Human beings have a deep, mystic relationship with words.
Words connect us with meaning, sound, vibration, and with Being itself. They are a means to communicate, to illustrate, to educate, to elevate and to liberate. Words link silence with sound, bridge Heaven and earth, marry the human with the Divine.
A mantra is the repetition of a word, phrase or sentence that serves at once as an anchor for the mind, and a means of transcendence beyond the mind.
Mantra is mystery made manifest, portal to the spiritual.
Mantra can be a tool to help us enter into meditation; it can be the object of our meditation; and it can be meditation itself.
A mantra is an invocation. We use mantra to invoke specific qualities as well as to enter a deeper, higher consciousness.
When mantra is used as a tool to help us enter into meditation, the mantra acts as a focal point to which the mind remains fixed, and to which it returns whenever it becomes distracted.
If only a tool, then it would not matter much what word or phrase would be used. However once we apply not only our minds’ but also our hearts’ focus to a mantra, then its meaning and significance very much matter – for when the heart focuses intensely on a spiritual quality, that very quality comes to the fore from its source deep within the heart, just as a faithful dog responds to its name being called and comes running home.
The heart is like a large, deep bell. The mantra strikes this bell and in response, the quality invoked by the mantra resonates both within and all around. At this point, word has become reality: the mantra is at once meditation’s seed, flower and fruit.