Here’s your chance to learn an amazing system of meditation from renowned spiritual teacher Jagad Guru Siddhaswarupananda. In this class you will learn: about the deep spiritual effect of meditating with a mantra, how to practice japa meditation with beads, how to practice kirtan meditation with music and singing, how to make your meditation more effective, how to establish a daily home practice and valuable tips for practicing meditation.

Learn Mantra Meditation With Jagad Guru Siddhaswarupananda

Video Transcript

Jagad Guru: Want we want to do is not just speak philosophy, but I want to give you a practical technique of meditation which you can apply when you go home.  Not just one day when you go home, but over a period of time be regular.  The process is called mantra meditation and I will not be able to… we’ll not go into it in depth, but we’ll give you enough of the process so that you can apply to your life.

So first thing is that a mantra… sometimes when people think of mantra they don’t know what it is.  They think it is just a sound of any kind.  That anybody can make any sound and that’s a mantra.  If they say it over and over again it becomes a mantra.  But this is not a fact.  A mantra means; that sound which draws the mind away from the temporary material dimension with all of its problems, hassles, anxieties, concerns.  That this sound draws away the mind from this temporary and puts it onto the eternal.  So a mantra has the effect of taking one’s mind away from the material dimension and into the spiritual dimension.

There are many mantras, but those mantras are supreme which are directly connected with God’s name.  So God’s names are the real mantras and also, of course, God’s words as in the Sri Isopanisad.  So tonight we’ll teach you one mantra and this mantra is not just for the purpose of getting a little peace.  Just like sometimes people talk about chanting mantra meditation just to get a little peace, but it is more than that.  We’ll talk about that after we actually chant this mantra.  I’ll show you how to chant this mantra.

The mantra is: Gopala Govinda Rama Madana Mohana. Now I will say it then you repeat it.  One sound at a time, one word at a time.  Gopala.

Audience: Gopala.

Jagad Guru: Govinda.

Audience: Govinda.

Jagad Guru: Rama.

Audience: Rama.

Jagad Guru: Madana Mohana.

Audience: Madana Mohana.

Jagad Guru: Madana Mohana is one, okay.  Madana Mohana.

Audience: Madana Mohana.

Jagad Guru: Gopala.

Audience: Gopala.

Jagad Guru: Govinda.

Audience: Govinda.

Jagad Guru: Rama.

Audience: Rama.

Jagad Guru: Madana Mohana.

Audience: Madana Mohana.

Jagad Guru:  So this is a mantra and a person can chant this mantra without any other thing.  It doesn’t need beads to chant or musical instrument to chant.  A person can chant this mantra simply with his lips, then of course with his mind because you’re chanting with your mouth and your ears then automatically your mind will follow.  If you think you’re just going to chant with your mind it is very difficult because the mind follows the senses.  So if you can understand this at the beginning then you can chant this mantra simply by repeating it.  This you can do without anything else.  For example, while you’re driving in your car you can simply be repeating this mantra to your self, with your lips softly or if you can hear it with your ears that’s even better.  The more senses that are involved in the mantra the greater the effect will be.  So if you’re chanting with your lips and your ears are hearing it then your mind is also involved then this is a very good effect.

Now what we will be teaching you tonight is called japa yoga or japa meditation.  It means the chanting of the mantra with the use of beads.

This technique, this yoga practice is applied, of course, by different religious systems that have taken the basic point, taken the basic practice and applied it to their own particular religious faith.  Such as the Catholics with the rosary and the Buddhists they chant also on beads and so on.  But the basic principle of this is called japa yoga or japa meditation.  The chanting of the names of God not only with the lips and the ears and the mind but also the sense of touch.  So this additional sense, of the sense of touch, then has the effect of making it so that the mind is even more centered upon the Supreme Lord.

If you look at your beads there is a head bead.  At this head bead we offer our obeisances, our respects to our spiritual master then we chant, Gopala Govinda Rama Madana Mohana while we’re touching the bead.

For our television audience at home it’s like we’re touching this bead… while a person is touching… fiddling… just like you have people who smoke cigarettes, right?  When they stop smoking one of their biggest problems is, what do they fiddle with?  What do they touch?  They don’t know what to do with their hands.  Their fingers are always like this.  They don’t know what to do with it.  So we have the tendency to touch and to feel things.  So in this japa yoga there is the redirecting of this tendency to fiddle with something, to touch something.  It’s a redirection of this tendency into a transcendental activity, spiritual activity.

