Every Fall and Spring, I hear the sounds of allergy season. It has hit us all hard this year but especially our daughter, Anya. It feels like a pressure in the head that will NEVER go away which makes sleeping hard. And then the next day you are groggy and unfocused.
What to do?? Of course, there are over the counter medications and I am not poo pooing their usefulness but the sister science to yoga called Ayurveda tells us that these symptoms point to an imbalance within our bodies and minds.
Think about ALL you have accumulated….ALL you have stored in your body and mind. Any fear that has not been expressed gets stored in your body and mind.
And energy needs to move.
If we carry or deny fear for example, it can turn into panic or paranoia. If we let it move through us, it becomes an energy that can help us heal and grow.
How can we open to, express and move through our feelings?
Mantra can be a healing tool! Sound on breath gives voice and movement to emotions, even ones triggered by trauma which allows us to experience, release and transform.
Ok...cool but HOW is this done??
There are actually a number of ways to use mantra for healing.One system would have you identify your needs by which element (Earth, Water, Fire, Air, Ether) may help you find balance, or by which location in your body needs healing or to identify how you feel contracted and then utilize a specific mantra to address this issue.
For example, if you feel nervous and ungrounded, you could use the seed syllable, Laṃ, to invoke the earth energy.
Laṃ, Laṃ , Laṃ.
If you feel stuck in an endeavor or feeling, you could chant to the energy of Ganesha to unblock your path. Another way to think about this is that you chant to remind yourself that YOU can unblock your path.
Om Gaṃ Gaṇeshāya Namaha
If you are feeling unsure of yourself, chant to the goddess of courage and fierce action that will lead you to take a bold step forward.
Om Duṃ Dūrgāyai Namaha
If we follow in this path we may have wonderful results but if we approach mantra for healing as purly prescriptive, we will only touch a small part of its healing potential.
Another way to access the healing potential of mantra is to offer your energy or emotion up in order to surrender to grace. This is very powerful. Instead of trying to manipulate your way to an outcome, you funnel all of you, all of the emotion as an offering to be transmuted into healing, not just for yourself but for others as well.
You make whatever mantra that resonates with you an offering to your highest ideal of the Divine. You begin to heal this relationship between you and your highest self as well as you and the Universal.
One day, while driving in the car with my daughter, an argumemnt ensued. We were late for something and tensions were high. There was a mantra playing on the car stereo and we spontaneously started chanting to it. Within a few minutes, I could understand why I was reacting this way and that I had the freedom to choose a different way of being.
And in that moment, I chose a more powerful way to be with my daughter. It was the merging of effort and surrendering to grace through sound.
Looking forward to sharing more mantra for healing with you as I have a really special offering coming up with my mentor and highly esteemed mantra and spiritual teacher, Russill Paul. More to come!!
For now, enjoy this practice with the simple but profound sound Om or AUM!