‘If you want to find the secrets of the Universe, think in terms of Energy, Frequency and Vibrations’- Nikola Tesla
What is this Energy or Frequency or Vibration? It is Sound!
Sound is a very integral part of the Creation itself. It is innate of every entity in this Creation. It is very important to note this. Without a sound, the creation itself is incomplete. Hence sound is very powerful.
It is interesting how mother nature teaches us so many lessons about sound. Just like when we just clap under a tree, the birds on the tree fly away. They do not even know who is clapping or where the sound is coming from they just get scared. Thus sound is such an integral part of our existence not just for humans but also for animals, plants.
There have been many research studies that documented with effects of sound on plants by placing sound sensors on the leaves of the plants.
There was one experiment where a scientist spoke to the first plant with harsh cruel words full of negative emotions or defamatory words which are generally not appreciated like ‘I hate you, you are useless, I don’t need you, you look ugly, you don’t bear any fruit and flowers’, etc. On the other side, he spoke to another plant in seclusion with love, affection, encouragement, and positive emotions and vibrations like ‘you are so beautiful, you are so attractive I am so happy that you are in my house’.
And the effect was seen that the first plant that was subjected to very harsh, rude, cruel hate speech withered away in time. And the second plant was doing much better. Thus the effect of sound on plants!
The famous example of Soloman islands where the tribes’ utter curses at the tree for few days continuously when they want to uproot a tree. The cursed tree which had survived for hundreds of years starts drying up in 3 weeks, which is the power of sound.
Another very popular example of deer getting attracted to the flute sound of the hunter is mentioned in the Sacred Pages of Srimad Bhagavatam. In real life also when the hunter plays the flute the deer forgets itself and may become the victim.
If simple sounds can impact the creatures then what to speak of human beings. In history, we have had great dictators like Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin and how they could speak and bring about a certain consciousness in the people.
So just powerful sounds can change the structure of the emotions in our body. They can make us happy, angry, sad, miserable, elated, energetic, shiver, surprised, scared, etc Sounds can make or break human relationships.
If we consider the power of sound from a spiritual perspective, from an inter-religious perspective, the Bible says that ‘in the beginning there was sound, Vedas says that ‘tene brahma hrdaye adi kavaye’ Krishna played flute and the flute sound entered the heart of Brahmaji to fill him up with knowledge and the scientists say that there was a big sound at the beginning of creation…Big Bang!
Thus Sound is certainly very integral. Even if we try we cannot be independent of the sound. An alarm that wakes us up every morning… even when we are asleep. Why?
It is the sense of hearing that develops first even in the womb of the mother. From the 18th week of pregnancy, the embryo can hear the mother’s heartbeats, etc. And the sense of hearing is the last thing to leave the body as we die. As the senses shut, the hearing is still there. So the first thing to enter and the last thing to leave is the sense of hearing! Isn’t it amazing!
If mere sound can be so powerful and has a great impact on our senses and emotions then what to speak of a MANTRA?
What is a Mantra?
The word mantra comes from the ancient Sanskrit language. ‘Man’ means mind, and ‘tra’ means release. So a mantra is a combination of transcendental sounds meant to release the mind from all the anxieties of material life. Also, it is referred to as ‘mananat trayate iti mantrah’ which means the combination of transcendental sounds that rescue the mind from repetitive worries or anxieties of this world. What are these worries?
The mind is like a bird with two wings. It keeps flapping with wings of past and future. Lamentation for the past and anxiety for the future, with these two wings, the bird keeps flying all over the place. So therefore MANTRA is that frequency, that vibration, that holy spiritual sound that can cut off those wings and make the bird sit in the present in calm, serenity, balance, spiritual joy and peace, fulfillment, and satisfaction.
Let me share the report of specific research done at AIMS (All India Institute for Medical Sciences) especially in the department of enema, Nuclear Studies. The research was about the effect of magnetic resonance and its imaging spectrum analysis. This was specifically done with respect to the power of mantras and to see the distribution of neurochemical activities in the brain.
This study was done over a period of 9 months on 30 volunteers with 4 classifications.
1. Those who did nothing 2. Those meditated on anything they wanted 3. Those who meditated on the meaning of mantras in their own language. 4. Those who chanted the Sanskrit mantras properly as prescribed.
