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See also    Naarad Puraan, 1/27  --- for more elaborated explanation;   Keelak,    Panchaakshar;    Poojaa;    Soham,   
Mantra;Mantra Hare Krishn;    Mantra Jaap  (for "How to do Mantra Jaap");   Mantra-Mrityunjaya;    Mantra-Panchaakshar;     Mantra-Planets
Mantra-Principles  (How Mantra works);    Mantra-Recitation (for the method of recitation of Mantra);    Mantra-Saadhanaa;    Mantra, Tantra, Yantra
Mantra-Principles;    Importance of Number 108    Jaap;

What is Mantra?

Mantra is a word or a group of words, such as "Hreem" or "Aum Namo Bhagavatey Vaasudevaaya". They are very powerful sounds which when pronounced repeatedly (doing Jap or Jaap) create great effects. Mantras are not devised by sages or gods but were revealed by gods. Ajapaa (A + Japaa = No + Chant) is the primal Mantra. This chantless Mantra pervades the breath going in and out, the subtle sound ‘Sah’ going in and the subtle sound ‘ham’ going out. (Sa = Shiv, Vishnu, Lakshmee, or Gauree [Paarvatee or Shakti]; Ham = I am; so = Parvati). As one chants this subtle-sound Mantra ‘soham’, a derivative of ‘sah-ham,’ ‘Hamsa’ comes into being by inversion. Soham, Hamsa and Aum (Pranav) all are equipotent. Hamsah is the union of the male and the female and the universe is Hansah. The Triangular Kaam Kalaa is thus formed by Hansah; Hansah Peeth is composed of Mantra. Kaam is desire and Creative Will and unitary Shiv-Shakti, and Kalaa is their manifestation. Shiv and Shakti are known as Kaameshwar and Kaameshwaree. Shakti (Kalaa) is the manifestation of Kaam (desire), which is Ichchhaa Shakti. Shiv is Seed and Shakti is Sprout.

Mantra are double-edged swords; they can be used only for the good and never for harming anyone. If Mantra are used for evil purposes, it is like digging a grave for someone else but falling and getting interred in it. A Mantra is sound and or silent energy which has transformational power on the person who utters it. By Mantra a Devtaa is invoked. Chanting of Mantra is like shaking a sleeping person to wake up from sleep. The moving lips are Shiv and Shakti; their movement is Maithun (union). Their Shabd or sound is the name, their Arth (meaning) is Devtaa whose name it is. The Devtaa that appears before him, is his or her manifestation, which is actually a roused, altered or higher consciousness of the Saadhak (aspirant), which can perceive the Arth  or the object that is invoked by Mantra. Shabd is cognitive sound, while Arth is the object it denotes and the thought it provokes. Thus the whole universe is covered by Shabd and the 50 letters of the Sanskrit alphabet, which is the Vaikharee stage in the evolution of Sound. Mahaakaalee's garland of fifty heads represents those fifty letters; she absorbs the letters, the Shabd, and the Arth into herself during Mahaa Pralaya (Great dissolution). That is the naked fierceness of absorption or dissolution.

(1) Mantra may be used on their own or as a part of visualization practice. In a typical visualization practice there is a communication from the practitioner to deity in the form of Mantra; and with deity to the practitioner in the form of blessings, or rays of light, or even speech.

(2) It can be used as mind protector while walking, doing dishes, or sitting in meditation. When counting the Mantra, one can use Maalaa (rosary) of beads (in Hinduism it is of 108 beads). This number has a mystical significance in ancient India. But the use of Maalaa is not essential if one does not have to count it. It is only essential when one has to do the Jaap of some Mantra by counting. Jaap can be done in a loud voice or internally.

(3) Definitions of Mantra are oriented toward either the results of repeating the Mantra or of the intentions of the original framers and testers of the Mantra.

