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Mantra, 19 Definition(s)

Mantra means something in Buddhism, Hinduism, Sanskrit, Pali Check out some of the following descriptions and leave a comment if you want to add your own contribution to this article:

19 Definition(s) from various sources:

The Mantra is the root concept of both Hindu and Buddhist Tantra. It is the life force of tantra Sādhanā. Mantra is an esoteric formula that is to be practiced according to a stricht Tāntric discipline. Each and every letter from ‘अ’ (a) to ‘क्ष’ (kṣa) of Mātṛkā Varṇa is living energy. They are acoustic roots of the different waves and the vibrations of the cosmos. These letters are the representative sonoric manifestation of the universe. According to Tantra Śabda is an expression of vibrational creative energy. When these letters are arranged after the Tāntric precepts a creative energy is generated which creates para-psychological wonders.

The Sanskrit alphabets are of Tāntric origin. They represent the different acoustic vibrations of the cosmos. The fifty letters are the fifty basic vibrations, which consitute the entire universe. They are the Bījākṣara of Tāntric esotericism. The word ‘Mantra’ has been made from man + trai (dhātu) + i (suffix) = mantra, and means the incantation of which brings liberation from the trifarious bondage—physical, mental and spritual. It creates an acoustic virbration in the psychic body of the Sādhaka, which awakens the Kuṇḍalinī Śakti. All mantra are words, but all words are not mantras. All words habe originated from Parā, but only few words which have been originated from Parā are mantras.

Mantra is most potent weapon to cut asunder te trammels of nescience. The incantation of mantra is called Praṇidhāna. The incantation of the Mantra creates an acoustic vibration which awakens the dormant divinity (Kuṇḍalinī or Herukā). According to Tantra, Mantra are endowed with great mystic power. Sādhanamālā says if the mantras are incanted according to strict esoteric technique it could perform wonders and impossible tasks. Sādhanamālā further says that through constant incantation of Mantra could generate so much power that the whole world could remain wonder struck. Mantras are powerful when they are applied strictly according to esoteric rules and formulations. The consciousness is the sole repository of the Mantra. Without the force of consciousness mantra is dead and useless.

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Mantra is said to be the sound-form of Devata (god-form). One realizes Devata through the chanting of mantra in mantra yoga. Mantra yoga concentrates on nada (sound) to strike rhythm between individual and cosmic vibration, to activate the right nādis, to expose one into the cidākāsa or daharākāsa (causal space).

Added: 24.Feb.2015 | Source: Hindupedia: The Hindu Encyclopedia
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Mantras  are sacred syllables used in Vajrayana practice to protect the minds of practitioners from negativity and ordinary impure perceptions (the root Sanskrit terms are manas meaning 'mind', and trai meaning 'protect'). They also serve to invoke the yidam deities and their retinues.


  1. secret mantras
  2. knowledge mantras
  3. dharani mantras

etymology: Mantra (Skt.; Tib. སྔགས་, ngak; Wyl. sngags)

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The Vedas mention three types of mantras: vedic, tantric, puranic. Each of these can be further divided into sattvic, rajasic, and tamasic mantras.

1) Sattvic (mode of goodness) mantras are chanted for light, wisdom, divine love, compassion, and God realization. They destroy all karma, bring peace, and lead to perfection after death.

2) Rajasic (mode of passion) mantras are chanted for progeny and material prosperity. Unlike sattvic mantras, which remove karma, rajasic mantras force men to takd rebirth to reap the fruits of their karma.

3) Tamasic mantras (mode of ignorance), popularly called "black magic," are sinful. They are generally used to propitiate spirits, harm others, and perform vicious deeds.

The original spiritual letters are endowed with specific powers, and in particular combinations they assume more power in relation to certain Deities. These combinations of letters are called bijas or seeds, and they combine to form words. When these words are connected in a particular order, they have special powers to represent a Deity in full. These combinations are called mantras. The power then manifested in the whole mantra is greater than that of any of its constituent sounds. The mantras, which are non-different from the Deity, are an eternal manifestation of the Deity and are spiritual by nature. By repetition of the mantra, the worshiper invokes the mercy of the Deity whose mantra he repeats.

There are six basic types of mantras used in Deity worship: i

  1. Dhyana Mantras—meditation mantras used to mentally invoke the Lord's transcendental form, abode, and pastimes.
  2. Bija Mantras—seed mantras for meditation and purification of articles used inpuja.
  3. Mula Mantras—root mantras, being the essence of the Deity, are recited along with each article of worship as a means of addressing the Lord.
  4. Stutis & Stotras—prayers chanted before, during, or after worship to glorify the name, form, qualities, and pastimes of the Lord.
  5. Pranama Mantas—prayers for offering obeisances to the Lord at the end of worship.
  6. Gayatri Mantras—Vedic or Pancaratrika mantras used to worship the Lord, invoking the three principles of sambandha, abhidheya, prayojana.
Added: 14.Aug.2014 | Source: Krishna Science: Gayatri Mahima Madhuri
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manta : (nt.) a charm; spell; incantation.

Added: 03.Aug.2014 | Source: BuddhaSasana: Concise Pali-English Dictionary
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Mantra (मंत्र): An incantation with words of power. A religious syllable or poem, typically from the Sanskrit language. They are primarily used as spiritual conduits, words and vibrations that instill one-pointed concentration in the devotee. Other purposes have included religious ceremonies to accumulate wealth, avoid danger, or eliminate enemies. Mantras are performed through chanting.

