Overcome pain with the power of mantra and speech, says ANCHAL SINHA
Love, joy, health, wealth and happiness are desired by all at all points of time. No one desires pain, but pain is part of life. It exists in this world from time immemorial. Our life oscillates on a scale 1-10, where 1 is pure joy and 10 is pure pain. It is debatable whether pain existed when our planet was being formed or whether it is a consequence of sin committed by mankind. However, to overcome pain, one technique applied by most religions is ‘verbal power,’ whether that of Hindu mantras, Buddhist chanting, gurbani of Sikhism, sacred chants of Jainism or the choir of the church. These verbal, positive affirmations woven in goodness and righteousness are a gift to mankind.
When you analyse life, you realise that pain is not a constant companion. It flows in and out of our life and often we have no will over it. So when adversity strikes and pain flows, we resort to religion and the gift of mantras to triumph over it. However, the approach should be to make these gifts an inherent part of our routine as we don’t know at which point of time in life, pain will flow in our life. This approach will ensure a hard blow to the inflow of pain and insulation to adversity. The variable and fluctuating nature of life makes this skill a positive necessity.
One such affirmation that has become very popular is the practice of chanting Daimoku — Nam-myoho-renge-kyo, a primary practice from the school of Nichiren Buddhism. This practice simplistically translates as: “I devote my life to the mystic law of cause and effect”. The strong and scientific foundation of the Daimoku reflects karmic principles of the Bhagwad Gita and Newton’s action-reaction law. Through this practice of Daimoku, one can chant for the benefit of oneself and of others. If someone has been extremely nasty, unjust and rude to you, then your obvious reaction will not be positive. Moreover, the person’s karmic accumulation towards your life may end up generating a negative reaction. However, by chanting for the wellness of this person, you will not only steer your karmic activity in a better direction, but may also end up changing the person for good.
The verbal power of mantras, chants and psalms embedded in religion has roots in the field of linguistics. For instance, there is a theory in the philosophy of language called the ‘Speech Act Theory’. This theory was introduced by Oxford philosopher J L Austin in his book, How To Do Things With Words. The theory stresses on the fact that utterances are performative in nature — when we say something, we do something. The process of autosuggestions to the subconscious mind is also activated through these processes.
Autosuggestions alter us and the world around us creating new positive environments. Positive autosuggestions are fruitful not only for the individual but also for the planet and create a positively renewed mind, thereby enabling people to take well-balanced decisions, subconsciously taking into consideration the impact of their decision on their family, society and the environment.
The spiritual belief that the universe is continuously repeating ‘tathastu’, a Sanskrit phrase which means so be it, should also alert us about what we say. People who believe in this spiritual belief consciously make efforts to cleanse their thoughts, as thoughts are the seeds of speech. Moreover, elders always insist on saying good things, always. That’s the voice of experience talking! Considering the scale of sin in society, leading a virtuous life of faith can be a challenge. However, we are all born to lead a content and happy life. This goal can be achieved, if we are equipped with the knowledge of positive, verbal affirmations based on the foundation of a healthy thought process.