Mantra yoga and mantra consecration: meaning and technique
In the first part on the subject of mantra, you learned some interesting information about mantra, kirtan and satsang and hopefully you were able to take something away with you. In the following blog post you will learn what exactly mantra yoga is and what mantra consecration is all about.
What is mantra yoga?
Mantra yoga is a meditation practice that focuses on the chanting of sacred syllables along with conscious breathing and a meditative focus to quiet the mind, develop spiritual energy, and attain states of enlightenment. The practice of mantra chanting is considered one of the simplest yet most powerful forms of meditation.
Mantra Yoga is the ancient science of sound vibration. It is based on the belief system that everything we do involves a certain type of energy; our thoughts, words, actions and emotions are all part of a larger energetic field called prana or life force. When we think or do something, we send out a surge of energy into the world. When we repeat a mantra over and over, we direct that energy inward, allowing us to tap into our deeper selves and gain greater control over our mind.
What exactly does mantra yoga do?
In mantra yoga, the practitioner repeatedly recites a specific mantra to achieve a deep meditative state. The chanting of these sacred sounds serves to focus the mind on the meaning and vibration of the words. When the practitioner's awareness revolves around the repetition of the sacred sound, its pronunciation and its meaning, a mental energy is created that can be used for spiritual purposes and to connect with the divine.
Usually, the yoga teacher provides a mantra that supports the asanas or flowing sequences. The sun salutation, for example, is very suitable for trying out a mantra yoga flow:
- Om Mitraya Namaha - Starting position: put your hands together in front of your chest
- Om Ravaye Namaha - inhaling, arms up and back
- Om Suryaya Namaha - exhaling, hands beside feet
- Om Bhanave Namaha - inhaling, right leg back
- Om Khagaya Namaha - exhaling, add left leg: support position, hold breath
- OM Pushne Namaha - exhaling, 8-point pose
- Om Hiryanyagharbhaya Namaha - inhaling, into the cobra
- Om Marichaye Namaha - exhaling, into downward facing dog
- Om Adityaya Namaha - Inhaling, place right leg between hands
- Om Savitre Namaha - exhaling, add left leg: forward bend
- Om Arkaya Namaha - inhaling, arms up and back
- Om Bhaskaraya Namaha - exhaling, arms to starting position
The well-known Gayatri Mantra and the Shakti Mantra are also particularly suitable for combining with the Sun Salutation.
Once you have found the perfect rhythm during mantra yoga, the yoga practice becomes a moving meditation that puts you in a so-called flow state: you experience moments of calm and inner peace.
Like prayer or affirmations, repeating a mantra can have powerful effects on the mind, body, spirit and emotions. Mentally, mantra yoga increases concentration and improves memory and focus. On a physical level, Japa meditation lowers heart rate, lowers blood pressure, and activates the relaxation response, stimulating self-healing. It also increases self-confidence and self-empowerment, reduces stress and balances emotions. Spiritually, mantras are said to clear bad karma, bring forth jnana (wisdom) and are considered one of the many yogic paths to self-realization. As always, daily or routine yoga practice is recommended in order to experience the best possible effect.
Mantra-Diksha: The ancient ritual of mantra consecration and its meaning
If you want to deepen your sadhana (spiritual practice) with the help of yoga practices and you want mantras to become an integral part of it, you may sooner or later deal with mantra consecration.
The mantra consecration (also mantra diksha) is an initiation into a specific mantra and activates the inherent power of a mantra - the mantra shakti. Mantra Diksha strengthens the connection to one's own higher self and ultimately also to the divine source. The spiritual power of the mantra is transferred to the yoga student and is intended to accompany him throughout his life and support him on his spiritual path.
In India, for example, mantra meditation is one of the most popular forms of meditation. A majority of people in India who meditate do so with a mantra and have also received a mantra initiation at some point in their lives.
Students learn how to pronounce and recite the mantra correctly and make a pledge to meditate on the mantra for at least 20-30 minutes each day.
Before that, the 6 parts of the mantra are discussed in detail and are part of the initiation. For example, the first part deals with the Rishi, the so-called seer of the mantra, who has experienced enlightenment. With the initiation into the mantra one enters the guru lineage, within which mantras and other spiritual practices are passed on.
How does a mantra consecration work?
On the day of the inauguration, fasting is done and offerings are prepared: donations of money, fruit and flowers. These are then presented on a celebratory plate. The Avahana mantras are the beginning of the ritual, with the help of which one invokes the divine blessing. Then the Guruparampara Shakti is invoked and Achamana, ie purification with purification mantras, is performed so that one and the initiate become very receptive and the blessings of the Divine can flow and be transmitted.
Then three sacred powder substances are applied so that the third eye is opened. This is followed by bowing to the divine and saying the mantra alternately with the initiate so that the pronunciation is properly practiced. Then, together with the initiate, the mantra is repeated aloud and then mentally. During this time the power of the mantra is transmitted. Then bow and meditate for at least 20 minutes.
After the mantra consecration, it is recommended to take your time and approach the next few days calmly. It is therefore always better to do the mantra diksha in an ashram or yoga center in order to isolate yourself from everyday life and integrate the special moment undisturbed and let it sink in.
We hope that we were able to bring you closer to the world of mantras and that you took valuable information with you.
Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu
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