Mantra Meditation : The power of repetition of sound

[quote style=”boxed”]” Just by repeating the name, that which can not be understood Will be understood just by repeating the name that which can not be seen Will be seen” [/quote]

[dropcap]M[/dropcap]antra repetition is an ancient meditation technique  extensively used in Tibet and India.

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Here is a simple explanation of Mantra Meditation:

What actually is a mantra

Mantra repetition simply means  repeating a sentence or group of words that have a phonetic significance . just that’s it.

Mantra  is intrinsically related to sound. Mantra is sound, and sound is reverberating in everything in this universe. When water flows, the gurgling sound it makes, is mantra. When wind blows through the trees, the  rustling sound it produces is mantra.  When we walk on the earth, our footsteps produce sound, and that too is mantra. Within  human beings  there is a self-born, indestructible sound which repeats itself constantly, along with our breathing and this sound is also a mantra.

Sound has enormous power, in fact it has the power to create an entire universe. It is written that God originally manifested as sound.

[quote](In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. New Testament, John1:1-2 )[/quote]

According to ancient Indian belief  in the beginning there was sound, which  reverberated as Om and from that sound everything came into existence.

Even modern scientist are beginning to recognize as our ancient sages did,  that there exists a vibration which reverberates ceaselessly throughout the cosmos.

When letters and syllables come together, they form words. Both our spiritual and our mundane life are possible only because of words; without language, we can not carry out any of our activities. Each word we use has its own power and produces it own reaction. A mantra is no ordinary combination of letters and syllables, but a living force. The name of God is not different from God. Mantra has been called the sound-body of God: It is God in the form of sound.

In  Bhagavad Gita Lord Krishna says,

[quote] ” Among rituals, I am the ritual of mantra repetition.” [/quote]

By this he means that while other techniques are means of attaining Him, mantra is his very being. That is why it is so easy to experience God by repeating the mantra. Mantra meditation is the repetition of a group of words which create  sound vibrations that awake the love of God in our hearts and mind.

The influence of mantra: How it affects the meditator

The mantra meditation can completely transform our inner being. Our inner state is created by the thoughts and feelings that continuously arise in us. Outwardly we may appear to have fixed identities-one person may appear to be a lawyer, another an engineer, another a doctor, another a professor. But inside, we are a continually changing mass of consciousness.

When we project the beam of mantra into this fluctuating mass, it stabilizes it and focuses it in one direction, the direction of the self. It helps us to transcend our confusion, our fantasies, and the constant changes of the mind.

Repetition of the name of God causes a kind of earthquake in our inner consciousness. Whatever thoughts arise in our daily life, they are recorded within us and form impression that are difficult  to remove.  But when we repeat the name, all these thoughts and impressions are erased, and the name of God is recorded. At every moment, what we think is what we become.

If the anger arises in the  mind and we identify ourselves with it, we become angry. In the same way, if we continually repeat the mantra with great love and interest, we will become absorbed in God. By its very nature the mantra has the ability to transform our awareness  into an awareness of ourselves as Self which is a part of supreme self God.

How to repeat the mantra : You can repeat the mantra silently or loudly but it should be at the same speed at which you talk. You can also coordinate it with the breathing, repeating it once with the inhalation and once with exhalation. Repeat it very carefully, just as a miser looks after is wealth.

Listen it as you repeat it, and in that way your mind will become permeated with mantra. If you repeat the mantra when you breathe in and breathe out, it will circulate throughout your body, permeating every one of your blood cells. then even the room in which you have been repeating become saturated with it.

It is said, “Mantra is that which protects the one who repeats it.” The power of mantra is beyond your imagination You can understand the meaning of the mantra, but you can not measure its strength. Mantra is the living force of God. Therefore, repeat it with respect.

If you devote even half hour or an hour every day to repeating the mantra, you will function much more effectively in your worldly life, and your heart will be filled with joy. You will begin to experience the self very easily.

 

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Next: hand  A detailed clarification on mantra meditation

Other Articles in this Series: 

Detailed Clarification on mantra meditation:

[dropcap]T[/dropcap]here are many doubts and misconception among people about mantra.  Even many knowledgeable persons says that mantra is nothing but a boring repetition of words that doesn’t affect our consciousness and the only effect it produce is to take the chanter ( the one who repeats the mantra ) into a state of sleep.

