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Esoterics 0 12 August 2020

Mantras: how to choose the right one and improve your life with it

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From this article you will find out what mantra means and how powerful it is, as well as about types of mantras, and how to choose a mantra so that it works as efficiently as possible.

What is a mantra

As spiritual practices such as yoga and meditation become more popular, increasing number of people is gaining interest in mantras. But what is mantra and how can you use its power?

What’s a mantra? In modern spiritual practices, the word “mantra” has become as mainstream as the word “intention”.  However, in fact, these are different concepts. The word mantra can be broken down into two parts: Man, which means mind and Tra refers to a means of transportation. In other words, mantras are tools of the mind – a powerful sound or vibration that can be used to enter into a deep state of meditation.

Like a seed planted with the intention to bloom into a beautiful perennial plant, a mantra can be seen as a seed to activate your intentions. Just as you plant the seed of a flower, you plant mantras in the fertile soil of spiritual practice. You cultivate these seeds by practicing mantras, and over time they bear the fruit of your intention.

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Mantra in meditation

Mantras can be enunciated, chanted, whispered or pronounced in mind. Most mantra meditation techniques have two main components: mindfulness meditation and mantra repeating or chanting.

Although this ancient practice is known to have Buddhist and Hindu roots, forms of reciting the “sacred word” exist in a wide variety of spiritual traditions, including Judeo-Christian and Shamanic.

Nowadays, the practice of mantra is also gaining popularity as part of the practice of mindfulness. 

People practice mantra meditation for a variety of reasons. For some, this practice serves as a kind of mental defense against unwanted distractions or emotions, such as when dealing with insomnia or overcoming travel-related fears.

For others, mantra meditation serves as deeper spiritual purpose. In some Hindu and ancient Christian traditions, for example, mantra reading is used to focus the mind and establish a connection with the Divine, both within and without.

In Buddhism, one of the benefits of chanting mantras is that it helps keep the mind focused and receptive to the blessings of the present moment. Since Buddhism is a non-theistic tradition, Buddhist mantras serve to awaken positive qualities and confidence, not an external deity.

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Mantra in yoga: setting intention

In many yoga studios, classes begin with the instructor sharing the topic of the session. He or she may invite participants to set an intention for their practice, and may also suggest guidelines for using mantras during the course. Mantras such as “I am strong,” “I am focused,” or “I am letting go,” can help the practitioner to keep the connection with the state of mind he/she wants to develop during his/her time on the yoga mat.

Such a mantra is used in silent repetition during asanas to help keep the mind focused. It is believed that in yoga, asanas are postures of the body, and mantras are postures of the mind.

Mantras used in such a manner are more like affirmations and help maintain a connection with a particular state of mind.

Mantra: the sacred language of Sanskrit

Mantra is essentially the foundation of all religious traditions, scriptures and prayers. According to Pandit Vamadeva Shastri (Dr. David Frawley), when mantras are carefully selected and used, they are believed to help change your subconscious impulses, habits and relieve suffering.

Mantras, pronounced or chanted, direct the healing power of prana (life force energy) and in traditional Vedic practices can be used to activate and access spiritual states of consciousness.

As a spiritual practice, mantra should be performed regularly for several months to achieve the desired effect.

Mantras can help you get back to an easy and simple approach to life and focus on the things that inspire you and truly make you happy.

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What is my mantra? How to choose a mantra

First you need to choose a mantra that you will practice. How to find your mantra? Here’s how to do it in 5 steps!

1. Make your mind about goal 

First of all, give yourself an honest question: what do you want the most? Perhaps you have a certain desire, aspiration. What is important to you? Peace of mind? Love? Health? Harmony? Overcoming fear? Success in business? This is the first step in figuring out which mantra is best for you right now.

Now select mantras depending on the thing that corresponds to your cherished desire. To do this, you can use our articles, where you will find mantras of love, mantras of happiness, mantras of health, mantras for attracting money, mantras for good luck, and mantras that cleanse from negativity.

Read about the purpose of each mantra, find out how their texts are translated from Sanskrit. Understand the deep meaning of the mantra – it must resonate in your soul.

2. Choosing a mantra: Use your intuition 

When it comes to spiritual practices, intuition is the best helper, truly trustworthy. Intuition will help you quickly understand which mantra is right for you, use this power at the initial stage of selection. You can listen to mantras, try to chant different mantras and listen to your inner feelings.

