mananat trayate iti mantraha
mantra is a sound which frees the mind from its own obsessive-compulsive thinking.
it is a science, not a knowledge or belief.
therefore, like any science, it has to be rightly learned and applied.
The historical derivation of the science of mantra corresponds with the intricacies of the Sanskrit language - a divine language called also "mother of tongues." It is not coincidence, that the Sanskrit language is a tool for working with the subtle energy potential, represented by each chakra in the subtle body.
The word literally means "to free from the mind". So mantra is a tool used by the mind that eventually frees one from the erratic fluctuations of the mind and material inclinations. The beauty is that, in the case of mantra, its power is tangible and it can be learnt with the right guidance, patience and the right attitude.
Mantra is a sound, a sound which is related to a certain energy or form - therefore great emphasis is put on correct pronunciation, resulting in an early development of a science of phonetics in India.
The vibrations and sounds of the mantra can awaken the prana or spiritual life force and even stimulate chakras.
Chanting is the process of repeating (not singing) a mantra.
meditation and music
We know from common experience that sound at high pitches is capable of breaking glass. Also we know that the space has a sound, which was captured thru special machines, since human ear is not able to hear this frequency. So we know that power of sound is quite amazing and broad.
For thousands of years all throughout the planet, mantras have been used to quiet the mind, experience inner stillness, and connect to the higher self.
The earliest mantras were composed in Vedic Sanskrit by Hindus in India, and are at least 3000 years old.
The science of vibrations and frequencies and how they effect people is something that has been around for thousands of years. We can still find evidence of this in the ancient Vedic texts of India. These explain not only the results of using the frequencies of words and mantras, but also supply instructions in some cases. The sages of ancient India used it to produce various results in the rituals they performed, and from the mantras they would recite. If the mantras were recited in particular ways, certain amazing results would take place, including changing the weather, producing certain types of living beings, or even palaces. Others used it to produce weapons, like the brahmashtra weapon, which was equal to the modern nuclear bombs. Specific mantras could be attached to arrows, with the sound causing powerful explosions when the arrow reached its target.
The word mantra in its most literal sense means to free from the mind.
A mantra can start a powerful vibration which over time, begins to override all of the other smaller vibrations, which eventually become absorbed by the mantra.
Mantras, although simple words and sounds repeated over and over again, are immensely powerful in their ability to tranquilize our mind and raise our consciousness. Besides, some mantras have specific effects in the person who recites them. It is recommended to choose a mantra that we enjoy singing, and that resounds in our heart.
Mantra means a sound, a certain utterance or a syllable.
Today, modern science sees the whole existence as reverberations of energy, different levels of vibrations. Where there is a vibration, there is bound to be a sound.
The whole existence is a kind of sound, or a complex amalgamation of sounds. Of these, a few mantras or a few sounds have been identified, which could be like 'keys.'
If you use them in a certain way, they become a key to open up
a different dimension of life and experience within you.
There are different types of mantras. Every mantra activates a particular kind of energy in a different part of the body.
Without that necessary awareness, just repeating the sound only brings dullness to the mind.
Any repetition of the sound always makes your mind dull.
But when it is done with proper awareness, with exact understanding of what it is, a mantra could be a very powerful means.
"Holiness" comes from "Wholeness", In East, any person who can integrate both Mind and Body with Awareness is called Holy Man or Woman. It is also subtle way of telling you that everyone is Holy, you just need to discover that Holiness inside you. The entire work of Holy Men and Women of the East is to pass on the information that the same possibility lies inside you.
Sacred music shares the purpose of transcending, uniting, elevating the human spirit. People's response to music transcends different cultures as it emotionally affects all listeners in the same way, because it is an universal language.
Manish has learnt from his Guru from India during years to use mantra along with the practice of Pranayam for bringing greater awareness and energy into body, mind and soul. Such pranayam-mantra vibrations can lift the mind into higher states of oneness as well as deep relaxation.
Having learned these techniques for so many years in India, Manish also shares them in his workshops, teachings and retreats. He also has recorded special music for this practice in his digital album PRANA. Being also a yoga teacher himself, he tells us that this practice merges perfectly with the practice of yogic lifestyle and asana.
Using certain music and mantra along with pranayam unites the mind and prana, drawing our attention and awareness into the breathing process. It makes the pranayam practice lighter and easygoing, it energizes all our chakras and it can easily turn into a meditation, when one can get the mantra to resonate with the breath.
Mantra therapy can be used to direct a higher prana or healing energy to wherever it is needed within us. Special healing mantras exist for both physical and psychological afflictions that can literally work wonders, if they are applied in the proper manner.
The energetics of mantras are subtle and can be modified significantly by the way in which they are applied.
The sound quality of the mantra , much like poetry, requires a subtle and sattvic (pure) mind to appreciate.
The science of yoga and mantra is much more ancient than the modern science. It is the science of the inner and people in ancient India made a lot of research and progress in the discovery of the true nature of oneself. The western sciences have been only focused on the outer while India has always emphasized the inner. Once the inner is is balance and harmony, outer is automatically balanced. That is exactly why when anyone is in the search of truth, he/she looks at India and her ancient wisdom.
Did you know that in India mantras are never performed in concerts?
Did you know that kirtan in India is not what is being shown in the West commercially?
Did you know that the sound has power, as it can relate to a certain energy (like health, wealth, relationships, wisdom, etc.)?
Did you know that the sound of mantra loses its power when it's not called rightly, if the pronunciation is wrong?
Did you know that mantras should be accompanied by the appropriate music, raga and feel, if used with music?
Did you know that many of the songs currently presented under the name 'mantra' are not really 'mantra' - such as the devotional songs from the so US-kundalini-yoga', which are beautiful texts from sacred books, but they are not mantras?