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There are many other wrong notions  about mantra which, I think, exist because of the fact that people are not aware of the full  mechanism of mantra. So before you start this meditation technique on Mantra, it is essential that you clear all your doubts about mantra:

[highlight]The doubt (1): Mantra will take you into sleep : [/highlight]

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[highlight]Fact: Yes but only if you use it as a lullaby. [/highlight]

 

The most important thing in mantra meditation is that you should  repeat it with the full awareness of its meaning. However,  many people repeat mantra without having full awareness of its meaning. If you repeat a mantra in such mechanical way then it will not produce any effect and will remain an ordinary word.

The emotional feeling in which  a mantra is chanted is the most important requisite of mantra meditation. In its absence a mantra is no more than a lullaby. So always keep in mind that whenever you repeat a mantra, you should know what is the meaning of that Mantra. Otherwise you’ll not be able to draw any benefit from it.

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[highlight]The doubt (2) : Language of most mantra is strange and difficult to understand. [/highlight]

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[highlight]Fact: To some extent it is true but there is a reason for it. [/highlight]

 

The entire concept of Mantra meditation began in  India. That is why most of the mantras are in Sanskrit Language which is the language of the Vedas (the oldest written texts of the world). Though the language Sanskrit may be ancient & alien to you, what is still intact in various mantras written in this language is their  phonetic significance and their ability  to create powerful vibration of sound .

All mantras were developed after painstaking research and efforts. Therefore, they are very well written tools for achieving a meditative state.   You should only think about meditating- the process of achieving a state of choiceless awareness- without thinking about the language of the mantra that you will be repeating.

[ Note:  Sanskrit is not the sole language of mantra. In almost every religion there are some specific words related to Sound. The word ‘Amen’ in Christianity, ‘Allah Hoo’ in Islam and ‘Om mani Padme Hum’ in Buddhist traditions are some examples. Please keep in  mind that of  whichever language’s mantra you repeat, you must repeat it with full awareness of its meaning. In the section Some mantra to dwell upon, I have discussed four mantra in details  : Om Namah Shivay, Hare Krishna Mantra,  Aum and So’ham.  Please make sure to read the basic terminology before you chant them ]

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[highlight]The doubt (3): If Mantra can create a powerful sound vibration then what is the need to repeat it. We can record a mantra on tape and can listen to it as and when we want for achieving a meditative state. easy ! Isn’t it ? [/highlight]

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[highlight]Fact : It seems logical but actually is not that logical.[/highlight]
It appears logical that If mantra can produce powerful sound vibration then why not use a tape recorder and listen to it repeatedly. However, in reality it is not that easy as it appears. If you record a mantra and listen to it passively, you will fall asleep as the mantra will act as a lullaby.

All those- who are really interested in mantra meditation- should keep in mind that there are two basic requirement for getting any benefit from  mantra meditation-

(1) the sound of the mantra; and

(2) the repetition of mantra with  faith and full awareness of its  meaning

When you play a mantra on tape, you are just a passive listener. The requirement of sound is there , but the awareness part is absent. Even if the recorded sound is of someone who has recorded the mantra with faith and full awareness of its meaning, the fact remains that you, who is just a passive listener, will not be able to draw any benefits form this sound as it is not your faith but that of someone else which is included in the recorded mantra. So unless you yourself chant the mantra with faith and full awareness of this meaning, the only thing you will get is a sound sleep.

Please keep in mind that In order to obtain full fruit of mantra, we have to repeat it with full awareness of its meaning. Most of the time, we repeat the mantra with the wrong understanding, thinking that the syllables of the mantra and the object of the mantra are different from each other and from ourselves. That is why the mantra does not bear immediate fruit for us. If you think about this you will understand that the same thing is true on a mundane level.

Suppose that someone calls you an idiot. If you do not accept the word “idiot” as referring to you, you will not react to it. But if you identify with it, you may become so angry that your blood heat up. If you were to identify yourself with the name of God as easily as you identify yourself with an abusive term, you would experience its effects at once.

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[highlight]Doubt (4): Is there a difference between repeating a mantra silently and repeating it loudly ? [/highlight]

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[highlight]Fact: There is a little difference but not much. [/highlight]

 

As I have already explained, the main thing is that you should repeat a mantra with faith, respect and with full awareness of its meaning. This can be done in both way i.e. by silently repeating the mantra or by pronouncing it loudly. The basic difference in repeating a mantra silently and repeating it loudly lies in the intensity of sound that comes out in both the method. But these vibrations may differ in their quantity  but not  in their quality  and both have the same effect on our inner consciousness.
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[highlight]Doubt (5): But no sound is produced when we repeat a mantra silently? [/highlight]

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[highlight]Fact: If you can’t listen a sound, don’t think it does not exist. [/highlight]

Well it appears to us that no sound is produced, the reality is that every action and  every thought  produces a sound. That’s a different thing that our senses can not detect it. Human being are capable of detecting only sound between 20 to 20,000 decibel. We can’t listen sound below or above that level. However, this does not mean that such sounds do not exist.

