Question from Email about OM
- XXX wrote:
Hello, does the regular chanting of OM take away the need to chant
any more mantras? There are so many hundereds out there but I would
like to chant an all inclusive one. Thank you.
I think that the technique found in the Archive section of our web
site, Meditation #44 OM, explains this nicely. Here it is:
Every vibration has a corresponding sound and everything in the
universe has a vibration and thus a sound. Each atom, molecule, cell,
object, group of objects, even the entire universe, has its own
collection of vibrations and unique sound.
When you chant a mantra, you merge with the sound vibration and become
at one with the energy wavelength of the object of your mantra. Mantra
chanting makes you at one with everyone, everywhere who is chanting
that mantra and with everyone who has ever chanted the mantra. All the
saints who have ever reached enlightenment through the technique of
chanting that mantra connect with you as you connect with the
vibration of the mantra. You merge with their essence which has been
purified and is holy and you become pure and holy because that divine
level of existence vibrates only with holiness, peace, and bliss.
By chanting a mantra, your cells, molecules, atoms, and sub-atomic
particles all vibrate in the same wavelength as the mantra. Once
attuned with this vibration you connect with everything resonating on
that plane of existence. It's like tuning a radio. At first you
get static, but once you are in the right frequency your reception is
perfect. Om is the universal sound. It is within every word and within
everything. So when you chant Om, you merge with all energy and all
forms, from the sub-atomic to the universal, from the most gross to
the most divine. And when you are tuned in perfectly, you will receive
holy frequencies clearly and merge and emerge at one with the source
of all and live happily ever after.
Many meditation teachers suggest that it is necessary to understand
every intellectual aspect of the meaning of the mantra that is being
practiced, but just as many others feel that the intellect may tend to
confuse and hold back spiritual progress. What both types of teachers
agree on is that mantras have the potential to take practitioners to
the level of consciousness that transcends the limitations of the mind
by a billion-fold. There is an ancient tale that very well shows that
true devotion and complete absorption are the key:
Once upon a time in a land far away lived a poor uneducated, mentally
challenged man who tended a herd of cows for his master. He happened
upon a meditation teacher and was very taken with his calm, loving,
gentle and happy nature. He decided he wanted to know that experience
first hand. And so he went to the teacher and begged him to teach him
a way to achieve the inner peace that radiated so obviously from the
teacher. The teacher accepted him as his student but quickly found
that the man couldn't understand any of the philosophical points
was making and as a matter of fact couldn't even remember the
Om when he tried to teach it to him. The teacher lovingly said, "My oh
my, you don't seem to know anything at all, can't be taught,
remember anything. You are devoted and sincere in your desire to gain
happiness though, so I will try to help you. My son, what do you
know?" The man said, "Oh great teacher, the only thing I know is cows.
All my life I've spent caring for cows, making sure they graze,
milked, and are kept clean. Yes, for me, everything is cows." "Well,
that's alright," said the teacher, "then you know what sound the
make." "Oh yes," said the man, "they say moo." "Very well then," said
the teacher, "for you, moo will be your mantra. All you have to do is
say moo continually and you will reach freedom from suffering and know
real bliss." So the man chanted moo, moo, moo when he took the cows
out to graze and he chanted moo, moo, moo when he milked them, and he
chanted moo, moo, moo when he cleaned them. He chanted moo all the
time and very soon merged with that vibration, which is Om backward,
and reached the highest heights of joyous understanding and lived
happily ever after.
From this story, we learn that it is virtually impossible to chant Om
"wrong". It is, after all, an insentient sound. But the giver of this
sound to the universe knows the intention and devotion of the
practitioner and that is by what we will be rewarded. It is said that
one minute of sincere chanting is superior to a thousand hours of mere
sounding of the words. A parrot can be taught to recite a mantra but
this will be just mere vibrations in the air. It is the love and
worship behind the sound that counts. Technically though, there is a
"correct" way to chant Om. It is made up of three letters: A, U, M.
These contain all the sounds there are. The A is guttural and comes
from the throat. It is pronounced without any part of the tongue or
palate in contact. The U sound comes from the middle of the sounding
board, the palate. In Sanskrit, the A and U join together to become O.
The O sound is vibrated from the navel/ solar plexus area and sent up
to the sternum to the voice region, the lips, where the M sound is
prolonged and vibrated up to the crown of the head. This vibrating M
is felt in every cell of the body and is beamed out lovingly,
soothingly, powerfully, to everything, everyone, everywhere.
Intellectually and metaphysically, A stands for the physical world
perceptible to the senses, the material world. U represents the astral
and dream planes, heaven and hell. M is the unknown, deep sleep, and
that which is unfathomable to the intellect. Thus Om contains the
entire spectrum of sound, words, worlds, and concepts. Om represents
the source of all light, love, and wisdom.
There are three ways to do mantras - aloud, silently but while
mouthing or humming the mantra, and completely silently within
oneself. When done aloud and particularly when done with others, the
sound of Om is energizing, calming, and healing. Although it is often
encouraged to do your mantra all the time, it would certainly be
questionable to consider chanting Om aloud in the middle of a board
meeting. Similarly, it may be preferable to do Om silently just by
moving your lips if you are in a movie theater. Chanting Om completely
silently is considered the most potent method because it is not
dependent on having a human voice box, or lips, or facial muscles, all
of which are temporary manifestations compared to the billions of
years you will be fully at one with Om. It is advantageous to
spiritual development to consider the theological, philosophical and
mystical aspects of Om while chanting with your physical eyes closed,
looking through the third eye, and paying attention to your breath.
This may seem complex and complicated, but once in synch, it happens
naturally as Om reveals itself, your Real Self, to you.
I hope this helps!