Make It Personal
For the purposes of meditation, your Mantra is a word or group of words that are repeated during the meditation session to help anchor your mind in your meditation experience. When the mind drifts during meditation, the Mantra is used to invite the mind back into a more centered, quieter place. Your Mantra will be more effective if it has personal meaning for you.
Think of an experience in your life when you felt safe and comfortable, a time when you felt like it was OK to be you. If such a time does not come easily to you, you can create such a scenario from your imagination. Describe to yourself what was going on. You may want to write down some thoughts about the experience:
- Where did it take place?
- Who was there?
- What was happening?
Begin to think about your experience in sensory terms:
- What were the sounds?
- What were the smells?
- What were the tactile sensations? What did it feel like?
- Were there tastes involved?
- What were the visual images?
Consult the Sensory Word List to help you find words that describe your experience. From your list of words, choose 1 or 2 that bring back the sensory experience of your event. These are the word(s) that you will repeat to invite you back into your meditation experience each time your mind wanders. Example: There’s a beach that I have visited several times in Mexico. The sand is dark brown with gold flecks. When the water washes over the sand, the gold flecks shimmer in the sun. I chose the word “shimmering” that reminds me of the warmth of the sun, the silky feeling of the water, the sounds of the ocean and sea birds and the feel of the sand under my feet. I used another scenario from my childhood where I felt safe and warm and chose the word “joy” that brings me back to that experience. As I meditate, I silently repeat the word “shimmering” as I inhale and the word “joy” as I exhale. These words serve as an anchor and help to invite my mind back into my meditative state. Play around with this process until you come up with a Mantra that resonates for you. You can always make adjustments to it if you think of other times that bring a greater sensory experience to you.