They do exists and leave their effect on us. When you chant a mantra silently, it produces a sound. Though we can’t hear the sound, , it does exist  and produces the vibrations which affects our inner consciousness.

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I hope the above clarifications have removed all your doubts about mantra meditation.

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Next:  hand    How to use mantra meditation in a busy and complex life.

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How to use mantra meditation in a busy & complex life.

[dropcap]B[/dropcap]y now you must have clear knowledge of mantra meditation. In order to meditate using mantra meditation you should use following:

(1) Read the general instruction on meditation (including do’s and don’ts)

 

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(2) Choose a mantra. Below I have described in detail three mantras. You can use either of them.

(3) Allocate 30 minutes for mantra meditation. Though early morning or late evening is best time, you can chooses any time as per  your convenience.  In those 30 minutes, 20 minutes will be for chanting (repeating)  the mantra and the last 10 minutes for being watchful of your inner consciousness.

(4) Sit comfortably at a quiet place.

Close your eyes.

Start chanting the mantra (either silently or loudly ).

Repeat the mantra with faith and respect.

Repeat it with the full awareness of its meaning.

Keep chanting the mantra for 20 minutes. (You may use an alarm clock for keeping track of time).

After 20 minutes….

stop chanting. Be quiet. Keep sitting silently.

The mantra will keep echoing in your mind for some more time. Just be watchful of what happens inside you.

Don’t judge, act or react. Just be aware of all that is happening inside you. Just be a witness of all your emotions, feelings, and other activities in and around you. You will feel a sense of calm and bliss. All thought activities will start decreasing and eventually come to a stand still.

Slowly slowly open your eyes and move out of the meditation.

This Mantra Repetition is an extremely powerful and widely used meditation technique which will deepen your meditation practice in almost no time.

When you begin meditating this way on daily basis, slowly you will start experiencing a thought free mind –  a state of choiceless awareness. Your self will be revealed to you. (Please remember that the 10 minutes watchfulness after the 20 minutes of chanting is a must. )Later you may increase your timing. But the ratio between chanting and witnessing should remain as 2:1.

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Next:  hand   Some mantras to dwell upon

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Some Mantras for Meditation

Here I have described a few powerful mantras in detail. You can choose to meditate with any of the three mantra. All of them are ancient, powerful and easy in pronunciation.

 

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But before you start, you must be aware of some of the basic terminology you’ll encounter while reading about these mantra. All these words are from Hindu Mythology.

Kali yug :The last in the four eras (time periods) of creation. The other threes are Satya yug, Threta yug and Dwaper yug . These four eras are characterize by the intensity/effect of the rule of truth in them with the Satya yug having the most prominent qualities of truth and righteousness, with Treta at second,  Dwaper at third and Kaliyug – the age of machines- at the fourth place. The present era is Kaliyug.

Trinity of  Brahma Vishnu and Mahesh: According to Hindu mythology there are three Gods who run the creation. The Brahma – who creates the universe, the Vishnu – who preserves the Universe and the Shiva- who in the end destroys the universe. Among the three deities, Shiva is considered as the destroyer. However, Shiva is also considered as the supreme reality- the inner self which remains intact even after everything ends.

Please also remember that the one who repeats the mantra either silently or loudly is known as chanter and the process of repeating the mantra is known as chanting.

The Mantras

Here are a detailed description of some mantras from the traditional Indian/Tibetan religious stream. All these mantras are extremely easy to pronounce and highly effective.  Click on each mantra’s link for detail :

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[do action=”insert-hand”/] Om Namah Shivay

[do action=”insert-hand”/] Hare Krishna Mantra

[do action=”insert-hand”/] Om (AUM)

[do action=”insert-hand”/] So’ham

[do action=”insert-hand”/] Om Mani Padme Hum

[do action=”insert-hand”/]  Gayatri

 

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Om Namah Shivaya : Mantra for meditation

Pronounced as Aum Num-ha Shi-why[dropcap]O[/dropcap]m Namah Shivaya is known as the great redeeming mantra also known as five-syllable mantra

O m Namah Shivay Mantra
Om Namah Shivaya in Hindi

The meaning :

It means “I bow to Shiva.” Shiva is the supreme reality, the inner Self. It is the name given to consciousness that dwells in all. Shiva is the name of your true identity- your self.