Types of Mantra

There are two types of Mantra--
(1) Vaidik Mantra - All the extensions of links to Ved are known as Vaidik Mantra, and
(2) Taantrik Mantra - Which are developed in Taantrik events are called Taantrik Mantra. Taantrik Mantra are of three types - Beej Mantra (Maulik, Yaugik and Koot); Naam Mantra; and Maalaa Mantra.

Beej Mantra
In Sanskrit language, sounds which have no direct translation but which contain great power which can be "grown" from it are called "Seed Mantra." Seed in Sanskrit is called "Beejam" in the singular and "Beej" in the plural form. For example, the Mantra "Shreem" or Shrim is the seed sound for the principle of abundance (Lakshmee - the consort of Vishnu). If one says "Shreem" a hundred times, a certain increase in the potentiality of the sayer to accumulate abundance is achieved. If one says "shreem" a thousand times or a million, the result is correspondingly greater. But this abundance can take many forms. There is prosperity, to be sure, but there is also peace as abundance, health as wealth, friends as wealth, enough food to eat as wealth, and a host of other kinds and types of abundance which may vary from individual to individual and culture to culture. It is at this point that the intention of the sayer begins to influence the degree of the kind of capacity for accumulating wealth which may accrue.

Beej Mantra come under the category of Taantrik Mantra (Vaidik and Sabar Mantra are still different). They are base for Tantrik Mantra.
A Beej Mantra responds to the "Kaaran Deh" (Causal body) of the Deity, hence its the seed of growing their basic power.
A Mool Mantra responds to the "Sookshm Deh" (Subtle Body) of the Deity hence it responds to harnessing an already developed (semi-developed you can say) form of the deities power in some way.
So you must also understand that the use of a Beej Mantra is also totally different.
Beej Mantra should never be given out loud and should never be recited out loud, that is how they loose their powers. These are the rules of the Rishi.

Mantra Anushthaan for a Mool Mantra
see also   Mantra-Jaap

As for complete Mantra Anushthaan for a Mool Mantra, you need at least these steps and they have following importance and hard work:
(1) Mantra Shuddhi (purifying Mantra vibration in atmosphere) = 4%
(2) Utkeelan (unlocking password as by creator of Mantra) = 2%
(3) Mantra Maitree (gaining friendship/compatibility b/w Mantra and own vibration) = 2%
(4) Shaap Vimochan (removing curse on Mantra if there is is any) = 2%
(5) Mantra Sanskar = 5%
(6) Mantra Jaagriti = 5%
(7) Purushcharan = (Jap + Hom + Tarpan + Maarjan + Bhojan) = 70%
(8) Mantra Arth (Mantra meaning) = 5%
(9) Others procedure if any = 5%

All this starts after Deekshaa and I have given approximate figures but clearly Purushcharan is the most important and most time consuming, and daily procedure for Purushcharan requires usage of Viniyog + Nyaas (see Mantra Nyaas) + Dhyaan + Mudraa + Fixed Jaap (chanting)... and then
1/10 of Jaap we do Hom (obligation of Mantra with Swaahaa in Havan Kund), then
1/100 Tarpan (on Yantra and/or in river/water), then
1/1,000 Maarjan/Abhishek (sprinkling water on self), then
1/10,000 of Mantra Jaap is Bhojan (to Braahman or Kanyaa)

Viniyog of a Mantra
Lets say you are not doing a complete Anushthaan, you are doing just some Prayog... in Prayog the procedure is again clearly defined by the person given that Prayog, that means Guru, it can be using a Yantra with specific Mantra and Tantra for 11, 21, 45... any no of fixed days. Prayog is a specialized way, empowered by a Guru, works primarily for his disciples. Others have minimum effect (yes this is the truth, try it). Or you just want the normal benefit from a Mantra, even in that case, it is a well known fact that the bare minimum required for working any Tantra or Mantra or Yantra is the knowledge of its Viniyog which compromises --

