Mantra Meditation 101 | Omega

If you learn best by listening and repeating, you're an auditory/verbal learner. You might enjoy mantra meditation. To find other meditation practices that match your needs and interests, see Which Type of Meditation Is Right for You?

What: Practiced in a variety of spiritual traditions, mantra meditation is the act of silently or audibly repeating a mantra—a special word, thought, or phrase—either in an ancient, sacred language, or in your native tongue.

Types: Transcendental Meditation®, Deepak Chopra’s Primordial Sound Meditation, rosary meditation, and some forms of Islamic dhikr

Benefits: More than 500 studies have been conducted on Transcendental Meditation alone, writes Paul Roland in How to Meditate. Research suggests the practice can reduce blood pressure and stress; help smokers and drug users during addiction treatment; and have a positive impact on psychosomatic disorders, he reports.

Keywords: verbal, mentally focusing, calming

Try this: Before you sit, choose a mantra or use one that your teacher has given you.

Sit in a comfortable meditation pose on the floor or in a chair. Close your eyes and take a few deep, centering breaths. Begin to mentally recite your mantra, over and over again, until it becomes effortless. When your mind wanders, don’t scold yourself; simply bring your attention back to the mantra by silently reciting it again. Continue in this way for at least 5 to 10 minutes. When you’re finished, sit quietly with your eyes closed for a few minutes longer. Has your breath deepened? Is your mind quieter? Then you’re on the right track.

Not sure where to start? You can listen to a guided meditation practice with a simple mantra from the yoga tradition called so’ham (pronounced “so hum”). 

© 2015 Omega Institute for Holistic Studies