Mantra meditation is meditation on a phrase, idea, or word. The word can be anything that means something to the meditator. Some mantras include god's names, or sanskrit words; but it can also be anything such as "love" and "peace" or something similar. Some common mantras include:
- OM (Aum)
- So'ham (so-haum)
- ram (raum)
- vam (vaum)
- ham (haum)
Although these are common mantras, mantras, can be anything you want them to be; not matter how long or short it is.
Mantra meditation is simple (as are most meditation techniques). Get into a comfortable position, relax your body, and then repeat your mantra.
There are several ways you can repeat your mantra.
One way is to repeat it out loud. If the mantra is one syllable long (such as OM), then you can breath in, and then breath out the mantra. If it is two syllables (such as So-ham), you can breath in and say one half (soooooo...) and then breath out and say the other half (hhhaaaaauuummmmm.....). If the mantra is more than two syllables, than its really up to you when to breath in and out. The mantra is important to YOU! So say it in whatever way is possible. Once you say it once, then repeat. Sound is very powerful, and the mantra may "strike a cord" with you if it is said out loud. Your mind will focus on the mantra, and will become calm and peaceful.
You do not have to say the mantra out loud if you do not wish to. You can say it in your head. Say it slow in your head, let the meaning come to you. If you want, you can also synchronize it with your breath. Repeat the mantra mentally, and your thoughts will quiet down, your mind and body will relax and be calm as you repeat your mantra.
You can also combine the two above techniques. Start out by saying the mantra out loud, and then slowly, get quieter and quieter, until you are at an inaudible whisper, then continue to repeat it in your mind, and even then get quieter, and quieter, until its nothing. This is a very easy way to relax the body and the mind if you need a de-stressing during the day.
The most important part of mantra meditation is that the phrase is one you choose. You should meditate with it however you want. It is your own meditation.
So do you have a mantra you use? Do you say it aloud or mentally? Comments are welcome :)