Mantras

General forum on the teachings of all schools of Mahayana and Vajrayana Buddhism. Topics specific to one school are best posted in the appropriate sub-forum.
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Epistemes
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Mantras

Postby Epistemes » Sat Sep 17, 2011 4:11 pm

Do mantras have meaning? Or are they empty of meaning?

For instance, the Chenrezig mantra seems to have attached to it certain perfections, purifications, colors, symbols, etc. There appears to be a number of interpretations surrounding what a person should be thinking when chanting the mantra. The interpretations are so varied and so open that it leads me to believe that all are completely arbitrary and the mantra is, at base, meaningless.

By meaningless, I'm not trying to imply that the mantras don't have value. That would be highly incorrect to state. It is apparent that the mantras have great spiritual value, but there seems to be a certain transmission of meaning which gives them greater meaning to some than others. For instance, from my ignorant point-of-view, I chant a mantra and it sounds like a series of syllabic gibberish with a profound calming effect - not so different from reciting a 'Hail Mary' 50 times in a row. To others of you, this mantra may symbolize something greater and feel insulted when I call it "meaningless" and "gibberish" - not that I intend a person insult towards anybody or anything.

It all seems rather relative. And it all seems rather subjective.
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PadmaVonSamba
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Re: Mantras

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sat Sep 17, 2011 4:47 pm

If you are asking whether uttering a string of Sanskrit syllables actually does anything on its own, beyond making the person who utters it feel better or whatever, in the same way that when Harry Potter says a magic word something happens, you may not get a definitive answer.
I once asked a teacher how saying mantras can liberate beings.
He said, "I don't know. How does a dog know you are calling him when you say his name?
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The Chinese characters are Fo (buddha) and Ming (bright). The image is of a student of Buddhism, who, imagining himself to be a monk, and not understanding the true meaning of the words takes the sound of the words literally. Likewise, People on web forums sometime seem to be foaming at the mouth.
Original painting by P.Volker /used by permission.

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Re: Mantras

Postby dakini_boi » Sun Sep 18, 2011 8:18 pm


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DarwidHalim
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Re: Mantras

Postby DarwidHalim » Fri Sep 23, 2011 10:57 am

I am not here nor there.
I am not right nor wrong.
I do not exist neither non-exist.
I am not I nor non-I.
I am not in samsara nor nirvana.
To All Buddhas, I bow down for the teaching of emptiness. Thank You!

AlexanderS
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Re: Mantras

Postby AlexanderS » Tue Oct 04, 2011 9:59 am

I developed trust in the power of mantra, when reciting "Om Amidewa Hri" created a hole in my fontanel.

In the context as to why I was doing it, that was a good thing.

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mint
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Re: Mantras

Postby mint » Thu Oct 06, 2011 1:04 am

Can reciting a series of mantras ever substitute for sitting meditation? For instance, can reciting a thousand mantras of Padmasambhava have the same effect as sitting meditation?

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Re: Mantras

Postby dakini_boi » Thu Oct 06, 2011 1:31 am


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mint
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Re: Mantras

Postby mint » Thu Oct 06, 2011 2:37 am


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Re: Mantras

Postby dakini_boi » Thu Oct 06, 2011 4:14 am


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Re: Mantras

Postby Pema Rigdzin » Thu Oct 06, 2011 9:44 am


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Re: Mantras

Postby Pema Rigdzin » Thu Oct 06, 2011 10:07 am


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mint
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Re: Mantras

Postby mint » Fri Oct 07, 2011 3:23 am


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PadmaVonSamba
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Re: Mantras

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Fri Oct 07, 2011 4:56 pm

You don't have to guess aimlessly. Buddha said to try things out for yourself. So, conduct a scientific study.
1. Chant Do Re Mi Fa So La Ti Do for an hour on one day,
2. Chant Om Mani PeMe Hung or Namo Amitabha for an hour the next day.
Do these alternately for a week and write down your findings.

Tell us what the results are.
Profile Picture: "The Foaming Monk"
The Chinese characters are Fo (buddha) and Ming (bright). The image is of a student of Buddhism, who, imagining himself to be a monk, and not understanding the true meaning of the words takes the sound of the words literally. Likewise, People on web forums sometime seem to be foaming at the mouth.
Original painting by P.Volker /used by permission.

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mint
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Re: Mantras

Postby mint » Fri Oct 07, 2011 9:36 pm


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Karma Dondrup Tashi
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Re: Mantras

Postby Karma Dondrup Tashi » Fri Oct 07, 2011 9:47 pm

Hehe. Interesting.

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PadmaVonSamba
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Re: Mantras

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Fri Oct 07, 2011 10:12 pm

I don't think you should try to fabricate a meaning for the placebo mantra, but perhaps (if it makes any sense) to establish some sort of target goal, for example, which made you feel more relaxed or put you in a mood sympathetic to the needs of others. Of course, if this were a well equipped study you could measure heart rate , blood pressure and so forth. In lieu of that, I guess you could come up with something a little more subjective.

You could try to determine chanting which mantra most benefited countless sentient beings, but I think it would be difficult to process the data.

The next phase should be 2 mantras, one authentic and the other a placebo, but you not knowing which is which.

If the outcome is positive, you will be rewarded with a little piece of cheese.
Profile Picture: "The Foaming Monk"
The Chinese characters are Fo (buddha) and Ming (bright). The image is of a student of Buddhism, who, imagining himself to be a monk, and not understanding the true meaning of the words takes the sound of the words literally. Likewise, People on web forums sometime seem to be foaming at the mouth.
Original painting by P.Volker /used by permission.

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mint
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Re: Mantras

Postby mint » Fri Oct 07, 2011 11:25 pm


dakini_boi
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Re: Mantras

Postby dakini_boi » Sat Oct 08, 2011 7:12 pm

Mantra A:

Om Ah Ra Pa Tsa Na Dhi


Mantra B:

Om Ah Ram Maha Lekhe Swaha



One of these is "real," one of them I made up. Maybe a week of each is too ambitious for an experiment, plus a waste of a week in practicing a fake mantra. Try 10 malas of one. Then, after a break of at least a few hours, 10 malas of the other one. Post your results.

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PadmaVonSamba
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Re: Mantras

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sun Oct 09, 2011 2:04 am

Profile Picture: "The Foaming Monk"
The Chinese characters are Fo (buddha) and Ming (bright). The image is of a student of Buddhism, who, imagining himself to be a monk, and not understanding the true meaning of the words takes the sound of the words literally. Likewise, People on web forums sometime seem to be foaming at the mouth.
Original painting by P.Volker /used by permission.

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DarwidHalim
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Re: Mantras

Postby DarwidHalim » Tue Oct 11, 2011 3:40 am

This is discuss in Kalu Rinpoche book.

Not everyone can make mantra. As we know bodhisattva level 7 is already extraordinary, but they still cannot make mantra. Only boddhisatva level 8 up to Buddha can make mantra.
I am not here nor there.
I am not right nor wrong.
I do not exist neither non-exist.
I am not I nor non-I.
I am not in samsara nor nirvana.
To All Buddhas, I bow down for the teaching of emptiness. Thank You!


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