The scientific use of sound to affect consciousness is called Mantra Yoga. Next to breathing, the use of Mantra is one of the more important aspects in the practices of Shivakti Tantra Yoga.
"Man" means mind, "TRA" means to tune the vibration (just as one tunes the keys of a guitar or a piano). Mantra is the sound current which tunes and controls mental vibrations. 'Mantra', the mental vibration to the infinite mind, is the direct connection between you & God, it is your personal broadcast.
In addition to the vibrations set in motion, something else happens when you chant. There are eighty-four meridian points, or pressure points in the roof of the mouth. Every time you speak, you stimulate them with your tongue. By stimulating these pressure points on the upper palate in a particular sequence, using the right access code, you affect the chemistry of the brain in a desired manner.
A mantra is a tool for reflection and the cultivation of awareness, and is used for both concentration and contemplation on the Source.
Within yoga, mantras are based upon sounds that reflect the energy of our divine nature. Om is considered to be the universal, consummate mantra.
Yoga teaches us that a mantra is a sound form of the Divine. It’s a sound form of the Great Consciousness. Different mantras relate to different aspects of the Great Consciousness, which are often expressed in the form of deities.
These sound forms are the subtlest in the world and also one of the most powerful ways to invoke the divine aspect of your own Self.
There are particular mantras that invoke different aspects of the divine feminine, or the goddesses of the yogic pantheon, and you can use these mantras and their corresponding goddess presences to bring great things into your life.
“Shreem” evokes the presence of the goddess Lakshmi, an aspect of the Divine Feminine who represents the power of auspiciousness, harmony and abundance. She is said to bring both material and spiritual wealth and prosperity.
If you have never practiced mantra meditation before, the process of reciting a mantra may appear rather mechanical. But the repetition of a mantra is anything but robotic. With regular practice you will find that japa practice will lead you to a much deeper understanding of yourself as you encounter new layers of your mind. Wants and hopes, duties and obligations, ideals and aspirations surface in your awareness. From meditation to meditation, life unfolds under your inner gaze, asking you to witness it in its entirety.
A mantra serves as a kind of centering device during this process. It offers a resting place for the everyday mind. It collects distracting energies. It brings spiritual insights forward, so that you can integrate them into daily life. Just as great music transforms a listener, a mantra gradually lifts and transforms your mind.
It can be noted that a mantra can be any word, phrase, or sound. The following mantras may help you get started:
- Om Gam Ganapati Namaha (We call in Ganesha, the remover of obstacles.)
- Om Namah Shivaya (I bow to Shiva)
- Om Parvatiyai Namaha
- Om Para Deviyai Namaha
- Om Shanti (Om Peace)
- Om Mani Padme Hum (‘Hail the Jewel in the Lotus’)
- Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo (I bow to the Creative Wisdom. I bow to the Divine Teacher Within.)
- Ek Ong Kar, Sat Nam Siri, Wahe Guru (There is one Creator whose name is Truth. Great is the ecstasy of that Supreme Wisdom!)
- Hare Krishna (divine praise)
- A-ham Prema (I am divine love)
(‘I love you; I’m sorry; please forgive me; thank you.’)
- Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu (May all beings everywhere be happy and free.)
- I am embodied
- I am pure peace
- I am Divine Bliss
- I am that I am
- I am a part of the infinite I am
- I am powerful
- I am Holy Love
You can recite these mantras (or whatever feels right in the moment) silently to yourself as you breathe, or you can say them out loud to charge them with even more powerful energy.
What is Sri Vidya and what is the benefit of Sri Vidya or practicing Sri Vidya? From the perspective of the Science of Mantras, there are two kinds of mantras. There are mantras of Devi (feminine energy) and there are mantras of masculine energy. Within those energies, there are further three types. The mantras of Devi are called Vidyas. When there is a mantra of a Devi, it means vidya. A good mantra of a Devi will always have a seed syllable. When there is seed syllable in a mantra, then it is like sowing a seed. That seed is going to go inside you, in your consciousness and sprout and make you a worthy recipient of the grace of the deity of the mantra. Every mantra has a deity: an owner of the mantra. If I were to look at Devi’s physical form for example, that is her visual aspect. But her sonic aspect, the aspect of sound, if I were to represent a Devi by sound, I will use her mantra. For example if you have a phone number of a person and you call that number and you get straight through to that person. Similarly, a mantra is the number of that God or Goddess. Through a mantra, you get through to that energy.
Sri means Devi, the primal mother, the first mother, the empress. She is Sri Mata, the mother goddess. Sri means somebody whose refuge you can seek. You can never seek a refuge of a weak person. You can only seek refuge in a strong person.