I woke up this morning with a pressing headache, it felt very much like one of those detox headaches so I knew exactly what it was – singing, or more precisely, chanting.
A few months ago I joined a Sacred Mantras circle run by Naomy Raven. I had never done anything like it before and very nearly didn’t go. I am so glad that I did, and I have been going ever since.
One of the most fascinating aspects of chanting is the numbers of times you chant. 108, that’s right – and yes, at first I thought “What???” – but there’s a reason why.
We have 108 meridians or energy points in the body and as the mantras are sung, or chanted, the sound vibration fills and balances each meridian point. In this way, mantras can be very healing. Hence, the detox headache this morning!
For me personally, I feel so uplifted during and after the chanting. There is something amazing about joining a group of people and collectively singing or chanting – it’s a feeling that cannot always be articulated but if it could it would be full of words such as joy, ecstasy, excited, bliss.
There’s a quote that I love by Joseph Campbell: “Follow your bliss”. If something feels good, do it, follow the feeling – even if there’s no logical or common sense reason for it. Always follow what feels good.
How Joseph Campbell explains the quote is almost a description of the past year for me. It goes:
“I even have a superstition that has grown on me as a result of invisible hands coming all the time – namely, that if you do follow your bliss you put yourself on a kind of track that has been there all the while, waiting for you, and the life that you ought to be living is the one you are living. When you can see that, you begin to meet people who are in your field of bliss, and they open doors to you. I say, follow your bliss and don’t be afraid, and doors will open where you didn’t know they were going to be.”
So I was always going to continue going to my mantra circle. Why wouldn’t I want to connect to that feeling again? Why wouldn’t I want to make that a regular thing in my life? It sounds like a brainer. Yet, I can remember not so long ago I would allow other things to get in the way of doing something that made me feel so good. My version of reality would kick in and I would think that the paper I had to write or the ironing I had to do or some other task that HAD to be done was more important than doing something that would connect me to a wonderful feeling. I could write a whole other blog on why that is but for now I am glad I follow my bliss these days.
Healing has been on the agenda for me for a while, almost like an undercurrent running through my life, often without me being overly aware of it. But it was always there. Healing on all levels – emotionally, spiritually, physically, mentally and energetically. So the chanting is a part of that. It’s a perfect ingredient.
I will leave this blog with how Naomy describes the mantras that we chant and why they have such an effect. If you’re interested in knowing more about her work you can find her here:
Sanskrit Mantras are very old and have been used for healing and for facilitating a deep meditative state for thousands of years. Sanskrit is no longer spoken but it is the language of the Ancient Indian Texts and Scriptures, though the mantras can be completely non-religious, actually pre-dating organised religion. I find the feel and sound of them very powerful and beautiful. There are mantras all for different purposes, many for healing and spiritual growth. I love to sing them and I invite you to come join me and experience the power of sacred healing chanting for yourself. Whilst mantra can be used for facilitating a meditative state, many people also find them to be uplifting and joyful especially when sung.
Naomy Raven, Sacred Voice Healing Drum