Mantra is a practice of praying to a deity 108 times in a row. A round of mala look like a rosary. Doing a mantra practice means picking a deity and chanting 108 times to them a day for 41 days. It’s not a religion…if that’s an issue for you. It’s more like praying to the highest parts of yourself. I’ll explain that a little more later.
I love Mantra. This is why:
1) People have been saying these chants for thousands of years. That’s thousands of years of energy and intention floating around the universe, waiting for you plug in and join the ride.
2) It’s an Easy way to create Ritual in your life. For some of the deities I printed out color photos from the web and say my chants to the paper…and I tell you, in invokes the same feeling as my amazing Ganesh Sandalwood Hand Carved Statue hand carried by my ex-husband from India.
3) It’s quick. If you are in a hurry, you can get around your Mala beads in 5 minutes. If you set a goal to meditate everyday…and if there is a day you don’t want to…you can always make yourself sit for 5 minutes. But you can also get into it and spread out the joy for a half an hour!
4) Gratitude. Because of what I listed in #1, When I sit to chant and take a moment to connect in with all the energy waiting to support my meditation….my heart gets so big. So big it could burst. And since my practice is at 6am….that is one helluva way to start the day!
5) If you are like me and have a hard time sticking to things….a 41 day mantra practice seems like a huge commitment. So when you sit every day and boom….you are at 41 days. There is a sense of accomplishment and again, gratitude for gifting yourself the challenge and a way to prove to yourself that you are dependable and honorable. AND…there is always something beautiful that comes out of your 41 day practice!
6) If you decide to sing your mantra…you are healing and balancing your throat chakra! It’s a special and wonderful side effect!
Let me give you an example of how powerful mantra practice is. Four years ago I started with Ganesh. Ganesh as you may know is the remover of obstacles. He is pretty bad ass. Look him up if you want his whole story. I recommend EVERYONE start with Ganesh….he opens sooo many doors for you.
After 41 days my whole life was different and I didn’t even know it yet. I fell off the wagon and stopped chanting for a while, but suddenly I was feeling a little stifled creatively, so I started 41 days dedicated to Saraswati. She is the goddess of music and art and intellect.
At the end of the 41 days…I didn’t even realize it, but I had written an article for biznik.com entitled….“Do you Suck at Referring?” It happened organically and was fired by a series of insane circumstances that I needed to simply air.
And that article took off like gangbusters. There were almost 8,000 views..in just a few weeks. I had never had anywhere close to 8,000 views of anything I had written previously…
And yes, I attribute that success to my 41 day practice to Saraswati.
But wait…there’s more.
Right now, right this minute…if you start a mantra practice…it’s the most perfect time!
We are entering the deepest part of winter tomorrow. We are at the bottom of the rabbit hole…and we are about to start looking up. We are about to begin our process of coming alive again. Of growing. Tomorrow is SOLSTICE!
And here is energetically what I’m getting at…if you start now…you will be able to use the momentum that’s about to swing to help you rise up towards the light!
The effort becomes more like a group effort. Instead of a lonely slog.
Sounds crazy I know….it’s the same with an exercise routine. Start the thing you’ve been meaning to start TODAY and watch it bloom as the season blooms. Start slowly today, then when leaves start popping out on the trees and the light returns you will have a strength that’s been brewing. You will have energy that’s available. You will have a running start.
Same with meditation. If you start right now then as the days lengthen you will increase your ability to call in everything you desire in your life!
And in case you have forgotten, all you need is all around you. We are the ones that get in our own way. And I know that’s really hard to hear when life seems to keep throwing punches instead of chocolates…but find a way to change your relationship to it, and life changes.
Look at all the studies of inmates finding meditation and changing their lives inside prision. Have you ever read The Sun magazine. There are always the most beautiful letters written by inmates in there…it’s amazing what changing your mind can do!
These deities are simply reminders of the parts of ourselves that we have forgotten, or never believed in. That’s what makes mantra so powerful. When we wake up to our potential, really call it in…magic does step forth.
Need help starting?
Here’s a beginners quick start manual:
Buy a round of mala beads or simply put 108 paper clips in front of you so you can move one over every time you chant.
Decide who you want to dedicate your practice to, I of course recommend Ganesh. (The mantra for him is: Om Gam Gana-pa-ta-ye Namaha. You can goggle it and even find someone chanting it 108 times and simply follow along!)
Pick a time you will meditate every day. I have two times in case I miss my morning time…then I know when I’m definitely doing it at night…a fail safe!
If you want to print a photo of the deity you are chanting to…it can be a great idea to keep you focused. I also put offerings around the photo…it’s generous and lovely! When I’m trying to build business I put a stack of $20′s in front of Lakshmi and some of my gold jewelry and my business cards! Like breeds like!
Finally, and in the immortal words of Nike….Just do it!
Oh, and have fun.
When I’m singing my heart out I lose track of time, I move my body (kinda like car dancing) and I feel amazing. You will too!
And of course, if you want more information we can discuss all of this at your next session.
Good luck and enjoy!
Om namaha shivah!