Harmonizing, life-supportive effect: Different sounds affect us in different ways. The Vedic Tradition of meditation, as revived by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, is a science of consciousness that thousands of years ago established a systematic, comprehensive knowledge of mantras and their effects. Specific sounds were known for producing positive, soothing effects on mind, body and surroundings. These mantras are used today in the Transcendental Meditation program.
No meaning: The mantras used in TM practice are not associated with meaning. Whether spoken aloud or thought mentally, every word has its sound, but it also has meaning. The word rose has a meaning and a sound. Words or phrases with meaning engage the mind in the realm of thought and meaning. In TM practice, the mantra is used for the effect of its sound only. The fact that the TM mantra is used free of meaning helps the mind settle down, beyond thinking, to experience more refined stages of the thinking process until the meditator goes beyond the faintest impulse of thought and arrives at the field of pure consciousness. In this state, the intellectual activity that is involved with thinking and meaning is transcended. This is the revitalizing experience of pure "Being."
These unique qualities of the mantras used in TM practice — harmonizing, life-supportive effects and no association with meaning — facilitate the transcending process.
The right mantra: Certified instructors of the Transcendental Meditation technique are trained in systematic Vedic procedures of selecting and imparting mantras. Selecting the mantra is not guesswork. It's not a mystical process. Nor is there a one-of-a-kind mantra for every person. But there is a particular mantra that will be most effective for you, just as everyone has their own blood type. Over 50 years of teaching millions of people the TM technique to has shown that this timeless system works marvelously well.
Receiving the mantra: Certified TM teachers make sure that a person learning to meditate initially receives the correct, precise pronunciation of the mantra. But it is not the mantra or sound alone that produces the benefits. How one first receives the mantra — along with continued correct use — is just as important for getting results as is getting the right mantra.
Mantras found on the Internet, learned from books, or shared by friends or unqualified teachers are not learned with the precision and authenticity of the Vedic system of imparting mantras. Certified TM instructors adhere to the time-tested Vedic procedures. Learning the mantra properly in this way is said to activate the sound so it can be effectively used as a mantra. Otherwise the sound may fail to produce the intended results.
Correct use of the mantra
When you learn the Transcendental Meditation technique, you learn more than just the correct mantra: you learn how to use the mantra so that it becomes a vehicle for transcending.
Learning the TM technique is easy and enjoyable, but it’s also a delicate process, so delicate that the technique had been long lost to society — even in the land of its origin — because of misunderstanding and inadequate teaching methods. Maharishi reintroduced the practice of “effortless transcending” and structured a systematic, standardized course of personal instruction and follow-up. The seven-step TM course includes not only practical, customized instruction about how to meditate effectively, but also gives comprehensive knowledge of consciousness and higher stages of human development.
What if I meditate using a mantra that has a meaning?
Do the TM mantras have roots in a religious tradition?
Why are the TM mantras kept private?
So once I learn, I can’t teach the TM technique to others?