Mantra is the combination of two, Man— to repeat (manana) and tra— the power of trana. They are sacred utterance, numinous sound, or a syllable, word, phonemes, or group of words believed by some to have psychological and spiritual power.
The use, structure, function, importance and types of mantras vary according to the school and philosophy of Hinduism and of Buddhism. Mantras serve a central role in the tantric school of Hinduism. In this school, mantras are considered equivalent to deities, a sacred formula and deeply personal ritual, and considered to be effective only after initiation. However, in other schools of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism or Sikhism, this is not so.
Mantras come in many forms, including (verses from Rigveda for example) and sāman (musical chants from the Sāmaveda for example). They are typically melodic, mathematically structured meters, resonant with numinous qualities. At its simplest, the word Om serves as a mantra. In more sophisticated forms, they are melodic phrases with spiritual interpretations such as human longing for truth, reality, light, immortality, peace, love, knowledge and action. In other forms, they are literally meaningless, yet musically uplifting and spiritually meaningful.
A mantra is a thought manifest in, or encapsulated by, a sacred utterance that possesses profound spiritual significance. Sound holds a key place in Hindu thought. Mantras are sacred syllables that encapsulate particular forms of cosmic power (shakti).
In Hinduism, a mantra is sacred and spiritually beneficial. By chanting a mantra repeatedly with love and devotion a person can become spiritually illumined. He develops a pure mind which enables him to see God. Each mantra has a presiding deity over it who is supposed to be giving the results of chanting of mantra (mantra phala). Mantra means which has to be repeated and understood.
- Holistic Sutra Posted for Ayurved Sutra by Soulpark with Shruti M