OM is a powerful sound. Whenever my baby is upset, especially on long car rides, chanting OM always, Always, I mean ALWAYS ceases her crying. It’s kind of crazy that it works every time and this phenomenon has left me kind of obsessed with OM.
If you look up the definition of OM, you’ll likely find something to the effect of, “OM is the original vibration that brought the Universe into existence.” Try actually saying that out loud to someone and not laugh at yourself. I dare you.
That definition is just way to mystical and magical. Therefore, it makes it exclusive only to those who are open to thinking about things that way. So I try to approach it differently.
I find it helpful to first break down the benefits of making sound. I think we can all agree that we release energy when we make sound. Everything exists on a vibration and the sound of OM is a positive vibration that is soothing for the brain and nervous system. Just take my baby’s reaction to the sound as proof!
Chanting OM in a yoga class can create a stronger sense of community and actually gives us a chance to use our voice in a yoga class where we otherwise might not speak a single word. Repetitive chanting can even help focus the mind in preparation for meditation.
Keep in mind that chanting is not about “sounding pretty.” It’s about all of the above!
Here is a clip of 20 toddlers chanting OM totally focused and calm at the beginning of one of my Saturday morning classes: https://youtu.be/in6RtspkVik