What Is Japa Meditation?
Japa meditation is a means of clearing the mind, freeing it from the clutter of worries and daily problems by chanting various mantras.
More Info: The purpose of any meditative practice is to clear the mind to bring about peace and renewed focus. The mind is often overwhelmed by tasks and details each day. Japa meditation helps to center the mind on a specific thought or object so that a renewed sense of balance and purpose can be brought to the forefront of the mind's awareness.
Japa Meditation Origins
Japa meditation began in India many years ago. The mantras that are used in Japa meditation come from Sanskrit letters that are uniquely arranged in specific ways to evoke certain responses. The goal is to focus one's mental energy in the most effective yet calming manner. It is not necessary to use the Sanskrit mantras however. Any name, word, or image can be repeated to bring about the desired effect.
How to Practice Japa Meditation
Japa meditation can be practiced aloud or silently. Audible chanting is typically done in a whisper or soft voice. Repetition of the mantra is the key factor.
Japa meditation is best practiced by sitting on the floor in a comfortable position with the eyes closed in order to block out distractions. If health factors limit one's ability to sit on the floor, a comfortable chair is also effective. The room can be lit or dark as long as there are no external factors that will hinder the clearing of the mind.