Added: 29.Jun.2012 | Source: WikiPedia: Glossary of Hinduism terms
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A sequence of sounds used as a focus of meditation. The most famous mantra is that of "om," which consists of the three sounds "aa", "oo", "mm". For some examples of mantras and their explanation, go here.

Added: 29.Jun.2012 | Source: ReligionNet: Hinduism Glossary
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The word Mantra means "instrument of thought", "sacred text", or "a prayer of praise".

Added: 28.Dec.2011 | Source: Wahibuddin's Web: Hinduism
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Mantra also mantram, Skt.; a power-laden syllable or series of syllables that manifests cer­tain cosmic forces and aspects of the buddhas, sometimes also the name of a buddha. Continu­ous repetition of mantras is practiced as a form of meditation in many Buddhist schools; it also plays a considerable role in the Vajrayāna. Here mantra is defined as a means of protecting the mind. In the trans­formation of “body, speech, and mind” that is brought about by spiritual practice, mantra is associated with speech, and its task is the subli­mation of the vibrations developed in the act of speaking. Recitation of mantras is always done in connection with detailed visualizations and certain bodily postures (mudrā) .

Added: 23.Jul.2011 | Source: Shambala Publications: General
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A Sanskrit word, literally meaning "mind protection". Mantra protects the mind from ordinary appearances and conceptions. There are four types mantra: mantras that are mind, mantras that are inner wind, mantras that are sound and mantras that are form. In general, there are three types of mantra recitation: verbal recitation, mental recitation and vajra recitation.
Added: 06.Apr.2009 | Source: Mahakaruna: Buddhism Glossary
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a sequence of mystic syllables, sometimes a single syllable, which may or may not possess intelligible meaning; spiritual or empowered speech. When written it may also be used as a charm (Sanskrit)
Added: 23.Nov.2008 | Source: Ashes of Ego: A Buddhist Compendium
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A Sanskrit word, literally meaning `mind protectionaE . Mantra protects the mind from ordinary appearances and conceptions. There are four types of mantra: mantras that are mind, mantras that are inner wind, mantras that are sound, and mantras that are form. In general, there are three types of mantra recitation: verbal recitation, mental recitation, and vajra recitation. See Tantric Grounds and Paths.
Added: 23.Nov.2008 | Source: Kadampa: Glossary of Buddhist Terms
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MANTRA (Skt.; = Tib. ngak). Ritual formula used in Vajrayana practice (see SADHANA) to evoke a particular deity.
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A sound that is used as a focus for medition or worship; a short prayer. Similar to Hinduism.
Added: 27.Sep.2008 | Source: Barricks: Official Buddhism Glossary
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Sanskrit words signifying a sacred word, verse or syllable which embodies in sound of some specific deity or supernatural power. It is one of the three mystics in Tantric Buddhism.
Added: 27.Sep.2008 | Source: Buddhist Door: Glossary
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(Sanskrit, "mind protection"). Syllables recited during meditation.
Added: 21.Sep.2008 | Source: Religion Facts: Glossary of Buddhism
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sacred or magical formula
Added: 29.Jun.2008 | Source: Chez Paul: A Buddhist Glossary
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A sound that is used as a focus for mediation or worship. Similar to Hinduism.
Added: 02.Jun.2008 | Source: Exploring Religions: Buddhism Glossary
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A syllable, word or verse which has been revealed to a seer in meditation, embodiment in sound of a deity; spell or incantation.
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- Look for other relevant definitions:

Search found: 15 related definition(s) for Mantra that might help you understand this better. Below are the 15 most relevant articles:

· Mahā-mantra
Oṃkāra is a mantra, or mahā-mantra, and Hare Kṛṣṇa is also a mahā-mantra. Unl...
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· Mantra-sādhanā
Mantra Sādhanā is an esoteric technique to restore equilibrium or what is cal...
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· Mantra-caitanya
 Mantra-caitanya is the élan vita of Mantra Sādhanā. It is an esoteric p...
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· Mantrādhvan
Mantrādhvan (मन्त्राध्वन्):—One of the six ways in which the Absolute m...
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· Gayatri Mantra
The Gâyatrî Mantra is from the Rig Veda (iii, 62, 10), which has existed in w...
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· Mahāmṛtyuṃjaya Mantra
Mahā-mṛtyuṅjaya mantra is also called- Mahā-mokṣa mantra as it gives the ulti...
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· Mul Mantra
The Mool Mantar is the most important composition contained within the Sri Gu...
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· Secret Mantra
Synonymous with Tantra. Secret Mantra teachings are distinguished from Sutra tea...
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· Vaishnava Mantra
Vaishnava Mantra (वैष्‍णव मंत्र): An invocation which endows a missile with some...
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· Sauh Mantra
Sauh Mantra is foremost among Mantras; It is like the seed of Nyagrodha tree ...
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· Japa
Japa (जप): A spiritual discipline in which a devotee repeats a mantra or the nam...
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· Dharani
A mystic form of praying, mantra or spells of Tantric order, ofter in Sanskrit, ...
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· Bīja
In Hinduism and Buddhism, the Sanskrit term बीज bīja (Jp. 種子 shuji), literall...
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· Śrī Vidyā
Śrī Vidyā is one of the most comprehensive and popular Vidyās in Śāktā. In th...
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· Vajrayana
Vajrayana is also known as Tantric Buddhism, Tantrayāna, Mantrayāna, Secret M...
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Search found: 20 books containing Mantra. You can also click to the full overview containing textual excerpts. Below are the 20 most relevant text pages:


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