(1) Mantra Name
(2) Rishi (Creator of Mantra, Seer who first attained or mastered the Mantra)
(3) Chhand (Meter of Mantra or pattern of pronunciation)
(4) Devataa (Name of deity)
(5) Beejam (main seed for power source of Mantra)
(6) Shakti (you can say main power enhancer, like to mature the seed)
(7) Keelak (the unlocking password)
(8) Abheesht Arth  (your purpose of chanting)

Although after that Nyaas (Energizing body ports and finger by - Rishi Nyaas + Kar Nyas + Hridyaadi Nyaas) + Dhyaan (deity image to concentrate on Third Eye) + Mudraa (Posture to invite and please deity) are also required before real Mantra Jap... (Real Mantra Jap is useful only if you are gaining Mantra Chetana = knowing + repeating the meaning of Mantra, sticking to deity image on third eye with devotion... ie (Mantra, Mantra Arth aur Devataa Se Ekee-karan karke dhyaan).

Still even without their knowledge or knowledge of Keelak also you can use a Mantra provided you have at least first 6 part of Viniyog. (for Keelak there is a special way of unlocking a Mantra, call it a master key like given in book Mantra Rahasya or their is one another little longer way also). And their is a way to substitute Nyaas and Dhyaan also. But for a Beej Mantra... it responds to a the causal body of Deity. It is like very basic and raw form of energy. Procedure is totally different.

To be a Rishi of some Mantra - To be a Rishi you will have to know the complete compatibility of all the 50 alphabets "Varn Maalaa" (all Devanaagaree letters) which has Swars (Vowels) like aa, ee, oo.. etc, one that don't use tongue and Vyanjans (Consonants) like ka, kha, cha.. etc, one that initiate by molding tongue. There is hidden energy of various deities in various sounds, some match while some don't... it all depends on the element they correspond to. Like mixing water with air will not be a very good idea... All this is given in somewhat detail in the book Mantra Rahasya" but to be honest even that is just the beginning... because the Shaastra says "jisey naad ka poorn gyaan ho jaataa hai use Brahm kaa gyaan ho jaataa hai" (one who has complete knowledge of sound gets knowledge of god/supreme/creator).

Modern science says that there is no matter, only energy... well Indian scholars always knew the same but they considered sound to be the base of Shakti (energy) in physical plane (hence its said in Mantra Rahasya : Brahmaand Mantra-maya hai, (universe is made of sound) that changes forms and it has its Maryaadaa (rules). In higher planes the Bhaav (feeling) and then Arth (meaning) and then Prakaash (subtle light, even higher  frequency).

A real Mantra is supposed to combine all these Gun (qualities) from all planes for the Mantra Saadhak, how to prepare such a Mantra is no Childs play. Although all Mantra are said to originate from Shiv's Damaroo but as for Moon Mantra, Mantra are given by
(1) Brahmaa (Vaidik Mantra)
(2) Shiv (Taantrik Mantra)
(3) Rishi (Masters)
(4) Some times deities themselves have offer

See, you need to be in level of one of these to actually form a Mantra! And then you will have to device the corresponding Yantra (the physical tool for corresponding deity's astral body) and Tantra (system/technique) for using it. So this is very difficult job. Better safe than to be sorry because misuse can burn you... everyone knows the wrong use of Beej Mantras can harm. Still if one wants to use them, then just do one at time (that is my suggestion)... do minimum like the initial
(1) Pavitreekaran (purification sprinkling water all around, keep that water next to your right knee)
(2) Aachman (inner purification) +
(3) Digbandh (sealing direction to protect against evil) +
(4) Deepak (hold lamp in lit b/w palms) +
(5) Invite dear Guru, Ganesh and other Deities you like with their short Dhyaan and or Mantra +
(6) Guru Dhyaan +
(7) Specific Deity Dhyaan / meditation (whose Mantra you use)
(8) Praarthanaa (prayer for specific wish, like Viniyog) +
(9) Jap (chant as much you can do, let it be fixed per day) +
(10) Kshamaa Yaachanaa (Ask for forgiveness for any conscious or unconscious mistake during like Karm or during Karm Kaand)
(11) Offer Prasaad and/or the water kept during ritual to Tulasee

At least this much you should do for a Beej Mantra. But Beej Mantra is still easy way for those who cannot do Anushthaan or Prayog or even recite Stotra and Kavach. This doesn't take much time to do but it will take time to actually start showing results in life.

