By Dr. Rita Khanna
Prana and the Power of Mantra
In Tantra, the best way to transfer Prana Shakti is through Mantra. Each Mantra is the conductor of a certain type of energy. For example, there is a special Mantra for a snake bite. When a person repeats this Mantra thousands of times, it becomes charged with a particular type of energy. If someone has been bitten by a snake, a person who has perfected the Mantra is called. As soon as he chants the Mantra, the poison is dispersed without causing any further pain or harm.
Tantric Mantras are carriers of Pranic energy, which must be used according to the rules for particular purposes. Many Mantras are given in the Tantra Shastras, but it is necessary to study them very carefully in order to utilize them properly.
Most people do not understand the power of the Mantra, and they think they can utilize it in their own way. Others use any word or name for their Mantra. For example, you may admire a great man and want to make a Mantra out of his name, but that cannot be a Mantra. If you think of that man as your Guru or your God, then you have emotion for him, so you like the sound of his name. That would be a Mantra of emotion; it is not a Mantra of Prana Shakti.
There are Mantras of all lengths and descriptions. There are scriptural Mantras; Mantras for fever; for counteracting poison and disease; for removing obstructions, difficulties and doubt; for increasing health, wealth, and sound sleep; for marriage; progeny and long life. Of course, you don’t have to practice all of these. If you practice Pranayama, Mudras and Bandhas, you increase the capacity of your Prana Shakti. Then, you can help others by a Mantra, flower, Mala, thought, or contact.
The Therapeutic Touch of Psychic Healing
Previously, Prana Vidya was only known and practiced by Yogis and healers, who were proficient in the science. Today, however, this ancient method of healing is attracting a lot of attention from the leading medical authorities’ and investigations are underway to ascertain its uses in the modern medical setting.
The ‘laying on of hands’ is simple and can be practiced by anyone. The healer first places his or her hands gently over the affected area of the sick person’s body, and then concentrates on sending healing energy through them.
The Secret of Real Health
In this modern age, people are very concerned about vitamins and minerals, but they have forgotten one important thing – the real secret of health; it is the state of the inner being which constitutes real health. Physical health is not the ultimate. In the good old days, people used to face epidemics of smallpox, plague, cholera, yellow fever, sleeping sickness, and many others. Now, however, despite the advancement of modern science, we have been facing a crisis, in so far as the health of mankind is concerned. Never in history have we had such terrible diseases. During these times, we are compelled to think, ‘Is there any way to achieve the best possible health?’ In recent years, we have come to the conclusion that Yoga is the answer.
The State of Inner Being
We have been taking care of the physical body, trying to meet our nutritional needs with adequate vitamins and minerals; but for a moment, let us think about the inner being. What about the mind? We have not been trying to supplement the necessary needs of the mind; therefore, man has become mentally ill. He does not even know how to think, what to think, or why to think; what to feel, how to feel, or why to feel. His mind is like a motor car – being driven by a driver who is heavily drunk. By chance, the car may reach its destination, but more than likely, it will meet with an accident along the way. Thus, it is very important that we have knowledge about controlling the mind, training the mind as a whole, and thereby, improving the quality of mental health. This is the main subject matter of Yoga.
Why do you take a bath every day? Why do you keep your house clean? It is because you believe that physical cleanliness and external cleanliness is necessary for good health. In the same way, have you ever considered that particular thoughts have to be cleaned out of the mind? You clean the kitchen and bathroom twice a day, but what about your mind? When a thought of fear, anxiety, or sorrow comes into your mind, what do you do? You just let yourself go; you fall into it; you do not even try to clean it out of the mind. That is why you are suffering from anxiety, fear, depression, dejection, and anger. These thoughts are hitting your mind, infecting your mind – just like virus causes havoc in your body. However, a thought is more dangerous, powerful, and effective than an ordinary physical virus. When a virus enters your body, it can be treated by certain drugs and medicines; but when a thought enters, when fear strikes, when passions and anxiety get into your mind, do you know what far-reaching effects it is going to have? Therefore, when we talk about health, we must definitely understand that we lack proper knowledge about the health of the mind; the health of the inner being.