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According to Hindu mythology there are three Gods who run this creation. The Brahma – who creates the universe, the Vishnu – who preserves the Universe and the Shiva- who in the end destroys the universe. Among the three deities, Shiva, though considered as destroyer, also symbolize the – the inner self which remains intact even after everything ends.

In this mantra the chanter (one who repeats the mantra) bow to Shiva- his true self.

Om Namah Shivay is a very powerful mantra. It has been said about this mantra that if this mantra vibrates continually in your heart, then you have no need to perform austerities, to meditate, or to practise yoga. To repeat this mantra you need no rituals or ceremonies, nor must you repeat it at an auspicious time or in a particular place.”

This mantra is free of all restrictions. It can be repeated by anyone, young or old, rich or poor and no matter what state a person is in, it will purify him.

How to repeat ‘Om Namah Shivay’

Sit in a comfortable and peaceful place and position. Start repeating the mantra in your mind or loudly with the same speed as you talk:

Om Namah Shivay (Aum Num-ha Shi-why)

A youtube video wherein this Mantra has been chanted in an excellent way :

( To repeat any mantra as already mentioned in General Rules : one should repeat it with full awareness of its meaning. )Repeat ‘Om Namah Shivay’, with the feeling that you are bowing to Shiva – your true inner self. Repeat this mantra with respect. The inner self is the form of God in you. So as you say ‘ Om Namah Shivay’ i.e. “I bow to Shiva’; you are actually bowing to God – The great almighty.

The repetition of the name of God is equivalent to be merged in his very being. When you repeat God’s name in your mouth, in one way, you experience the God itself. Just repeat this mantra with faith and it’s powerful phonetic vibrations will start doing miracle for you.

Further Reading :

Read this [do action=”insert-hand”/] True experience of a reader with Om Namah Shivay

[do action=”insert-hand”/] Another reader’s true experience with Om Namah Shivay

Let us proceed to second Mantra:

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Next : hand  Hare Krishna Mantra

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Hare Rama Hare Krishna Mantra for Meditation

[typography font=”Cantarell” size=”22″ size_format=”px” color=”brown”]Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare
Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare[/typography]

[ Pronounced as:  Hare – ( Ha’ray),  Rama – (Raa’maa)   & 

Krishna – ( Kri-Sh’-Naa) ]

 

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Hare Krishna Mantra in Hindi
Hare Krishna Mantra in Hindi

A youtube video wherein this Mantra has been chanted in an excellent way :


[dropcap]’H[/dropcap]are Krishna’ is the mantra which  is known to maximum number of  western seekers thanks to the commendable work done by His Divine Grace A C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupad (founder of  ISKON – International Society for Krishna Consciousness  www.iskcon.com  in spreading its awareness world wide.  George Harrison, the popular singer of world famous Beatles group also devoted his entire life in spreading the  awareness about this mantra.

[quote style=”boxed”]“A mantra is mystical energy encased in a sound structure and each mantra contains within its vibrations a certain power. But of all mantras, the maha-mantra (the Hare Krishna mantra) has been prescribed as the easiest and surest way for attaining God Realization in this present age.”— George Harrison (1943-2001), in his autobiography :’I, me and Mine'[/quote]

This mantra is known as the Maha-mantra of Kailyug (the supreme mantra of Kaliyug – the present era of machine where truth and righteousness are at their lowest level. ) It has been said that by repeating this mantra with faith and devotion, one can attain salvation and peace of mind.

[highlight] ” harer nama harer nama harer namaiva kevalam kalau nasty eva nasti eva nasti eva gatir anyatha”[/highlight]

– A Sanskrit verse from Brhan-naradiya Purana which means

 “In this age of Kali, there is no alternative, there is no alternative, there is no alternative for spiritual progress other than the chanting of the holy name, the chanting of the holy name, the chanting of the holy name of the Lord.”      

The meaning of Hare Krishna Mantra

This mantra is made up of only three words : ‘Hare’, Krishna and ‘Rama’. ‘Krishna’ and ‘Rama’ are the name of Lord Vishnu – one of the mythological God in the trinity of Gods Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh. It is said that in every yug (era) Vishnu takes incarnation on earth to establish the law of truth and righteousness.