And two final notes:
(1) One very commonly confused point... is it Kreem or Kreeng...  Shreem or Shreeng... Aim or Aing... Hreem or Hreeng... and so on,
Well, if you have not taken Deekshaa, (one with Kreeng, Shreeng, etc have a different procedure). So go for the Mmmm ending one. There is a simple scene, whenever you use Mmmm, sound comes out of nose, it touches Brahm Randhra, and ideally this is the best situation for Dhyaan and transmitting your vibration to universe / Deity. This will bring peace to concentration to you.
(2) The Mantra you are trying to form... "Aim Hreem Shreem Kleem" is obviously very similar to Navaarn Mantra "Om Aim Hreem Kleem Chamunda-yayi Vichye".

[As a wise head, I would recommend Navaarn Mantra, as it is a very special and already Siddha Mantra in Atmosphere of earth. Also considering your desires... this will cover all. Get a Deekshaa for that Mantra, the Tantra (technique), because this is also fairly easy.
Aim, Hreem, Kleem have powers (Shaktis = Sarawswati + Lakshmee + Kleem/Paarvatee) of Brahmaa, Vishnu and Shiv... and actually if you read the Viniyog of the Navaarn Mantra, you will realize it.]

After this Viniyog comes Nyaas

Mantra, Their Genders, and Use

Man + tra. Manan means "to know all", and Traan means "to be kind on worldly people". Both these meanings give meaning to the word Mantra. Mantra is of three types - feminine, masculine and neuter. The Mantra which have two "th" i.e. "Swaahaa" in the end, they are feminine. Whichever Mantra end in "Hum" or "Phat", they are masculine. Whichever Mantra end in "Namah", they are neuter. Pauraanik Mantra come in this category. They lack in the force and vitality like others.

The Nityaa Tantra gives various names to Mantra according to the number of their syllables, for example, a one-syllabled Mantra is called “Pind”, a 3-syllableed Mantra is called “Kartaaree”, a Mantra with 4-9-syllables is called Beej Mantra, a Mantra with 10-24 syllables is called Maalaa. Commonly the term Beej is applied to monosyllable Mantra. The Taantrik Mantra called Beej are so named because they are the seed of the fruit, which is Siddhi, and because they are the very basic essence of the Mantra. They are short, unetymological vocables such as Hreeng, Shreeng, Kreeng, Hoong, Aing, Phat etc which will be found throughout the text (see also the Mantra portion of Atharv Ved to which the Tantra stands in close relation).

Mantra Siddhi is the ability to make a Mantra efficacious (Siddh) and to gather its fruit in which case the Mantra is called Mantra Siddh. Mantra are classified as Siddh, Saadhya, Susiddh, and Ari, accordingly they are friends, servers, supporters, and destroyers – a matter which is determined for each Saadhak by means of Chakra calculations.

All Mantra's Devtaa are men; and all Vidyaa's Devtaa are women. These three types of Mantra are used in six types of Karm -

(1) Shaanti (to pacify),
(2) Vashya or Vasheekaran (to control),
(3) Stambhan (to stop),
(4) Dwesh or Vidweshan (jealousy),
(5) Uchchaatan, and
(6) Maaran (to kill).

Six Types of Mantra
(1) "Namah" is used in Shaanti (peace) and Mohan
(2) "Vaushat" is used in Pushti (health) and Vasheekaran (to control somebody)
(3) "Hum" is used in killing and destroying love
(4) "Phat" is used in Vidweshan and Uchchaatan
(5) "Vashat" is used in attaining sons and Deepti

Some Special Mantra

(1) Omkaar/Pranav Mantra - Omkaar is a combination of three basic syllables  [See also Aum]
 A (as pronounced O in Other), U (as pronounced in U in Usha) and M (as pronounced in M in Mother).
 It is said that AUM should be pronounced only by Taantrik. All ordinary people should pronounce it as OM.

(2) Panchaaksharee (5-letter) Mantra - For Shiv - "Om Namah Shivaaya"  [See also Aum]  

(3) Ashtaakshar (8-letter) Mantra - For Naaraayan - "Om Namo Naaraayanaaya"
According to [Padm Puraan, 5/35], both Rishi and Devtaa of this Mantra is Naaraayan, its Chhand is "Daivee Gayatri"; Pranav is its "Beej", Lakshmee is called this Mantra's "Shakti" (power). Its first Pad is "Om", second Pad is "Namo" and third Pad is "Naaraayanaaya". Thus this Mantra is said to be of three Pad. Pranav consists of three letters - Akaar, Ukaar and Makaar and thus it is said to be the form of three Ved. This is the dwelling place of Brahm. Akaar represents Vishnu, Ukaar represents Lakshmee Jee and Makaar is their servant "Jeev" which is the 25th element also.

[10 Indriyaan, 5 Bhoot, 5 Tanmaatraa, mind, Ahankaar, Mahat Tattwa, and Prakriti - these are the 24 Tattwa; and their witness Consciousness is the 25th Tattwa.]

3.1. Ashtaakshar - Om Namo Naaraayanaaya (Tirumangai Azvar received this Mantra from Bhagavaan Himself.) Homage or obeisance to Lord Naaraayan Purport: Ashtaakshar: Naaraayan is the Means and the Goal; He is the Fruit.

3.2. Dwayam or Tirumantram - Shreeman Naaraayan Charanau Sharanam Prapadye Srimat Naaraayanaaya Namah. Shreeman Naaraayan,
I fall down and surrender at your feet, Shreeman Naaraayan, my obeisance to you.

3.3 Charam Shlok - is the famous 'Sarva Dharmam Paritraajya Mama Ekam Aham Twam Sarv Paapebhya. . .  . " Shlok of Geetaa. It is a secret because of its invaluable hidden truth. Shreeman Naaraayan during His Krishn Avataar did the Geetaa Upadesh to all the people through Arjun. Since Bhakti Yog was highly difficult even for Arjun, Krishn out of His Mercy asked him (all the people) to perform 'Prapatti', as a means of God-Realization - Abandoning all duties, surrender unto Me only. I shall deliver you from all sins. Do not lament. (18-66)

(4) Dwaadash-Akshar (12-letter) Mantra - For Krishn/Naaraayan - "Aum Namo Vaasudevaaya".
Women and Shoodra can also do its Jaap but without "Aum". For others its Jaap can be done with "Aum". This Mantra's Prajaapati is Rishi, Chhand is Gaayatree, Devtaa is Vaasudev, seed is "Aum", and power is "Namah". Its Jaap should be done 1,200,000 times, its Havan should be done by its one tenth number (120.000) times.

(5) Shodashaakshar (16-letter) Mantra -
Hare Raam, Hare Raam, Raam Raam Hare Hare |
Hare Krishn Hare Krishn Krishn Krishn Hare Hare ||

It has two ‘Akshar’ (letters or syllables) each. And for the sixteen nodes, we hence have thirty-two Gun (characteristics). It contains three Divine Names – ‘Hare’, ‘Raam’ and ‘Krishn’. ‘Hare’ comes from ‘ha’ and ‘ra’ Dhaatu (‘haran’ means "to take away")

He who does the Haran of ‘Sansaar’ (worldly existence) is Hari Naaraayan.
He who does he Haran of ‘A-Gyaan’ (ignorance) is Shiv.
He who does the Haran of ‘Dur-Gati’ (misfortune) is Durgaa.
He who does the Haran of ‘Vighn’ (obstacle) is Ganesh.
He who does the Haran of ‘Andhakaar’ (darkness) is Soorya.
Thus the term Hare applies to all five types of Upaasak.

