For most people out there, music is their solace. It provides them comfort and a sense of security. All of us have a favourite type of music that we will listen to based on the mood. For some, it may be softer tempo music that calms the mind while for others, the aggressiveness and loudness may be a trigger to let go of their excess energy.
Music has been known to instantly affect emotional and mental states. Through music therapy, you can elevate your mood, can increase cognitive functions of the brain, relieve yourself of pain through enhanced tolerance and create positive experiences with people around you.
In a similar manner, chanting mantras can help balance your energies of the chakra and promote a healthy mind, body and soul. When you chant specific chakra mantras, their vibrations resonate with that particular chakra and leverage the energy for personal and spiritual growth.
What are Bija Mantras?
In Sanskrit, ‘bija’ means ‘seed’ and Mantra is an instrument that binds our mind. Out of many types of mantras in yoga, Bija Mantra is the essence of all mantras which grants special power to them, also called ‘seed mantras’.
A bija mantra is one Sanskrit syllable used to chant and invoke a specific frequency sound that channels cosmic energy through our bodies.
In yoga practices or meditation, the Bija mantras are used to encourage inspiration, health and vitality. They help yogis tap into that underlying cosmic current of energy that exists in this entire universe but is just out of reach of our human eye.
Each bija mantra has powerful and intense vibrations with a unique meaning behind them. You can gain access to higher consciousness when you chant them either alone or combine them with a longer mantra.
Bija Mantras and sounds of chakras
How Bija Mantras can help in Chakra Balancing?
The fact that 7 chakras in our body are the spinning wheels of pranic energy makes Bija Mantras a perfect working tool for them. The frequency of these bija mantras is such that it resonates with aligned chakras.
Understand it this way.
Prana in our chakras spins at a particular rate (based on a balanced or imbalanced chakra) which generates vibrational energy of a certain frequency. It leads each chakra to its frequency of vibration, sound, color, and symbol to which it is tuned.
Think of a balanced frequency of each chakra like an object’s resonant frequency [efn_note] Fundamental and Harmonics http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/Waves/funhar.html [/efn_note].
When we chant Bija mantras it acts like that external object which creates harmonic resonance in a system. By chanting Bija mantras in a natural tone we actually generating sound vibrations that are in tune with the chakras. Therefore these are often casually called the chakra sounds. For example, OM is the most chanted bija mantra which is also called the sound of the universe.
The chakras sounds
Each of the 7 chakras has a specific bija mantra associated with it. When you chant these mantras aloud, the frequency of their vibration will surround you and if you do it in silence, the mantras will vibrate in your mind.
Here are the bija mantras for each of the chakras:
1. Root Chakra – LAM
Pronounced as ‘lum’ as in plum or alum
LAM sound frequency resonates with the root chakra and eliminates fear and guilt. The root chakra has the same frequencies as that of thunder or earthquake.
When you chant LAM mantra, its frequency creates a harmony with the root chakra’s frequency, hence balancing the chakra.
2. Sacral Chakra – VAM
Pronounced as ‘vum’ as in thumb or numb
The frequency of the sacral chakra is tuned to the sound of flowing water thus when you chant VAM its frequency will help in activating the chakra. Through this, it will remove any blockages or bad habits while opening your mind to accept change.
3. Solar Plexus Chakra – RAM
Pronounced as ‘rum’
Solar plexus chakra is associated with transformation and chanting RAM will effectively help in achieving it.
The most unique characteristic of RAM sound is that it can also aid in healing your DNA. Chanting the bija mantra is one of the most direct ways to activate this chakra and awaken your personal power.
4. Heart Chakra – YAM
Pronounced as ‘yum’ as in yummy
The heart chakra’s frequency matches the natural sound of air & wind and chanting YAM will create a harmonic resonance with this chakra.
This bija mantra will help in enhancing your communication through which you will have a better connection with people as well as the environment.
5. Throat Chakra – HAM
Pronounced as ‘hum’ as in humming
Chanting HAM awakens your intuitions, which is closely related to the throat chakra. The frequency of the bija mantra, which is the same as that of the insects, resonates with the chakra and is greatly effective in activating and cleansing the throat chakra.
6. Third Eye Chakra – AUM
Pronounced as ‘aum’
OM is the universal sound. It is said that the entire universe’s vibrational frequency is the same as that of OM. Hence it is no surprise that this bija mantra is significant in opening and balancing the third eye chakra.
Chanting OM bija mantra erases any stereotypes, balances spiritual order and also restores neural connections.
7. Crown Chakra – Silent OM or AH
While the crown mantra doesn’t ideally have an audible bija mantra, it is the silence or the ‘sound’ of silence that deeply resonated with this chakra. You chant OM silently, in your mind, the silence will allow your higher conscience to open to the divine. By chanting it silently, the vibrational frequency will surround your mind and make it easier to open the chakra.
