Trying Different Mantras
As part of my practice, I am trying out different mantras when I meditate.
For the past few years, since about mid-2015, I have been focused on breath awareness. Basically, as a meditator, I sit and focus on the breath: its sounds, the rhythm, the silence surrounding the breath, and feeling my body relax into it.
As I learn about a lot of different mantras that a person can use in meditation, I find that there are quite a few that personally appeal or have appealed to me.
When I first began to meditate, I was drawn into it because of mantras. The mantra, “Jai Ram” really called to me. It means “Glory to God” in Hindi. I repeated that mantra over and over again for the better part of two years, starting in 2010. I did that in and out of meditation. I feel like for those two years I spent a lot of time in a mindful state. It is that mantra that carried me through three big, tragic life events in a short time in 2011.
Though I found comfort in reciting “Jai Ram” hundreds of times a day, I also wanted to see what other ones I could try. I wanted to see if reciting a different mantra would change my meditation experience in any way. Now, after practicing different types, I think that the meaning of a mantra is less important than becoming “one” with the sound of it. Different mantras are different words and sounds to the same end – a meditative state.
I will say, despite that, I do have my favorites. I like ”Om mani padme hum.” I have always found such comfort in that particular mantra. It is a mantra of compassion. I would recite that one a lot to myself in the years after I used “Jai Ram.”
I recently read in the book Perfect Health, by Deepak Chopra, about how certain mantra sounds go with each chakra. (If you’re not familiar with chakras, first, let me know and I’ll write a post about it. Second, they are seven different energy centers in the body that enhance a characteristic physically and symbolically. For example, the throat chakra is responsible for the functioning of the voice, but also the ability to “speak up.” For more info, click this link.)
I’m enjoying trying out these other sounds at the moment. I still love the sound “Om” and am continuing to use that, but there’s also “Hum” (which focuses on the throat chakra) and “Ram” (this focuses on the solar plexus chakra). Of course, these three types of mantras are not new to my mantra lexicon. Sometimes certain sounds just seem to roll off my tongue more easily.
Do You Use Different Mantras?
Still, another that I enjoy is “Om So Hum.” This is similar to “Ham Sah.” Both mean, “I am that.”
Is one of your favorites listed here?
- Jai Ram
- Om mani padme hum
- Ham Sah
Do you have one in English you like to use? I have personally tried these:
- No worries
- I am peace
- I am love
I personally prefer the first set, that all originated in the ancient language of Sanskrit. I just has a “universal” appeal, you know?
Mantras in general seem to move me into a deep meditation faster than breath awareness. How about for you? Do you meditate and if so, do you use mantras?