• A Tantrik Message: Sound Creates the Body, ELEPHANT JOURNAL JULY 2013

    Posted in Articles by Eric Shaw


    A Tantrik Message: Sound Creates the Body


    .1899 Public Domain Chakras


    Read it at Elephant:  http://www.elephantjournal.com/2013/07/a-tantrik-message-sound-creates-the-body/


              In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. ~ John 1:1


    Kirtan is the rage, and sound healing is is a hip health modality. Many of us chant Sanskrit daily in yoga classes, but few know the deeper implications of its use and Sanskrit’s relationship to Tantrik history and yoga practice.


    The Body of Sound, known in Sanskrit as the Nada Deha or Sabda Sarira, is a development of Tantra.  Yoga history tells us it emerged around the 6th century.


    Saraswati goddess Pub domain


    One of the names that developed for the Tantra path was Mantramarga—the path of the mantras. Tantra was a path where the guru was primary, and individual mantras were given to Tantrik practitioners to help refine their general karmic disposition.

    This emphasis on sound is a legacy of India’s Vedic tradition.  Yoga Philosophy tells that sound is one of the first evolutes of the universe.

    The universe was understood to be constructed from sound, and the 50 phonemes of the Sanskrit alphabet were its foundational members.

    Vac, the Goddess of sound (who later became the art and music goddess, Saraswati) was a key deity, and the Agni Hotra (Fire Ceremony) depended on chants for its efficacy.

    Indeed, the first two Vedas, the Rig and Sama (1500 – 1000 BCE), are completely composed of chants.

    The complexity of the Vedic chanting ritual attempted to create a “sound body” of the universe. This functioned as a microcosm of the universe’s macrocosm. The rituals redirected universal energy for the support of individuals or human society.

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