The volunteers’ left and the right hemisphere of the brain were mapped to see the behavioral patterns, basically, the frontal side which deals with the thoughts and activities. Also, analysis of the neurochemicals like creatine, glutamate, etc, and their functioning was observed.
The observation turned out to be very very interesting! Read on:
- For someone who did not do anything, the distribution of the neurochemicals was very erratic, no balance left and right hemispheres were totally asymmetric.
- For those who meditated on something… there was some change but not that significant, a little better.
- For those who meditated on the meaning of the mantras, the patterns and balance were way more significant than the first two.
- But the highest distribution of neurochemicals and the balance was seen in those who articulated the Sanskrit mantras from the scriptures. There was such symmetry of the right and left hemispheres of the brain, it was perfectly in sync, which brought the balanced distribution to show that the person is balanced in thoughts.
The professors from the department of AIMS of clear magnetic resonance have published articles about it. Thus this particular study speaks a lot about vocal meditation, silent meditation, and particularly mantra meditation.
Mantra is not made up by a man and it has the power that we cannot truly explain and resonate with. We need to uplift ourselves to be able to actually resonate with the power of mantras. But we can see and experience the effect.
This is one of the many studies done on the power of mantras from the scientific perspective. It is not just in AIMS in India, but it is done all over the world. Like Harvard medical school, in Germany, a scientist Earnst Chladini did a study on cymatic photography. Cymatic photography is when invisible sound is mapped to a visual image.
What he did was also very much conclusive. He actually inverted a sound speaker and filled it up with water and played mantras through it and with proper lighting arrangement he observed the effect on the water.
He took visual images of the effect of mantras on water. He had the most brilliant systematic organized ordered diamond structured surfaces. He did much analysis over a period of time. He also did keyboard analysis connected to a plate of sand granules. When he played different sounds from the keyboard, the effect on the sand granules on the metal plate was also photographed. He said that more than the sand grains, the water in the sound speaker was more conclusive. And why is it so?
Our body and our brain both are 80 percent water. You can imagine the effect of mantras on an inverted sound speaker filled with water is so impressive, you can imagine the effect it brings to our brain and our body, from a material perspective.
Let us reiterate… by repeating the mantras, we can balance the neurochemical activities in our brain, recalibrate our neural activity, actually realign our internal structure. It is not just a mental thing. Physically we can see it is bringing symmetry, balance, which is the key to have peace in our life.
Therefore, whether it is through Yoga, Patanjali Yoga Sutras, Science, Spirituality, Ayurveda, Srimad Bhagavatam, Srimad Bhagavad Gita, the conclusion is one and same- ‘Mantras are very powerful and they transform our internal structure to attain peace and happiness.’.
What mantras do to our body? Have you ever had this query?
Our body is made of different domains.
- The physical structural domain, intra-connected through blood vessels and lymphatic vessels.
- The Physiological domain made up of Kapha, Vata, and pitta as taught in Yoga and Ayurveda.
- The psychological domain, is the domain of our existence, a combination of sattva/goodness, rajas/passion, and tamas/ignorance.
- The Panca Kosha domain consisting of annamaya kosha, manomaya kosha, pranamaya kosha, vijnana maya kosha, and Anandamaya kosha.
- And after this is the layer of the Mind, a layer of intelligence, and a layer of ego.
SO the mantra traverses or pierces through all these layers and actually works on the mind.
It is interesting to note how these different domains are intra-connected with each other. And are interconnected too. This is the reason why when the innermost layer of MIND is agitated, all other connected systems also get agitated and affected. It is like a little virus on the hard disk having the ability to crash the whole computer system.
But if the mind and the consciousness are peaceful by the spiritual mantra mediation, then that Peace, Positivity, and Power radiates through all the different layers of our body. In other words, the mind which is happy and healthy brings in the body which is happy and healthy.
I just discussed the relevant science behind mantra meditation. Now let me reveal few aspects of mantra meditation from the spiritual perspective.
There are many references about actually uttering a mantra is more powerful than just meditation. Very specifically the saint Sanatana Goswami quotes in his writing ‘Haribhaki Vilas’ about the powerful effects of chanting mantras.
