Thoughts on Mantra: What we can learn from the humble Lightbulb!

Be the lightbulb - prepare to channel the power of God through mantra!

The lightbulb – a divine metaphor!

There is an excellent analogy used by yogis to symbolise the evolution of man that is required before he can experience God.

It is the idea that one cannot place 1,000 W of electricity through a humble lightbulb; such power levels can only be withstood by, and are only meant for, a powerful electrical transformer.

What does this mean? Well let us analyse the idea. What happens when 50 W of electricity pass through a 100 W lightbulb? It will probably not shine to its full capacity, but it may dimly light. What happens when one puts 100W of electricity through a 100 W lightbulb? Undoubtedly it will shine brightly, as it was meant to. But when 1,000 W of electricity – 10x the required amount – pass through a small 100 W lightbulb, what happens? Quite simply, it will probably explode! The reason is also simple – it was never manufactured to withstand such a powerful electrical current.

What makes us more than mere lightbulbs?

What should become quite obvious is that electricity symbolises the power of God in this metaphor, manifesting as the light of consciousness when passing through a human being. Ordinary humans are like the 100 W lightbulb. They have great potential to shine, but this is still insufficient (in their current forms) to withstand the full force of the divine.

However, human beings have a critical advantage over the lightbulb: we are not inanimate objects! We live, breathe, think and act independently. This also means that we have the capacity to grow. Pushing ourselves daily beyond our physical, mental and emotional limitations allow us to exceed our past achievements with ever greater accomplishment.

In other words, what must happen is that our ‘power level’ must slowly increase before we can experience the full glory of the divine.

Power comes from within

There is no doubt that mantras are the auditory or vocal manifestation of the divine. By meditating more and more deeply on a mantra, you are increasing your capacity to channel the divine through you. Just as the lightbulb shines, one who learns the secrets of a mantra will undoubtedly shine in every aspect of his or her life.

There is no limit to the spiritual growth that one can experience through focused and determined meditation – even with a small daily effort!


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Burn Karma 24/7: Turn Work into Tapas!

Let your every action be a prayer to help you continuously burn karma!

Karma bears a heavy burden

Past actions can weigh heavily on your progress in your current life. Such is the rule of the universe.

However, God has provided a mechanism to alleviate the strain – karma can be burned away or dissolved by a variety of methods; most of which are good actions toward your fellow man and the Gods.

This blog is focused on the benefits of mantra. One such mantra for effective and powerful karma burn is to chant Rama nama – or the name of Rama. I have previously covered the merits of Rama nama in prior posts.

But as anyone knows from experience – karma can be thick and stubborn, taking time to eliminate before one can move on. How can one make time to steadily burn karma in our busy lifestyles?

The art of Tapas

Tapas is the practice of intense austerities with a singular goal in mind – to raise one’s consciousness (or put another way, build one’s spiritual power) to extent to which the Gods take notice and provide one with a boon. When one thinks of boons, our thoughts are coloured by visions of grand (and implausible) requests for immortality and invulnerability from various divine weaponry – as happens frequently (!) in the Mahabharata and other popular epics.

In reality, the practice of any sadhana, if performed correctly and with sincerity, will often result in unseen benefits, or a big step toward your stated goal – be it getting over past karmas, praying for happiness, or a resolution of an ongoing problem.

There is a simple way of performing tapas – by turning work into prayer, and prayer into meditation.

Banish idle thought to focus the mind

Have you noticed during the course of the day how many times idle thoughts enter your stream of consciousness and interrupt your work? This is the precious spare time in which one can refocus the mind on God and dissolve karma!

Use every moment of idle thought or pause during the work day to your advantage and chant the Rama nama silently in your mind, praying for the forgiveness of the Lord for yourself and all of your colleagues and loved ones.

In office work, there are a multitude of ‘brainless’ tasks that happen daily which are ripe to reclaim to useful thought! Such as: when you commute to work daily; when you ride the elevator to your floor (or between departments); photocopying; typing inane emails…the list is endless!

Never lose a moment! Focus your mind on Rama and let him remove your burdens!

Push toward subconscious prayer

As detailed in prior posts the subconscious mind is actually a more powerful tool for focus and deep thought than the conscious mind at times. Chanting Rama nama continuously in the mind during idle periods for weeks at a time will undoubtedly seed the mind with this potent idea. Once the conscious mind continues its focus on work, one will find that the subsconcious mind will continue and direct you back to Rama nama in your idle moments. What a mechanism! The mind is truly wonderful in this way.

This is the path to continuous karma burn and turning every duty into pure, fruitful tapas. Burn karma to move forward!

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Never be Late Again! Pray to Ganesha.

Let Ganesha manage your Time - you will never be late!

Do you have a problem with timing?

