Posts Tagged ‘how to meditate’

What is a mantra?

Wednesday, April 29th, 2015

A mantra is a tool for protecting the mind from the habitual, unconscious cycles of thought and action we get caught up in. In ancient Vedic philosophy, these imprints on our subconscious mind are known as samskaras.

These impressions that get stored in our mind through cultural conditioning and past experience directly impact how we perceive our conscious experience in the present. Mantras are ancient techniques that we can use to protect our mind from getting stuck in the bottomless well of samskaras. The sounds themselves, even before they are assigned meaning, resonate in different parts of the body and mind, increasing sensory awareness.

The first mantra that you have been exposed to is most likely Om (Aum). It is a universal mantra and the primordial sound of nature. The A (pronounced Ah) resonates in the lower part of the body, the O in the middle part, and the M (pronounced Mmm) in the upper region. The vibrations of OM evoke movements of energy, beginning at the base of the spine and moving upwards to the crown of the head. For the spiritual seeker interested in ancient literature, the Mandukya Upanishad elucidates the syllable of OM and its four states of consciousness.

Mantra recitation guides the practitioner in finding their sacred inner sound – the internal music that has had the volume turned down. Sanskrit scholar Nicolai Bachman explains that Sanskrit originated as the language of mantra and that each mantra has specific or general effects on oneself, others and the world. When pronounced properly, this scared sound energy intimately connects the individual with nature. Swami Sivananda has taught that a mantra practice transforms the mental substance by producing a particular thought movement. According to him, these rhythmical vibrations regulate the unsteady vibrations of the five koshas (sheaths or layers). The koshas are believed to veil our inner Self. Meditation and mantra practice allow the practitioner to peel away the layers, diving deeper into the core of our being.

Daily practice of mantra meditation will make one centered in the core sheath. Developing a japa (mantra repetition) practice with the use of mala beads can take the practitioner into higher states of meditation. As we delve deeper, we use the mantra as a sanctuary that houses the source of power to manifest our intention. When we work with the sound energy of Sanskrit mantras, we tap into an ancient practice that has been performed for thousands of years as an expression of the pattern of nature.

~ Mihir Garudmt

Time to spread your wings

Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013

Astrology Soul Coach
Cosmic Dance for December 2013
This past week I spotted a Bald Eagle perched in the highest branches of one of the tallest trees in the area. Although there are a few around, this is a rare sighting in an urban area in this part of the country. Animals are messengers and this one carries a message very pertinent to the last month of 2013. “Time to spread your wings” seems like an obvious choice, but I don’t think that’s it. As we look forward to December and the first 6 months of 2014 we’re looking at two important retrograde cycles, the first by Venus, the planet of love from December 21st through January 31st and the second by Mars, the planet of action March through May.

The Eagle’s Message is about being patient, finding a higher vantage point from which to view life and embracing a larger perspective. Venus is associated with what we love and value in life – often a proxy for intimate relationships – but actually much more encompassing. Venus has been traveling through the practical and committed sign of Capricorn since November and will continue through the first week of March. During the retrograde pattern, in which from our perspective on earth Venus will appear to be moving backwards, we will revisit some old relationships and maybe even do some evaluation of currents ones. We might also give more thought to how we earn, invest and spend money. Retrogrades are times for reviewing previous choices and decisions and coming to greater clarity.

Relationships will continue to take center stage in the first half of 2014 with Mars moving through Libra, the sign of partnership. December is a good time for honest reflection about our goals – generally, financially and concerning love. Focus not on action but on improving the clarity of your perception.

Quote of the month: “The moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease for ever to be able to do it.” (J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan)

C.A. Brooks is a clairvoyant astrologer, writer, speaker and coach
You can find her at 12Listen.com and read her weekly astrology column in Mark’s Power Peek at 12House.com. She hosts a daily radio show “A Course in Miracles Daily Lessons” on 12Radio.com at 7am Pacific – 10 Eastern. You can also tune into her weekly Astrology radio program, Simpletales, on 12Radio.com every Tuesday 11am Pacific – 2 Eastern.
ca@cabrooks.com
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