All About Om

The meaning of this sacred syllable--and how to practice om yoga meditation

BY: Swami Nirmalananda Giri

 

Continued from page 1

8) In time your inner mental intonations of Om may change to a more mellow or softer form, even an inner whispering, but Om is always fully present and effective. Your intonations may even become silent, like a "mouthing" of Om, yet you will still be intoning Om. Amazingly Om becomes a silent sound. This is a mystery, but you can experience for yourself. But of this be sure:

Om never ceases.

Never. You will no doubt find that your intonations of Om move back and forth from more objective to more subtle and back to more objective. Just intone in the manner you feel is most natural at the moment.

9) Continue intoning Om throughout your meditation time in the way just outlined. If you find yourself getting restless, distracted or "fuzzy," inwardly intone Om more rapidly and strongly for a while and then relax back into your usual mode of intoning. Rolling the beads of a japa mala can also help.

10) As you meditate, thoughts, impressions, memories, inner sensations, and suchlike may arise. You may also become aware of one or more areas of your brain or body at different times, as well. Om can produce peace, awareness and quiet joy in your mind as well as soothing radiations of energy in the physical and subtle bodies. Be calmly aware of all these things in a detached and objective manner. They are part of the transforming work of Om, and are perfectly all right. But do not let your attention become centered on or caught up in any of these inner phenomena. Keep your awareness centered in your intonations of Om, which should always be your primary focus.

11) Remember: Om Yoga meditation consists of two things only: mentally intoning Om and listening to those inner intonings, "hearing" them. And always without strain.

12) At the end of your meditation time, keep on intoning Om in a continuous stream as you go about your ordinary routine.

Simple and Easy

Can it be that simple and easy? Yes, it can--and is. Suppose some people who have always lived in tents entered a house and came upon a locked door. Knowing nothing of doors, locks, and keys, how would they open it? They might throw themselves against it, beat on it with their fists or heavy objects such as sledgehammers or even some kind of battering ram. If someone approached them with a tiny key they could easily snap in two and told them it would open the door, they would laugh at him. But he would effortlessly insert the key, simply turn it, and enter. It would be that simple and that easy. Om Yoga is also that simple and easy because it goes directly to the root of our bondage which is a single (and therefore simple) thing: loss of awareness. The simpler and more easeful our practice, the more deeply effective it will be.

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