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Monday, March 15, 2010

Mantras

Rabbi Kaplan proceeds to discuss mantras. Matras as you recall are words and phrases that are repeated over and over again. Not only is it a good meditation on it's own but it can also be combined with other forms of meditations. Such would include contemplation and visualizations. Contemplation is when you gaze on an object or a word. Some examples of a good contemplation are a candle and the word yud hey vav hey
THis word is loaed with meaning. Inside it is the secret to charity. It is also the secret to Hashem benifence to the Jewish people and the citizens of his planet. Visualization while being safe is very difficult to perform. Most people can keeop a vision in their mind for maybe a few minutes and then it fades. There are a couple of visualization in that chapter. THe first one being the letter aleph. Picture it as colered black against a white background. If the background is hazy then you can visualise a dot that erases all the background distortion. Another visualiztion is to visualize the seven layers of heaven and imaging your self ascending those layer and coming to a curtaqin with G-d's name on it. Real powerful meditation. Even a candle can be mystical for when one gazes upon it once seeing Black, Red, Yellow and blue. Blue is a spiritual color that open up the gateways to God.


THe book explores how mantras were written into the daily prayer. The Amida which said three times daily. One should say the words slowly and concentrate their meaning. The words establish that God is the one who bestows blessing upon us. We must pray at the proper times.

THe Shema is another mantra that is used. Said over and over again one thinks about the unification of the nation of Israel and about the unification of God. Further in the prayers there are also contemplations on the redeemer.

Hitbodedute is discussed. At times it can be rather difficult to start a conversation with God. One can use a mantra " Master of the Universe" in order to get the ball rolling. One can also discuss with God how difficult it is to get into a conversation with him. Hitbodedut is a great meditation for clarifying your life and getting the house in order but be wary of using it as self therapy. One can get into a cul desac they canot get out of.

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