There are over 20,226 mantras in the Saṃhita portion of the Veda alone. Then there are all those mantras not in the Vedas and also important. How do we get started developing a daily practice of Mantra and where do we begin?
One way to start is to really think about why you want a mantra practice? Personally for me, it has been about these 2 things:
- Growth – This has been a life-long theme for me. In my previous “career” as well, I was involved in Learning & Development, for over 20 years. Now that I use the path of Veda mantras, growth feels accelerated and rich. The process of learning – adhyayanam helps develop concentration like no other tool I have ever experienced. The themes of developing Will-power through the understanding and recitation of Agni (fire) mantras, developing the power of memory, the power of conviction or self-confidence have been my most rewarding learnings. The greatest growth has been with clarity.
- Prayer – As my teacher’s teacher says – prayer is the highest, most beautiful expression of free-will. Faced with situations not in our control – we have 2 options – fall into despair, feel victimised, blame the world etc. Or, we can exercise our free-will to pray. This prayer helps us understand the intelligent order of the world, helping us develop acceptance. Life can be a blessing also in difficult times. Quite similar to our acceptance of gravity through understanding. We are not feeling victimised or blaming gravity when an object dear to us falls as a result of gravity and breaks. We do not shout at mountains for getting in our way. We can learn acceptance, through logic and understanding. Prayer does exactly this!
Once you have your intention set clearly, a daily practice will evolve, because it becomes the intelligent thing to do!
Gaṇapati Gāyatrī mantra – so we can gather up all our best inner resources to face life and everything it throws our way!