Some Buddhists will have serious issues with the christian associations with that style of music of course. Folk tunes are also potentially a great resource - much of Vaughan Williams' work comes from that background.
dimeo wrote:A very interesting topic indeed. I'm looking forward to this thread evolving over time.
I've been curious about this same idea as well. I don't read or speak Sanskrit. A friend told me that it was necessary for me to do so for me to access the 'true spiritual energy' of the Sanskrit syllables and English couldn't do that. I think the teachings can have great meaning when read in the language we can read and speak.
When I was first introduced to the Chenrezig compassion / 6 syllable mantra "Om Mani Padme Hum"
I just followed along and it 'felt good' to do the chanting. I later learned that vibration of chanting in the brain has scientifically proven effects which are positive to the brain. But I still wondered how much of the teachings about the mantra was just dogma / religious tradition. I wondered if some aspects of mantras was just a cultural or ritual tradition and what be most beneficial to practice?
I understand that part of the mantra is aspect of 'enlightened sound' and how sound is experienced simultaneously with emptiness. It also makes sense to me is how this mantra can represent the essence of the core teachings of the Buddha. It acts as a key memory link (mnemonic) to the teachings. It's helps to 'chunk' the complex and almost infinite volume of teachings into a small manageable bit easy to remember.
The repetition helps to embed it deep in the unconscious memory. When we experience stress and seek refuge in meditation and return to chanting the mantra, it leads us back to the teachings that it represents. What a beautiful thing! Rinpoche taught that it is the buddha in mantra form. This makes sense in a way. And that it can be chanted to rid oneself of the defilements and purify the mind.
lobster wrote:Certain words used in Eastern culture as power words also exist in English. OM I would suggest is pretty well known. Variants such as HUM sing.
PorkChop wrote:Hsi Lai temple seems to be teaching Chinese hymns to English speakers.
PorkChop wrote:Here's a clip from some Buddhist nuns who seem to be doing Christian-influenced Buddhist chanting (though not the Medieval style posted earlier on this thread).
Huifeng wrote:PorkChop wrote:Hsi Lai temple seems to be teaching Chinese hymns to English speakers.
This is from the Great Compassion Repentance, the basic tune is quite repetitive, while the lyric content changes.
But, this is still in Chinese....
Huifeng wrote:PorkChop wrote:Here's a clip from some Buddhist nuns who seem to be doing Christian-influenced Buddhist chanting (though not the Medieval style posted earlier on this thread).
This is the standard "Dedication of Merit" song for the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas. I've sung it more than a few times myself, when staying with them, and have it memorized -- but little opportunity to use in Taiwan... Though, I don't think it's Christian. If I recall correctly from talking about this with Ven. Heng Sure, I think the tune comes from some 60s (or maybe 70s) folk song.
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