These euphoric mantras, recorded at the Ratna Ling Retreat Center in the redwood forests of Northern California, come from a Tibetan tradition that prizes music as a means to reach enlightenment. A mantra has the power to purify body and mind, paving the way for an inner transformation from chaos to clarity. On Mantras from Ratna Ling, exultant male voices unite in a cacophony of sound; the uplifting chants are accompanied by the occasional percussion instrument. The recitations are imbued with an extraordinary level of energy and unmistakable devotion, lighting the path toward enlightenment.
Mantra is like a set of keys capable of unlocking the power of human potential, and of nature. Mantra is enlightened energy coded in syllables and sounds. We may not know why they work, only that they do.
Mantra can be compared with music, which also carries inner meaning that cannot be expressed in words. In the West, classical musical techniques and instruments are focused on harmony, melody, and thebeauty and purity of sound. In the Tibetan tradition, music is not primarily a form of art, but a means to enlightenment. Through the ages, Tibetanshave perfected the knowledge of how sound affects the mind. Melody and musical phrasing play a secondary role. To a Western ear mantra recitations may seem monotonous, but the sound of mantra works in mysterious ways.
Mantra restores balance between body and mind, and between humankind and the forces of nature. "Man-" means the essence of mind, and "-tra" refers to the "instrument for" the magical transformation. When we chant a mantra, our minds and souls find refuge in awareness, even amidst violence and chaos.
©2010 Dharma Publishing (P)2010 Dharma Publishing
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