Japa-Part 2 – Japa sahita dhyana

The Sanskrit word sahita means ‘together with’, or ‘combined with’. The word dhyana means ‘meditation’. T his practice is a combination of lapa and awareness of an inner symbol (antar trataka).

If you chant the mantra Aum then you can use the corresponding symbol as a focus of attention. If you have a personal mantra and \ on know its symbol then you should use this, otherwise you can choose any other symbol in association with your mantra. If you have an ishta devata, then you can use this for trataka. If you are not too sure on this point contact a qualified teacher.

Incidentally, each mantra is inseparably associated with a definite symbol or form. Therefore, if your mind attains a deep state of relaxation and one-pointedness and receptivity, and if the whole mind is filled with the sound of the mantra, then the specific psychic symbol will spontaneously arise to conscious perception. In this way, you will find out the exact form or symbol of your mantra.

The method is basically the same as we have already described in the previous lesson1, but YOU must visualize your chosen symbol in front of your closed eyes. If so inclined, you can feel devotion or reflect on the meaning of the symbol and mantra.

If your mind is not one-pointed it is quite difficult to visualize a clear picture. Therefore, we recommend that you first of all calm clown your mind and remove distracting thoughts by practising methods 1 and 2 described in the previous lesson. When the mind becomes concentrated, then you can start to practise japa sahita dhyana. This is a more difficult practice, but it is also more powerful. Your awareness must flow towards the mantra, the symbol and the japa rotation. If you find it difficult to maintain a fixed inner image, practise the method previously explained.

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