‘adya cit smaranam vishoh, bahu ayasane sadhyate
oshtra spandana matrena, kirtanam tu tato varam’
The author is saying that ‘meditation of Vishnu in the mind yields results after a long time. But it is way more powerful and beneficial if one moves one’s lips and tongue and vibrates the spiritual sounds. The results come faster.’
Naradiya Purana says
‘japato Hari namani sthane shadgunadhikah
atmanam ca punatyucchaih japah shrotram punati ca’
When one chants the name of Hari, it is a hundred times more powerful than just remembering Him in the mind. So the mantra meditation according to this verse is a hundred times more powerful than silent meditation. What is the reason for that? Is it a sectarian fanatical approach? Not at all. It is very logical.
In the process of silent meditation, one can purify oneself. This is the maximum effect. But in the process of mantra meditation where the mantras are audible, the person who is chanting the mantras and those who listen to those mantras both get spiritually rejuvenated and purified by that sound vibration! Isn’t this a Super Powerful Process?
Another reference from the scriptures by Vyasa dev. He gives his perspective in this regard, as quoted by Sanatana Goswami in his book called Brihad Bhagavatamrita-
‘manyamahe kirtanameva sattamam lolatmakaimaksva hrdi smirat smrte, vaci sva yukte manasi shrutau tatha divya parahava krccha atmavat’
He says that more than silent meditation, mantra chanting is better. And why is it so? He explains that there are 3 benefits of audibly uttering the mantra.
- Our tongue gets absorbed instead of gossiping, backbiting, etc.
- Our ears get absorbed instead of hearing negative scripts from around us.
- Finally, our mind gets absorbed, which is the innermost powerful system within the system of our body. All of these go through purification simultaneously.
Our tongue and ears are knowledge-acquiring senses. They get first distracted and distract the tranquil mind. This is the reason why Sri Caitanya, who started the Bhakti Movement in the 15th century taught the process of Sankirtana which is the congregational chanting of mantras along with dancing.
In the world currently, it is the biggest trend to pay and join clubs. Why? Because people love to HEAR MUSIC and DANCE. Even old buddies find their way to clubs at night for music and dancing. The true fact behind the happiness experienced with music and dance is that ‘Sound is an integral part of us, no matter where you come from, what you do, which gender you are!’
When we take part in the same type of music and dancing, in a spiritual circle, uttering mantras using musical instruments then we shall experience the soothing, calming, attractive, relaxing, and rejuvenating effect of Mantra Meditation, which is Easier, Faster, and Most Powerful.
Now the question may be raised about the type of mantras. Well, to utter any mantras with any motive in mind, we have to refer to the scriptures. Bhagavad Gita says
yaḥ śhāstra-vidhim utsṛijya vartate kāma-kārataḥ
na sa siddhim avāpnoti na sukhaṁ na parāṁ gatim
Those who act under the impulse of desire, discarding the injunctions of the scriptures, attain neither perfection, nor happiness, nor the supreme goal in life.
So one must choose their mantras depending on what they desire. Having said that, let me inform the readers that the current age we are in, is Kali Yuga. There are certain protocols specifically meant for this age. Why are such protocols?
In this age, Scriptures say that humans are, confused, agitated, irritated, provocative, hopeless, focused mainly on pleasures limited to senses and the body, and not are inclined towards inner self and God-realization. That is why the scriptures strongly recommend and prescribe the mantra meditation for the people of this age.
There is one very interesting reason why we should opt for mantra meditation. Do you want to really know? Continue reading…
Did you know the sense of hearing is the LAST thing to leave the body when other organs shut down in the process of death? Sense of hearing stays sharp until the last minute. This is the reason why, particularly in India, people surround a person dying and chant God’s names until the person actually leaves the body.
Mantra Meditation is the most powerful process for this present age. There are different mantras for different purposes. To achieve good health, good wealth, relief from evil effects, good education, etc, one can chant different mantras like Mahamrtyunjaya Mantra, Shri Sukta, Durga Sukta, Saraswati yantra, etc respectively.
When one wants to go beyond the material realm then it is recommended to chant Vishnu mantras like Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya, Om Namo Narayanaya, Shri Krishna Sharanam mama, Radheshyam Radheshyam, Jay Rama Krishna Hari, Sri ram jay ram, Hare Krishna maha-mantra, etc. When something is highest means obviously, it can offer all the benefits that other specific mantras offer. In other words, Vishnu’s mantra meditation bestows transcendental benefits which include all the secondary benefits, and it is authorized and recommended by the Vedic Authorities, Great Saints of this age, and Krishna Himself in Srimad Bhagavad Gita.
Now let me define very clearly the effects of mantra meditation in this age. These effects will radiate all over and in oneself.
1 Cleanses Our Consciousness
Our consciousness is just like a mirror filled with dust. And these dust are compiled of many impressions, karmas, scripts that we carry all along.
Mantra meditation cleanses our consciousness layer by layer and purifies it. Thus paving the way for the upliftment of our consciousness. The Clarity reigns! Our intelligence becomes resolute! Our mind becomes serene, calm, focused, and god-conscious, which is essential in our human journey.
2 Helps Realize The Futile Nature Of This World
We know that this world we live in is futile in nature. Still, we act in such a way that it is permanent. We work so hard only to get the pleasure which is temporary.
Take a look at the Titanic. People on the Titanic thought they were going to be happy forever. What happened? Titanic sank in the ocean. This is just one example of how this world is futile.
The sooner we realize this, the happier we shall be!
3 Radiates Positive Energy In Our Body, Mind And Soul
As earlier explained, mantra meditation balances the neurochemical activities in the brain and brings balance which is the key to positivity.
Not only that, the transcendental sound vibration pierces through the different domains in our body and directly impacts the mind which is the innermost layer of our body. Thus traversing, it brings our body, mind and soul in the proper alignment, radiating positivity all over.
4 Lights The Lamp Of Knowledge
'Tamasoma Jyotirgamaya' - Knowledge is like a lamp, our ignorance is like darkness.
What is this ignorance?
Though we think we are so advanced in the technology space, health space, etc. we still are unaware of the reality of our own self, our eternal relationship with God, our inner world which is much bigger than the visible world we live in. The fact that we are unaware is ignorance. There is no excuse for ignorance.
So mantra meditation enhances our knowledge thus clearing the darkness of ignorance.
5 Magnifies The Happiness
What is happiness?
The feeling of pleasure, the feeling of satisfaction, the feeling of fulfillment, the feeling of being rich, the feeling of freedom, the feeling of being righteous, the feeling of attachment, etc. Thus Happiness is different for different people in this material realm.
The real happiness is that feeling of being reconnected to God. God is unlimited, endless bliss. So if we connect ourselves to that infinite bliss, our happiness keeps magnifying moment by moment.
Take a moment right now and experience that magnifying happiness by connecting yourself to God through mantra meditation!
6 Fills One With Content And Satisfaction
We are all desirous of these 5 stars of satisfaction. Is it not?
The satisfaction comes when our actions completely resonate with our being. one may get little satisfaction here and there but that satisfaction and fulfillment do not last long.
Our innate nature, as a child of God, is to serve. We are serving someone or the other in this world, in one way or the other, mostly with a selfish motive. We cannot avoid serving others.
The moment one deletes the selfishness aspect from the service platform, that moment one experiences a real sense of satisfaction. One has to only change the perspective and continue serving. This is the gift of mantra meditation.
7 Makes One Selfless To Spread The Happiness To All
Here is the biggest benefit of mantra meditation!
One learns to be selfless and happy all the time, no matter what situation one is in. Mantra meditation brings in that balance, peace, and joy.
Then one realizes the importance and urgency of sharing the contagious happiness which is within oneself. How would one share it? By teaching the process of attaining happiness to others. As we know 'Systems Work, People Fail', whoever implements the system for happiness, they are assured of abundant happiness. And what is that system?
In conclusion, there is no better process than mantra meditation for becoming HAPPY. Because mantra meditation is easier to implement, faster in achieving results.
And the best part of mantra meditation is there are no hard and fast rules to chant Vishnu's mantras. One can utter the mantras anywhere and everywhere while doing anything like eating, sleeping, bathing, cleaning, working, etc.
So my dear readers, what are you waiting for? Start your mantra meditation today...