Modern life is undoubtedly tough. When you live around a tight timeline every day, ever moment counts – whether you work in the corporate world or not.

In this context, being late is unacceptable. But once a schedule is upset, its incredibly difficult to get back into the routine, is it not?

Pray to Ganesha to restore balance…

One sure-fire way one can avoid being late for any situation is to pray to the Lord of Beginnings – Ganesha.

Through my experimentation with mantras, I have found that reciting any Guru-initiated Ganesha mantra no less than 1,008x DAILY without fail, one will ALWAYS be on time. This is one of the earliest Siddhis one gains from praying to Ganesha – who is the Lord of Siddhis. It quickly appears and when it does, it revolutionises your timekeeping!

…even when you think a situation is insurmountable! 

As one perfects the practice of a Ganesha mantra, it extends to cover even the most impossible situations. In fact, this miraculous siddhi will extend to situations where you actually believe you are late – you will in fact still be just in time! Some twist of fate will inevitably work in your favour – if not in the short term, the long term.

Put your faith in the Lord of Obstacles to destroy all hurdles in your way; He is never wrong and always works in your favour.


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Thoughts on Mantra: The Secret of Sankalpa

Sankalpa holds the secret to unlocking a mantra!

If effort is proportional to benefit, certainty is proportional to speed

Faith is something the that grows with time and experience. The greater number of answered prayers, blessings and small mercies, the greater the faith of a person.

It is with this strong faith that one must approach japa and more importantly, their sankalpa. Sankalpa means resolution. At the beginning of each japa one chants the sanskrit verses pertaining to the correct sankalpa for their goals.

Most people believe that sankalpa simply declares the japa mantra that one is about to chant – but it is much more than that. It is a powerful invocation of the divine through a declaration of total commitment and absolute resolution to accomplish what one sets out to achieve!

Don’t doubt the power of sankalpa

Such a powerful resolve is what causes ordinary men and women to ascend to greatness.

It allows the athlete to push him/herself to the pinnacle of physical and mental perfection. It is the method by which insurmountable battles are won. It is the last minute inspiration. It is the strength that one summons in times of great despair.

In truth it is the point at which one begins to tap into their divinity to change the course of fate itself.

Use the power of sankalpa to unfold a mantra

We have previously touched upon the concept that one must unfold a mantra with the help of a guru to gain the full understand of its method, its essence and power. The final component to unlock the immediate and full effect of a mantra is the power of sankalpa: absolute determination that what one prays for, one will achieve.

The secret behind sankalpa

There is a saying amongst the spiritual communities in India: don’t sit under a mango tree praying for a mango to fall! Why? Because its far better to climb it and take whats yours.

The relevance of this charming anecdote is to help the aspirant understand that there are two components to sankalpa – a mental one and physical one.

The mental aspect is relatively obvious – one clearly states their goal with firm determination to succeed. However, the physical manifests in two forms: the first is that the japa that one states he or she will complete daily will be done on time and without fail. The second is the secret: while the metaphysical world can be bent to one’s will to align fate in your favour, you MUST act in the physical world – i.e. climb that tree!

The most pertinent example and lesson is for students – don’t simply sit at the last minute praying for divine intervention in your studies and exams! Unyielding commitment to study day and night is necessary to reach your goal. The mantras simply remove the obstacles and distractions along the way.

Let us never forget that doors open for those who knock.


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How to Bend Destiny with the Navagraha Mantras – 9 – Saturn

Get on the good side of Saturn by praying to Hanuman to enhance your spirituality and character

This post continues the ongoing series on How to Bend Destiny.

Shani –  Planet of Challenges and Character 

Saturn is the most feared planet of all in the Eastern astrological construct. It is famed for causing long periods of difficulties where people are tested to the limit. Why? I believe it is because God is not interested in where you start or how but how you run the race. The evolution you undergo and the character you build in times of tragedy and difficulty is a key part of life and the true measure of a man or woman.

Saturn has the effect of detachment, spirituality, longevity, foreign travel and also of thieves and robbers. It is the overlord of all spiritual personalities and behaviour.

Effects of Saturn

Shani is the son of the Sun (Surya), mothered by Chaya. Shani is known to be lame (due t0 a prior quarrel with Yama, the God of Death and Afterlife) and the root cause of testing periods in one’s life.

Shani in a positive position within the horoscope gives the aspirant powerful leadership potential,honesty and sense of justice. It also causes spiritual detachment from materiality and wordily behaviours if the aspirant is so inclined.

Boost your spirituality and character!

The Vedic prayer to Saturn is below, followed by the Shani Gayatri.

Vedic prayer to Saturn


Neelaamjana Samaabhaasam Raviputram Yamagrajam

Chchaaya maarthanda samboothm tham namaami Shanishwaram


“I bow down to Saturn, the one of a dark-blue complexion like ointment, the slow moving one, the son of Chaya and the brother of Yama.”

