Sunday, March 3, 2013

How Vibrations Affect our Physical Reality - Part II: Using Sounds to Balance Chakras

In the previous post, I have written about research done by Ernst Chladni and Hans Jenny, giving us the science of acoustics and cymatics, respectively. In this post, I'd like to talk more about the use of seed sounds or bija mantra. The basic sounds associated with each chakra are as follows:

Bija Mantra (seed sounds) of the 7 chakras

As seen in the above diagram, each chakra corresponds to a particular tone. A note on pronouncing the different mantras. The LAM mantra is actually pronounced LUM (as in lump) the VAM mantra is VUM and so on. However, this is a simplified way of representing the nature of a chakra as it correlates to sound.  

Seed Sounds associated with chakras
As seen in the above diagram, each chakra is associated with a number of sounds. Intonation of these sounds through the vocal apparatus or listening to sounds created around the human body leads to resonance of the chakra corresponding to those sound frequencies.  

Each chakra is made up of a varying number of 'petals' and each petal has a sound associated with it. The root sound of the third chakra is RUM, however, it has 10 petals and has 10 additional sounds, one for each petal, as shown in the lower left-hand corner of the above diagram. The ancients that first understood this reality created languages using these syllables and vowels. We call these "sacred" languages, in this case, Sanskrit.

When a mantra is recited, a complex string of vibrations is sounded, meant to activate the chakra, associated petals, corresponding nerves and endocrine glands, working together to bring about consequent effects on the passage of vital energy (prana, chi or ki) through the propeller-channel assembly of related chakras (propellers) and nadis (channels). Extrapolating the research conducted by Hans Jenny and his hypothesis that each cell vibrates to a specific frequency, we can see how a detailed map of each organ and its corresponding tone/frequency is important in the creation of a mantra, as important as the knowledge of the alphabet is to creation and use of words in English.

System of Nadis (channels) in the human body

Two of the most important examples of "sacred" languages are Hebrew and Sanskrit. The 'tree of life' in the Kabalah system is similar to the chakra system and uses overlapping imagery, but they are not exactly the same. Since I am more familiar with Sanskrit and the Hindu system, I will elaborate on it's use and the use of mantras.

However, a study of the other systems is just as valid and eventually, integration of the best aspects of each system will offer us a method to optimize the use of sound, chants and mantras for use as mechanisms of healing and to facilitate human transcendence. Instead of creating rigid boundaries between systems, it would benefit mankind to take the best of all the systems available to us and add our own unique research to create new systems that better suit our current state of evolution to attain even higher levels of consciousness.

The current approach to ancient knowledge vacillates between two extremes:
  1. Agnostic or atheist scientists (and I used to be one of these until my awakening gave me, among other amazing things,  an undeniable piece of physical evidence in the form of an ever-present slithering energy serpent in my spine).  These men and women of science laugh at all ancient knowledge. They deny the existence of anything that is not quantifiable using 'modern' technology. The creation of our amazing scientific tools has blinded them to anything that has come before. They do not see it as a continuum of evolving consciousness.  They see it as 'old' 'useless' 'superstition', as opposed to 'modern' science.
  2. Rigid followers of ancient systems that see those systems and their texts as infallible and to be taken on faith alone. Mantras that are to be repeated without understanding their inner meaning.  They laugh at modern man and his ignorance of the 'wise' ancient ways and consider deviation from a literal interpretation of scripture to be sacrilege. This approach has caused the greatest amount of misery and is responsible for all the conflict in modern society when dogma and blind adherence to faith gets in the way of greater achievement that integrates older methods with new technology.
Both groups have valid points, but one fails to understand that older wisdom is compatible with new technological advances and the other fails to see that the modern era can also build on disparate streams of knowledge if only the rigid boundaries and supposed infallibility of ancient scriptures is questioned and re-organized using a modern methodology and scientific perspective.

A middle-path is needed. The possibilities are endless if we use the scientific method and study not only meditation but mantras, vibration and their effect on the human body.

The gayatri mantra is the most important mantra in the Hindu system of knowledge and is used in rituals, daily prayers and for worship by millions of people on an everyday basis. It is passed on from father to son in the ritual known as a 'thread ceremony' which marks the entry of a boy into adulthood. Most people use this mantra ritually, by force of habit, not knowing it's true significance. As seen in the diagram below, each syllable of the mantra activates centers in specific parts of the human body.

Gayatri Mantra and the activation of centers in the human body

A general translation of the Gayatri can be give as:

"We meditate upon the spiritual effulgence of that adorable supreme divine reality
Who is the source of the physical, the astral and the heavenly spheres of existence.
May that supreme divine being enlighten our intellect, so that we may realise the supreme truth."

Syllable Translation

Om: Para Brahman (The Absolute)
Bhur: The Physical plane (Root Chakra)
Bhuvah: The Astral plane (Sacral Chakra)
Svaha: The Celestial plane (Solar Plexus Chakra)
Tat: Ultimate Reality
Savitur: The Source of All
Varenyam: Fit to be worshiped
Bhargo: The Spiritual effulgence
Devasya: Divine Reality
Dhimahi: We meditate
Dhiyo: Intellect
Yo: Which
Nah: Our
Prachodayat: Enlighten

A more detailed explanation can be found here.

Basically, this mantra is a pattern of vibrations meant to activate certain centers in the human body by repetition of the mantra, the resonance of the syllables creating the right conditions for the activation and safe flow of kundalini energy. The thread given to the initiate during the ceremony has six strings, representing each of the lower six chakras or planes of existence leading to the highest, the seventh realm leading to and beyond the crown chakra.

After my own awakening, I found it very helpful to chant this mantra or to meditate while playing a taped recitation in the background. It is immensely helpful in reaching the meditative state.


  1. As I was doing research for my vlog on cymatics (a topic that I've long been intriqued by) as well as vibration/healing - was looking for the correct sounds of the Bija mantra and found you. Really informative. Thanks!

  2. Thank you for all this information! I'll definitely be using the sounds of the syllables to resonance the mantra vibrations within me 🙆