Aum Pendants

Aum (also Om, Devanagari) is a mystical or sacred syllable. It is found at the beginning of most Hindu texts as a sacred exclamation to be uttered...

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Soul Symbols

Throughout history all cultures have honoured natural gemstones for their ability to enhance the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual attributes of the body...

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Ganesha Pendants

Elephant-headed Ganesha is Lord of beginnings, and he himself is symbolized as a transition point for he is neither man nor elephant.

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Malas

Japa is the repetition of sacred mantra either by chanting vocally or mentally, usually with the assistance of a mala (prayer beads)... Chanting manta is the...

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Using a mala is the simplest and most effective technique for spiritual attunement. Ordinarily, in our attention to the external events in our lives, we have a tendency to actually leave ourselves behind. We step outside our own being, and lose touch with the inner presence which is our true source of strength and happiness.

The first step is to turn your awareness back into the pure experience of just calmly being yourself, and establishing a sense of being peacefully aware of where you are at this present. Quietly sit and create an inner mood of sincerity, devotion, and focused attention, by turning your awareness within. When you start to sit for practice, it is important to begin by bringing all your energies into alignment with your intention of turning inside. Clarifying your intention for your practice, strengthens your sense of purpose. Preparing yourself becomes a bridge between the ordinary out-going mind, and the calm, inner state of spiritual practice.

Using a mala offers the assistance for spiritual development, for it helps maintain a focused intent while repeating the names of the Divine. All religions have sacred names to describe and assist with connecting to the Divine principles of life. There is no purifier greater than repeating the name of the Divine. Some short mantras which can be easily used are: Aum, Shri Ram, Aum Namah Shivaya. Different mantras can be used depending on the requirements of the individual. Choosing a mala and appropriate mantra to create the desired affirmation requires time, careful consideration, and usually the guidance of a guru who knows your personal requirements.

After establishing proper posture and inner attunement to prepare for mala practice, the next step is to close your eyes and observe your natural breath. Simply tune into the rhythm and depth of your inhalation and exhalation patterns. Then holding your mala in your right hand, begin to breathe deeply and focus your attention on the specific mantra that you wish to use. Holding the first bead between your fingertips, repeat your mantra, and at the end of the mantra sounding slowly push the mala bead towards the guru bead. Proceed to the next bead, and repeat this mantra repetition and finger action. Using your mala helps maintain a calm rhythm, as you continue repeating the sacred sound of the Divine throughout the beads contained within the mala.

International Iyengar Yoga Conference with instruction by BKS Iyengar

Mantra Chanting

The word “mantra” is a combination of two Sanskrit syllables, “man” meaning “to think”, and “tra” meaning “to free”. Mantra is the way to free or liberate the mind from habitual thoughts, thus offering an expanded sense of awareness. The practice of using a mala and practicing mantra chanting has a deep spiritual purpose.

Mantras are an effective means to bring us back to our soul purpose, and true essence of our life’s journey. Frequently the cares of our everyday existence within the material world swallow up our deeper needs for spiritual nourishment and attunement with the universe. Giving ourselves the daily time to listen to our inner needs, allows us to touch the eternal truths that are within.

Swami Muktananda Swami Muktananda

Consistent listening or chanting to a specific mantra soothes the nervous system by quieting the mind, and directing the mind towards calm, positive thinking. It helps free us from negative influences, allowing for us to live more peacefully and joyously. All mothers have this innate knowledge of knowing that habitual singing a specific song to their baby helps calm a fussing child, and allow them to sleep more soundly. Mantras originate from the Vedas, the ancient scriptures of India, and thus have an added dimension of sacred sound.

A mantra is a Sanskrit verse that elicits a specific response from the world around us. Different mantras can be used depending on the requirements of the individual. Unique properties of each mantra can be activated by consistent listening to or chanting of the specific verse. The rationale of repeating a mantra frequently is that it creates a rhythmic vibration of sound which manifests as pure concentrated energy. This energy connects to the creative forces of nature, which is then amplified and reflected back to the individual. Over time, each and every molecule of the body becomes saturated by the beneficial vibrations of the mantra being recited. By the consistent act of repeating a mantra with concentration and faith, we are resounding in the ether an immense charge of electrons. Therefore we set up a sympathetic vibration in the universe, which creates a desired response based on the cause and effect principle within nature.

Devoted chanting or attentive listening to a mantra also creates a signal within the auditory nerves, which in turn reaches the higher centers of the brain. This vibration then magnetizes the brain cells, and ultimately penetrated the physical, astral, and causal forces within us. In essence the positive, sacred sound vibrations created by repeating a mantra over-ride any negative self-defeating thoughts, which may be responsible for any challenging life situations. Healthy sound waves that are created with focused concentration help to destroy any negative thought forms or emotions within. Sacred mantras restore and strengthen our being, allowing us to release old ingrained negative patterns of acting and being making space for the opportunity of the transformational process of renewal.