If you do not like any sound in the text of a mantra or you have difficulty in pronouncing it – just accept it, this is simply not the mantra you need right now, look for another one. Each of us has enough inner wisdom to understand how much the mantra is suitable. 

3. Listen to your body 

How do you feel when you chant a mantra? Is your emotional and maybe physical condition changing? If this is indeed your mantra, you will most likely observe the following changes:

  • lightness in the head and body;
  • bad thoughts seem to dissolve (later you will feel “emptiness” in your mind – this is a complete immersion in the process of reading the mantra);
  • increasing heat at the bottom of the chest smoothly spreading over the body;
  • pleasant vibration in the back of the head and neck.

Try it now by listening to this mantra of love and tenderness:

What do you feel? Do you feel this way when you read or listen to another mantra? If yes – you can be sure – this is exactly the mantra that will help you to harmonize your condition and get closer to the desired goal.

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4. Try out!

It is impossible to understand how to choose a mantra and whether you have chosen the right one, unless you try. Give your mantra a trial period: practice reciting it regularly for at least 2-3 weeks and listen to yourself – is there attunement with the energy of the mantra?

Start with a slow chanting of the mantra, and then try to read it a little faster so that your speech is fluent. Then chant the mantra more and more quietly until you move to the inner voice – this is correct reading.

5. How to pick a mantra: Be consistent

When you think you have found your mantra, focus only on it. Don’t jump from one mantra to another and don’t change it every few days. Meditate on this mantra. Meditate in a quiet place, make yourself comfortable, close your eyes and mentally repeat the text of the mantra to yourself. Clear your mind from all thoughts, do not even think about the meaning of the mantra – concentrate on the inner sound. Meditate for at least 15-20 minutes.

To understand whether you have chosen the right mantra, be sure to practice reading it or meditating for at least 21 days – this will develop a habit and you will definitely feel how effective this mantra has been for you.

After you understand that the mantra is yours, use it not only during meditation, but also during the day: when you go to work, wash the dishes or walk the dog. The more regularly and more often you consciously practice reading your mantra, the better it will work, and therefore, bring you closer to your cherished goal.

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 13 main yoga mantras

We have collected the most interesting and effective mantras that are used in yoga and meditation around the world. How to understand that this specific mantra is for you? Listen to your heart. If you feel an inner response, be sure to try to practice it.

1. Om

Pronunciation: A-OO-M

How it sounds:

Why Practice: Om is considered the first sound heard when the universe was created. As you chant this mantra, you should feel the sound energy rise from your pelvic floor up through the crown of your head. The Om sound is said to help unblock the throat chakra, which can lead to more harmonious communication with others.

2. Shanti mantra, praising the world

Pronunciation: Aa-oom Shanti Shanti Shanti

How it sounds:

Translation: Om World World World 

Why practice: For calming, appeasement.

3. Gayatri Mantra

Pronunciation: om bhur bhuvah svaha tat savitur varenyam bhargo devasya dhimahi dhiyo yo nah prachodayat

How it sounds:

Translation:

Earth, sky, everything in between.

Superior divine power of the Sun.

Can we contemplate the radiance of this god?

May this inspire our understanding.

Why Practice: This is one of the oldest Sanskrit mantras. It speaks of the unity of all creation, despite its many forms. Repetition of the mantra harmonizes the energy of the sun and helps to overcome suffering.

4. Mantra of Ganesha

Pronunciation: om gam ganapataye namaha vakratunda mahakaya suryakoti-samaprabha nirvig nam kuru me deva sarva-kariesu sarva da

How it sounds:

Translation:

Greetings to Ganesha.

Oh Ganesha, god with a curved torso, remarkably tall,

Whose brightness is equal to ten million Suns.

Grant me freedom from obstacles

In everything, at all times.

Why practice: Ganesha is the god of wisdom and success, the one who gets rig of obstacles. Use the mantra to start any new business.

5. Patanjali mantra

Address to Patanjali, the author of the Yoga Sutras

Pronunciation: yogena chittasya padena vacam malam sharirasya ca vaidyakena yo ‘pakarottam pravaram minimum patanjalim pranjalir anato’ media

How it sounds:

Transfer:

With palms folded together

I respectfully bow to Patanjali, the best of sages,

Who dispels the impurities of the mind through yoga,

Of speech through grammar and body through medicine.

Why Practice: This mantra glorifies Patanjali, one of the ancestors of the yoga tradition, and is often repeated at the start of yoga classes. Try practicing this mantra as a way to honor an ancient tradition and thank your teachers. This chanting also reminds us that yoga is meant to purify the mind, while Ayurvedic medicine can heal the body, and that our speech (as well as our breathing) is the backbone. 

6. Mangala mantra

Pronunciation: svasti prajabhya paripalayantam nyaena margena mahim mahisah gobrahmanebhyah subham astu nityam lokah samastah sukhino bhavantu

How it sounds:

Translation:

May the rulers of the Earth protect the well-being of people,

Through justice, through the right path.

May there always be good luck for all living beings.

May all the inhabitants of the world be full of happiness

Why Practice: Mantra attracts the good and fortune for everyone, harmonizes the energy of Mars. It can also be used when you are dedicating your practice or meditation to someone else.

7. A chant from the Upanishads, a collection of ancient Indian philosophical and religious texts

Pronunciation: om saha nav avatu sakha nau bhunaktu saha viryam karavavahai tejasvi navadhitamastu ma vidvishaavahai om shanti shanti shanti

How it sounds:

Translation:

May we be protected together

May we eat together.

May we work together with energy,

Let our exploration be enlightening.

May we be free from strife.

Om Peace, Peace, Peace!

Why Practice: This mantra is often repeated at the beginning of a joint study or activity, making it a good option for reinforcing anything from practicing yoga to accepting a new opportunity, such as moving to a new job.

8.  A chant from the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, one of the oldest Sanskrit texts

Pronunciation: asato ma sad gamaya tamaso ma jyotir gamaya mritjor ma amritam gamaya om shanti shanti shanti

How it sounds:

Translation:

Lead me from the unreal to the real.

Lead me from darkness to light.

Lead me from death to immortality.

Why Practice: Mantra embodies peace and freedom, gives peace of mind and ease.

9. Introductory address to the Isha Upanishad, a Sanskrit text that delves into self-knowledge

Pronunciation: purnam adah purnam idam purnat purnamudachyate purnasya purnam adaya purnam evavasisyate

How it sounds:

Translation:

This is the whole. This is the whole.

The whole arises from the whole.

Taking the whole from the whole,

Only the whole remains.

Why Practice: This passage expresses the fundamental idea that the All and abundance  are one and the same; visible and invisible, microcosm and macrocosm are one. Simply said – we are one. When you feel lonely or misunderstood, this mantra can help you refocus your thoughts.

10. Sat Nam

Pronunciation: Saaaaaaaaaat Nam

If you want the mantra to spread from the base of the spine to the center of the head, chant “Sat” 35 times longer than “Nam”.

How it sounds:

Translation:

Truth is my name.

hy Practice: Used in the practice of Kundalini Yoga, the mantra Sat Nam can be used as a way to find your intuition. This is a powerful mantra of love. It is also part of the Sat Kriya meditation, which is said to activate sexual energy when practiced daily for at least 3 minutes.

11. Adi Mantra  

Pronunciation: Ong Namo Gurudev Namo

How it sounds:

Translation:

I bow to the creative energy of the infinite.

I bow to the Divine channel of wisdom.

Why Practice: This Gurmukhi mantra opens a channel of communication between the disciple and the Divine Teacher. It also opens us up new beginnings and gives us strength to try new things.

12. Siri Gaitri Mantra

Pronunciation: Ra Ma Da Sa Sa Sei Hung

How it sounds:

Translation:

The sun, the moon, the earth, infinity, all that infinity has is in  me.

Why Practice: Used as a restorative meditation to transfer healing energy to yourself and others. In Kundalini Yoga, the posture for this meditation is as important as the sound. Take a comfortable seat with your elbows bent and firmly pressed against your chest, with your forearms extended perpendicularly, palms up

13. Neti-neti

Pronunciation: Neti neti

How it sounds:

Translation:

Anything but that, anything but that.

Why Practice: The Neti-Neti Mantra is a way to refute something, be it harsh words or a situation in your life that you would like to change.

We hope this information was interesting and useful for you! Do you have a favorite mantra? Write in the comments!

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