The episode: “Star Force: Fugitive Alien 2,” ep. 318
The riff: Nonchalantly answered by Servo as an officer enters the bridge of a spaceship and finds the captain incapacitated, asking “Captain Joe, is anything the matter?”
The explanation: The Upanishads are a series of philosophical and theological texts that form the basis of the entire Hindu religion and worldview. There are more than 200 in total, and together they give an idea on “Brahman,” which is more or less explained as “the unchanging reality amidst and beyond which cannot be exactly defined.” This is a very complicated topic so I won’t try to explain further, but suffice to say, The Upanishads are among the most influential texts ever written.
Novelty factor: I believe I’ve heard references to these same texts in other MST3k episodes and wondered at the meaning, so it was good to finally hash that one out.