Recently, I have been putting too much energy into my own self chatter as I try to make sense of my life, climate change and other crises that the world faces at this critical stage in the earth’s history. I have been able to understand different aspects of my life and my personality as I exist in this historical fragment. However, sometimes my thoughts become too much to handle, and I need to turn down the volume.
Thoughts are physical manifestations of the mind. Just as a guitar uses strings to produce sound waves, the brain uses nerves to produce thoughts. However, the mind and the brain (they are separate) can either play harmonious melodies if they are in tune or a raucous cacophony when out of tune.
One method that I use to condition my mind is to chant a mantra using vowel sounds. Vowel sounds are universal human sounds that are embedded in our space-time reality as harmonious constants. We can harmonize with these constants and condition our minds and bodies by chanting them out loud or even in our heads if necessary. When you chant vowel sounds the sound waves reverberate throughout your body. The cells in your body begin to adhere to the harmonious sounds individually and collectively in systems such as your central nervous system. Once your cells are vibrating harmoniously it sends a positive feedback loop to your brain that then sends more positive thoughts to your cells.
These are the objective effects of chanting. The subjective and unconscious effects of chanting mantras are noticeable in the conditions of your life and the quality of your perceptions. You may perceive more beauty in your daily life. Or have a better experience at work. Your personal relationships may experience more harmony. Or you may have more vivid dreams. The possibilities are infinite.
I titled this post “Mantras for Manifestation,” mostly to get your attention. However, I hope that I made it clear how a vibrational sound wave from your vocal cords actually manifests a new condition in your awareness. It is possible that harmonious mental and physical states will lead to greater prosperity, but there is a lot more to life than material goods. When we can focus on getting our emotional needs met without the use of material objects we feel more fulfilled and happy than we would if we attempt to satisfy those needs by buying something new.
I want to share with you one mantra that I use to harmonize myself on four levels. Before I chant, I remind myself to subdue my ego in order to stay connected to the universe. If it’s a sunny day and I’m outside I like to chant with the sun hitting my third-eye. This really amplifies the effects of chanting.
The mantra goes, Maat Ra Ma Om.
Maat was an Ancient Egyptian principle that represented harmony between human society and natural laws. The Egyptians deified the principle through the goddess Maat. I believe that their devotion to Maat was a major reason that their civilization lasted thousands of years in prosperity. Maat held their society together by promoting moral behavior by villagers and pharaohs alike. I don’t have a source to show you now, but they must have extended this philosophy to nature. They could have suffered a calamitous event such as a famine, outbreak of disease, or enemy invasion on mere chance alone. Yet they persisted for 4,000 years or more. They must have known that they had to give more to nature than they took from her in order to continue to reap her rewards. Knowing this fact is why I use Maat in my mantra.
Ma is the sound of the earth, and it’s also why we call our mother “mama”. It represents the feminine creative force.
Both of these sounds contain a long Ah sound, which was the first sound of creation at the moment of the Big Bang according to several traditions such as the Yogis, Tibetans, and Egyptians.
Om is the sound nature (the universe) makes when it is in harmony with itself. Om actually consists of the sounds Ah-Ooh-Ma, which is why you will also see it written as AUM. The first sound being Ah.
As I chant, I consciously and subconsciously know that I am harmonizing my mind, body and soul with human wellbeing, the sun, the earth and the universe as a whole. The mantra reminds me that the best way to create is not from my ego’s desires but from the higher awareness that I am a small part of a larger whole that is continuously evolving.