The word Raam is ‘Par Brahm’. The word Raam came into existence even before the incarnation of Raam. When King Dasharath and Kaushalyaa were blessed with Raam, he approached Sage Vashishth for naming ceremony. The word Raam is to bestow one with ‘Sukh’ (happiness) to all the three worlds. By uttering the word Raam, the mind is removed from all the stress and is filled with calmness. While the word Krishn means something that attracts our mind. Thus, even if one chants the Mahaa Mantra with a worldly desire in mind, the power of Mahaa Mantra is that the Lord not only satiates that person’s worldly desire but also bestows Mukti. Such is the greatness of this Mahaa Mantra.

(6) Gaayatree Mantra - Any Mantra with 24 syllables may be called as Gaayatree Mantra, but there is only one Mantra well-known by the name of Gaayatree Mantra, that is - "Aum Bhoor Bhuvah Swah, Tat Savitur Varenyam, Bhargo Devasya Dheemahi Dhiyo Yonah Prachodayaat".

(7) Mahaa Mrityunjaya Mantra - "Aum Tryambakam Yajaamahe Sugandhim Pushtivardhanam Urvaarukmev Bandhanaan Mrityor Moksheeya Maamritaat"

(8) Kireet Mantra for Naaraayan - "Aum Kireet Keyoor Haar Makar Kundak Shankh Chakra Gadaambhoj Hast Peetaambardhar Shree Vatsaankit Vakshahsthal Shree Bhoomi Sahit Swaatma Jyotirmaya Deept Karaaya Sahastraaditya Tejasey Namah" It contains 65 letters. Its Jaap should be done 6,500,000 (65 Lac) times.

(9) Pushti Devee Mantra - "Gam Dam, Vam Sam Pushtyai Namah"

And there are many more Mantra for many Devtaa.

How Many Times to Recite a Mantra?

One should do Jap of a Mantra the same number of times in Hundred Thousands (Lacs), whatever number of letters are in a Mantra, for example the 5-letter Mantra should be recited 500,000 times.

The first 100,000 Mantra's Jaap gives Aatm-Shuddhi (cleanses one's mind),
the second 100,000 Mantra's Jaap does Mantra-Shuddhi (Mantra's purification), 
the third 100,000 Mantra's Jaap gets the Saadhak Swarg Lok, 
400,000 Mantra's Jaap takes the Saadhak to Vishnu
500,000 Mantra's Jaap gives clear Gyaan
600,000 Mantra's Jaap stabilizes Saadhak's Buddhi in Vishnu
700,000 Mantra's Jaap makes the Saadhak As Vishnu, and
after doing the Jaap of Mantra 800,000 times the Saadhak attains Moksh.
[Naarad Puraan, p 434]

Some Other Information About Mantra

Mantra of 4 Ved - Rig Ved, Yajur Ved, Atharv Ved and Saam Ved, are called "Pratham Mantra" (First Mantra)
Sadyojaat etc Mantras are called "Dwiteeya Mantra" (Second Mantra)
Brahmaa, Rudra and Vishnu are the forms of "Triteeya Mantra" (Third Mantra)
Eesh (Shiv), Agni and Indra etc Devtaa are the forms of "Chuturth Mantra" (Fourth Mantra)
A, I, U, E (pronounced as in Ek) and O - all are the forms of "Pancham Mantra" (Fifth Mantra) - they are called "Mool Brahm" (root Brahm)

[Agni Puraan, p 272]

Greatness of Mantra

In our scriptures, it is said that during the process of creation from the Supreme Brahm, the Space (Aakaash) came first and sound is the property of the Aakaash. From Space came Air (Vaayu), and from Air came Fire (Agni), from Fire came Water (Jal) and from Water came Earth (Prithvi). Sound is an abstraction that is closest to the Supreme Brahm.

We employ different means to worship the Supreme Brahm. We worship It as a deity in the form of Earth, in the form of Water (in a Kalash), in the form of fire (during Havan), in the form of air (through Praanaayaam etc) and in the form of sound (through the chanting of the Ved, and chanting of the Divine Names).

