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The Om syllable is considered a mantra in its own right in Vedantaschool of Hinduism.

In Tibet, many Buddhists carve mantras into rocks as a form of meditation.


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"Mantra" (Sanskrit

) means a sacred utterance, numinous sound, or a syllable, word, phonemes, or

group of words believed by some to have psychological and spiritual power. [2][3] Mantra may or may not be
syntactic or have literal meaning; the spiritual value of mantra comes when it is audible, visible, or present
in thought.[2][4]
Earliest mantras were composed in Vedic times by Hindus in India, and those are at least 3000 years
old.[5] Mantras are now found in various schools of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism.[3][6] Similar
hymns, chants, compositions and concepts are found in Zoroastrianism, [7] Taoism, Christianity and
elsewhere.[2]
The use, structure, function, importance and types of mantras vary according to the school and
philosophy of Hinduism and of Buddhism. Mantras serve a central role in the tantric school of
Hinduism.[5][8] In this school, mantras are considered equivalent to deities, a sacred formula and deeply
personal ritual, and considered to be effective only after initiation. However, in other schools of Hinduism,
Buddhism, Jainism or Sikhism, this is not so.[7][9]
Mantras come in many forms, including c (verses from Rigveda for example) and sman (musical chants
from the Smaveda for example).[2][5] They are typically melodic, mathematically structured meters,
resonant with numinous qualities. At its simplest, the word (Aum, Om) serves as a mantra. In more
sophisticated forms, they are melodic phrases with spiritual interpretations such as human longing for
truth, reality, light, immortality, peace, love, knowledge and action.[2][9] In other forms, they are literally
meaningless, yet musically uplifting and spiritually meaningful.[5]

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