Mantras, chanted by millions of Hindus for eons, have today spread across the world and are benefitting people every day. A mantra is a careful assembly of syllables by the rishis of yore. Mantras produce subtle vibrations in the body and these vibrations have an uplifting effect. In fact, a mantra is defined as that which when recited repeatedly leads to the upliftment of an individual.
In fact, ordinary mortals have succeeded in unlocking their potential by the recitation of mantras and have gone on to become enlightened sages and seers. While some mantras work for the holistic and all-round spiritual growth of an individual, there are many that exist for the development of specific attributes.
For example, each of the seven chakras has a mantra associated with it. The vibrations emitted from these mantras work specifically the intended chakra. There are mantras that help in promoting brahamacharya. While others dedicated to Saraswati, the goddess of learning, help the practitioner improve mental faculties.
Not for nothing has the word entered the English language with nearly the same meaning as that in Hinduism and Buddhism. The proof of the pudding lies in the tasting. If mantras can make a humble weaver like Kabir attain self realization, then they can work wonders for us. Chanting of a mantra is considered as the surest way out of the depths of the Kali Yuga.
The best times to partake this spiritual food are early in the morning before sunrise and at dusk. Most mantras begin with the syllable OM as the first word. This, according to the Vedas, is the primordial sound that has existed since the dawn of time.
This Vedic belief is not very different from what the Bible says about the Word that existed in the beginning. The science of healing through mantras has existed in India since long, but today it has caught the attention of researchers around the world. The art of mantropathy may be new to the West but it is gaining traction. There are many practitioners of Transcendental Meditation that can heal ailments through the powers of mantras.
A rosary is often used to keep track of the number of times a mantra is recited. This mala or rosary usually contains 108 beads made of crystal or wood from the holy basil. The rosary helps focus the mind when repeating the mantra. Uttering the mantra aloud is recommended for newcomers. With time, one can internalize the repetition and do a mental japa or recitation.
Apart from spiritual stimulation, research shows that mantras activate the right and left hemispheres of the brain and also the acupuncture meridians in the roof of the mouth. Mantras cleanse the body of toxins, relax the mind and help oxygenate the blood. Imbalances of humors in the body that lead to illnesses are corrected.
However, these benefits, useful as they are, pale before what mantras can help the determined practitioner achieve. The vibrations generated by a mantra in a physical body attune it with the vibrations of the deity being invoked through the mantra and thus the benefits associated with the particular deity descend upon the individual.