Hare Rama Hare Krishna
Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Krishna mantra is a revered and ancient practice in the tradition of Bhakti Yoga. It is composed of three Sanskrit names that represent different aspects of the divine, and has been treasured by spiritual seekers for its transformative power. The repetition of the mantra is considered a sacred practice in Bhakti Yoga, and has been used for centuries by practitioners seeking to deepen their spiritual awareness and connect with the divine.
The history of the Hare Rama Hare Krishna mantra can be traced back to the Kali-Santarana Upanishad, a sacred text of the Vedic tradition. It was later popularized by the saint and philosopher Chaitanya Mahaprabhu in the 16th century, who emphasized the importance of chanting the names of God as a means of attaining spiritual liberation. Today, the mantra has been embraced by people of different cultures and backgrounds around the world, and is often chanted in kirtans and other spiritual events. It has also been popularized in popular culture through music, films, and other media.
In Sri Bhakti-Sandarbha, Jiva Goswami explains in Anuccheda 270 how and why kirtana is the recommended process for spiritual development in the age of Kaliyuga:
“This devotion to the Lord in the form of kirtana is unlimitedly merciful to devotees who are humble and devoid of the pride associated with wealth, prestigious birth, admirable qualifications, and praiseworthy accomplishments. This is understood from the Vedas and the Puranas.
As stated in the Brahma-vaivarta Purana:
“Therefore in Kaliyuga, activities such as penance, yoga, study of the Vedas, and sacrifices cannot be properly performed, even by those who are highly competent.”
Therefore sankirtana, appearing amidst the people of Kaliyuga, who are naturally meek, easily confers upon them all the results derived from the practices prominent in other Yugas and thus makes them perfect. For this reason, the Lord is especially pleased in Kaliyuga only by sankirtana, as stated in the Chaturmasya-mahatmya of the Skanda Purana:
“In this world, singing about Lord Hari is the best penance. In Kaliyuga especially, one should perform kirtana for the pleasure of Lord Vishnu.”
The same point is made by Sage Sukadeva:
“What is attained in Satya-yuga by meditating on Lord Vishnu, and in Treta-yuga by propitiating Him with elaborate sacrifices, and in Dvapara-yuga by worship of the deity, is attained in Kaliyuga by singing about Lord Hari.” (Bhagavatam 12.3.52)
Also, “Whatever one achieves in Satya-yuga by meditation, in Treta-yuga by the performance of sacrifices [rituals], and in Dvapara-yuga by worship of the deity, is attained in Kali-yuga by singing about Lord Krishna.” (Vishnu Purana 6.2.17)
Furthermore, the Srimad-Bhagavatam (11.5.36-37) says:
“Those who are actually advanced in knowledge are able to appreciate the essential value of this age of Kaliyuga. Such enlightened persons worship Kaliyuga because in this fallen age, all perfection of life can easily be achieved by the performance of sankirtana. Indeed, there is no higher possible gain for embodied souls forced to wander throughout the material world than the Supreme Lord’s sankirtana movement, by which one can attain the supreme peace and free oneself from the cycle of repeated birth and death.”
In addition to its spiritual benefits, research has suggested that chanting mantras like Hare Rama Hare Krishna can have a calming effect on the mind and reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression. This is in line with the practice of Bhakti Yoga, which emphasizes the importance of developing a personal relationship with the divine. Practitioners are encouraged to see the divine as a loving parent or friend, and to offer their devotion and service with a pure and selfless heart.
The Hare Rama Hare Krishna mantra is believed to have the power to awaken the spiritual energy within the practitioner, known as Kundalini. This energy is said to lie dormant at the base of the spine, and can be awakened through various spiritual practices, including mantra chanting.
The practice of chanting the mantra is often accompanied by the use of prayer beads, known as a Mala, which is used to keep count of the number of times the mantra is repeated and believed to have a purifying effect on the mind and body.
The idea that the Hare Rama Hare Krishna mantra is a powerful tool for spiritual growth and inner transformation is rooted in the teachings of Bhakti Yoga, a devotional form of yoga that emphasizes the cultivation of love and devotion to the divine. This practice is particularly important in Kaliyuga, the current age in the Hindu cycle of time, which is believed to be marked by spiritual decline and moral degradation.
The benefits of chanting the Hare Rama Hare Krishna mantra are explained in various Hindu scriptures, including the Srimad Bhagavatam and the Chaitanya Charitamrita. These texts explain that the mantra is a means of invoking the divine presence and receiving divine grace, which can help one overcome the material obstacles to spiritual growth and attain liberation from the cycle of birth and death.
In the Bhakti tradition, the chanting of the Hare Rama Hare Krishna mantra is seen as a form of sankirtana, or communal singing of devotional songs. This practice is believed to have a transformative effect on both the individual and the community, as it fosters a sense of connection and unity among devotees and helps to purify the heart and mind.
Overall, the Hare Rama Hare Krishna mantra is considered to be a simple yet powerful spiritual practice that can help individuals to cultivate a deep and abiding love for the divine, overcome the obstacles of the material world, and experience a profound sense of joy and peace.