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How are mantras like affirmations?

Posted by Lisa on March 13, 2017 at 1:00 PM

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Are mantras and affirmations one and the same? They are very similar. In the yoga tradition a mantra is in the language of Sanskrit, this highly charged language of the spirit. There are many styles of chanting that use Sanskrit. It is a language of energy or prana. It is a language that builds life force energy as you speak it. Mantras can serve to connect you to the cosmos, different spiritual planes of existance and ultimately to God or the Divine. This is especially true of the Vedic style of chanting. The chanting of Vedic scripture or the words of the Upanishads. There is Bhakti chanting that is primarily concerned with total surrender to God. To offer up all you are, all of your love to the divine. Then, there is Tantric chanting. This style of chanting is the most like using affirmations to me. Here one syllable sounds are often used that are repeated over and over. When we do this, we are affirming this quality of energy that are already within us that we want to uncover. Thus, we become bathed in that energy. When we go out into the world, we are resonating with that energy and more of that energy is drawn to us. You can also do this with words in English, like affirmations.

 

Hold your heart and repeat, "I am love" or to embrace your power say "I am powerful." It is really endless. To keep yourself in the magic of the moment, you can say, "I am here." Give yourself a time frame with which to bask in these words. Let them hit your heart and feel their presence.

 

This type of practice using English can compliment your mantra practie using Sanskrit. The English can bring you within and open your heart, the Sanskrit can connect you to all there is and to the Divine.

 

Try this simple practice: Repeat an affirmation of your choosing for 5 minutes and then the mantra Om Gam Ganeshaya Namaha for 5 minutes. Do this in the morning and also in the evening before bed.  Or use Sanskrit first and then English. Experiment for yourself. Then, find a pattern and try it for a while, at least a week or set a goal for 2 weeks or a month, possibly 40 days!

 

Please met me know any feedback from your practice! Namaste!


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