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THE POWER OF MANTRA

           MARCH 1, 2012   

In This Issue
CHANT CLUB
MONTANA MAR IS ONLINE
BHADRA AT THE ROADHOUSE
THE POWER OF MANTRA

GREETINGS DEAR FRIENDS

  

February has been a very busy and exciting time down here in Costa Rica. There was the 9-day retreat that I co-hosted with a Nia teacher, my friend Wendy Roman. It was a smashing success and we're all still processing the wonderful time we had visiting some incredible natural beauty, experiencing Nia dancing and various sound-healing events, and enjoying the beautiful people and facilities at Finca de Vida.

 

There were a couple of Bhadra concerts with my friends Michelle Herrera on viola and Billy Woods on percussion. I'll include some pics in the next newsletter  - I managed to loose my camera so I'm relying on some friends' photos. Plus I've had the good fortune to find myself a weekly gig every Sunday at a bar called The Roadhouse 169.

 

Some things, like internet access, continue to be a challenge, so getting my newsletter out in a timely and efficient manner has been difficult. Because I am getting some interest in chant and mantra down here, I have decided to repeat an article I wrote a few years back called 'the Power of Mantra'. It'll be in 3 parts.

 

Also, the March issue of the online magazine called 'Montana Mar', to which I am a contributor, is now available. See the link below.


John Tonin will be leading the Guelph Chant Club this month and next.  
  

If you'd like to access past newsletters containing articles on the Big Shift, as well as articles on the Physics of Mysticism, Magic, the Power of Mantra and other topics, please visit the 'newsletter' page of my website: 

 whyislife.com


Peace and love, Dennis.
  
GUELPH CHANT CLUB
While I'm away in Costa Rica, the chant will be led by my friend, John Tonin.

DATE                                        CITY                                 VENUE   
WED., MAR 7, 2012                     Guelph,                        Unitarian   Church
7:45 to 9:30 pm                            Ontaro                   

The Unitarian Church is on the corner of
Harris and York Streets in Guelph.

For more detailed directions, check out guelph-unitarians.com

SUGGESTED DONATION - $15


MONTANA MAR IS NOW ONLINE!

 

Montana Mar is a monthly magazine published in Costa Rica. It has gained a reputation for the quality and variety of its articles. I am proud to be one of the regular contributing writers.

Montana Mar has recently become an E-magazine  

- please check it out at MONTANA MAR

 

  
  ACOUSTIC SUNDAYS AT ROADHOUSE KM169

With Dennis Gaumond and guests

BLUES, FOLK, JAZZ AND BEYOND
 
WHERE: Roadhouse KM 169 is at the 169 KM point on the coast hwy between Uvita and Ojochal, Costa Rica.
WHEN:  Every Sunday (except Superbowl Sunday - Feb 5) - starting Sunday, Jan 29
TIMES: 1st set - with Dennis Gaumond - 5 to 5:45PM
            2nd set - with guest - 6 to 6:45PM
     3rd set - open mic - bring your instr. - 7 to 8PM
 
Great food
No cover charge
2786 5404
 
  

THE POWER OF MANTRA - Part 1

A Relationship of Frequencies

by Dennis Gaumond

 

What is a mantra? Why do they have such strong capacity to affect us? To answer these questions we must first acknowledge that sound in general has a powerful effect on human consciousness. There's ample evidence in the scientific community to back this up, but most people would acknowledge that some sounds such as nails on a blackboard, are irritating, while other sounds such as a gently babbling brook, sooth us. For the most part, all humans tend to react to these sounds similarly, although there may be some variation as to which sounds affect which people.

 

It may be useful to think of a sound as a 'relationship of frequencies'. Every single, solitary sound is a vibration with a specific frequency. Most of the sounds we hear consist of several sounds combined, or a relationship of frequencies. It is the way that these frequencies relate to each other that determines the way they affect human consciousness. With noise or discordant sound the frequencies have no mathematical relationship with each other. In music the frequencies (the notes) do relate to each other - are in harmony with each other and are thus more naturally pleasing to the ear. 

 

A good way to understand a mantra's power is to look at the way a chord affects us in music. A major chord, which is a harmonic relationship of three frequencies or notes, has a built-in emotional quality, an inherent way of affecting human consciousness. It makes us feel a certain way. A minor chord, which is a different harmonic relationship of three notes, has a completely different emotional quality than the major chord. It affects us completely differently. All humans react to these different frequency relationships in the same way. It's built-in. We don't know why it affects us this way - it just does.

 

Similarly, a mantra is a collection of sounds, a relationship of frequencies. Every mantra has an innate ability to affect human consciousness. Said another way, each sound, each syllable has a natural inherent power. Certain combinations of these sounds have a 'vibrational meaning', a vibratory quality that relates to aspects of humanity/divinity. Repeated exposure to these sounds can bring about a shift in human consciousness. A mantra has a built-in power to change our beliefs, to change the way we act, think and feel. We're not sure exactly how it works - it just does.  Some ancient root languages such as Hebrew and Sanskrit and some indigenous languages were built upon this realization, so that the vibrational 'meaning' of certain sounds contributed to the literal meaning of words. Back when human consciousness was more right-brained and intuitive, the language was developed in a way that was truer to the connection between the vibrational meaning and the literal meaning of a 'word'. Our modern languages, developed during a time when human consciousness was more left-brained and less intuitive, are less connected in this vibrational way.

 

Some power mantras evolved to become the names of deities. In other words, the sounds that represented a certain set of human/divine qualities were eventually assigned a divine persona, and the sound became the name of that persona, that deity. For example, the relationship of frequencies - the word - 'kali', contains a certain power/meaning or set of characteristics. This set of characteristics was eventually assigned to a persona, a goddess named Kali. When we use the name of a deity in a mantra, we are not just invoking the image of that deity, we are invoking the power inherent in the sounds that make up the name of the deity. 

 

It's interesting that some sounds are seen in the names of deities from different cultures and religious traditions. For example, the sound 'ra' or 'ram' appears in many contexts. Anyone who possessed the secrets of 'ram', is said to possess 'the highest expression of cosmic knowingness'. The original name of Abraham was 'Abram', which means 'he who has Ram'. This root can be seen in several names for divinity, such as Rama(India/Tibet), Ra and Ramtha(Egypt), and Aram(Celtic). Another example, the word 'yoni', which is the Sanskrit word representing the female genitalia, appears in African chants dedicated to the African goddess of sex and love, Ochun. 

 

In the Ancient Hebrew traditions, the name of God - Jehovah derived from Yahweh, which derives from a set of 4 vowel sounds, ee, ah, oo, eh. These sounds were called the 'Tetragrammaton' and were said to have great power. At a point in their history when the patriarchy/priesthood sought to control all direct connection to divinity, it was forbidden for the common Hebrews to use this name and they were told to use the word 'Adonai' to refer to God. It's interesting that, in overtone singing, one uses these same vowel sounds to get the different harmonic overtones.

 

There's no question that sound is a powerful force. It has always been associated with 'magick' - the art of creating our reality with our will, with the power of consciousness. Two words associated with magic are 'incantation' and 'enchantment'. Within these words we can see the root 'chant'. We create our reality at all times. By the effective use of mantras we can learn to control that creative force and thus control the reality of our lives.  

 

(This article will continue with the next newsletter - you will learn about Sanskrit, a language that has been called a 'science of sound'.)


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