It's easy to forget that we are all perfect in our own design. Sometimes we muck it up with habits and choices that do not serve us.
“I Am Loving Awareness”
Over the past decade, I have experienced divine connection in a variety of ways—in Nature, in solitary or group meditation, and with spiritual teachers who helped facilitate that falling away of form into formlessness. In spite of any longing on my part to hold onto it permanently, however, my experience of God came and went, arose and then receded. Repeatedly, I vacillated between the appearance and disappearance, almost as if I were playing hide-and-seek with God. Then Ram Dass died.
The practice of mantra is an effective way to concentrate your mind. But as important as concentrating your mind is what you concentrate on. Although the mind can focus on anything, only certain words can qualify as a mantra. A mantra must connect you with the sacred. Most of them focus you on God through repetition of a divine name. A mantra provides a boat with which you can float through your thoughts unattached, entering subtler and subtler realms. It is a boat that steers itself – to the threshold of God.
The use of mantra sets up one thought, one wave, that repeats over and over again, dislodging your attachment to all other thoughts, until they are like birds gliding by… Offer all your thoughts as a sacrifice to the mantra. If you think, “This isn’t going to work,” take that thought and imagine yourself offering it to the mantra on a golden tray with a silk handkerchief, incense and a candle. Offer it as you continue to repeat the mantra undisturbed. Keep offering your thoughts, your doubts, discomforts, boredom, even your sore throat.
I recently had the experience of listening to a live youtube channel of a weekend event with Krishna Das in Yogaville in May, 2018. He has been chanting for many years and also plays the Harmonium. There are several others who are a part of this band. I love listening to his chanting and the musical instruments. One of the musical instruments I deeply resonate with is the “violin”. It just sets my heart on fire.
Tears of joy, sadness and even my deepest fears came bursting forth during this event. I do not know what the words mean and I do not need to know but I do Know that I was transformed by this weekend event. I still am contemplating whether to get a “Harmonium” or not! I want to learn how to play it and chant with it! I was so impacted by this experience that I looked at tickets for his next event. I did not want to miss out!
In the face of a crisis—whether the loss of a job, the end of a relationship, a betrayal or a financial setback—the human mind has a tendency to react in conditioned, limited ways that usually only intensify our pain. We may ruminate on the past, getting stuck in feelings of resentment, regret or self-pity. Or we may project into the future, getting caught up in fears and worst-case scenarios. Instead of becoming trapped in the mind’s repetitive and ultimately self-defeating thought loops, you can use the following three mantras to move through a difficult situation and return to your innate state of balance and well-being.