This highly polished copper bracelet bearing the "Om Namah Shivaya" Hindu mantra in Sanskrit, with rope braid detail, is naturally adjustable and handmade in Nepal. The Tamil Saivaite hymn Tiruvacakam begins with the five letters 'na' 'ma' 'ci' 'vaa' 'ya'. It is part of the Shri Rudram Chamakam, a Hindu prayer taken from the Yajurveda, and thus predates the use of Shiva as a proper name, in the original context being an address to Rudra (later Shiva), where siva retains its original meaning as an adjective, meaning "auspicious, benign, friendly", a euphemistic epithet of Rudra. Namah Sivaya is the most holy name of God Siva, recorded at the very centre of the Vedas and elaborated in the Saiva Agamas.
Na is the Lord's concealing grace, Ma is the world, Si stands for Siva, Va is His revealing grace, Ya is the soul. Namah Sivaya has such power that the mere intonation of these syllables reaps its own reward in salvaging the soul from bondage of the treacherous instinctive mind and the steel bands of a perfected externalized intellect. Namah Sivaya quells the instinct, cuts through the steel bands and turns this intellect within and on itself, to face itself and see its ignorance.
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On a cool summer evening, several dozen people gather in a modest-sized room at Piedmont Yoga, Rodney Yee’s bustling studio in an upscale neighborhood near downtown Oakland, California. The beat of the tablas can be felt through the hardwood planks of the studio floor, and the inviting rhythm quickly sets knees and legs in motion, even for those sitting in Lotus position. Although we can’t prove it, chant, or sacred singing, was probably one of the first expressions of human spirituality. Robert Gass, author of Chanting: Discovering Spirit in Sound, also believes that ritual vocalizing was one of the first, and remains one of the most universal, human impulses. Association (or triggering), in which one’s experiential memories, built up over time, invest a piece of music with ever-deeper levels of meaning.
Entrainment, in which the body-mind is induced to align (or vibrate) with a melody or rhythm to which it is exposed. Gass adds that chant derives its power from the synergy of all five elements working together. Something plenty deep was clearly being touched in many of the participants during the kirtan sessions I attended over the course of several months, starting with that summertime Krishna Das gathering at Piedmont Yoga. Both grew up in the New York City area, and both traveled to India as young adults, in that time when the doors of perception, having been flung open by the social and spiritual tumult of the 1960s, seemed to be coming off their hinges. He enrolled at Reed College in Portland, Oregon, where he planned to study music and religion. But Uttal became fully immersed in Indian music over the course of numerous journeys to India. There is a famous image of Hanuman, the Hindu monkey god, that has been made into a poster. In this guided meditation from Sonima, find balance and light through breath awareness that will uplift your practice of parenting.

Om Namah Shivaya means "I bow to Shiva," the supreme reality, the inner Self or Consciousness that dwells within all of us. Lord Shiva is the Great Teacher that brings the many lessons we have to accept and learn from to make progress on the spiritual path, as well as the great destroyer of the Ego that prevents us from moving forward toward Liberation.
This Om Namah Shivaya Copper Healing Bangle Bracelet will bring the healing energy of copper while invoking the mercy and guidance of Lord Shiva. Gurumayi chants the Siddha Yoga mantra Om Namah Shivaya in Swami Muktananda's Samadhi Shrine in Gurudev Siddha Peeth, the Siddha Yoga Ashram in Ganeshpuri, India. The Panchakshara should be recited by Shiva devotees during pooja, homa, Japa and while smearing Vibhuti. They doff their shoes and jackets, grab blankets and bolsters, and find places on the floor.
As the crowd settles in, he noodles on a harmonium, a mini-keyboard that generates sound by means of a hand-operated bellows. His services have never been in greater demand: On his week-long visit to the San Francisco area, he led kirtan at other yoga studios in the region and appeared in an evening of discourse-and-kirtan with famed American spiritual teacher and cultural icon Ram Dass.
An incorrigible singing junkie, I never pass up an opportunity to lift my voice, either solo or with others.
The chant goes on, and I sit with my eyes closed, relishing the deep breaths and sonic exhalations and enjoying the melodic variations. At its conclusion, there is silence again, but charged this time with elation, alertness, and eagerness. The following month I returned to the same studio for an evening with Jai Uttal, which also drew 40 or more eager chanters. In the Ramayana, a classic spiritual text, Ram’s wife Sita has been abducted, and Hanuman, his devoted ally, helps reunite the divine couple.
Eventually, in 1987, he formed Triloka Records with a partner, and since then he has released several albums, including One Track Heart (1996) and Pilgrim Heart (1998). But on the eve of registration for his first semester, he attended a concert by the Indian sarod master Ali Akbar Khan.
Here’s how yogis are bringing mindfulness to this important topic, so everyone feels welcome on the mat. Lord Shiva is one of the Hindu trinity along with Lord Brahma, the creator, and Lord Vishnu, the preserver.
I haven’t taken part in a group kirtan chant in a good 20 years, since the last time I found myself inside an ashram.
After perhaps five minutes, I notice the chant has picked up energy, and I open my eyes out of curiosity.
His simple observation explains the surge of interest in chant and other rediscovered rituals.
This chamber, renowned for its special resonance, was created for devotional rituals 6,000 years ago.
And if you look into creation myths from different cultures, in almost every case the world is said to come into being through sound, through chant. He points to five key elements of chanting that make it such a powerful and universally appealing practice. Every single class at the studio, she says, begins with the group sounding Om three times, and proceeding to a brief chant, which differs from class to class and teacher to teacher. Having experimented on the first two albums with a world-music approach to the arrangements and accompaniment, K.D.
Lord Shiva is the destroyer, but he is also the great healer, as he can destroy Death itself.

