Author Topic: Theravada buddhism and mantras  (Read 146 times)

Offline leeben

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Theravada buddhism and mantras
« on: November 07, 2017, 10:26:33 am »
Hello!

I want to keep it short, as i am a little bit busy person  ;D.

I have lately been very interested about theravada buddhism. I love it! I know the basics, but there is always this one thing that crawls to my mind:

Mantras.

As far as  know, they are not a big part of theravada, but can i still chant them? And if i can, what mantras can i chant, what are part of theravada, or what mantras are used in theravada? Thank you if you had time to read, peace  :buddha:.

Offline Pixie

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Re: Theravada buddhism and mantras
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2017, 12:28:04 pm »
Hi leeben,

The only Theravada mantra I know of is "Buddho". Here's the late teacher Ajahn Chah talking about it:

http://www.ajahnchah.org/book/Just_Do_It_1_2.php

Hope that helps.

With best wishes,


Pixie _/|\_
May all beings have happiness and the causes of happiness.
May they all be free from suffering and the causes of suffering.
May they never be deprived of true happiness devoid of any suffering.
May they abide in great impartiality, free from attachment to loved ones and aversion to others.

Offline IdleChater

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Re: Theravada buddhism and mantras
« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2017, 01:37:35 pm »
Hello!

I want to keep it short, as i am a little bit busy person  ;D.

I have lately been very interested about theravada buddhism. I love it! I know the basics, but there is always this one thing that crawls to my mind:

Mantras.

As far as  know, they are not a big part of theravada, but can i still chant them? And if i can, what mantras can i chant, what are part of theravada, or what mantras are used in theravada? Thank you if you had time to read, peace  :buddha:.

You absolutely can do mantra recitations, if that's what you want to do.  They are more of a Mahayana thing, but so what? 

The Avalokiteshvara mantra is commonly used - OM MANI PADME HUM.

The short Varjarasatva mantra is used for karmic purification -  OM AH HUM

The Amithaba mantra is common in pureland practice including funerary rites - do it for those who have passed - OM AMI DEWA HRI

Medicine Buddha is recited for healing purposes  - TAYATA OM BEKANDZE MAHA BEKANDZE RADZA SAMUDGATE SOHA

Get a mala to help you keep track of recitations.  Sandalwood or Lotus seed would be best.  If you can't find a mala  just put 108 knots in a cord and use that.  A stitch counter for knitting would also work.

Offline Rahul

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Re: Theravada buddhism and mantras
« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2017, 07:46:34 pm »
What makes you like mantras so much? To me mantra is a tool to attain and remain in a state of mind. To me mantra is a phrase or a short sentence that has a meaning I understand very well and which I repeat consciously again and again to reinforce that meaning in my mind and get into a state of mind related to that meaning. And hence, mantra can be in any language and given or made by anyone, including myself. A sentence like 'keep striving' or 'be mindful' is also a mantra to me.

Offline leeben

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Re: Theravada buddhism and mantras
« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2017, 07:46:38 am »
What makes you like mantras so much? To me mantra is a tool to attain and remain in a state of mind. To me mantra is a phrase or a short sentence that has a meaning I understand very well and which I repeat consciously again and again to reinforce that meaning in my mind and get into a state of mind related to that meaning. And hence, mantra can be in any language and given or made by anyone, including myself. A sentence like 'keep striving' or 'be mindful' is also a mantra to me.

I think its something that takes you away from the moment, also concentrating you to the moment. It's hard to explain, i just like the sound of it and how it feels. It's pretty much like asking a person why he likes tapping his fingers on the desk: There is no answer. He just... likes it.

Offline IdleChater

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Re: Theravada buddhism and mantras
« Reply #5 on: November 08, 2017, 09:51:49 am »
I think its something that takes you away from the moment, also concentrating you to the moment. It's hard to explain, i just like the sound of it and how it feels. It's pretty much like asking a person why he likes tapping his fingers on the desk: There is no answer. He just... likes it.

That's great - no need to explain further.   A lot of what causes people to go in one direction or another on the path has to do with connection.  That sounds kind new-agey, I know, but it's true.  Teacher's, schools, and practices are often chosen because the practitioner senses a connection to that thing - a sense or familiarity or leaning.

So, if you feel like you want to do mantra practice, just do it. You don't permission or blessing from anyone around here, that's for sure.  There are plenty of mantra practices that you don't need anyone's permission to do. 

If you're really interested, I can guide you to sources that can provide a complete liturgy for the practice of those mantras.  There can be more too it than just recitation of the mantra.  PM me if you'd like to expolore that.


Offline leeben

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Re: Theravada buddhism and mantras
« Reply #6 on: November 08, 2017, 09:56:04 am »
I think its something that takes you away from the moment, also concentrating you to the moment. It's hard to explain, i just like the sound of it and how it feels. It's pretty much like asking a person why he likes tapping his fingers on the desk: There is no answer. He just... likes it.

That's great - no need to explain further.   A lot of what causes people to go in one direction or another on the path has to do with connection.  That sounds kind new-agey, I know, but it's true.  Teacher's, schools, and practices are often chosen because the practitioner senses a connection to that thing - a sense or familiarity or leaning.

So, if you feel like you want to do mantra practice, just do it. You don't permission or blessing from anyone around here, that's for sure.  There are plenty of mantra practices that you don't need anyone's permission to do. 

If you're really interested, I can guide you to sources that can provide a complete liturgy for the practice of those mantras.  There can be more too it than just recitation of the mantra.  PM me if you'd like to expolore that.
Thank you for  your opendmindedness! I think i am good with this info, but thank you for offering your help :=)

Offline Spiny Norman

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Re: Theravada buddhism and mantras
« Reply #7 on: November 09, 2017, 02:19:48 am »
Mantras.
As far as  know, they are not a big part of theravada, but can i still chant them?

Yes, of course.  I sometimes chant the prajnaparamita. 

 


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