Ram is the name of the incarnation of Vishnu in the Treta yug ( you must have heard the famous story of Ramayana – the popular Indian epic. Rama is the hero of that epic. You can learn more about Ramayana here.

Krishna is the name of the incarnation of Vishnu in the ‘Dwaper yug’. He is the central character in the Mahabharata (pronounced approximately as Ma-haa-BHAAR-a-ta ) -the another popular epic of India (which incidentally is the longest epic of the world). Krishna is the most popular God of Hindu religion.

The Bhagawad Gita – the highly spiritual and mesmerizing conversation between Krishna and Arjuna( one of the bravest and famous character of Mahabharata ) on the battle ground of Kurukshetra is one of the most popular and respected religious books of World.
[ you can learn about Mahabharata here and about Bhagawad Gita here]

Both these words  ‘Rama’ and ‘Krishna’ have become powerful and effective for the simple reason that for thousand of years  millions of Hindus have been praying to God by chanting these two names. The faith, devotion and a pure spiritual  feeling with which these two names have been chanted by all these devotees for so many years have made these words electrifying- charged with energy. Just repeating these names can take anyone into meditation quickly.

The word Hare has come from ‘Haran’ which means  to take way or to end. So when one says hare Krishna, he  requests  the God (the supreme consciousness)  to take away his sorrows , his shortcomings, his failures and  pains. This Hare Krishna Mantra is actually a little prayer to God for taking away all the sorrows, pains and shortcomings of the chanter and provide him  bliss and joy.

“Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare
Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare”

Whenever you chant this mantra, always keep its meaning in  mind. Chant this mantra with devotion and faith . While repeating his mantra request the God almighty to take away all your sorrows, pains and failures and give you joy and bliss.

It is the experience of many that when one repeat this mantra with full faith and with full awareness of its meaning, his/her whole being gets filled with Krishna Consciousness  ( which is a name given to the feeling of bliss and joy one gets in repeating this mantra.)

This mantra is a very easy mantra. You can chant it anytime, anywhere. Give at least 15 minutes per day for this mantra repetition. Sit quietly in a comfortable position. Then either chant it silently or loudly. Repeat it with full awareness of its meaning which is ” O lord, take away all my sorrows, pains and shortcomings and give me bliss and joy”.

This mantra is a simple and effective meditation technique. Slowly you will start enjoying it as its repetition will give you a sense of calm and bliss.

[ You can learn more about this mantra (and can even listen to the devotees of ISKCON chanting it by visiting the website www.iskcon.com . Further to know in detail the history of this mantra,  about its first propagator Chaitnaya Mahaprabhu and the about the affiliation of George Harrison with the Hare Krishna Movement  visit www.mantra-meditation.com  )

(Please also read  How to use mantra meditation in a busy and complex life.  for adopting Hare Krishna Mantra in your daily life. )

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Next Mantra : hand   Om ( Aum )

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True experience of a reader with Om Namah Shivay

A symbolic drawing of Mantra

 

[dropcap]T[/dropcap]his real life story was sent to me by one Mr Dieter Schmitt Eiden. It’s really inspiring and thought provoking. Enjoy it !

 

“I was joining a job with a Danish tour operator in Sri Lanka in 1980.
Usually my coach with 48 guests onboard went during a 7- days roundtrip around the beautiful island.

One day while we were joining one of those trips we stepped into a small temple that wasn’t in our program.

I liked the place personally very much because it was too small to visit it with a large amount of tourists and I had seen before that the place was a very religious spot for the natives living around there. I could not even find out if the place is Buddhism or Hindu.
I asked my clients just have a look into the small room there but not to disturb the calm and peaceful atmosphere of praying people.

In front of a Buddha’s image there were a large collection of donations to see like a little radio, plastic flowers, small figures, vases, boxes, glasses and pots, even one with fresh smelling rice next to candles and incense.

I observed chicken and ducks picking on the floor but they did not harm to anyone.
There was only that special feeling in me that made me come back to this temple whenever I was near.

Three men were lying there on the ground in front of the Buddha praying with their deep voices: Om namah shivay, again and again this song and it seamed they did not breath. I didn’t really understand but the bass sounds went into my brains forever.”

