akasha or akash, aakaashá, ākāśa, (Sanskrit: आकाश) — meaning space or sky and is the basis and essence of all things in the material world; the smallest material element created from the sukshmaloka (astral world). It is one of the panchamahābhūtas (five great elements), the others being prthivi (earth), apa (water), agni (fire) and vayu (air). Its main characteristic is shabda (sound).

The Nyaya and Vaisheshika schools state that akasha (or ether) is the fifth physical substance, which is the substratum of the quality of sound. It is the One, Eternal, and All Pervading physical substance, which is imperceptible. According to the Samkhya school, akasha is one of the panchamahābhūtas (five great elements) having the specific property of sound.



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