पूर्णस्यपूर्णमादाय पूर्णमेवावशिष्यते ।।
This is the first verse of the Ishavasyopanishad (ईशावास्योपनिषद). The beauty of this verse is that in just two sentences it describes the essence of the Divine. It says -
"Aum Purnamadah Purnamidam Purnatpurnamudachyate
Purnasya Purnamadaya Purnamevavashishyati"
If one were to translate it word - to - word, it would mean -
Purnamadah - That is complete
Purnamidam - This is complete
Purnatpurnamudachyate - from what is complete comes out completeness
Purnasya purnamadaya purnamevavashisyati - If completeness were to be removed from completeness, what remains is again complete.
"That is complete; This is complete and completeness emerges forth from completeness.
If from completeness, completeness were to be removed, what remains is again complete."
What is 'That', that is complete? What is 'This', that is again complete? What is that 'completeness' from which 'completeness' emerges? and finally how does completeness remain when completeness is removed from completeness? Completely bewildering to us.
No wonder then, that India is the birthplace of Zero; for what is said about completeness in the above verse, definitely holds for zero as well - if you take away zero from itself, what remains is again zero!