So a person redirects his sense of touch and he chants on the bead, Gopala Govinda Rama Madana Mohana.  Then he goes to the next bead with his finger and does it again, Gopala Govinda Rama Madana Mohana, Gopala Govinda Rama Madana Mohana.  On each bead, chanting on each bead this mantra.  So it’s a very simple thing.  Is it clear?  So what I would like to do is actually make it… although this japa meditation is an individual practice.  It’s not meant to be a group participation practice so much.  It’s meant for you to apply individually when you’re alone to make it so that you can get a feel for what we’re talking about, so that then you can then apply it on your own.

Why don’t we do it now here and then if you have questions later about it then you can ask.  So first thing is why don’t we all chant together in unison this, Gopala Govinda Rama mantra on these beads?  So if you keep your eyes not closed and not open.  Little bit open this is the best way.  That way you don’t fall asleep.  But then you also don’t have many distractions from outside, okay?  Many people they want to meditate, they close their eyes but they fall asleep.  But if they open their eyes they’re distracted.  So if you keep your eyes kind of open kind of closed that’s the best, okay?  So why don’t I lead then you can catch up follow with me okay?  Everybody can chant. Okay can you say it?  Can you say it, this mantra?   Gopala Govinda Rama.  We’re going to go a little fast okay?

Gopala Govinda Rama Madana Mohana (chanting on beads a number of times)

Jagad Guru: So this practice of japa yoga, you can chant on these beads.  If you like you can take these beads with you and apply it.  You must try it.  There’s a saying, “the proof of the pudding is in the eating.”  You must practice it on a regular basis.  For example, you should rise in the morning after you bathe then you should chant this japa, japa meditation as long as you can.  Fifteen minutes, twenty minutes, thirty minutes and also sometimes if you like to take walks you can also take these beads with you and chant this japa meditation while you’re walking, but you should keep your eyes completely open when you’re doing it that way otherwise, of course, you’ll have some problem.

Some people I know they chant on beads even while they’re driving and it’s very dangerous.  But because they’re chanting they’re not afraid.  But it is very good to chant this japa meditation when you first arise in the morning then before you sleep at night.  Before you go to rest chant ten, fifteen, twenty minutes on these beads.

Now another way to chant this mantra is called kirtan or with musical instruments and with other people.  Some people they say that if you chant the names of God out loud, also some people who sell mantras say this for their own financial benefit, that you can not say a mantra out loud.  You must keep it a secret.  They say you cannot say the mantra out loud otherwise it loses its effect.  They do not appreciate that the mantra is God’s name and that God’s name is always of the same power.  It is not that if the name of God somehow comes into connection with the material dimension, that the power of the name of God becomes dissipated.  Their proposal is that God’s names can lose their potency when they come into contact with matter, material nature or maya.  But actually the exact opposite is true: that God’s names have the effect of influencing the world, not vice versa.  So a person does not need to be afraid to say the mantra out loud.

Now, kirtan means, not only saying the mantra out loud as in japa meditation, japa yoga, but even you can put it to musical melodies, musical instruments.  You can sing the names of God.  Sing this mantra and a very positive effect will be there.  You don’t need to simply keep this mantra in your mind.  You can actually sing it.  So this is called kirtan when there is a group of people that come together and sing the names of God together.  So that is what, of course, we were doing earlier.  So why don’t we just…  I’ll lead this chanting.  You can use guitar?  You can… so who plays the guitar?  Where are the guitar players?  And you don’t need to worry when you’re chanting God’s names how bad your voice sounds.  This is the wonderful thing that you can have a horrible sounding voice and because God’s name is there, oh it sounds very beautiful.  So you never need to be self conscious and think that I have to sing like Pabs Dadivas in order to sing the names of God, no, okay?  So I’ll lead and then you follow okay.

I’ll say it … kirtans generally are done like that.  That one person leads and then the others follow, then one person leads and the others follow and sometimes we all sing it together.  Okay, so.

Gopala Govinda Rama Madana Mohana (sings kirtan)