The term Veda is derived from the Sanskrit root vid, ‘to know’. Anta means ‘end’. Thus Vedanta literally signifies ‘end of wisdom’. Philosophy is called Vedanta because it explains what that end is and how to achieve it. Vedanta is the religion of the Vedas or the Upanishads. It is the only universal, eternal religion. It is the essence of the teachings of the shrutis.
Vedanta is that bold philosophy which teaches unity of life or oneness of consciousness. It is that supreme philosophy which boldly proclaims, with emphasis and force, that this little jiva or human being is identical with the Supreme Soul or the Eternal. It is that sublime philosophy which elevates the mind at once to the magnificent heights of Brahman hood, divine splendour and glory, which makes you absolutely fearless, which destroys all barriers that separate man from man, and which brings concord, unruffled peace and harmony to the suffering humanity at large. It is the only philosophy that can really unite, on the basis of the one common Self in all, a Hindu and a Mohammedan, a Catholic and a Protestant, a Vaishnavite and a Shaivite, an Irishman and an Englishman, a European and an American, on a common platform, and in the core of their hearts also. It is the only philosophy that, when properly understood and practised, can put a definite stop to the world war, dissensions, splits, communal fights, skirmishes, that exist in different nations and communities.
Vedanta is a magnetic healing balm for the wounded and afflicted in the dreadful battle field of this dire samsara. It is the divine collyrium which removes the cataract of ignorance and gives a new inner eye of intuition or wisdom. It is the direct royal road to the domain of unalloyed felicity and the Supreme Abode of Immortality and Eternal Bliss. It eradicates ignorance - the root-cause of human sufferings - puts an end to the ever-revolving wheel of births and deaths and confers immortality, infinite knowledge and bliss. It gives hope to the hopeless, power to the powerless, vigour to the vigourless and joy to the joyless.
Vedanta speaks of one atma or Brahman which is beginning less, endless, timeless, spaceless, immortal, self-luminous, indivisible and all-pervading, who is sat-chit-ananda.
Vedanta gives freedom for all. It embraces or includes one and all. Vedanta is neither theory nor dry philosophy for contention and argumentation. It is actual life of perennial bliss in Brahman or truth. Equip yourself with four means. Enquire, “Who am I?” Meditate on Brahman. Know “Thou art That.”
Oh aspirants bold! Say, Om Tat Sat; Om-Sat-Chit-Ananda-roopa, Shivoham, Shivoham; Sat-Chit-Ananda-Svaroopoham.