Mantra - Mentally, audibly or both?

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Mantra - Mentally, audibly or both?

Postby jonaz108 » Sat Jun 08, 2013 9:10 pm

Namaste,

I would like to hear your opinion about the efficacy of chanting mantras like
the Shurangama mantra or the long Mahakaruna Dharani, mentally or audibly.
What you think is the best and why.

Thank you for enlightening me.
My heartfelt gratitude.
John
Since I live in Portugal, I can only answer to posts between 9:00 and 20:00 (0º UTC).
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Re: Mantra - Mentally, audibly or both?

Postby Nilasarasvati » Sat Jun 08, 2013 9:26 pm

Jonaz, I've wondered the same thing...
I can't speak for your teachers, but mine told me when I asked that silently vibrating the mantra is much more powerful, even though there's nothing "inferior" about chanting aloud or saying japa or soft whispered repetition.
Hindus, I have heard, believe the same thing.

My own personal opinion is also that, when you can vibrate them internally without distraction (Even when there are other noises or people speaking) it leads to greater internalization of the mantra or Dharani. This will especially help, in my experience, with recalling the mantra in dreams or in liminal states of consciousness like just waking up. Or even at the time of death.
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Re: Mantra - Mentally, audibly or both?

Postby Knotty Veneer » Sat Jun 08, 2013 11:31 pm

I think it can depend on the mantra. I was taught that generally mantras for wrathful practices (e.g. protector practices) are not repeated audibly, mantras for semi-wrathful practices are said barely audibly ("so only your collar can hear" - I think was translation of the Tibetan) and peaceful mantras are said audibly but not loudly. Another point that was made to me was that mantras should not be said too fast - each syllable should be distinguishable.
Everyone talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it - Mark Twain.
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Re: Mantra - Mentally, audibly or both?

Postby lobster » Sun Jun 09, 2013 7:28 am

Audible mantras act more on the physical level. Improving voice, breathing and physical well being, as well as the aspects of concentration and meditation. Less audibly they give a clear, prescriptive feedback indication of physical and mental health. Inaudibly they allow 'secret' practice and therefore are more subtle and 'advanced'.

I do all three. :popcorn:
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Re: Mantra - Mentally, audibly or both?

Postby mandala » Sun Jun 09, 2013 9:10 am

Both is a good idea where suitable - when you speak the mantra out loud it also becomes a wholesome action of speech and body.
For a healing mantra like Shurangama, out loud can be of benefit to any beings around you like animals etc.
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