OM – The Mantra

Om on Mt. Kailash, Himalayas


BY Yogini Shambhavi 

Mantra consists of the use of sacred sounds and intentions to transform the energy of the mind in a positive direction.  Mantras can also be performed to help us with concentration, with our work, dealing with emotions, for health, prosperity or overall well-being.

Om is the prime mantra of the Purusha, the Cosmic Being, the Atman or higher Self. As such, it attunes us with our true nature and higher reality. Om is the sound of Ishvara, the cosmic Lord, the creator, preserver and destroyer of the universe, who is also the inner guru or prime teacher.  It reflects both the manifest and the unmanifest Brahman, sustaining the vibration of Being, Life and Consciousness in all worlds and all creatures.

Generally, Om is divided threefold as A, U and M, with A referring to creation, the waking state and Brahma, the creator; U as sustenance, the dream state and Vishnu the preserver; and M as dissolution, the deep sleep state and Shiva the transformer.

Om serves to open and clear the mind for meditation. It brings about an ascension and expansion of our energy. It promotes the higher consciousness and inner light and takes us into the formless realm. It draws the sound current up the spine, through the chakras (energy centers) and out from the top of the head. Om also means “yes” and is said to be the sound of assent. It allows us to harmonize with the forces of the universe externally and with our own nature internally. It attunes us to the cosmic reality and the sacred vibratory patterns that arise from it.

Relative to other mantras, Om is often used to begin them. It clears the mind for other mantras to work, opens us up to the higher consciousness, and brings a deeper prana into the mantra. Without first chanting Om, it is said that other mantras may not be effective. Whole Upanishads and entire books have been written about it.

Om helps harmonize the body, life force (prana), mind, and senses with the higher Self, Atman or Divine presence within. It connects us with the cosmic healing prana. It brings a deep healing energy into the subconscious mind to remove negative emotions, addictions and compulsions. Om can clear the energy in the home or dwelling and bring in the Divine light, grace, and knowledge.