What is mantra

Interview with the Spiritual Master Shri Prakash Ji

In our difficult time, gone under a spell of fashion, people began to practice yoga and chant mantras. Many people think that if they use mantras, they will attract wealth, avoid misfortune, and fulfill theit cherished desires. Is it really so?

What is mantra

- Tell us, dear Teacher, what is a mantra?

- In Sanskrit language there are certain phrases that, if a person repeats them during meditation, help him to achieve the need result. If we translate the word "mantra," it means "what calms the mind." It is its simplest meaning. When a person repeats a mantra regularly, his mind calms down and inner joy arises in his soul.

- You have said that the simplest meaning of the word “mantra“ is calming the mind, but what is its deepest meaning?

- A life a person is living now, and everything that he receives, is his past thoughts, words, and actions. A person lives for many, many lives, and in this life he gets the result of his past thoughts, words, and actions, and do not just vanish, together they make up his karma. Everything that a person has thought, said or done should bring its result. Karma can be of three kinds: thoughts, words, and actions, but an action gives the best karma. When a person is not yet born, his future is already determined. The divine power, the divine law, works so well that all the words, thoughts, and actions of any person do not disappear, they remain in the space as a sound, as a word. We think that once we've said something, thought, done it, it all ends, but nothing really ends. Good thoughts, words, and actions are preserved as a good word, bad things as - a filthy word. It returns to us and gives us its results, joy or sorrow. And when a person receives it, he does not really understand why. It happens that bad things come to a good person, difficult situations, or, on the contrary, something unexpectedly good happens to him - it is his manifested karma from past lives.

- The work of the Divine Law is a great science. A person can make mistakes, but there are no mistakes in how this Law works, everything received by man is necessary for him. In ancient times, when spiritual sages meditated about God, they understood how this Law works and, through their meditations, discovered pure words, mantras, which can help a person to cleanse his negative karma. If a person repeats such a word, the effect of his negative karma will decrease. This is the most important way a mantra works.

- Guruji, now there are many books, in which various mantras can be found: for material prosperity, for health, for a happy family life. Can they be used at one's discretion?

- You can now find many mantras in books, but you need to repeat the mantra you have received from a spiritual person, who has perfected in this mantra and completely understands its meaning. He has seen the power that this mantra posesses, and knows its effects. Any mantra has many meanings, it is not enough just to translate its words. There are even mantras that are absolutely forbidden to be taken from books. When the Master gives you a guru-mantra, he looks at the state of a person, at a level of his soul, at his karma - thoughts, words, and actions, at his whole life situation. There are 24 bij-mantras, they have always been, are, and will be in the Universe. And all people are connected with some bij-mantra. When a person comes to the Master, the Master sees him or her as a soul, not as a man or a woman, rich or poor, he sees the karma of this soul, with what energy this person lives. In his meditation, the Master understands which mantra will help a person, what kind of a bij-mantra should be given in the guru-mantra. And it is this guru-mantra that will lead to the perfection of this person, that will harmonize his life.

- There is so very much power in a mantra, it's impossible even to explain its full meaning with words. Most importantly, when a person receives his initiation and repeats a mantra, then his life is brought to order. Even the one for whom life is very hard, if he regularly repeats a mantra, can see unexpected changes and begin to receive good results. A person might not even understand how these changes come in his life, but the improvements are obvious. Everyone has good karma, and thanks to a mantra, it gradually begins to grow, while negative karma fades away.

- Can chanting a mantra help in a difficult life situation?

- Everyone has some good karma, which is still sleeping. God gave much of it to us all. Someone's good karma wakes up quickly, and someone's is in a deep sleep, because there are many more other karmas that do not allow this good one to wake up. But if a person practices mantra chanting every day, then his good karma will wake up and give its positive result, I can say this for sure. There might be very hard situations in life, a person sometimes comes up to me with such difficulties, that it seems there is no way out, and all the doors are locked for him. And when I share knowledge with him, and a person practices mantra chanting, a way out is finally found, and his life is getting better. For some it was happening quickly, for others it took a few months, depending on how concentrated a person was is performing his sadhana, his spiritual practice. A mantra has a great power to purify, and when negative karma is purified, good one will wake up.

- When I meet with my students, I see at once who does his practice regularly and who does not. If I see correct, regular repetition of a mantra, then this person does not have any complaints. There are some minor difficulties, they always are, but they have no really difficult problems, everything is being solved.

- You have said that a person receives everything by his karma, and that a mantra purifies karma. How much of your destiny can you improve with the help of spiritual practices?

- Everyone gets 100% of their karma, but if a person prays, chants mantras, meditates, practices healthy life style, then almost half of his karma can be fixed (and that's a lot!), but the rest will still be needed to work out. These are the rules of karma. Changing the Divine Law for 100% is too difficult. There were only a few people in history of the earth who had succeeded in it. Those people were very spiritual yogins.

- What is the role of a prayer?

- If a yogin has look at a person, he will see that this person consists of words and various sounds. The whole Universe began with a word, everywhere there is a sound, everywhere there is a word. That is why in all spiritual practices and religions there is a prayer in the form of words. Therefore, people believed that it was necessary to read a prayer well and clearly to purify their own unclean karma.

- Prayer does not need to be in the form of a text, any word that a person sincerely addresses to God can be considered a prayer. The main thing is a clean state of mind at this time. Therefore, it is better to pray after chanting a mantra - when a mantra is pronounced for many times, an inner state of a person becomes purer, and his prayer works better.

- Any prayer gives its result, when it goes from the bottom of your heart. But for cleansing ones karma a prayer is not enough, one needs to constantly monitor his thoughts, words, and actions. When a person controls this, it is a great spiritual practice and the best prayer.

- How do I chant a mantra? Are there any rules for this?

- There are three kinds of mantra chanting: aloud, in a whisper, and mentally.

- When a person starts his practice, it is better to repeat a mantra aloud, if there is such an opportunity. Loud repetition is good, when there is no one nearby, because sadhana is most effective when a person is alone. When a person repeats a mantra aloud, gradually, he becomes more concentrated, and the repetition itself becomes internal. Repeating a mantra outloud gives more concentration. When many thoughts come to one'smind, a sound helps to overcome them, and the number of thoughts decreases. If you chant a mantra mentally, but you can not concentrate and your thoughts are still vrushing, a mantra will not work so well.

- If there is always someone nearby who can hear you, it's better to repeat a mantra in a whisper, when only your lips move, but you are not heard by anyone else.

- When mantras are repeated aloud or whispered, you need your body and the place where you practice to be clean. External purity is important, because a mantra is a sacred spiritual energy. For it to work well and bring good power, both internal and external purity are necessary. For a mental repetition of a mantra there are no such strict rules. A person can do this mental chanting anywhere and anytime. He can go somewhere, do some work and mentally chant a mantra at the same time.

- Do I need a certain position for chanting a mantra?

- it is very good for practice when the spine is straight. It is better to sit in a special posture for this, but many who have not been sitting like this for their whole lives find it too difficult. If your legs hurt, then you can sit on a chair and chant a mantra. It is important to make sure that your back is straight at that time. Many nerves pass through a spine. If you do not sit with a straight back, the energy won't be able to rise and activate your chakras. When your chakras work harmoniously, your life will be a true joy.

- How do I get maximum effect from the mantra chanting?

- In order to get a good result from the mantra chanting, regularity of practice is very important. A mantra can give you everything, both material and spiritual success, but it all depends on how often a person practices it. If you do this every day for an hour and a half, in the morning and in the evening, then your life will become peaceful for certain. If a man has received a mantra, but does not take this practice seriously, he will not gain any resul. And if he constantly changes the way of his practices, there will also be no peace. For spiritual practice, it is important to be focused on one thing. Minimum is 40 minutes a day. For a good quick result, you need 1.5-2 hours of good meditation and chanting a mantra, then in six months or a year you will definitely see changes for the better.

- If a person does not have for forty minutes a day for mantra chanting in his schedule, let him start with just 5-10 minutes of regular practice a day, it will also give its positive result. With time, there will be more order in his life and more opportunities to practice.

- For really good spiritual achievements, if anyone aspires it, a person needs to practice for 4 hours a day, at least for 4 hours. Then spiritual energy will awaken, your everyday life will come to order, and, gradually, in your spiritual life you will also see progress. If someone already has spiritual karma, then it will quickly wake up.

- Guruji, what should an ordinary person who works, who has a family, children, and so many things to do that he can't find much time for spiritual practices, do?

- People do not find time for mantra chanting because they do not understand its importance. But, in fact, the most important thing in life is that a person starts his morning with a prayer, with a mantra, that he learns to concentrate. That would give you strength for the whole day, for any work that you do. Those who are keeping the house, need strength for domestic affairs, those who work, need strength for work, those who are engaged with spirituality, need power for spiritual growth. Therefore, it's good to start your day with a mantra. It purifies, teaches you concentration and gives you strength, energy.

- An hour and a half or just an hour anyone can find for mantra chanting. An hour or an hour and a half a day is what a person spends on others, most often it's useless talking. We also spend 30-40 minutes on meals. Even taking shower is what we spend our time on. There is always time for all these actions. Similarly, spiritual practice should be in a daily schedule. I understand that it's not easy for people whose lives are mostly worldly to find time for a practice, but it can help you and bring order to life. If you discipline yourself, then you can definitely find time to chant a matra. Everyone can, even the busiest person.

- All the people want to live happily. And only the lack of knowledge prevents them from living joyfully and achieving their goals. The science of a mantra is an ancient science which gives a key to open many doors. No doubt a mantra can help us solve our health problems, improve both the inner state and the external, material situation. It has a great power. With this key, anyone can change his lives for the better. Radhe-Radhe!