What are mantras?
Mantas are sacred sounds that are chanted or spoken by someone who is praying, meditating or want to improve their life.
The word mantra means “sacred sound” and are thought to hold both psychological and spiritual power because it has the ability to clear out the mind and help us focus our thoughts from the constant swirling of the mind.
Mantras help us control the mind as well as retrain and rewire the brain by giving one the power to chose our thoughts and change your life. A mantra is anything that makes the mind steady or calm.
What’s the science behind this?
The mind’s job is to constantly scan the world and ask itself if we are safe and if we belong where we are standing. Sometimes, when we cannot stop thinking or overanalyzing, our mind controls us through anxiety because it’s thinking of the worst and promotes fear.
Sometimes, a negative thought can cross our minds and we get stuck in a negative, fear-based thought and can bring us stress, anxiety, and sometimes, depression.
Neuroplasticity is the ability of forming new neurons or neural pathways in the brain throughout repetition. So the more one practices a new thought, the deeper that neural pathway becomes. The deeper the neural pathway is, the more likely that new belief becomes second nature.
After doing this for a while, those old neural pathways that brought anxiety becomes inactive and the new neural pathways form so the brain reorganizes itself. So that means that everyone can change the way they think, their beliefs, and behaviors whenever they want to!
Are mantras from a specific religion?
Mantras are a part of almost every religion. The repetition of prayers or mantras are often seen in Buddhism, Hinduism, Judaism, Catholicism, and other religions. Some use mala beads, rosaries, prayer hymns, the repetition of a verse, etc.
Every repetition (or mantra) that one finds in every spiritual tradition has this so that one can take control of our minds and promote positive thoughts rather than destructive ones. So mantras are not religious or spiritual, they have been woven into these and you do not have to be of a specific religion to use mantras.
Can I create my own mantras?
The answer is yes and it’s super easy to do! Although it is common to use Sanskrit mantras in meditation, we can create our own mantras. The first thing to do is to acknowledge what we are feeling, our fears, or situations that are giving us anxiety and then ask ourselves what we want to believe or how we want to feel instead.
One can pick up to three words to describe how we want to feel instead of the negative emotion. And with it, we can create the mantras to promote positive actions in our lives!
I usually say my mantra early in the morning and when I go to bed at night, but one can say it while meditating (one can use their mala beads for this!), when anxiety kicks in, or simply when you have time.
One does not have to stick with just one mala for the rest of their lives, it’s important to pick the ones that go along with the lives we want to have.
The Mantra Cheat Sheet:
The most common mantras begin like this:
- I am _____ (Example: I am optimistic.)
- I trust _____ (Example: I trust that things will fall into place.)
- I have _____ (Example: I have faith that things will work themselves out.)
- I feel _____ (Example: I feel abundant.)
- I love _____ (Example: I love my body.)
- I am becoming _____ (Example: I am becoming confident in my work.)
- I am learning to _____ (Example: I am learning to be peaceful.)
- I am using my voice _____ (Example: I am using my voice to promote peace.)
- I believe _____ (Example: I believe in myself.)
- I have the power to _____ (Example: I have the power to express myself clearly.)
- I am open to _____ (Example: I am open to receiving my calling.)