I love chanting.
The moment that it changed for me was when I was desperate. My life was weighing me down. I spent most of the week as a householder under some extreme stressors and I needed some relief.
I began to chant my heart out along with Jai Uttal in Sanskirt, the ancient language of India. Immediately after chanting I was infused with new energy or calmed for bedtime, depending on the specific chant.
Years before I had learned toning and chanting techniques as a part of my teacher training in LifeForce Yoga (yoga for anxiety and depression) and although I loved what I learned I hadn’t applied it so usefully in my own life. This application of using chanting to increase energy in the daytime and calming before bed helped to change my nervous system. Despite the life stressors, I was able to use this tool to manage myself. I could feel the physical and mental effects right away.
For me, as a mother of three, finding time to do an hour long (or even 30 minute) yoga posture routine is challenging. Usually my yoga involves at least one child crawling on me, under me, or bouncing on my head. It can actually be very dangerous for all of us! Chanting has been one way to easily integrate the children into the benefits of an awareness practice like yoga.
Kids naturally do this too – singing or toning to themselves to calm themselves or to express joy, happiness. Comparatively, when I teach a group of adults to chant, it can be very difficult to let out true, deep sound, then, when mastered, very liberating.
Check out the article:
In this article it is suggested that “Group singing has been scientifically proven to lower stress, relieve anxiety, and elevate endorphins.” It is briefly mentioned that community, or individuals connecting to one another, is important. This is one of the cornerstones of Inward Office’s mission: to create community. Community is an essential component of a happy, long life. Also singing teaches breath control, or “pranayama” as it is called in Yoga. Controlling the breath has a direct effect on our experience of stress and managing the “fight/flight/freeze” mechanism of the nervous system. Finally, I discovered my fullness of voice when I discovered my fullness of breath. If I take the deep diaphragm breaths, I can really let out a true sound, unrestrained by my fear of singing mediocrity.
Interested in chanting, mantras, kirtan, and singing? Contact us for more information about how you can join a group. Chanting isn’t always related to God or religion, although it can be. Toning is completely secular and relates to the energy centers in the body. Join us to feel the effects. You will know after you try.