looked upon as inspired writings. See Muller, Hist. of Anc. Sanskrit Lit.; Muir, Original Sanskrit Texts.

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