A mantra may sound very straightforward, a concept that is easy enough to grasp and simple enough to practice. However, mantras hold a lot more power than we might realize.
A mantra is a word or a phrase that is often repeated to shed light on a positive and transformative energy. It is unique and special to each individual. Mantras can come in any way, shape, or form – they can be a string of words or sounds, and even a single syllable or a long paragraph. A mantra is a positive thought pattern that can be uplifting, encouraging, and even mystical.
You may find it valuable to repeat your personal mantra in a yoga class, meditation, or prayer. In certain religions like Hinduism and Buddhism, mantras are believed to have special spiritual powers. The word mantra originated from ancient India, and was brought into spiritual practices that were recited or chanted in Sanskrit. The word mantra is derived from two Sanskrit words—manas (mind) and tra (tool); mantra translates as “a tool for the mind,” and was designed to help practitioners access higher powers and their true natures. It is thought that each of the fifty letters of the Sanskrit alphabet has a unique vibration that resonates with the different qualities related to the human psyche. This sound vibration allows us to mindfully focus on our present thoughts, feelings, and our highest intention.
‘Our subconscious thoughts are a powerful form of energy that are constantly attracting our current reality.’
From a psychological perspective, we know how important our thoughts can be. Our subconscious thoughts are a powerful form of energy that are constantly attracting our current reality. When we begin to consistently and consciously visualize our dreams, hopes, desires, and goals, our mind begins to internalize this into our subconscious. Speaking our mantras aloud can energetically align ourselves with the beautiful, radiant, fulfilling life which we seek.
Neuroscientists have discovered the beneficial effects of positive thoughts, which provide long term effects for the way we think. Focusing on a mantra has the ability to help free your mind of background chatter and calm your nervous system. Repetitive thought patterns form neural pathways, as neurons that “fire together get wired together.” This means that the more a specific belief or thought is activated and reinforced, the stronger these neural pathways become and the more often they become our “automatic” pattern of perceiving. These thoughts create a sense of our own reality.
Mantras have powerful vibrational resonances that alter our consciousness to bring us into a deeper state of presence and awareness. This is why the practice of reciting a mantra can be extremely powerful. It’s important to find a mantra that aligns with what you are seeking.
One of the most universally recited mantras is the sacred Hindu syllable Om —considered to be the sound of the creation of the Universe. Pronounced like: a-u-m, Om is believed to contain every vibration that has ever existed, or will exist in the future. When each syllable is pronounced fully, you should feel the energy of the sound lifting from your pelvic floor all the way up through the crown of your head. It is also the energetic root of other longer mantras, including Om namah shivaya, meaning “I bow to Shiva,” Shiva being the inner Self, or true reality.
Some other common traditional mantras include:
- Ham-Sah – I am THAT
- Aham Prema – I am Divine Love
- Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti – Peace of mind, body, and speech
- Om Tat Sat – All that is
Mantras serve different purposes. Be open to trusting your instincts, and choose a mantra that is energetically aligned with your intuitive nature. Here are some mantras that are popular in English:
- I am enough
- Every day in every way, I am getting stronger
- I am a magnet for health, wealth, and happiness
- Inhale the future, exhale the past
- I am the change
- Everything I need is within me
- I can and I will
- I love myself, I believe in myself, I support myself
- I am open to the possibilities of the Universe
- I am full of gratitude
Once you find your own mantra that suites you, begin to watch in wonder how this mindfulness practice changes your life, and helps you discover your innate potential for happiness and awareness.
Atkins, S. (2020, May 11). A beginner’s guide to essential sanskrit mantras. Sonima. Retrieved June 19, 2022, from https://www.sonima.com/yoga/sanskrit-mantras/
Johnson, J. (2017, December 7). Do you know how powerful your thoughts are? HuffPost. Retrieved June 19, 2022, from https://www.huffpost.com/entry/do-you-know-how-powerful-_b_4705523#:~:text=Neuroscientists%20have%20discovered%20that%20repetitive,go%20to%22%20pattern%20of%20perceiving.
Mindworks. (2021, May 14). Finding your mantra for meditation – benefits of mantras: Mindworks. Mindworks Meditation. Retrieved June 19, 2022, from https://mindworks.org/blog/finding-your-mantra/
Moran, S. (2018, March 20). The science behind finding your mantra-and how to practice it daily. Yoga Journal. Retrieved June 19, 2022, from https://www.yogajournal.com/yoga-101/mantras-101-the-science-behind-finding-your-mantra-and-how-to-practice-it/
Yugay, I. (2022, May 16). Mantra meditation: The beginner’s list of mantras for Meditation soul. Mindvalley Blog. Retrieved June 19, 2022, from https://blog.mindvalley.com/mantra-meditation/
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