Tuesday, 1 July 2014

ajapa japa or I’m chanting as we speak, sweetie

I have managed to keep up quite a lot of routines that are giving myself a good turn, and hopefully those small virtues outweigh the vices—if I take time to count.  The yoga and taking time to meditate and relax, however, have become shadows of their former regiments.  It’s never comfortable (nor necessary, fortunately) trying to account for why one stopped cultivating a good habit, but introspection is something that I hope to rediscover.  Looking for a mantra to repeat in my head, I came across this website (one carefully and genuinely tended, which sadly seems kind of rare nowadays)that presents the fundamental mechanics of yogic meditation and rewarding practises that one ought to develop in a clear and accessible way.
I decided that I would stick with the classic mantra that I picked up—the Soham, understood to be a vocalization (though mantras are only to be repeated mentally) of one’s natural circulatory rhythm.  As a boustrophedon (from backwards to forwards), the words pose the question “Who am I?” and the answer “I am that I am,” but the sound and the its resonance through one’s mind and body is the important manner. Reaching the point when the silent chanting becomes sychronous with one's breath and pulse and one know longer thinks about the words and act, having become automatic and second-nature, is called by ajapa japa. I have some ways to go yet.  I also learned that there is a long established Christian tradition of meditation akin to Eastern practises (and not some latter day appropriation or concession). The choice sacred word, what a mantra means, has a distinctive Eastern ring and is often left untranslated in the Bible, as they original translators could not determine the stress and tone of the Arimaic on paper. The intentionally ambiguous Maranatha could be pronounced (in one's head, while meditating) as either maranâ thâ' or maran 'athâ' and so either as the prayer Come Lord or as the declaration The Lord has Come.