The Mantras of the Sanskrit Alphabet

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The Sanskrit alphabet consists of fifty prime mantras, considered to be the 'mothers' or root powers behind the entire universe. They have special correspondences with the planets and signs as noted below.48

The Planets and the Sanskrit Alphabet

16 Sounds in the Head and Senses - Sun

3?

am

Top of Head

3ii

am

Forehead

i

im

Right Eye

%

un

Left Eye

3

um

Right Ear

$

uin

Left Ear

%

rm

Right Cheek

%

Pi1

Left Cheek

c5

lm

Right Nostril

H

Irm

Left Nostril

t?

em

Upper Lips

airn

Lower Lips

3i

om

Upper Teeth

aSI

aum

Lower Teeth

3i

am

Top of palate

31:

ah

Bottom of palate

9 Sounds of Tissues - Moon

i

yam

Plasma

Heart or Air Chakra

i

ram

Blood

Navel or Fire Chakra

lam

Muscle

Root or Earth Chakra

i

vam

Fat

Sex or Water Chakra

sam

Bone

Retention of Breath

q

sam

Marrow

Retention of Breath

À

sam

Reproductive

Inhalation

ham

Prana

Throat or Ether Chakra/Exhalation

«I

ksam

Mind

Third Eye

25 Sounds of the Trunk and Limbs - 5 Planets

Right Side, Mars

Left Side, Venus

karn

cam

Shoulder Joint

kham

cham

Elbow Joint

gam

jam

Wrist Joint

gham

Base of Fingers

nam

ñam

Tip of Fingers

Right Side, Mercury

Left Side, Jupiter

Z

tam

à

tam

Hip Joint

3

tham

«i

tham

Knee Joint

i

dam

i

dam

Ankle

i

dham

M

dharn

Base of Toes

nam

nam

Tip of Toes

Trunk, Saturn

i

pam

Right Abdomen

pham

Lower Abdomen

bam

Left Abdomen

H

bham

Base of Throat

mam

Heart

The Sun relates to the vowels, which in Sanskrit are a group of sixteen. Vowels traditionally represent the spirit, soul our inner Self because they can be pronounced without the aid of consonants. Consonants in turn represent matter, form and limitation because they rest upon vowels for their expression.

The Moon relates to the nine semi-vowels and spirants (s and h sounds). These are intermediate between vowels and consonants in their sound quality. Like vowels their sounds can be drawn out over a period of time, but like consonants, is limited in duration.

Of the two groups, the semi-vowels govern the prime elements with Earth-lam, Water-vam, Fire-ram, Air-yam and Ether-ham. These relate to the five lower chakras of the subtle body, from the root or muladhara chakra to the throat. The sibilants govern Prana. The Sanskrit letter S governs inhalation, while the letter H governs exhala tion. The letter S governs time or duration, while the letter H governs space or prana (life-force). The Sanskrit Sh sounds govern the balance between these two forces.

Mars relates to the five guttural consonants (pronounced in the region of the throat). Venus relates to the five palatal consonants (pronounced in the region of the soft palate). Mercury relates to the five cerebral consonants (pronounced with the tongue curled back toward the roof of the mouth). Jupiter relates to the five dental consonants (pronounced with the tongue against the teeth). Saturn relates to the five labial consonants (pronounced using the lips).

The set of five planetary sounds also relate to the five elements but in a more general sense. The Mars group governs fire, the Venus group water, the Mercury group earth, the Jupiter group ether and the Saturn group air.

The Sun as the sixteen vowels, the Moon as the nine semi-vowels and spirants, and the five planets as the five sets of consonants (twenty-five total), make up the fifty letters of the Sanskrit alphabet.

These mantras make up the Mantra Purusha or cosmic being of mantra, which we can visualize in a planetary form. Astrologically speaking, the Sun and the vowels form his head. The Moon and its letters are his tissues and his Prana. Mars and its letters form his right arm. Venus and its letters form his left arm. Mercury and its letters form his right leg. Jupiter and its letters form his left leg. Saturn and its letters form his trunk.

We can visualize our own body as this astrological mantra Purusha and use the recitation of the Sanskrit alphabet as an astrological treatment measure.

The Signs and the Sanskrit Alphabet

Aries

am, äip, im, lip

Taurus

um, üm, rm

Gemini

rm, lip, lfm

Cancer

env, aiip

Leo

om, aum

Virgo

am, ah, áam, çaip, sam, haip

Libra

kam, kham, gam, gham, ùam

Scorpio

cam, cham, jaqi, jham, ñaip

The Signs and the Sanskrit Alphabet (cont'd)

Sagittarius

tam, tham, dam, dham, nam

Capricorn

tam, tham, dam, dham, nam

Aquarius

pam, pham, bam, bham, mam

Pisces

yam, ram, lam, vam, ksam

Each sign of the zodiac similarly has corresponding Sanskrit letters. Note that OM corresponds to Leo, the sign of the Sun. Some people in India will name their children based upon these sounds of the signs, though most do so based upon the Nakshatra sounds. This system as a whole is not much used today, though it is emphasized in ancient texts on Mantra Yoga. The vowels begin with Aries as the first sign. The consonants begin with Libra as the first sign, with five per sign. The rest are counted off in the usual order of the Sanskrit alphabet.

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