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Mantra meditation – Wildmind

Introduction to and Historical past of Mantra Meditation

Mantras are phrases or phrases which are chanted out loud or internally as objects of meditation. Usually these mantras are related to explicit Buddhist figures, whose qualities will be cultivated by the repetition of the related mantra.

Mantra meditation predates Buddhism, in all probability by tons of of years. The origins of mantras return at the least to the Vedic custom that preceded the Buddha, the place mantras have been used as incantations to affect, and even to manage, the gods.

On this part of our website, you possibly can discover how we outline mantra meditation, be taught how mantra meditation works, and skim concerning the numerous figures that mantras are related to and what their mantras imply.

All through historical past, cultures have believed within the sacred energy of phrases. They’ve believed that uttering sure phrases or names might management the exterior world, or management the unseen forces, like gods or spirits, that they believed acted upon the world. We will see that within the English phrase “spell”, which may imply merely to place letters collectively to make phrases, or to make use of phrases with a purpose to management the world via magic.

All through historical past, cultures have believed within the sacred energy of phrases…

The phrases grammar and glamour have the identical authentic meanings. Gramma-techne was the Greek time period for the science or artwork of letters. This got here into English because the phrase grammar, but in addition got here in Scots (as “glammer”) to imply “to forged a spell upon” — to make use of the science and artwork of letter magically with a purpose to enchant. The phrase glammer was anglicized as glamour, and got here to have its extra modern romantic and aesthetic associations, the place somebody is ready to affect us, not by the ability of their phrases, however by the fantastic thing about their look. So the English language comprises fossilized notions that phrases can have magical powers.

The phrase “enchant” is one other phrase that implies a connection between phrases — chanting — and influencing others.

This perception is the ability of language was significantly sturdy when it got here to the phrases that we name names. In historical India it was believed that should you knew the true names of the gods, then you could possibly name upon them and compel them to do your bidding.

Most of us nonetheless, it appears, have a lingering perception within the particular nature of names. Think about how you’ll really feel should you found that somebody had written your identify of a chunk of paper, put it in the bathroom bowl earlier than utilizing the lavatory, after which flushed your identify away. Or take into consideration how hurtful it may be if somebody makes enjoyable of your identify.

Though early Buddhism used chanting as a way of observe, and used the recitation of verses as a approach of cultivating an consciousness of the qualities of the Buddha (Buddhanusati), using mantras doesn’t appear to have come into Buddhism till the rise of the Mahayana traditions, which integrated components of the non-Buddhist method to spirituality generally known as “Tantra.”

Tantra made intensive use of mantras as methods of communing with and influencing the gods, and Buddhism co-opted this technique as a approach of getting in contact with the qualities of enlightenment. The Mahayana had already developed a “pantheon” of symbolical figures in human kind to characterize the variety of the enlightened state. Given the shut contact with the Tantric traditions, it was pure that these archetypal Buddhas and Bodhisattvas got here to be related to explicit syllables and mantras.

It was believed that should you knew the true names of the gods, then you could possibly name upon them and compel them to do your bidding.

Mantras are discovered within the Japanese Buddhist Nichiren custom, the place the recitation of Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō (Hommage to the White Lotus Sutra) is the principle observe, and within the Japanese Shingon custom. Within the Japanese Pure Land custom, the mantra Namu Amida Butsu (Homage to Amitabha Buddha) is a key observe. Variations of this mantra are present in Vietnam, Korea, and China.

Strictly talking, there are not any mantras within the Buddhist Theravadin custom, though there’s a lot chanting. Chants of lovingkindness, akin to Sabbe Satta Sukhi Hontu (could all beings be completely satisfied), and chants of safety and blessing are quite common, and these operate as mindfulness practices in precisely the identical approach as precise mantras.


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