The Three Shaktis
Yoga is a perfect practical system of physical, mental, and spiritual health. According to the basic Yoga philosophy, man is a composition of three basic constituents: life force (Prana Shakti), mental force (Chitta Shakti), and spiritual force (Atma Shakti).
Life Force (Prana Shakti)
Prana is the universal life force, and this body has a certain amount of it. Our existence is a miracle of Prana Shakti. It is on account of Prana that we live, move, and grow. This Prana Shakti is not the air we breathe, it is inherent in us; we are born with it. For up to four months, the fetus lives on the mother’s Prana; but from the fifth month on, it develops an independent Pranic unit. Life is the manifestation of Prana.
When Prana is flowing in the correct voltage, you feel strong, energetic, enthusiastic, and all your sense faculties are sharp. However, when the voltage falls, you feel physically weak and exhausted.
Mental Force (Chitta Shakti)
Besides Prana, there is another Shakti in the body called, mind or consciousness, through which we are able to think, remember, analyze, and differentiate. There are so many mental faculties within us, and they are all the play or manifestation of the mental Shakti.
Prana Shakti and mental Shakti are represented in this physical body by two important flows known as, Pingala Nadi and Ida Nadi, respectively. The word ‘Nadi’ means flow. In every electric bulb, you have two wires, positive and negative. In the same way, in every organ and part of the body, there is a combination of both of these Shaktis. Prana Shakti and mental Shakti pervade the whole body of man. Pranic force is positive and mental force is negative. When these two are connected, they create energy. If there is any disconnection, what happens? If you remove one of the wires from a switchboard, the light will not burn. It is the same in the lower and higher organs. If one of the energies flows and the other does not, then the organs do not function. Therefore, according to Yoga, there should be a balanced distribution of energy to every part of the body from head to toe. If there is any imbalance, there is illness.
Spiritual Force (Atma Shakti)
Prana Shakti and Chitta Shakti are both physical energies. Atma Shakti, the third type of energy, is spiritual. It is non-physical, transcendental, formless energy. Mooladhara Chakra produces both the physical and spiritual energy, but the spiritual energy is produced by a larger generator. This energy cannot be conducted by either Ida or Pingala. For this, there is another line called Sushumna, which conducts the spiritual energy from Mooladhara straight up to Sahasrara, in order to open the whole brain.
You know that only one part of the brain is functioning; nine parts are locked. These nine parts of the brain contain infinite knowledge, experience and power, but we are not able to utilize it because there is no conscious force. When Sushumna conducts this spiritual energy to Sahasrara Chakra, the dormant parts of the brain become active. Then, they not only give you mental health, but also spiritual wealth. When the practitioner of Yoga is able to awaken Kundalini, and connect it with Sahasrara, through Sushumna Nadi, you become the master of the body, mind. and spirit.
Therefore, the secret of human health is the proper distribution of the three Shaktis – Prana, mind, and spirit. In Yoga, this is done through the practices of Hatha Yoga which purify the physical body; Pranayama which purifies the channels or Nadis through which energy is distributed; and Meditation which stops the flow of Prana and mind, and leads the spiritual energy directly to the brain, Sahasrara Chakra. The different branches of Yoga, such as Hatha, Raja, Kriya Yoga, etc. are very powerful systems for the health, not only of this external physical body, but the health of the whole man in totality.
In order to gain total health, it is necessary for the spiritual life to become the base of our ordinary life. The people of this century have been thinking that spiritual life should be led for the sake of improving the physical life. We have put the cart before the horse. We consider the physical life as the base and the spiritual life as an adjunct, but it should be the other way around. Man’s life is essentially spiritual; the physical life is just one part of his existence. In the same way, we have been making many mistakes. We say, ‘Oh, the divine is within us’, as if we were the containers of the divine. When, in actuality, it is we who are