Shree Hanuman Chalisa - Mantra Par Excellence



 

The power of mantra Jap or repetition of select holy words has been a time tested technique of spiritual development. The recitation of a mantra stills the mind and drives consciousness closer to its original source. At other times consciousness gets attached to activities of a finite mind and its small finite powers.

Some decades ago when modern researchers began to research effect of mantra recitation on humans, some came to conclusion that even the recitation of nonsense words like coco cola rather than selected sacred ones were producing benefit. However it is a grave mistake to do that because in meditative states consciousness becomes open to connections in the universe and then there is danger that nonsense or evil of the universe shall enter it.Whatever the mind focuses on, that it tends to attain.

A modern computer user may compare this to his experience of a computer. When not connected to the net, its powers are limited to that on the finite computer. When connected to the net it may multiply hugely. However, if connection is made to undesirable websites then much malignant-ware may enter the computer, even destroy it. Therefore, when choosing a mantra for recitation, choose sacred words of beauty and goodness. The words thus chosen may be from one’s language, culture or religion or from another provided one understands the meaning of it. Patanjali, the father of yoga, has stressed that focus on meaning during recitation of God’s name is beneficial. However, faith in sacred holiness of the chosen word also helps even when does not understand the meaning fully. Mantras may be recited loudly or internally with no sound emerging.
 
A mantra must have some other properties too. For example, it must be such that it enhances regular even breathing rather than disrupt it during recitation. Thus it takes evolved sages to choose the right mantras. Since the precise breathing apparatus and background of all varies, it remains for an individual to discover the best mantra for his or her personal spiritual development perhaps with the help of a spiritual teacher if necessary. A mantra can be as short as a single word or consist of several words or verses. Some of the favorites of this author are
OM
Ram
Om Namah Shiva
Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti
Om Mani Padme Hum 
The Complete Gayatri Mantra (In its Sanskrit verses)
The Complete Hanuman Chalisa
The Chalisas are the longest of spiritual mantras consisting of forty grouped couplets along with introductory and concluding verses. Chalisa means forty in Hindi. Of all the Chalisas, connected to various gods and goddesses of Himalayas and the plains it guards, the favorite of this author as well as of millions of others is the Hanuman Chalisa. The verses of this Chalisa include sacred and holy deeds of Lord Hanuman as well as about the recitation and power of the mantra and the name of the author, the sage and divine poet Tulsidas. Being a long mantra, it is one that is excellent for advanced mystics and scholars as well as the common man.

The Gayatri mantra in Sanskrit with its advanced spiritual meaning may be regarded as one best for scholars and priests, but Hanuman Chalisa belongs to all. It may be read just once to have a beneficial effect unlike a brief mantra that must be repeated over and over again. or it may be repeated several times for a longer session. There is a ecommendation within the verses of seven times being a session with more advanced benefits than just once. As mentioned in the Hanuman Chalisa and as true for any mantra, spiritual benefits of mantra recitation is proportional to control one can exercise on one’s mind and actions. 

Youtube has an excellent collection of Hanuman Chalisa videos by leading lights from the musical world rendered as artistic creations. Just search for them on google or youtube on your smart phone and listen to some. These are useful for learning the correct pronunciation of words in the Mantra but the final recitation must be done by the seeker himself by reading free of the artistic embellishments.  I find the one by Anup Jalota particulary good on youtube. It is at:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qD0Lnh0IJHY

In India these are usually produced in small pocket size books so that one may carry them wherever one goes. One such has been the companion of this author in his travels across the globe, In India these are usually produced in small pocket sizes so that one may carry them wherever one goes. One such has been the companion of this author in his travels across the globe. But some know it all by heart.

The picture with this post is of Lord Hanuman at the gate of the Naini Mata temple in Naintal snapped by this author some years ago. In mythology he was a god that belonged to the Vanar race that has monkey like physical characteristics and abilities such as a tail but also human ones like speech and intellect and Lord Hanuman was the most learned of beings in the times he appeared in pre-history. It is believed that he is immortal.

Jai Hanuman ji ki, Jai Bhagwan
(Praise Hanuman, praise the Lord)

NOTE: 
For those unable to read Hindi and wishing for an English transcription of Hanman Chalisa see:

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