All About Om

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

Continued from page 1

5) Keep on intoning Om in an unbroken stream at the rate that seems most comfortable or "right" to you at the moment--quickly, moderately, or slowly. Whatever you feel to do at the moment is right, and it is just fine to change back at forth during your meditation. Your deep intuition is coming into play, and as you are a living organism, so also will your intoning of Om be living, and therefore sometimes change in speed of repetition.

6) Do not let your intonations of Om get caught or captured by any physical process such as the breath or the heartbeat, as this draws you into body awareness and the limitations of the subconscious, and can even put you to sleep! Japa must be an act of will, of the free impulse that rises from deep within, from the Self. Doing japa in time with the breath or heartbeat develops passivity and integration with the material side of our being rather than the spirit. This is extremely important to understand.

7) Simply intone Om inwardly, "listening to" or "hearing" the mental sound of your intonations of Om. Your intonations should be resonant and strong. You do not shout or bellow inwardly, but you do intone in a robust or full-bodied manner with no hesitation or feebleness. Experience Om as both cause (inner speaking) and effect (inner hearing) in a relaxed and easeful manner, experiencing the inner sensations produced by this practice. This enables you to enter effortlessly into the Witness Consciousness that is your finite spirit within the Infinite Spirit that is God.

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Om can produce peace, awareness and quiet joy.
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