Shukra Gayatri


“Om Sanischaraya vidmahe
Suryaputraya dhimahi
tanno manda prachodayaat


“We know Shani,
We meditate on the son of the Sun,
May the slow one inspire us” 

Mantras to Hanuman

The Ruling Deity of Shani is Lord Hanuman. We have already covered a number of Hanuman chants, including: the Hanuman Gayatri and the Hanuman Chalisa.

Coming soon: Part 10 – Rahu

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Prior parts of the series

Click here for part 1  – Introduction

Click here for part 2 List of Mantras to Planets

Click here for part 3 The Sun + Shiva

Click here for part 4 The Moon + Parvati

Click here for part 5 Mars + Skanda/Hanuman

Click here for part 6 Mercury + Vishnu

Click here for part 7 Jupiter + Dakshinamurthy

Click here for part 8 Venus + Lakshmi


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Thoughts on Mantra: 333 is the New 1000

333 - a powerful shortcut to be used by the dedicated sadhak

Time is the most precious commodity

It is virtually indisputable that of the rare commodities a person could waste, time is the most precious. A sadhak living the lifestyle of a busy student or corporate persona must indeed carefully ration their time.

In this regard, I would like to present a modest help for those practising mantra yogis who find it difficult to incorporate a fixed time for japa in an unpredictable routine.

The ‘Easy’ Thousand

There is a short cut which is prescribed in scripture – if one cannot complete a full 1000 recitations of any mantra during an ongoing daily routine, then one is permitted to chant exactly 333 as an equivalent. This is known as the Easy Thousand.

Why does this work? First, like a teacher excusing a student from a rare indiscretion, know that for Vedic mantras and practices, the Devas are all-knowing and merciful in excusing the dedicated aspirant from exceptional circumstances. Secondly, it is noteworthy that 333 sums to 9 – a symbolic figure for infinity (read the prior post on Why 108? for more information). Therefore, it may be considered a sanctified count. In practical terms, it is a shade below half-way; thus freeing up more than enough time from meditation practices for the sadhak to complete whatever extraordinary duty they may have to.

When, where and how

Remember: this technique should be used on that rare occasion when one interrupts their usual nityakarmas due to some one-off time management difficulty. Straight after japa one should mentally prostrate themselves before the deity of the mantra and apologise for taking such a shortcut.

On the other hand, for a beginner of mantra japa moving to an intermediate level and looking to increase their count beyond 108x to a new plateau, chanting 333x daily is an easy stepping stone to 1000x later on.

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How to Bend Destiny with the Navagraha Mantras – 8 – Venus

The power of Venus can enrich your life with love, wealth, fame and beauty!

This post continues the ongoing series on How to Bend Destiny.

Shukra –  Planet of Love, Wealth and Fame 

Venus is a planet centered on materiality: love, wealth and fame fall under his remit. Needless to say, the deity features as a prominent God of physical wealth and comforts within the Hindu Pantheon,along with Lakshmi and Kubera.

Effects of Venus

In Eastern astrology, Venus is known as Shukra or Shukracharya. Whilst Brihaspati is the Guru of all the Devas, Shukracharya is the Guru of all the Rakshasas. Shukra was the son of Bhrigu. Interestingly, it was he that was first to receive the Maha Mrityunjaya mantra from Lord Shiva and perfected its siddhi – to raise the very dead back to life! It is said that to receive it his tapas was extreme: he hung upside down from a tree above a fire while meditating on Shiva.

Venus governs one’s interaction with the sensual and material. Those with strong artist talents, high levels of wealth,beauty and fame are all heavily influenced by the positive qualities of Venus. On an inter-personal level, Venus influences one’s marriage and relationship with lovers.

Boost your material wealth!

The Vedic prayer to Venus is below, followed by the Shukra Gayatri.

Vedic prayer to Venus


“Himakundha Mrinaalabham Daithyaanam Paramam gurum
Sarvashaastra pravatkaaram Bhaargavam pranamaamyaham”


“I bow to the descendant of Bhrigu, whose appears white like an icy pond. He is the spiritual master of the rakshasas, and teacher of the scriptures.”

Shukra Gayatri


“Om aswadhwajaaya vidmahe
dhanur hastaaya dhimahi
tanno Shukra prachodayaat


“We know the horse-flagged one,
We meditate on the one who carries a bow,
May Venus inspire us” 

Mantras to Lakshmi

The Ruling Deity of Venus is Lakshmi, Goddess of Wealth, Fame and Beauty. We have already covered a number of Lakshmi chants, including: Shreem, Kanagadhara Stotra and the Lakshmi Gayatri mantra.

