The word ‘mantra’ is Sanskrit and it means sacred syllable(s) or sacred word(s). Mantras are vibrational formulas that are recited silently within, spoken, or sung outwardly. There are mantras in Sanskrit as well as in many other Asian languages. The word OM is a mantra unto itself and perhaps the most well-known of them all.
Indigenous tribes around the globe have been known to formulate sacred syllables and words. Shamans and holy men have used these for centuries in Native American cultures as did the Polynesian people, the Australian aborigines and the Mayans and Incas.
Listening to mantras not only make us feel at peace but also have the power to quite literally transform our lives by lifting us towards a higher consciousness. The human voice is actually one of the most powerful sounds we can hear and has the ability for transformation and healing. Chanting mantras is both therapeutic and healing for us and is therefore an extremely important tool in our quest for a better life.
Sanskrit mantras are energy-based sounds that have the power to vibrate and resonate throughout the entire body. The mantras are not just sounds; they are sound vibrations which hold the energy of the word. They form a connection between prana, the mind and the senses. Prana is the universal principle of energy or force and is the sum total of all the energy that is palpable within the universe, including all the forces in nature and the powers which are hidden in mankind and lie everywhere around us. Prana is the vital force which allows us to speak and our breath is the fundamental force which carries that prana. Any sound requires breath and prana is the energy behind every piece of speech. Speech is the verbalisation of our thoughts and links all our senses.
The same thing applies to mantra chanting. Mantras have the power to vibrate energy at certain frequencies and ranges, and therefore to demagnetize the body. Sound travels five times more efficiently through water than through air, and as the human body is comprised of more than 70% water, it is therefore an excellent conductor for both sound and vibration. Mantras exemplify the transformative power of sound.
The most important of all mantras is Om. “Om is the primordial throb of the universe. It is the sound form of Atma (Consciousness).” Maitri Upanishad.
The sacred pronouncements or chanting of Sanskrit Mantras gives us the power to achieve our goals and to elevate ourselves from the ordinary and on toward the higher levels of consciousness. It allows us to attain a blissful state of liberation and freedom.
Below, I have selected 8 of my favourite mantras that have transformed my life spiritually and musically in such an artful manner. They are sang by such heartfelt angelic voices, and come from a range of Eastern religions. To me, anyone can use mantras as tools for personal progress, especially when they are rearranged like they are below. Ultimately you will find that each mantra, though from a language or religion you may not understand, leads to the same source of love and peace. Enter your email here (dr-foo.com/newsletter) and I will send you a download link to my favourite transformative mantras (and music) below.
1. Snatam Kaur – Ek Ong Kar
Read more about this beautiful mantra here, and how it can help you.
2. Snatam Kaur – Aakhan Jor
Beautiful, emotional mantra for ego busting. I listened to this non stop when I was in India. Read more here.
3. Snatam Kaur – Suni Ai
Listen to the sound of Creation,primal voice of the universe,
bring healing of heart and soul
Listening,beings of the spiritual heart,
to the Cosmic call, of the universe of love.
Listening, Earth, and the holistic experience of dreams.
Listening, nature and beings of the world,
to the voice of the inner Universe,the core of being.
Listening, the infinite spirit in the cosmic paradise of Creation,
whisper forever in bliss.
Listening,all suffering will be erased.
Listen to the light of love,we are one(♥)
4. Imee Ooi – Heart Sutra (Sanskrit)
This is Imee Ooi’s breakthrough ‘hit’, such that temples, sacred places all over the world have ripped it off to be played. There are many interpretations of this Buddhist Heart Sutra that can be found online. But to me, I feel supreme harmony and bliss when she breaks into this. And there is something special about the Sanskrit language for sure.
5. Imee Ooi – Om Mani Padme Hum
Again, Imee does all Buddhist mantras beautifully, in a way accessible to all. Read more about the meaning of the mantra here.
6. Imee Ooi – The Dharani of Sri Devi (Sanskrit)
One of the first mantras from Imee Ooi that I feel in love with. Beautiful voice. Read more about the meaning of this mantra here
7. Imee Ooi – Medicine Buddha Dharani (Bhaisajyaguru)
Stunningly soothing mantra for healing. Read more here
8. Gayatri Mantra
The Gayatri mantra is one of the oldest and most powerful of Sanskrit mantras. It is believed that by chanting the Gayatri mantra and firmly establishing it in the mind, if you carry on your life and do the work that is ordained for you, your life will be full of happiness.
9. Dr Foo Live Mantra Set
This is special live set of mantras featuring some of the above listed mantras plus world music and electronic (progressive music) that I concocted live, specially at the Zsofi Tapas Bar rooftop (where I play every 2 weeks). This is free for download, and you can listen to it whenever you are stressed or in need of higher connections, inspiration. Sign up for the Dr Foo Newsletter to get event updates too.
What are some of your favourite mantras and how have they helped you? Share them in the comments below or via Facebook
Sources for Mantra explanations: