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Thread: Mantras

  1. #1

    Mantras

    Basically what the title states. Is anyone into mantras and what knowledge have you been able to glean from engaging in said . I find the Hebrew sephirot and the hindu sanskrit names attributed to deities to be quite interesting . It seems there is a correlation between certain primordial sounds and certain mental states . Seems fascinating that in certain cultures the first alphabet is the phoneme a, while the concept of the divine is tied to the sound aleph in hebrew and aum in sanskrit.

    Also read a bit about the myth of odin and how he had two crows whose names were basically thought and memory, how he had to hang on the world tree for nine days to get the power of the runes which is basically letters and how he finally lost an eye to pay for divine wisdom. In the bible god said let there be. In the tao te ching it is said that the name that the name that can be named is not the eternal, however in yhe same breath they say but conceived as having a name it is the mother of all things. Seems from this that most mystical traditions have a high regard for sound as a tool for attaining higher consciousness. A good example is how positive affirmations has an ability to alter our psychological state and also negative words can make one feel depressed. But these concepts have no tangible reality beyond the real world concepts upon which they are mapped . Does that then not mean that phonemes should have certain psychological impact too? If they are related to anything that is. Anyone who has a better grasp of this then me would be appreciated.

    Also has anyone come across any data that would indicate the rationale as to the relationship between certain sounds and the symbol used to represent them? Cheers

  2. #2
    Senior Member mgtower's Avatar
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    Re: Mantras

    Not to detract from sounds and their mental impact, but sight has a much stronger impact on mood and mental health (IMHO). Therefore I would assume sound has the same effect, therefore I must confess, my mood is much better surrounded by the sounds of nature as opposed to any metropolis. Even people talking can ruin a mood when I'm immersed in natural surroundings, If you think about it from an alien perspective people and primates in general sound distressed all the time, it's why I turned off my TV in 05' I didn't like the sounds emitting from it, they were evil and dark, created in hell itself!
    Hope I'm not off topic...

  3. #3

    Re: Mantras

    Quote Originally Posted by mgtower View Post
    Not to detract from sounds and their mental impact, but sight has a much stronger impact on mood and mental health (IMHO). Therefore I would assume sound has the same effect, therefore I must confess, my mood is much better surrounded by the sounds of nature as opposed to any metropolis. Even people talking can ruin a mood when I'm immersed in natural surroundings, If you think about it from an alien perspective people and primates in general sound distressed all the time, it's why I turned off my TV in 05' I didn't like the sounds emitting from it, they were evil and dark, created in hell itself!
    Hope I'm not off topic...
    I concur with your observation as to the impact of sight on mental health, however the reason I did not delve into that is because it seems to me that evidently there is quite extensive data to support the relevance of certain visual images or patterns on the brain and also we depend on sight more than any other sense organ if I am not mistaken. So there has been more emphasis placed on research in that domain .
    Come to think of it there is a technology called brain wave entrainment that utilises certain audio frequencies to create resonance in the brain and hence induce certain mental states. The basic premise is that alpha , beta,delta and gamma are the most recurrent operational frequency of the brain and they map onto states of concentration,meditation, sleep etc. So it seems there is evidence that the do-re-mi musical scale has an ability to induce certain mental states. So the million dollar question is which scale is the alphabet based upon. If you observe carefully you might observe that despite there being certain sounds in common amongst languages there seems to be certain sounds that are either present in some languages and absent in others or vice versa. So are these sounds without any rational basis. Is it the emotional state induced that produces certain sounds or is it the sound that produces certain emotional states.

    As to the instances of the distress caused by the consumption of what is available on the mainstream media, I would surmise that the likelihood that most humans have a very good grasp of detecting subtle emotional undertones in sound patterns emitted by most animals we have come in contact with via whichever media is probable. Now that being mapped to certain emotional states in our psyche is not too farfetched when you think of it. Hence ,I think your decision was based on an understanding that you did not want your body flooded with cortisol each time the TV came on.Smart move on your part.

    What do you suppose could be the cause of a metropolitan area inducing a stress response and the opposite for a more natural environment ? Do you think its a question of the chicken and the egg ? Cheers

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    Senior Member mgtower's Avatar
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    Re: Mantras

    Okay, I understanding the post a little more' in fact allot more.
    Scales, like in music, why do some scales promote melody and harmony and others produce fear and apprehension without going into the realm of music too far, why is music universal? Why is the music irreverent to the lyrics? And the notes of the lyrics detached from the lyrics themselves? It's the voice tone that produces the emotion more than the language itself.

    In nature there are no geometric absolutes, no straight lines, no flat surfaces, no corners. Whereas in a metropolis there's nothing but harsh geometric shapes along with vanishing points, and ceaseless noise pollution! White line fever is a good example of this, even after you close your eyes from a long night time drive, your minds eye is still seeing lines, signs, guardrail, and lights, everything natural is blotted out by the darkness, everything your minds eye sees is man made, street lights, even the glow of a metropolis is etched out by an obscured tree silhouette made from pure darkness void of any detail or color. Nature hides in plain sight in our world of electric lights. What is our natural state anymore with 24 hour lighting? What effect does this play on our psyche??? Before modern times I think the human mind enjoyed allot more peaceful and tranquil surroundings. Now life itself has been transformed into a 24 hour flash-bang grenade! People in the metro world have never seen a moon shadow nor the big dipper, the natural world has psychedelics beyond any artists ability to create or recreate! If you ever have been on a mountain ridge or peak covered in snow at sunset, everything becomes atoned in crimson, the whites of your eyes even turn red! If I could, I would go in the forest and never come out!

  5. #5
    Senior Member mgtower's Avatar
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    Re: Mantras

    To any car buffs I'd like to add this case in point with visual effects on the mind and emotion.

    Exibit-A: 1930s', grandpa's rendition of style and sex appeal at a time when men ruled industry soup to nuts.



    Exhibit B: 1970's feminism and gynocentrism getting in full swing emasculating the designers and engineers with estrogen induced thinking injected by the female social engineers in and throughout government, coining the word "shit box". VW was the last one to loose its fenders...


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    Re: Mantras

    Sorry for delving into a topic I know little about, but my impression of mantras conjures up thoughts of religious indoctrination for which I have little time.

    Having been brought up a catholic I eventually came to the conclusion that I was being manipulated and decided to eschew the whole thing, including any belief in a god or deity.

    That being said, I do still have a kind of a faith. If I had to describe my religious beliefs I would say I consider myself a ‘Christian Atheist’. An oxymoron I know but to me faith and religion are two completely different topics.

    But to get back to the O.P., as I understand it mantras are used primarily for meditative purposes. I have tried meditation in my youth and I must admit I did gain some benefit insofar as it allowed me to contemplate things beyond my experience.

    However using a mantra for such purposes seems to me to be a little self-defeatist. Yes using a mantra to block out outside influences may be effective, but the very act of reciting a mantra must ultimately distract from the act of meditation itself. How can one truly let their mind roam free if they have to concentrate on reciting a mantra? Does this make any sense?

    Or maybe you are talking about listening to recordings of others reciting mantras while you meditate? But is that not ultimately another distraction?

    I mean no disrespect at all here and am merely conveying the thoughts that I have had on the topic. If you can shed any light on my confusion it will be gratefully accepted.
    Last edited by Jackoff; September 3, 2019 at 10:44 PM.
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  7. #7

    Re: Mantras

    Quote Originally Posted by Jackoff View Post
    Sorry for delving into a topic I know little about, but my impression of mantras conjures up thoughts of religious indoctrination for which I have little time.

    Having been brought up a catholic I eventually came to the conclusion that I was being manipulated and decided to eschew the whole thing, including any belief in a god or deity.

    That being said, I do still have a kind of a faith. If I had to describe my religious beliefs I would say I consider myself a ‘Christian Atheist’. An oxymoron I know but to me faith and religion are two completely different topics.

    But to get back to the O.P., as I understand it mantras are used primarily for meditative purposes. I have tried meditation in my youth and I must admit I did gain some benefit insofar as it allowed me to contemplate things beyond my experience.

    However using a mantra for such purposes seems to me to be a little self-defeatist. Yes using a mantra to block out outside influences may be effective, but the very act of reciting a mantra must ultimately distract from the act of meditation itself. How can one truly let their mind roam free if they have to concentrate on reciting a mantra? Does this make any sense?

    Or maybe you are talking about listening to recordings of others reciting mantras while you meditate? But is that not ultimately another distraction?

    I mean no disrespect at all here and am merely conveying the thoughts that I have had on the topic. If you can shed any light on my confusion it will be gratefully accepted.
    I dont think you are wrong about the mantra being another form of distraction, however if we think of a baby that is currently being crabby and then parents start jiggling a set of keys to attract the childs attention then the child stops crying, then mission accomplished. To all intents and purposes I think that is how mantras can be summed up.