21 years later far away from Asia I got a book about Babaji of Haidakhan, India who was convinced that all religions are one. I got impressed about his explanations of the om namah shivay- praying and its powerful meaning. Babaji also mentioned the scene I was honoured to see just a few steps far in front of mine. And after reading his book I got the courage to talk about it and today I can write it down here.

“One of the three praying men, the one in the middle, became up to his feet, he was pale and had problems to breath. Immediately those two men on both sides got aware of the sickness of the first and they tried to help him standing upright. Then happened something so unbelievable that I couldn’t talk about for years because I didn’t understand.

The pale man was watching straight to the wall with the Buddha’s image while smoke got up out of his scalp and the smell of burned meat spread in the air. A perfect flame was seeing over his head and then he broke down to the floor, the other men let him slide down to rest. I only realised that a large 3 with a little tail had been burned into his scalp.

It was simply too much to believe what I saw.
We were asked to go out of the temple and it made me more comfortable to walk out there. I could not explain to my clients what they had seen also.”

*****
++ Babaji gave me the response years later when he described the possible delighting of a human being after praying the om namah shivay for many times.

God brand marked the God-sign ‘om’ into the scalp of that man and I had no doubts that this really had happened there.

Just for your information,
Kindest regards,
Dieter Schmitt Eiden

DSE CASA DIEGO
TENERIFE

 

[do action=”insert-hand”/] Read : Another readers experience with Om Namah Shivay 

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True experience of another reader with Om Namah Shivay

[dropcap]A[/dropcap]fter reading the experience of  Mr Dieter Schmitt Eiden, another reader Mr. Anil Pande, from Dubai has sent his true experience of  using Om Namah Shivay Mantra which is almost unbelievable. Enjoy it !

 

Dear,

Having read the experience of mr. SDieter Schmitt Eidenirs, regarding OM NAMAH SHIVAAY mantra, I would like to share my experience which may sound very strange to people but is absolutely true.  We are shaiviate brahmins living in Sharjah, UAE.  My son has also been a very strong follower of lord Shiva and has felt his blessings on him time and again.

Few months back, I got some sandwiches for him from the market but forgot taking them from the car.  after reaching home I realized this and told him to go to my car and get the stuff for him.

As I banged the door of my car after taking the sandwiches out, I did not notice that poor child had his hand in the door frame.  his hand was caught in the door of my Ford Taurus, which is quite a heavy vehicle.  Image the pain the child must have had.  He was crying like mad.  But I don’t know what happened to him, he said daddy play SHIVA TANDAVA STOTRAM for me and started say OM NAMAH SHIVAAY, OM NAMAH SHIVAAY without break.

I saw clear blue lines in his fingers and the SHIVA TAANDAV STOTRAM which he had started reciting with the CD. I rushed towards the nearest hospital and stopped at a traffic signal.. the child was on with lord shiva’s stuti and to my surprise, in front of my eyes, the lines started fading and I said Anirudh your blue marks are going…. and here goes the second one and they were all gone… just in front of my eyes and trust me friends, the fellow had no pain, and he was able to move his fingers freely.  when I reached home, the child was absolutely healthy and had no pain whatsoever.

trust me friends, as the shiva purana says, there can’t be more sins on earth as the punyaa one gets out of OM NAMAH SHIVAAY.

Anybody, who does not believe this, can contact me, i would love to clarify any doubt one may have.  this incident is just of the things happened to us.  lord shiva is the only truth and blesses to all.

 

Next : hand  Hare Krishna Mantra

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OM : The sound of universe

[dropcap]O[/dropcap]M or AUM is the most important and significant word of Mantra tradition. It is considered as the root mantra of all mantra. In a majority of Mantra, you will find OM.

 

The symbol of Om

 

Om in Hindi
Om in Hindi

 

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OM is the most often chanted sound among all the sacred sounds on earth. This sound is considered as the sound of the existence.

it is believed that the whole universe, in its fundamental form,  is made up of vibrating, pulsating energy. Om is considered as the humming sound of this cosmic energy.

OM is said to be the original primordial creative sound from which the entire universe have  manifested. It is also known as the ‘Anahat Nada’, the “Unstruck Sound”. This means the sound that is not made by two things striking together.

If you observe the nature of sound you’ll find that all ordinary audible sound are produced by the striking of two objects : bow and strings, drum and stick, two vocal cords, waves against the shore, winds against the leaves, bat against the ball, tyers against the road etc. In short all sounds within our range of listening are produces by things visible or invisible, striking each other or vibrating together, resulting in pulsating waves of air molecules which  we interprets as sound.

