887 – Questions we seek answers for

What and why is Aum added before every mantra?

Aum is the basis of all sounds and is considered the universal symbol for God. Aum of the Vedas became the sacred Hum of the Tibetans. Amen is repeated by the Moslems and Amen by the Egyptians, Greeks, Jews and Christians. Amen in Hebrew means sure and faithful. It is the all-pervading sound which emanates from the invisible Cosmic vibrations. It is the voice of creation and testifies the divine presence in every atom. One can hear the sound of Aum in the Anahata chakra through meditation. Therefore, it is chanted at the end and beginning of a sadhana.

Why does one repeat Shanti three times?

The three repetitions of Shanti are addressed to three groups which are obstacles in the study of the scriptures and experienced by one on the spiritual path.

Cosmic (God sent) i.e. Adhi-Daivika or heavenly wraths or from unknown objects: From Nature; the thermic or dynamic forces such as earthquakes, lightening, thunder, torrential rain, bitter cold or heat and so on.

Phenomenal i.e. Adhi-Bhautika or cruelties from known objects outside of us: From objects like fire, floods, land-slides, venomous reptiles, catastrophes, war or sound disturbances and disruptions. All these disrupt our meditation.

Purely subjective i.e. Adhyaatmika of from our own selves––obstacles arising from our own body, mind and intellect: Body ailments, inertia, insincerity, lack of faith resulting in doubts, lack of concentration, agitation of mind-physical or mental activities which arise from our own negativity.

In order to perform our sadhana, we must chant Aum three times and add Aum Shanti at the end. We seek help to remove the Tri-Tapa which means at the lower level the hardships of the three stages of life. Tri-Tapa-Yatana also refers to the suffering at the physical, mental and emotional level.

Reference: Pushpanjali by Swami Chinmayananda.

Aim Hrim Klim


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