Coming soon: Part 9 – Saturn

Follow me on Twitter: @MantraYogi

Prior parts of the series

Click here for part 1  – Introduction

Click here for part 2 List of Mantras to Planets

Click here for part 3 The Sun + Shiva

Click here for part 4 The Moon + Parvati

Click here for part 5 Mars + Skanda/Hanuman

Click here for part 6 Mercury + Vishnu

Click here for part 7 Jupiter + Dakshinamurthy


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The Ultimate Game-changer! Part 4: Method of Chanting Aditya Hridayam

Secrets of Aditya Hridayam: Part 4

This is the fourth and final part of a series on the powerful stotra: the Aditya Hridayam.

Click here to read the first part.

Click here to read the second part.

Click here to read the third part.

Quick recap

In the prior parts of this series, we explored the background and the introduction to the Aditya Hridayam by Agastya, and the benefits of recitation.

The method to chanting the Aditya Hridayam

Given the practical benefits and the philosophical undertones to the Aditya Hridayam, it is suitable for any dedicated aspirant to chant or hear the stotra daily.

It is auspicious to start chanting from a Sunday.

It is ideal to chant the stotra 3x in one sitting. Once a routine has been developed, one may chant the stotra once on Monday-Saturday, then three times on Sunday.

The reverence placed on the Sun by Agastya Rishi should not be taken lightly. Remember that one should be freshly showered wearing freshly washed clothes before one sits down to commence chanting. It is not be recited absent mindedly on the way to work if at all avoidable.

Use the full focus on your concentration to derive the greatest benefit. As you chant, you will notice your worries disappear, a great confidence will be instilled in your mind and you will gain the admiration and respect of others through decisive action throughout your life.

Text and audio

The text of the stotra is available in basic form here.

Click here to listen to the audio of the stotra.

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The Ultimate Game-changer! Part 3: Benefits of Aditya Hridayam

Secrets of Aditya Hridayam: Part 3

This is the third part of a series on the powerful stotra: the Aditya Hridayam.

Click here to read the first part.

Click here to read the second part.

Quick recap

In the first and second parts of this series, we briefly explored the background and the introduction to the Aditya Hridayam by Agastya.

A stotra of incredible power

As outlined by Agastya Rishi himself in the prelude to the stotra, the Aditya Hridayam has immense power.

Just look at the results – Rama himself used it to not only repel Ravana’s attacks but finally and decisively win the battle over insumountable odds and against a semi-divine opponent (Ravana was partly Gandharva, Deva, Brahmin and Rakshasa).

The stotra not only cleared Rama’s mind of doubt but also drove him to action! This is the power of the stotra.

Listening to Agastya’s reverence for the Sun in his introduction helps us understand why – the Sun is adored as the Parambrahman itself.

Given these points – when the stotra has been tried and tested by Sri Ramachandra himself, what is not possible when one recites the Aditya Hridayam?

Benefits of the Aditya Hridayam

Having extolled the Sun as the very Supreme Being that all aspirants, Devas, Asuras and Rishis strive to know, Maharishi Agastya provides a long list of benefits:

  • Destruction of your sins
  • Victory in battle/destruction of enemies
  • Alleviate worry, anciety and self-doubt
  • Instils determination and confidence
  • Long life
  • Prosperity

The Sun is effectively the universal illuminator. When chanted, the Aditya Hridayam illuminates one’s soul (destroys sins), one’s mind (instils clarity of thought),  one’s heart (determination and confidence), and one’s body (a long disease free life).

In the next part, the method behind the mantra will be discussed.

Coming soon: Part 4

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The Ultimate Game-changer! Part 2: Secrets of Aditya Hridayam

Secrets of Aditya Hridayam: Part 2

This is the second part of a series on the powerful stotra: the Aditya Hridayam.

Click here to read the first part.

Quick recap

In the first part of this series, the circumstances under which the Aditya Hridayam was imparted to Rama were explored.

Rama was confused and depressed as nothing was going his way on the battle front. Ravana remained alive and elusive to his tactics and weapons.

In the midst of this, Maharishi Agastya appears and begins to initiate Rama into the Aditya Hridayam.

More than the Solar Orb

Agastya’s introduction to the AH is key to understanding the stotra’s main themes. He mentions that the Sun is:

  • The Ruler of the worlds and Lord of the universe
  • That which is revered by the Devas and Asuras alike
  • The embodiment of all the Gods
  • The nourisher and energiser
  • The embodiment of Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva and other key deities

By the end of the description the Sun is effectively extolled as the Parambrahman; there is nothing that the Sun cannot or doesn’t do to regulate the universe.

The point that is conveyed is that when pray to the Sun with the AH, you are in fact praying to the greatest deity.

In the next part we will look at the benefits of chanting the Aditya Hridayam.

Coming soon: Part 3

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