However, in order to render an ideal fit for worship, Mantra (the form of sound) have to be chanted. In order to worship the Lord in a Kalash (vessel of water), Mantra are to be chanted to install the Lord in the Water. In order to worship the Lord in the form of Fire through Havan, Mantra have to be chanted to install the Lord in Agni. In order to worship the Lord through Praanaayaam, one should contemplate on and chant the Pranav Mantra. Thus all these forms of worship are rendered futile unless accompanied by the sound aspect in the form of Mantra.

However, if we were to worship the Supreme Brahm in the form of sound, mere chanting of the Ved or chanting the Divine Name of Lord alone is enough. It does not expect any other accessory to make it complete. That is the greatness of worship by chanting the Divine Names.

[From Tantra of the Great Liberation (Maha Nirvan Tantra). by Arthur Avalon]
But in all types of worship the main thing is Mantra, Mantra is the soul of Tantra. Tantra is the Body, and Mantra is soul. There is no Tantra or Yantra separate from Mantra and vice versa.

Mantra also have their Sanskaar. There 10 of them - (1) Janan, (2) Jeevan, (3) Taadan, (4) Bodhan, (5) Abhishek, (6) Vimaleekaran, (7) Aapyaayan, (8) Tarpan, (9) Deepan, and (10) Gupti. (p 25)

Mantra Chaitanya is Chaitanya Shakti and is the name for the Gyaan of the presiding Devtaa - Adhishthaatree Devtaa of the Mantra. The awakening of the Mantra is in the consciousness of the Saadhak, the knowledge of Him. When introduced by the Beej of Saraswatee (Aim), Maayaa (Hreem), or Kamalaa (Shreem), instead of the Mantra Om, it bestows various kinds of learning, Siddhi and prosperity in every quarter. The Mantra may be varied either by the prefixing or omitting of Om by placing it before each word or every two words of the Mantra. (p 29)

A Mantra can be said to be a word-symbol or symbols representing and expressing, as nearly as possible, the particular view of God and the universe they stand for. When the Mantras that are of the nature is given to the disciple or Saadhak by an illumined Guru, it becomes a living seed. The Guru, by his spiritual power, gives life to the word and at the same time awakens the spiritual power latent in the disciple. That is the secret of Guru's initiation. A Mantra is an aid to meditation.

There are three types of Mantra: -
The first category include those that invoke the low powers of nature and are called as Taamasik Mantra.
The second category of Mantra excite and manifest might and power and are called Raajasik Mantra.
Lastly, there are those that are of quiet and purely spiritual types of Mantra - they are called Saatwik Mantra.

All the Mantra again fall under two classifications: -
(a) those that need only to be chanted and there is no need for one to know their meaning and
(b) those Mantras that are of the nature of an invocation and the devotee must necessarily know the meaning of those Mantra. In the absence of knowledge of meaning of the Mantras he will not be able to bring his mind to play upon the Divine theme constantly.

The Vaidik Mantra are both in prose and poetry. Metrical Mantra are called "Rik" and "Yajus" is the name of the prose Mantras.
[By G Balasubramanian in "Aum Namah Shivaaya" Group, on Jun 15, 2009]

Some More Things to Know About Mantra
[by Narasihma Rao in "Aum Namah Shivaaya" Group, between June 12-16, 2009]

Mantra Number
It depends on Mantra. Let us take one Shiv Mantra, His Mantra Siddhi number is 1,000,000 (one million or 10 Lakh), but it depends on Yug, this is Kali Yug, so in Kali Yug it is 4 Lakhs. All these are mentioned in the Tantra or Sanhitaa, or you will get from Guru.

Mantra Timings
Usually the Mantra chant has to be done in early morning. For some Vaamaachaar cults it be may be midnight. In some cults, such as Mahaa Lakshmee, Swarn Karshan Bhairav and Neel Saraswatee, chant will be at midnight. Even day also differs, for some it should be Poornimaa, or Amaavasyaa and so on....