    Basically,I think we spend so much time moving from one distracting thought to the other that we don't seem to comprehend where our impulses and desires emanate from and most times when trying to concentrate on something then random thoughts might just pop up which tend to make our activities less efficient. The way I see it is that the mind is always looking for something to do so as not to be still and delve deep into our consciousness because that could produce anxiety, hence the jiggling of the keys for the baby is the same in context. From what I have come to understand we simply give the mind something to occupy it, so in a roundabout way it is learning to be one pointed ( concentrated). It sort of could be compared to lifting weights we start with the easiest tasks. I think that's why people have difficulty with being isolated because without people to distract us from ourselves we would eventually have to look within and usually there lies fears,desires, lies and truths which we would rather not encounter. So I am inclined to believe that yes it might be a distraction but it is easier for someone who does not yet have the ability to still their mind without the use of some focal point.

    As to secondarydary benefits of a mantra, I believe it serves as a tool for self reflection. We repeat a word or statement that correlates with our desire or ideal and then if we are smart enough to ensure it is something that we truly desire then eventually our subconscious will start to trigger patterns of behaviour within us to square our desire with reality. I recently read a research on positive affirmations and it was found that the tendency for a selected mantras success was predicated on how much we are able to believe that outcome is possible from where we presently stand. So for example someone who has social anxiety it might be more useful to start with something as simple as saying "I will try to not run away when in a crowd" rather than saying "I am confident and bold". So essentially the affrmation serves as a tool for behavioural correction if done with sincerity. It sort of has some similarity to prayer though the problem with most peoples prayer as Gurdjieff posited is that its either self comforting,self hypnosis or based on complete delusions.

    I think most people underestimate the power of self talk, both positive and negative.

    To the last point about the virtue of certain morphemes and their influence on our consciousness that I cannot say I have a grasp of as I am presently exploring this. However, it does not seem farfetched to assume that they have some basis in reality. Afterall,mathematical symbols might not be a real thing but they map onto observable phenomena in nature. The number 2 might be artificial but the concept two clearly is an observable pattern in nature. So i am inclined to believe there should be some reason why we have the ability to produce certain units of sound. For now though I am still exploring . Cheers

  8. #8

    Re: Mantras

    Quote Originally Posted by mgtower View Post
    Okay, I understanding the post a little more' in fact allot more.
    Scales, like in music, why do some scales promote melody and harmony and others produce fear and apprehension without going into the realm of music too far, why is music universal? Why is the music irreverent to the lyrics? And the notes of the lyrics detached from the lyrics themselves? It's the voice tone that produces the emotion more than the language itself.

    In nature there are no geometric absolutes, no straight lines, no flat surfaces, no corners. Whereas in a metropolis there's nothing but harsh geometric shapes along with vanishing points, and ceaseless noise pollution! White line fever is a good example of this, even after you close your eyes from a long night time drive, your minds eye is still seeing lines, signs, guardrail, and lights, everything natural is blotted out by the darkness, everything your minds eye sees is man made, street lights, even the glow of a metropolis is etched out by an obscured tree silhouette made from pure darkness void of any detail or color. Nature hides in plain sight in our world of electric lights. What is our natural state anymore with 24 hour lighting? What effect does this play on our psyche??? Before modern times I think the human mind enjoyed allot more peaceful and tranquil surroundings. Now life itself has been transformed into a 24 hour flash-bang grenade! People in the metro world have never seen a moon shadow nor the big dipper, the natural world has psychedelics beyond any artists ability to create or recreate! If you ever have been on a mountain ridge or peak covered in snow at sunset, everything becomes atoned in crimson, the whites of your eyes even turn red! If I could, I would go in the forest and never come out!
    I think I get what your point about music and the voice. But do you think it would be possible to elicit similar emotional responses from two individuals one of whom speaks the language in which a song is composed and the other does not ? Seems like it would be an interesting research to embark upon.

    To your point about the man made constructs being quite out of harmony with nature, I guess that makes sense. The continual exposure to human constructs has essentially deprived us of the majesty of observing the cosmos. I will have to reflect a little bit more on what you have explained. Cheers

  9. #9
    Senior Member rkspsm's Avatar
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    Re: Mantras

    Quote Originally Posted by African-Daoist View Post
    But do you think it would be possible to elicit similar emotional responses from two individuals one of whom speaks the language in which a song is composed and the other does not ? Seems like it would be an interesting research to embark upon.
    I dont think it will be same unless the accents match, and they often never match. Though its my hypothesis.

    The reason I bring up accent because, I have read a little bit into speech analysis. The bulk of our speech consists of vowels, as the consonants are very short lived high frequency hissing sounds. The vowels are generated when the our vocal pulse travels through all the "filters" which are throat, mouth, etc. I say they are "filters" because thats exactly the role they play, in terms of sound theory. They each affect certain bands of frequency and enhance them. These bands are called formants.

    Every human has several formants (I think 10-15, dont remember). But only the lowest three participate in forming vowels, and of those three, the lower two are involved in majority of vowels. The formants higher than these only affect uniqueness of the sound of a particular person. So these lower formants can be varied up and down, say in one configuration they are close together, and in other configuration they are far apart. These configurations produce vowels. And its the variance in this setup across cultures which leads to this thing we call accent.

