Most of us are familiar with “Aum,” or “Om” as it is referenced in the West, as not only the opening but the closing of your yoga practice. While many teachers do not use any mantra in their classes, many do and although “Aum” is the most common and the root of all mantras there are many more that you may hear or even grow to love as you embark on different lineages of yoga and different teachers.
From the Ashtanga Invocation to various Kundalini mantras that are used throughout the class, we are introduced to the idea of using mantra in our yoga classes and slowly become familiar with them.
When finding our own personal mantra do we have to use pre-existing ones? Not necessarily, but there is certainly something to them. A mantra can be as simple as a phrase that you repeat to yourself over and over again, a reminder to yourself everyday that there is a purpose to your action. While we have the opportunity to explore and hear all of these beautiful words, we also have the opportunity to create our own, take them from our favourite songs or poems or even quotes finding whatever resonates with us.
A Mantra is clearly defined as;
A sound, syllable or group of words that is considered capable of “creating transformation.”
Perhaps you have come across a mantra in yoga that really speaks to you, that touches you deep to the core every time you hear it or perhaps you have created your own or even have yet to come across something that talks to you. Personal mantra’s or affirmation are likely to progressively change as we move through our lives based on the challenges and opportunities that face us, but how do you even begin to find your “mantra?”
While not an easy task to find something that fits you and speaks to you here are some steps when considering your own personal mantra, whether you make your own or find one;
- What Do You Want to Achieve? What is your passion, what do you want from your life? Take a look at where you are today and the challenges that are before you, what would help you get where you want to be?
- Positive Language! Look for things that use positive language. By changing your language not only in the use of a mantra but everyday, you can change your life. Look at the difference between “I will” and “I want to.”
- Choose a Few! Nobody said you only have to have one. Can’t decide take them all, and write them down!
- Visualize! Post your mantra somewhere that you will see it every day, whether that’s on the bathroom mirror, or the front door. Leave yourself a constant reminder!
- Repetition! Find ways to bring your personal mantra into your life, share it with others, make modifications that make it more suited to you.
Finding your own personal mantra can be a challenge, when there is so many to choose from. Remembering to look inside to find what really touches you, that makes you feel good, that brings a smile to your face and leads you to YOUR definition of happiness or where you want to be in your life.
One of mine;
“Everyday, think as you wake up: Today I am fortunate to have woken up. I am alive. I have a precious human life. I am not going to waste it. I am going to use all my energies to develop myself to expand my heart out to others for the benefit of all beings.” ~ 14th Dalai Lama
Do you have your own personal mantra? Please feel free to share in the comments below.