Mantra Chant
Must be in a regular passion, I mean daily 1000 times, up to completion of 1 Lakh count without fail. (Number may be differs like 108, 1,,000, 2,000 ...but the same number you have to do daily.

Chanting Place
It is defined by the Guru, for some Mantra Upaasak has to stand in a water stream. Upaasak has to sit in mountain peak or banks of rivers or temple or Guru Charan or at least in his own house.

Aasan is also specified by Guru on your capacity. For all Mantra Darbhaasan is recommended. For some Vaishnav Mantras it is Peetaambaram. Depends on your mental stamina they may suggest Krishn skin or Vyaaghra skin (Skin of deer and tiger). For some Vaamaachaar, they will suggest Panch Peethaasan and Shavaasan.
* Rule : For Krishn jin and Vyaaghra jin should not have any holes or damages (means the hunted animal skin should not be used).

Food Habits
For Mantras onion, Masaalaa and garlic are restricted. Of course non-veg, egg are also prohibited. For Vaamaachaar and Panch Makaar Upaasanaa Upaasak has to eat fish daily.

Mantra Parts
Each Mantra, whatever it may be, you have to do with Saptaang. Otherwise it is like asking help from PHC. For every Mantra the Saptaang (7 parts) are
(1) Rishi : Author of the mantra
(2) Chandassu: Chanting pronunciation
(3) Devtaa : To whom it is addressed (GOD name)
(4) Kaamyam : Purpose, Desire
(5) Ang Nyaasam: It varies from Mantra to Mantra
(6) Panch Poojaa (Gandham, Pushpam, Dhupam, Deepam, Naivedyam, Taamboolam).
(7) Arpanam: Chant is giving to GOD.

Mantra Mudraa
It differs from Mantra to another Mantra. They are expressed before and after Mantra chanting.

Mantra Hom
Whatever the Mantra number chanted, a Hom (offering to Fire) has to be performed for its Dashamaansh. Hom Dravya depends on Devtaa, like for some Shaivite Mantra Til and Ghee, for Mahaa Lakshmee is Lotus flower.....

Mantra Tarpan
Dropping water or something for GOD.

Mantra Shaap Vimochan Mantra
For some Mantra, Shaap will be there, so after their Jap we have to do the Shaap Vimochan Mantra Jap.

We all use mantras or words all day long -- repetitive, out loud, or silently -- phrases such as "It' s hard," or "I' m tired." "I don't know what I'm doing," "It will never happen ... .. I'm stressed," "There&# 39;s not enough time," or "There&# 39;s not enough money." We don't even notice them becoming part of our reality by repetition.

We act out on what we say, live on how we think. If our Mantra is, "I am stressed," we will be stressed. Or if our Mantra is, "It's never going to happen." it's never going to happen. In the beginning was the word, and the word was God. So powerful are our words to ourselves and to others and the power of positive thinking and expressions of positive thinking through words are very important. The words in Mantra are chosen not only for their meaning as words, but also for a scientific reason that goes far beyond pure definition. All Mantra we use are based on the science of "Naad" -- the secrets hidden in sound. The roof of our mouth has 84 meridian points, all along the upper palate.

Mantra were given to us as special gifts. Long ago, highly evolved Rishi (Seers) went into deep meditation. They began reciting certain sounds that made the tongue hit these meridian points in the mouth in certain combinations. It's kind of like playing the piano -- if certain notes are struck, a beautiful song is produced. With every word we speak, or in this case the Mantra we recite, we hit certain "keys." If the right combination of keys is struck, then the hypothalamus, thalamus, and pituitary in the brain are all stimulated in such a way as to bring our minds into a meditative state, and even into ecstasy. Whichever combination of letters gave the ancient seers this peaceful feeling or helped them heal their ailments, they passed it on to us. Every single Mantra in the Ved are the results of their experience.


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Created by Sushma Gupta on 3/15/06
Updated on 05/24/13