Benefits of chanting bija mantras
Chanting bija mantras will aid in opening and cleansing the chakras. They are tools that will help you feel alive and achieve a state of fulfilment and contentment. The specific frequencies of these chakra mantras will align your bodily vibrations to them.
You will be stress-free, have improved concentration, experience a positive change in your mood, and feel relaxed after you have completed your mantra chanting session.
There is also some scientific evidence that shows the effect of mantras on our brains. An analysis of the ‘OM’ chant on the nervous system published in 2009 [efn_note] analysis of acoustic of “om” chant to study its effect on nervous system http://paper.ijcsns.org/07_book/200901/20090151.pdf [/efn_note] shows that chanting the OM mantra stabilized the brain, increased energy, and removed distractions.
Another study in 2013 [efn_note] Effects of the Transcendental Meditation Technique on Trait Anxiety https://www.tm.org/healthpro/downloads/Journal-of-A&C-Medicine.pdf [/efn_note] concluded that chanting mantras had substantial positive effects on people with high anxiety. In 2012, a study [efn_note] Circulation: cardiovascular https://www.tm.org/healthpro/downloads/circulation-aha.pdf [/efn_note], was published which showed improvement in patients suffering from cardiovascular disease, who were exposed to mantras, by reducing their blood pressure and stress.
However, there is still a vast amount of gap in the research, which is being slowly mitigated. We still cannot deny the fact that mantras have a positive effect on uplifting our chakra energies, building confidence, and improving our spiritual connection. People who have been following the ritual of bija mantra chanting swear by its effects and experiencing chakra healing symptoms.
How to chant bija mantras for chakra balancing?
Ideally, there is no set order that you should strictly follow. You can chant the bija mantra for all the chakras in one sitting or focus on one chakra alone.
Start from the root chakra and go up to the crown chakra or vice versa. Your focus should be on listening to the mantra chant and feeling the vibrations flow through the chakra.
Follow the instructions below for bija mantra meditation focusing on chakras.
1. Get into a comfortable posture
Before starting any chakra mantra, find a comfortable and peaceful space, where you will not be disturbed or where you won’t have many distractions. Make sure the place is well ventilated so that you can get fresh air during the chanting session.
This can only be done in a cross-legged position on a yoga mat and with the spine straight. Or you can get into any other posture as well where you’re comfortable enough to sustain for the duration of chanting.
Close your eyes and give a few minutes for your body and mind to relax.
2. While inhaling chant the first letter and while exhaling chant the last letter
Based on the chakra that you’re focusing on, start by voicing out the first letter of the bija mantra and finish by drawing out the last letter. For example, if your focus is on the root chakra, audible make the L sound of LAM and draw out the M sound.
Make sure that the tone of your voice is natural or neutral. Do not try to go for a high or a low pitch just for the sake of it. You should be comfortable while chanting these mantras as they are meant for chakra healing.
3. Slowly roll out mantras
Roll out the bija mantra sound slowly, for the duration of your breath. Repeat the mantra with a few seconds of silence in between each chant.
The whole chakra mantra chanting session can take 45 minutes to 1 hour. If you’re focusing on all the chakras, give at least 3 minutes for each chakra mantra for it to have its effects. Take a few minutes between each mantra and sit in silence while revelling in its energy.
4. Hold your posture for a while after finishing up the chant
After you have completed the chanting, keep sitting in the same position, with your eyes closed, and feel the vibration flow throughout your body. Alternatively, you can rub your palms to make them warm, keep them over your eyes and slowly drag them down your face, throat, and down your body. Then, slowly open your eyes.
Difference between Chakra Affirmations and Chakra Mantras
Chakra mantras should not be confused with chakra affirmations. Both of them are starkly different and have unique characteristics.
- Chakra mantras are essentially unique sounds whose powerful vibration helps in chakra healing. Whereas chakra affirmations work with words and their positive meaning rewire the brain to think on a positive track.
- While mantras can be done during meditation, affirmations do not require you to sit in a meditative pose. You can say your chakra affirmations at any time of day, provided you pay attention to what you are saying and make yourself believe in them.
- Chakra mantras are the sounds of the universe, with no specific meaning behind them and chanting them will align and harmonize the vibrations of your body to the universe. Chakra affirmations are positive statements that are said to make your mind believe in them. The statements can talk about many topics such as self-love, confidence, acceptance, etc.
- Chakra mantra affects you on an energetic level whereas a chakra affirmation will affect your subconscious.
However, both of them need to be said regularly and repetitively.
Even though bija mantras are sounds with no meaning, the healing abilities of their powerful vibrations have been felt by many. Yogis and rishis have been following the practice of chanting mantras for ages and have been successful in attaining the enlightenment and inner peace we all aspire to have.
You have to follow a practice regularly to see its effects and the same can be said for chakra mantras. Stick to a routine and you are bound to feel the bija mantra working its magic by activating and cleansing your chakra. Peace, wholeness, love, and spiritual guidance will automatically flow through you once your chakras have been aligned.
Let the mantras lead you to a fulfilling journey of spiritual love and prosperity!