Mantra is a Sanskrit word that has very precise etymology:
Man, from manas = mind
Tra, from trae = release
And ‘therefore a “tool” that allows you to clear your mind and at the same time a particular sound, repeated rhythmically, has the power to slow down the brainwaves bringing the mind into a state of quiet. Born in the oldest Vedic tradition that the ancient yogis, through long meditations in the silence of the places of retreat, they could hear and codify a series of sounds whose frequency is able to calm the human mind. Developing the ability to listen well, deep down, the ancient Rishis are
able to discover all internal sounds and classify them. From this classification was born the Sanskrit alphabet consists of 50 letters as the 50 vritti (fluctuations of the mind) of the subtle system. Each of these vritti corresponds to a vibration related to a mental tendency. Mantras are then sequences of syllables composed by the Sanskrit letters that go to form sounds with specific characteristics:
- Incantativo: you must be able to produce a resonance on the fine structures of the body-mind system. The mantra must indeed be able to “enchant the mind“.
- Pulse: you must be able to pulsate with entitative pace. The mantra has to be an arrangement of syllables which can be distributed equally on our vital rhythm.
- Ideational: it must have a meaning. Each mantra has in itself the seed of an idea, a concept on which we can place our order to expand consciousness.
The mantra is a means to get to meditate deeply and naturally. A number of them related to the Tantra tradition allows to meditate with good results. Among the oldest known mantra and remember the Asatoma and Gayatry.