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Video:How to Chant

with Koti

Chanting is a common ritual in the Hindu religion and is taken from ancient Hindu texts. Learn the traditions behind Hindu chants like "Om."See Transcript

Transcript:How to Chant

Hi. I’m Koti. I’m a volunteer at the Hindu Temple of Greater Cincinnati for the past fifteen years. Today I’m with About.com, and I’m going to talk to you about how to chant the Hindu Chant.

Hindu Chants are Derived from Ancient Hindu Texts

The Hindu Chant goes back to the Vedas. Vedas are the foremost texts of Hinduism. And these were learned purely in the oral tradition. This is a revelation for seers who are in deep contemplation. And they transmitted these chants to their disciples, and they stayed in the oral tradition unaltered for several centuries. Only in the past few centuries have they been committed to writing. So when someone learned Vedas, it was by hearing and sitting close to a guru, and repeating after the guru.

Chants are Meant to Cause Body Vibrations

The way it is chanted is very important, because that is what causes the vibrations in the body, and these are all highly selected to create special effects on the body. These are all time tested, so when you chant them right, you have the effect.

The Om Chant Represents the Universe

I will start with the greatest of the Hindu chants. This chant is called Om. If you take the entire body of Hindu knowledge, the Vedas, the pinnacle of that is Om. Every sound in this universe is a fragment of Om. They way you chant Om, is you take a deep breath. Usually it is done by exhaling through the left nostril and inhaling through the right nostril. Hold the entire lung capacity sitting there. This is done in a sitting position, this is called the Lotus position. After you take the deep breath, then you start releasing it. You should start saying Om as you release it. It should. It should start as though the sound is starting from your belly button. Typically you do it at least three times. And then you breathe again and repeat the Om.

The Om is representing A –U – M and the silence. A is the beginning, like spring, then U is fading away like the Autumn season or the fall season, and then M, the silence that is the silence of winter. It is not death, it is immortality because all these things come back in spring again.

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