The word mantra is the combination of 2 Sanskrit words. In Sanskrit, “Man” means mind, while “Tra” means vibration or wave. For meditation practices, a mantra is seen as an utterance, a sound or syllable, a specific sound created to develop a certain level of vibration.
Technically, when you use mantras in meditation you are trying to produce a reliable outcome or experience. You are creating certain sounds that have been proven to deliver particular results. When you hear the word “baby”, you probably have positive feelings. You may actually smile when you hear that word. The words “murder”, “violence” and “death” put your mind in an entirely different place.
So it is easy to see from your own life that sounds create experiences and mental states of being. This is how mantras can benefit your meditation practice.
The ADI mantra, for example, is performed by chanting the sounds “ONG, NAMO, GURU, DEV, NAMO” in succession. It is used to reduce depression, stress and anxiety. It combines sound with meditation to channel the flow of energy through your mind and body. The rhythmic repetition of this mantra, when accompanied with proper breathing and meditation, has been shown to alter the chemical composition of the human brain. This helps balance your nervous system and regulate stress levels.
It eliminates a preoccupation with your body and material goods and objects. This soothing mantra physically boosts your immune system, your body’s natural ability to resist disease and infection. It bolsters compassion, empowers the chanter, and is simply performed by beginning and veteran meditation practitioners. The ADI mantra is just one of many which can improve the experience you get from meditating.