Mantra Meditation

This is an essential guide to

Hare Krishna mantra meditation

passed down by great sages of India.

This mantra has the power to awaken our original spiritual consciousness.
Inspired by the teachings of A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada


Mantra is a Sanskrit word. ‘Man’ means ‘mind’ and ‘tra’ means ‘to liberate’. A mantra is a transcendental sound vibration that has the potency to liberate the mind from suffering and illusion.

The sages and scriptures of India have described the Hare Krishna mantra as the greatest of all mantras.









This simple sixteen-word mantra’s sound vibrations are powerful enough to awaken the natural happiness with everyone.

Hare: The spiritual energy;

Krishna: The all-attractive;

Rama: The reservoir of all pleasure.

The mantra requests Hare, the spiritual energy to connect us with Krishna, the divine source of all attractive, and Rama, the reservoir of all pleasure.

Practical Guide to Mantra Meditation


Everyone knows that a happy life requires good health. A proper diet, regular exercise and sufficient rest are necessary to keep our bodies strong and fit. If we neglect these, our bodies become weak and susceptible to infection.

More important but less well known, is the inner self’s need for spiritual nourishment. If we ignore our spiritual health requirements, we become overwhelmed by negative tendencies like stress, anxiety, anger and boredom. To meet our spiritual need and awaken the natural within, a genuine process of meditation is recommended.

The Vedas, ancient texts containing India’s timeless spiritual wisdom, advise that the best process for awakening spiritual consciousness is the hearing and chanting of transcendental sounds or mantras.

The Benefits

Peace of mind

The mind is full of unlimited desires, and being perpetually restless, it constantly flickers from one object to another. The mind is taking us anywhere and everywhere. It is as though we are riding on a chariot behind unbridled horses. But as soon as we focus on the spiritual sound of the Hare Krishna mantra, the wild horses of the mind gradually become calm and controlled.

Freedom from Karma and Unwanted Habits

The law of karma states that for every material action performed, nature forces an equivalent reaction upon the performer. Meditating on the Hare Krishna mantra destroys this karma and also the seeds of desire to perform material activity again. Hence the mantra empowers us to change deep rooted habits, replacing the negative with the positive.

Spiritual Nourishment

The inner self needs spiritual nourishment to awaken the natural within, through a genuine process of meditation. If we ignore our spiritual health requirements, we become overwhelmed by negative tendencies like stress, anxiety, anger and boredom.

Self Awareness

By chanting and hearing the mantra we begin to perceive our pure spiritual nature, which exists beyond our body and mind. As this awareness manifests we become increasingly freed from the fears and anxieties of material existence.

Revives Our Original Pure Consciousness

Our consciousness is the original, natural energy of the living entity. By chanting the transcendental sound vibration, we cleanse away all misgivings within our hearts and awaken our spiritual consciousness.

Real Happiness

Material pleasures are limited and temporary and therefore unbale to fully satisfy the spiritual self. However, chanting Hare Krishna gives complete satisfaction because it places us in direct contact with the spiritual energy and awakens us to the blissful reality beyond matter.

Meditating with Beads

1. For help with the pronunciation, please use this the Mantra Meditation Practical Guide Link (Kalkey) on the Art of Mantra Meditation:

2. Before you begin, you may say the following invocation mantra once:

Jaya Sri Krishna Caitanya, Prabhu Nityananda,

Sri Advaita Gadadhara, Srivasadi Gaura bhakta vrinda

3. With the beads in your right hand, hold the first bead with your thumb and middle finger (see figure 1 below) and pronounce clearly the full Hare Krishna mantra:

Hare Kṛishṇa Hare Kṛishṇa Kṛishṇa Kṛishṇa Hare Hare

Hare Rāma Hare Rāma Rāma Rāma Hare Hare

Pronunciation: Hare (Ha Ray), Krishna (Krish Na), Rama (Rah: long a; Ma: short a)

4. Move to the next bead with the same two fingers. Again pronounce the full Hare Krishna mantra. Repeat this on 108 beads until you complete one round.

5. To complete another round do not cross over the head bead, but turn the beads around and chant on them in the opposite direction.

6. To chant using a bead bag, follow the above process, but place your right hand and n=beads in the large opening of the bag. With your index finger protruding out of your hand and beads in the large opening of the bag, (see figure 2). This keeps the beads clean and makes meditation more comfortable.

Meditation Tips

Engage the Sense of Touch

Using beads is especially helpful as it engages the sense of touch in the meditation process and helps you concentrate on the sound of the mantra.

Find a Comfortable Atmosphere

One can meditate anywhere – at home, riding on the bus, or walking in nature. It is preferable to be in a peaceful atmosphere. Burning a stick of incense can add to the meditative mood. During meditation you can sit with crossed legs. If this is not possible you can sit in a chair or walk slowly.

Pronounce the Mantra Cleary and Attentively

When you are meditating the mind will tell you about all the urgent things you have to do. When this happens try to realise the mind is not you and focus only on the sound of the mantra as you clearly pronounce each syllable. Tell your mind “we can do these things later, but for now we are meditating!”


You can meditate anytime, but regulation helps in making the mind peaceful. Therefore, dedicating yourself to completing a fixed number of rounds on the beads every day brings the best results. You can gradually increase this number.

Meditate with the Saints

You may find it especially helpful to chant along at a comfortable pace with the background track of Srila Prabhupada.

Mantra Meditation Guide Audio

Meditate with Musical Accomplishment

Since ancient wisdom times spiritual practitioners have gathered in groups to sing the Hare Krishna mantra, accompanied by drums and other musical instruments. This is another powerful way of meditating on the mantra, which does not involve the use of beads. Link (Kalkey Kirtana) is dedicated to the form of meditation. You can sing along, or just relax and absorb your mind in hearing the spiritual sound vibrations.

Wisdom of the Sages

“Truly, wisdom springs from meditation; without meditation, wisdom wanes; having known these two paths of progress and decline, let one conduct oneself so that wisdom may increase”. Buddha Dhammapada.

“For the soul there is neither birth nor death at any time. He has not come into being, does not come into being, and will not coming into being. He is unborn, eternal, ever existing and primeval. He is not slain when the body is slain.” Krishna, Bhagavad Gita

“For him who has conquered the mind, the mind is the best of friends; but for one who has failed to do so his mind will remain the greatest enemy.” Krishna, Bhagavad Gita

“A person who is not disturbed by the incessant flow of desires — that enter like rivers into the ocean, which is ever being filled but is always still — can alone achieve peace, and not the man who strives to satisfy such desires.” Krishna, Bhagavad Gita

Neither shall they say ‘lo here!’ or ‘lo there!’ for behold, the Kingdom of God is within you.” Jesus, the Bible

If by giving up a lesser happiness, one may behold a greater one, let the wise man give up the lesser happiness in consideration of the greater happiness.” Buddha, Dhammapada

“Chant Hare Krishna and your life will be sublime.” Srila Prabhupada

All glory to the chanting of the Hare Krishna mantra, which cleans the mirror of the heart and thus extinguishes the blazing fire of material miseries. The chanting is the benediction moon that spreads the white lotus of good fortune for all living entities. It is the life and soul of all education, it increases the ocean of transcendental bliss, and enables us to fully taste the nectar of life at every step”.

Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Shikshastaka.