Mantra for peace
Lokah samastah sukhino bhavantu
May all beings be happy and free. May my thoughts, words, and actions contribute to this happiness and freedom
This quote is a mantra, that is, a phrase that you listen to or rehearse aloud or in a low voice. A mantra (man "mental" and tra "protection, calm") aims to stop the never-ending flow of our thoughts by allowing the mind to stay focused. The sound vibration of the mantra is also very important, especially because it balances the nervous system.
The first time I heard the Lokah samastah sukhino bhavantu mantra was during my first Jivamukti* yoga class led by Yogeswari **.
Until then, mantras were not my cup of tea: you often have to sing them, while you do not know them and, in addition, you have to do it with strangers.
But during this class, Yogeswari had the good idea to print the lyrics: one less thing to worry about!
When we started singing Lokah samastah sukhino bhavantu, its round and sweet sound immediately appealed to my ears.
Then Yogeswari translated the mantra. I found it very powerful and in accordance with the principles of yoga and my own values, namely not to respond to negative behaviors by negativity and let others be who they are.
For me, this mantra has the power to awaken the positivity and equanimity of thoughts, words and actions, which helps to improve the relationship with oneself and with all living beings.
Small meditation around peace:
Sit comfortably in a place that soothes you, with your eyes closed.
Take deep breaths and with each exhale relax your muscles.
When you feel relaxed, take a natural breath and start repeating the lokah samastah sukhino bhavantu mantra (pronounce lokah samastaha soukhino bhavantou) aloud.
Repeat it as many times as you like, letting yourself be rocked by its rhythm.
When you are done, keep your eyes closed and let your spirit go up in harmony with yourself and everything around you.
Enjoy this moment of peace.
To get out of your meditation, take a deep inhale and when exhaling slowly open your eyes to get back in touch with what is around you.
* Yoga Jivamukti was created in 1986 by David and Sharon Gannon. It aims to reach a state of enlightment through compassion towards all living beings. This style of yoga is part of Hatha Yoga. It focuses on singing, postures, breathing and music.
** Yogeswari is one of the senior teachers of Jivamukti Yoga. She is also the founder of the AZAHAR Foundation, which promotes conflict resolution through yoga and the arts in Cambodia, Rwanda and Ivory Coast.