In contrast to the above, OM is the sound which is not the result of the striking of two objects. It, rather emanates on its own. It is the primal sound of the universe that contains all sounds in itself.

The meaning of OM

Well unlike all other mantra, there is no meaning of OM. It is actually not a word, it is a sound. As per Hindu tradition, OM is the purest name of God. It is the sound of the supreme consciousness. So when you reapeat OM, you actualy take the name of God.

Now without going into the further philosophical explanation of OM, let us learn how to meditate using OM. Repetition of OM or AUM dissolves the mind it its divine source. The chanting of OM several time loud, purifies the atmosphere.

Sit in a comfortable undisturbed place. Take some deep breath. Now chant at least 7 times OM in succession. Make each breath last as long as possible. Teak deep breath and chant Oooooooo~~~~~hhhhhhhhhh~~~~~ Mmmmmmm~~~~~. Then again repeat this chanting of OM. Do this for 7 times. After this, stop chanting and sit for a moment of silence. You will be amazed by the inner peace you’ll get in such a small chanting of OM.

Listen the sound of Universe :  Let us listen the sound of OM. You are requested to   listen carefully. This sound of OM produces instant positive vibrations and takes the listener to a state of mental stillness.

Chanting the OM mantra for 15 minutes daily can produce remarkable effect in you. This mantra will help you to calm the mind, settled the thought process and realize the self.

Listen to OM now !!

Download this small (just 164 KB) mp3 file of OM. Listen to this powerful vibrating sound of Universe now.

It’s a very small file and you can listen to it within seconds.

Listen to this sound of Aum here :

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Download the OM mp3 sound

Click here to download this sound :

[do action=”insert-hand”/]    The sound of Om

(if you click with Right mouse button you’ll be prompted to save the file. Save it in your hard disk)

After downloading it, play it on your favorite media player and switch on the repeat button. It’ll keep repeating itself. Enjoy !.

(Please note: Very important !  Don’t listen to Om while you are busy (for example while driving or doing important tasks requiring mental effort). Stop listening it if you feel uneasy. Not recommended for heavy meat eaters)

 

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 Next Mantra : hand   So’ham

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Soham Meditation: The natural mantra which repeats itself

The natural mantra – Soham  (Pronounced as So’ Hum’)

Soham Mantra image in hindi
Soham in Hindi

 

A mantra which repeats itself in all of us ! This the the natural mantra – Soham .

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[dropcap]T[/dropcap]ill now I have told you about those mantra which  are required to repeated by the meditator. Now, I’ll tell you about a mantra which is not needed to be repeated – because it is continuously repeating itself on its own – in all of us. This mantra is  So’ham – the natural mantra, the mantra of your true self. It does not belong to the East or the West or to any religion.

So’ham  is the inherent in everybody, in all of us; it repeats itself continually, along with our breathing. It is said that as long as this mantra keeps going on inside us, there is life in the body. As soon as it stops, we are no more.

Let us learn about ‘So’ham’ in some more detail :

In order to understand So’ham, once more we have to look at our breathing process. During breathing  we inhale air and  exhale air. If you closely observe your breathing process, you will find that as your breath goes out and comes in, it produces two tiny sounds of syllables. The breath goes out with the sound ‘ so’ and comes in with the sound ‘ham’.

[ A clarification before you read further : : Of late I have been getting emails from various readers who say that what is described above has confused them. They have learn/read something  different about So’ham in other organizations/websites.

I have written :

“The breath goes out with the sound ‘ so’ and comes in with the sound ‘ham'”

But many says it the reverse which is true i.e. the breath goes in with the sound ‘ so’ and comes out with the sound ‘ham’

Well to be honest I don’t know why the description at my website is different from other sites. The source from where I learnt this technique had described the sound of  inhalation/exhalation in the same way as I have written here. And to me, it’s seem very natural explanation as whenever I meditate using So’ham I get this feeling that my exhalation is producing the sound ‘So’ and inhalation the sound ‘ham’.

I also want to share something about my source. You all should read this letter from Swami Muktananada to Franklin Jones (in 1968)  wherein he has discussed in detail about the So’ham Mantra.

I think it’s just a matter of belief and has a lot to do with our breathing pattern. If we are asked to breath deeply then most of us will start with an inhalation. Very few of us will start the breathing with a exhalation.  In our sub conscious mind it is deeply rooted that whenever we take breath,, the inhalation comes first and exhalation comes after it.