Did you know that mantra does not need music? and that if us musicians, are lucky enough to compose music for a sacred text, then it deserves the utmost respect, humble attitude and right approach.
In Mantra, intention matters, understanding the meaning is not important, pronouncing rightly is KEY to achieving any result. Otherwise it is just 'entertainment.'
Manish Vyas offers regularly different Workshops (1 or half day) and Retreats (3-5 days) where he expands deeper into this subject, teaching its theory and its correct application, also sharing different well-being and meditation techniques from India.
from the blog
Sanatana Dharma rests upon yogic insight born of the meditative mind, not on mere faith or belief. It is a spiritual science, not a religion.
S O U L F U L S H A R E S
"Dear Manish Vyas, salute your unconditional commitment to spread the teachings of Upanisads, the root source of Spiritual science. It's amazing to observe your skill of seamlessly taking the teachings of Advaitha Philosophy to the world and helping them to understand in a language of music which is understood and revered by the people, both in West and East. You are blessed to have a teacher like Nisargadatta Maharaj who moulded you with right knowledge of Sri Sankaracharya's teachings." Sanjeev, entrepreneur
"The music and words of Manish Vyas have brought me peace often when my mind is scattered or I am unsure. The power of just sitting and being with yourself, connecting to the Divine, God, nature, and the common truth within, is tremendous. Gratitude for this, and for the technology which allows us to receive and share the goodness which is in this world." Teena, writer
sacred music of India is the spring of indian music. It is a 'science of awareness' and a vehicle that stills the mind. It was perceived, preserved and transmitted in the ancient temples by the sages of India. They named it Nāda Yoga - the science of using sound vibrations to bring the moving pendulum of the mind to a stand-still.
my personally designed mantra-book is available in the store
Mantra Japa was a concept of the Vedic sages that incorporates mantras as one of the main forms of puja, or worship, whose ultimate end is seen as moksha/liberation. Essentially, Mantra Japa is the repetition of mantra, and has become an established practice in India at all levels of happenings in spiritual life and daily life. It involves repetition of a mantra over and over again, usually in cycles of auspicious numbers, like 108 times. For this reason, Malas are used, containing 108 beads and a head "meru" bead which represents the Guru. The devotee performing Japa counts each bead as while reciting the mantra. Having reached 108 repetitions, if he/she wishes to continue another cycle of mantras, the devotee turns the mala around without crossing the "meru" bead and continues the practice. The Mala is private, personal - it should not be shared nor displayed in public, and it should be kept in a protected place or next to the Altar.
When we use a mantra for the purpose of Meditation, it is multidimensional. It covers all the dimensions of your existence, of your being. It does not only take care of the mind, it also takes care of your body, your emotions and your other subtle bodies – it heals, it cleans, it nourishes.
Read on the blog about the silent mantra practice where one just listens to the mantra.
Should I offer or lead a Mantra practice?
I often encounter students, mostly beginners who tell me that they want to lead a mantra practice in public. Many of them are asana instructors, with no background of Sanskrit and even less Indian music... but they still want to offer this activity in their Studio. And that also, they want to do playing Harmonium like a church organ (with chords instead of the right way.)
So basically what i suggest is that if you want to practice mantra singing or chanting in front of a group, the best is to use a CD or high resolution music of an Indian trained mantra singer. In this way, you are going to give the possibility to the group to practice rightly, or at least to try to follow the right style by following the recording.
Many people don't realize that it is no needed to to live mantra presentations, the audience doesn't need that, because they will be copying a wrong way of practicing mantra. So many times is stronger the ego of the person eager to lead a singing group than the real need of it. besides many times the group will no benefit from an untrained mantra singer who will present the science with lots of LOOPHOLES.
If you offer people an authentic recording of mantra, not only will they benefit from the practice, but they will be able to be in contact with the authentic way of practicing mantra, the right pronunciation and the appropriate music.
Mantra is not about singing - actually mantra does not need music, and even less the wrong music - it is a science, of sound, therefore needs a proper training to practice and even more to lead others into it.
There are different types of mantras. Every mantra activates a particular kind of energy in a different part of the body. Without that necessary awareness, just repeating the sound only brings dullness to the mind.
As a science, it is a very powerful dimension, but if it is imparted without the necessary basis and without creating the necessary situations, it can cause lots of damage because this is a subjective science. We know of people who have caused damage to themselves by the improper utterance of something as common as Gayatri mantra.
The Gāyatrī Mantra, also known as the Sāvitr Mantra, is a highly revered mantra from the Rig Veda, dedicated to Sāvitṛ, the Sun deity.
Oṃ bhūr bhuvaḥ suvaḥ
dhiyo yo nah prachodayāt
– Rigveda 3.62.10
Gayatri japa (meditative prayer through chanting) is used as a method of prāyaścitta, instrument of Tantric practice.
Gayatri mantra needs a very particular way of chanting it... it cannot be just sung like a 'concert' piece.. or with some lullaby, sweet melody... maybe you will enjoy the melody, but it will not deliver its effects, because the way of chanting or singing this mantra must follow the power of the its energy: the Sun. Thus in India specific Ragas were created to be able to represent that energy correctly, so that the mantra will be able to flower its benefits.
It is believed by practitioners that reciting the mantra bestows wisdom and enlightenment, through the vehicle of the Sun (Savitr), who represents the source of energy, inspiration, strength, power, purification, the ultimate light of wisdom.
This track is from the album Prānā by Manish Vyas, an album conceived for music for Prānāyam:
Link on Spotify (Nadi Sodhana Pranayam with Gayatri Mantra) : link