Judge me if you wish but, without fail, the yoga classes I teach at my small yoga studio in Stellenbosch end with the chanting of three OMs. I always give people the option of staying silent because I know that many would rather crawl naked over broken glass than make weird yogic mooing sounds, but I love it and here’s why.
Everything in the universe is pulsating and vibrating – nothing is really standing still! The sound Om, when chanted, apparently vibrates at the frequency of 432 Hz, which is the same vibrational frequency found throughout everything in nature. It is a mantra, a vibration and an intention all rolled into one.
As such Om (pronounced AUM) – as I understand it – is the basic sound of the universe; so by chanting it we are symbolically and physically tuning in to that sound and acknowledging our connection to all other living beings, nature and the universe.
In addition the vibrations and rhythmic pronunciation also have a physical affect on the body by slowing down the nervous system and calming the mind similar to meditation. When the mind is relaxed, your blood pressure decreases and ultimately the health of your heart improves.
Finally it is also a way to delineate the time of our practice from the rest of our day and signify that this is a special time in which to care for ourselves and practice being mindful.
All in all, beginning and/or ending a yoga practicing with Om helps to connects us to our practice in a deeper way than just with physical postures.
So tell me, do you love to Om or does your heart sink when that time comes around? Do you join in with gusto or do you clench your jaw and pray for it to be over? I’d love to hear.
Source: Sam Sanders, Mindbodygreen.com