That’s why when we are asked to concentrate on So’ham, most of us naturally connects ‘So’ (being the first syllable) with inhalation (being the the first process of breathing). ‘Ham’ is therefore linked with exhalation *being the second syllable and second process of breathing respectively)

I have also observed that it is very easy to shift from one belief to another. Since I was connecting the first syllable (‘So’) with the second process of breathing, it was just a belief of my subconscious mind. I did a little practice and link the ‘So’ with inhalation and ham with the exhalation. It’s easy

For those of you who are confused over this let me suggest something.

So’ham is also known as Hamsa mantra. So’ham and Hamsa are the same mantra; the order of the syllables is simply reversed. An ancient Indian Sanskrit text “Shiva Sutra Vimarshini’ (commentary by Kshemraja) at III.27 says ” The breath is exhaled with the sound Sa and inhaled again with the sound ham. Therefore, the empirical individual always repeats the mantra Hamsa. (or Ham’So)

Since you believe that ‘So’ is the first syllable and should be used with inhalation, you should repeat the mantra Hamsa. Doing it this way you will connect the first syllable ‘Ham’ with inhalation and the second syllable  ‘So’ with exhlation. Now everything will be in order and your confusion will go.

Having said that I want to reiterate  that you  should be your own decision maker. We all have to be our own light in this path of spirituality. Take your own time, research a bit if you want, consult others and choose the path most suitable to you. We all are different. So are our needs and opinions. ]

See for yourself now ! Observe your breathing and notice the sound of ‘so’ and ‘Ham’. You will see that breath is coming out with the sound ‘So’ and coming in with the sound ‘ham’

Every time the breath goes out and comes in, one repetition of the So’ham mantra takes place. Whether one is a Christian, a Jew, a Hindu  or a Musilm, one repeats this mantra unconsciously thousands and thousands of times every day.

The meaning of So’ham is “I am That”. Through these two syllables, we contemplate our oneness with the supreme consciousness. Through the ever going process of breathing, our ‘self’ keeps repeating this mantra –  I am that.

The heart is considered as the source of So’ham. It is from the heart that the syllables of ‘So’ and ‘Ham’ arise, and again in the heart that they subside. If you observe your breath, you will notice that it arises from within with the sound So’, goes out of the body to a distance of about twelve fingers, and dissolves there. A fraction of a second later, the inhalation arises with the sound ham and goes back into the body. It merges in the heart for a split second and then arise again in the form of ‘So.

Between the inhalation and the exhalation, and between the exhalation and inhalation, there is a fraction of second which is absolutely still and free of thoughts.( It is the same moment of pause that I explained in Pause breath method of Deep Breathing)  . That space is the space of the truth. When you breath in and out, listening the ham  and so, you should focus on that space for as long as it lasts. As you practise the technique, the space will gradually expand.

Observing the So’ham is a natural Sadhana, a natural yoga. It is known as ajapa-japa, the unrepeated mantra repetition. Since So’ham goes on within you all the time, you do not have to make an effort to repeat it. All you have to do is become aware of it. You do not need any faith. You just have to watch the space of truth.

Since this technique is very subtle, you have to practise it for a while in order to understand it. Whenever you sit quietly, follow your breath and listen to the mantra. If you do not immediately become aware that the mantra (So’ham) is repeating itself, you can repeat the syllables along with your breathing. (So’ during exhalation and ham’ during inhalation).  In a few days you will be able to synchronize the mantra with your breath. Soon you will begin to hear the mantra naturally. If you practice it for a while, you will experience the self.

The practice of So’ham is recommended in the Upanishads and the Vedas. It has been said about So’ham that :

Watch the So’ham. Those who contemplate So’ ham ceaselessly, discarding worldly entanglements, they attain the supreme state and their worldly bondage is destroyed.

While repeating So’ham, keep in mind that the goal and practice of So’ ham are the same. So’ ham means “I am that,” and if you practise it with complete concentration, being aware of the breath coming in and going out, you will experience That (which is nothing but your true self). The truth is that you do not really have to practise it, because you are already That.

The practise of So’ ham is a matter of understanding. You are not required to repeat it . It is already going on in you. You have to just watch and listen it. Just watch the breathing process, listen the So’ham and realize the true self present in you which always says ‘I am that’

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Next Mantra [do action=”insert-hand”/] : Om Mani Padme Hum

Please also read  [do action=”insert-hand”/] : An independent view on Transcendental Meditation

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