    And from what I know about music, its not the actual frequency of individual notes that matter, but the difference between them. But this "difference" is different for different accents, which makes me believe that actual tune output when a person with different accent tries to sing a song, might end up being different.

    But I have very little knowledge beyond these and some superficial details, so its basically a conjecture. I do think it can be an interesting experiment.
    A clever fighter not only wins, but excels in winning with ease. His victories bring him neither reputation for wisdom, nor credit for courage. He wins his battles by making no mistakes. Making no mistakes is what establishes the certainty of victory, for it means conquering an enemy that is already defeated.

    Sun Tzu in The Art of War
    MGTOW is about making no mistakes against gynocentrism.

  10. #10

    Re: Mantras

    Quote Originally Posted by rkspsm View Post
    I dont think it will be same unless the accents match, and they often never match. Though its my hypothesis.

    The reason I bring up accent because, I have read a little bit into speech analysis. The bulk of our speech consists of vowels, as the consonants are very short lived high frequency hissing sounds. The vowels are generated when the our vocal pulse travels through all the "filters" which are throat, mouth, etc. I say they are "filters" because thats exactly the role they play, in terms of sound theory. They each affect certain bands of frequency and enhance them. These bands are called formants.

    Every human has several formants (I think 10-15, dont remember). But only the lowest three participate in forming vowels, and of those three, the lower two are involved in majority of vowels. The formants higher than these only affect uniqueness of the sound of a particular person. So these lower formants can be varied up and down, say in one configuration they are close together, and in other configuration they are far apart. These configurations produce vowels. And its the variance in this setup across cultures which leads to this thing we call accent.

    And from what I know about music, its not the actual frequency of individual notes that matter, but the difference between them. But this "difference" is different for different accents, which makes me believe that actual tune output when a person with different accent tries to sing a song, might end up being different.

    But I have very little knowledge beyond these and some superficial details, so its basically a conjecture. I do think it can be an interesting experiment.
    Thanks for the response,I found your exposition quite enlightening. It seems you have opened up a new dimension for me to explore. Initially, I was not thinking of the possibility of observing how the specific tonal variations due to accents might affect different individuals, however with MRI or ECG scan to help to map the cortical response it might be quite illuminating.

    The idea I was talking about which I did not explain clearly, is to have a scenario where one group of people are played a song in a language they do not comprehend, the second group would be exposed to the same song but with an understanding of the language being a prerequisite for members of this group. Of course I think it would be necessary for there to be no instrumentals in the music just vocals and the location for the test would necessarily have to be as devoid of visual stimuli as possible. The test would then be taken across a spectrum of emotional ranges from a happy song,sad song and even a song devoid of any emotional significance as a control. That's the basic premise .

  11. #11
    Senior Member mgtower's Avatar
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    Re: Mantras

    99 luft balloons is a good song to use in that experiment, personally I like the German version. Same tune, different language. Das Underbar!


  12. #12
    Senior Member rkspsm's Avatar
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    Re: Mantras

    Quote Originally Posted by African-Daoist View Post
    Thanks for the response,I found your exposition quite enlightening. It seems you have opened up a new dimension for me to explore. Initially, I was not thinking of the possibility of observing how the specific tonal variations due to accents might affect different individuals, however with MRI or ECG scan to help to map the cortical response it might be quite illuminating.

    The idea I was talking about which I did not explain clearly, is to have a scenario where one group of people are played a song in a language they do not comprehend, the second group would be exposed to the same song but with an understanding of the language being a prerequisite for members of this group. Of course I think it would be necessary for there to be no instrumentals in the music just vocals and the location for the test would necessarily have to be as devoid of visual stimuli as possible. The test would then be taken across a spectrum of emotional ranges from a happy song,sad song and even a song devoid of any emotional significance as a control. That's the basic premise .
    I have an odd habit of running a song in background while working, and that too in loop playback. So the same song keeps playing over and over again. Sometimes one song can occupy that spot for days !!! And I will often play songs from languages which I do not understand, but still like the tune/melody. There was this one song, it was some folk song of new zealand. I played it so many times that I could recite it as the song played, without understanding a single syllable...

    But I never sung it in front of someone, so cant say much more than that.
    A clever fighter not only wins, but excels in winning with ease. His victories bring him neither reputation for wisdom, nor credit for courage. He wins his battles by making no mistakes. Making no mistakes is what establishes the certainty of victory, for it means conquering an enemy that is already defeated.

    Sun Tzu in The Art of War
    MGTOW is about making no mistakes against gynocentrism.


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