Often times, after people have been chanting awhile, they feel ready to take on a chanting discipline of some sort. A chanting discipline is a commitment to chant a particular Sanskrit Mantra or grouping of Mantras for a certain determined time that works on an issue you’d like help with.
A good way to go about it is to first figure out the most important issue you want to work on: Health, Abundance, Spirituality, Anger, Fear … Love. The options are as varied as we are. You might sit in a quiet place and close your eyes and ask, “What is it I really need to work on – to transform, to let go?”
Once you have your issue or desired result in hand, next, locate a good Mantra for that, making sure it is coming from an excellent source, of course.
Mantra disciplines are usually for 40 days. Why is this? Well, 40 seems to be a very profound number spiritually speaking: Jesus went into the desert to meditate for 40 days. Buddha sat underneath the Bodhi tree for 49 days. Also, 40-day disciplines have been used for thousands of years by our fore-fathers and fore-mothers, so it’s got a good history to it as well.
There are basically two ways to go about a 40-day discipline. You can repeat your Mantra either 108 (1 Mala) times in the morning and night (If it’s a really long Mantra like the Long-form Gayatri – you can do that either morning or night if time is an issue). Or, you can chant it all through the day as much as you can. Most of us know which will work for us – so do that. For me, I like using my mala, then I know when I’m done, I’m done. It’s clear cut.
A great Mantra Discipline to start off with is doing a Ganesha Mantra. Ganesha helps us in overcoming obstacles. A good one is:
OM SHRI GANESHAYA NAMAHA
SALUTATIONS TO THE ONE (GANESHA) WHO ELIMINATES OBSTACLES
Also, should you be working on something that you have a lot of karma around you can stack Mantras for the same issue but coming at it from different sides? For example, maybe you are trying to get a job, but you are finding a lot of obstacles in your way, you could do the Mantra above and also add:
OM GUM GANAPATAYEI NAMAHA
SALUTATIONS TO THE REMOVER OF OBSTACLES OF WHICH GUM IS THE SEED.
And maybe, you could also add a Lakshmi Mantra for Abundance – you get the idea. In stacking them, you would do a mala of one, then the next, followed by the last one. And do this stack in the morning and night for 40 days.
If you find you have forgotten one day to complete your mala(s) for that day, you will need to start the 40 days over – if you go to sleep that night and wake up a few hours later remembering – you still need to start over. But, if you catch yourself before you go to sleep, then that day is still good and you can complete your discipline for that day.
After you are finished the 40 days, give your self a breather and see what has shifted for you. Sometimes you see results right away, other times it manifests a few months after. If you feel you need to do another 40 days as your situation is profound. Do that.
It’s all karma. We must take responsibility for our own lives and where we find ourselves as we truly have created it all. Luckily, we have Sanskrit Mantra and other spiritual measures we can take to transform ourselves.
So, if you need guidance on your Mantra discipline – help with which Mantras etc.,- I am here.
Aly M. Dunne