आकाश, ākāśa

“ether”, “space”

One of the five great elements (mahabhuta). The main characteristic of akasha is śabda (sound), and it is associated with the primordial sound – nāda. Akasha is also translated as voidness or emptiness and is synonymous with vyoma.

In panchapujas (with an offering of 5 upacharas), akasha is symbolized by pushpa (flower). The root "kāś" in the word ākāśa means radiance expanding all around, in all directions. Likewise, a flower opens its petals upwards (akasha is also the sky) and in different directions. Thus, offering pushpa means a state of openness in relation to the Supreme. Sadhaka therefor reveals himself to the Divine by presenting flowers.