Most of us are familiar with the word, Mantra. The definition from the Vedas is,

మననాత్ త్రాయతే ఇతి మంత్రహ

Mantra is that which protects the person chanting it

There are several ways to meditate on and experience the power of a mantra. Do you want to know the difference between these methods? Here’s a shocker for you: The easiest way amongst these ways is the least followed path! Why is that? We all are used to believing that: the harder you make a task, the higher is the benefit from it! But, that is not necessarily true.

Would like to share with you all, a Compare and Contrast of two methods of meditating upon a Mantra.

Mantra Japam –Shabda Shakti
[Meditation based on sound of the Mantra]
         Mantra Ardha Anusandhanam – Ardha Shakti
[Meditation based on meaning of the Mantra]
Focus is on the count of the chant that works with your mindFocus is on the qualities of God that captivates your heart
Demands a certain procedure and restrictionsRight practises are automatically followed because of devotion/love imbibed in one’s heart
The impact or the experience of the mantra goes down after a whileLifestyle in entirety aligns with love for God, every activity becomes a service thereby meditation continues throughout the day

Purvacharyas always recommend ‘Meditation based on meaning of the Mantra’. One needs to adopt a mantra that conveys the knowledge of God and the self as defined by our purvacharvas in agreement with Vedas. Meaning of the mantra (o:m and its elaborated Narayana mantra) reveals the reason for our existence stating that the soul belongs ONLY to God. When one understands this statement, there can be questions such as: Why, How etc. To help one understand further, the entire Vedic literature tries to take several examples. Ithihasas and Puranas also came forward trying to explain the same. Ramayana talks about qualities of the soul (Seetha) and God (Rama).

The bond between God and Soul is inseparable – like the light from the rays of the Sun and the Sun. The light from the rays of Sun and the Sun are different from each other. But they are never away from each other. Similarly, soul exists as a belonging of God and is never separate from Him. What is God like? His form, his qualities are all the aspects that one can learn from a Guru and begin meditating based on all this expanded knowledge of the mantra!

– From the discourse of Sri Chinna Jeeyar Swamiji, Dhanurmasam, Morning Session

For beautiful explanation of the mantra and ways to meditate from Swamiji, listen in at JETWORLD YouTube channel here (05-01-2019, Morning session of Dhanurmasam Videos)!