Saturday, 8 February 2014

Mantra Yoga

Every morning in Mandala Yoga Ashram the community comes together to chant with a harmonium and practice meditation. The following chant can open the heart and inspire reflection on the nature of existence.

(I am Shiva, Pure Consciousness)  (Hindi)
Shivo-ham Shivo-ham Shivo-ham Shivo-ham
In Essence I am Consciousness. (4x)
Wahi Atma Satchitananda Mai Hun
I am that same underlying Intelligence which is Reality, Consciousness and peaceful Bliss.
Amara Atma Satchitananda Mai Hun
I am that immortal underlying Intelligence which is Reality, Consciousness and Bliss.
Shivo-ham Shivo-ham Shivo-ham Shivo-ham
In Essence I am Consciousness.
(1) Akhila Vishwa Ka Jo Parama Atma Hai
This underlying Intelligence is the Whole Universe.
Sabhi Praniyo Ka Wahi Atma Hai
All living things are infused by this same underlying Intelligence.
(2) Amara Atma Hai Marana Shila Kaya
This underlying Intelligence is Immortal; but this body is mortal.   
This represents the sentiments of the chant,
the imperishable essence
which cannot be burnt.

Sabhi Praniyo Ke Jo Bhiter Samaya
It is the Inner Being of all living things.
(3) Jise Shastra Kate Na Agni Jalave
That which weapons cannot cut and which fire cannot burn. 
Bujhave Na Pani Na Mrityu Mitave
Water cannot wet It nor death eliminate It.
(4) Hai Taro Sitaro Me Aloka Jisaka
It is the Light in the multitudinous stars.
Hai Chanda Wa Suraj Me Abhasa Jisaka
It is indeed the Light in the Sun and the Moon.
(5) Jo Vyapaka Hai Kan-Kan Me Hai Wasa Jisaka
It pervades every particle of existence.
Nahi Tino Kalo Me Ho Nasha Jisaka
It cannot be destroyed either in the past, present or future.
(6) Ajara Au Amara Jisko Vedo Ne Gaya
It is That which the Vedas have sung about.
Yahi Gyana Arjuna Ko Hari Ne Sunaya
Krishna transmitted knowledge of this underlying Intelligence to Arjuna.

Extracted from the book "Mantra Yoga and Ashram Chants" by Swami Nishchalananda

How We Can Use Mantra to Awaken Awareness

An extract from "Mantra Yoga and Ashram Chants" by Swami Nischalananda

Begin chanting the mantra Om. Your attention is on the sound.
You are absorbed in the vibration, perhaps feeling relaxed or even quite blissful.
Then imagine or feel that there is space inside your head. This is known as the chidakasha (inner space) or mental space, where thoughts, feelings and dreams arise. This inner space is a fact of our existence; to deny it would be to deny our thoughts and feelings. But to bring this inner realm to our attention we have initially to imagine it.
Swamiji teaching on the symbolism of OM
Allow the mantra Om to resonate within this space. Besides the vibration of Om, all kinds of thoughts, feelings and emotions may be arising there. Allow everything to happen, to arise, without any suppression or denial.
The mantra is not us - we are creating the sound pattern known as Om. The thoughts, feelings and visions are not us either - they are expressions of something deeper. Beyond it all there is something that is observing all these things - this ‘something’ we call Awareness, pure Consciousness, the Reality of what we are.
The aim of Yoga practice, including Mantra Yoga, is to establish contact with this Reality. Mantra helps us to do this by gradually over-riding the distractions of the mind - the anxieties, obsessive thoughts and emotions. The vibrations of the mantra create spaciousness in which the constant chatter of the mind evaporates, bringing clarity. In this spaciousness we are more able to relax into a deeper level of our Being. In this state, Awareness can arise, and in time we begin to re-identify ourselves with That. It becomes a constant reminder of our Deeper Nature.