His name is Krishna Das, and he has come to lead this group in an evening of kirtan, devotional chants from the Hindu tradition.
At the time, I found it pleasant enough, but got kind of bored by the melodic simplicity and repetitiousness of the chants.
Startled by what I see now—a swaying group of bodies and a number of arms extended toward the ceiling, waving back and forth like the tendrils of so many sea anemones—I think: How did I wind up at a Grateful Dead concert?
Certainly, in a society where many believe singing is something done by people other than themselves and purchased in the form of concert tickets or a CD, our understanding of the aesthetic and ritual dimensions of the human voice has diminished. Yoga teacher Chaula Hopefisher, a former professional jazz musician who for several years has led chanting sessions at the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health, has seen a range of emotional and spiritual responses. All classes conclude with three group Oms, and some teachers also lead another brief chant at that point. Both are easygoing and garrulous, but Krishna Das has a more avuncular aura; Uttal seems more intense, as though some part of him were continually engaged in a deeply creative process.
Because these chants have been sung by so many people for so many centuries, when we do them we plug into that energy field and are nourished by it. The pattern plays out repeatedly over several hours: easy, quiet beginning, building gradually in rhythm and intensity, climaxing in exultant cries and inspiring half a dozen or more of those in the room to stand, dance, run in place, and even perform what appears to be a personal form of calisthenics. Participants in her chanting sessions have included recovering drug addicts and others in halfway houses, who may be facing issues of sobriety, childhood abuse, or a life-threatening illness such as AIDS. At Yoga Works, some teachers lead the three Oms, and a few add other chants (Iyengar teachers, for example, may lead invocations to Patanjali). The purpose of repeating these names, in ever-shuffling combinations, is a simple one: to merge with the Divine.
One woman seated to my left wears a look of bliss, complete with ear-to-ear grin, the entire evening, and repeatedly reaches forward and upward with her hands as though working a huge lump of sacred clay, or reaching into a magical electromagnetic field, or both. Leslie Howard opens and closes all her classes at Piedmont Yoga with chants, both because of her own affinity for singing and because the clientele enjoys it.
At one Berkeley studio where he appeared, the room became so full that latecomers were actually turned away for fear of violating fire regulations. In time, Jai too became enraptured, and his life and work have largely revolved around chant since then. For my part, I have a great time singing along, riding the energy, and feeling my insides open with each deep breath and long vowel. In the rarefied culture of the yoga community, Krishna Das and Jai Uttal, it seems, have emerged as the Pavarotti and Domingo—or, if you prefer, the Mark McGwire and Michael Jordan—of kirtan.
Uttal’s tenor vocals, like the densely rhythmic and richly eclectic music he performs with his band, the Pagan Love Orchestra, are more complex, full of brilliant, idiosyncratic trills in the Indian tradition. The woman sitting beside Krishna Das sings the responses into her microphone, helping the group along. Yet the two men’s chanting work is identical in spirit, and the paths they took toward their vocations remarkably similar. After a couple of repetitions, the tabla player joins in, adding some propulsion to the effort, and the kirtan has begun in earnest.

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