Definition - What does Lam mean?
Lam is a one-syllable sound known as a bija, or "seed," mantra. It is the bija mantra associated with the muladhara (root) chakra, and its vibration is believed to activate this energy center.
Located along the spinal column, each of the seven main chakras is associated with its own individual vibration and bija mantra.
Lam is also used to cleanse the muladhara chakra, in order to establish or maintain a sense of being grounded and connected to the earth. The vibration created when chanting lam is said to cleanse any impurities that collect at the base of the spine, allowing vital life force energy known as prana to flow freely.
Since the muladhara chakra is the gateway to the remaining six chakras, chanting lam can be a powerful means of shifting energy throughout the entire body.
Yogapedia explains Lam
Bija mantras are not typically translatable, and their real power is believed to stem from the sound vibrations created by chanting, either aloud or silently. The vibration of lam promotes grounding by stimulating the energy of the muladhara chakra, associated with stability and a sense of being rooted to the earth.
Energetic blockages and imbalances in the muladhara chakra may cause insecurity, anxiety disorders, fear, panic attacks, worry, overthinking, depression or nightmares. As such, chanting lam can be used to ease these conditions.
The muladhara chakra is first of the seven major chakras, located at the base of the spine, where it provides the foundation and support for the chakras above. When in balance, muladhara provides fearlessness, safety and physical, emotional and spiritual stability.
Lam chanting can therefore help to open up feelings of security, prosperity and belonging. It is particularly useful when energy or self-esteem is low.
The other six chakras and their corresponding bija mantras are:
Svadhisthana, or spleen/sacral chakra - vam
Manipura, or navel/solar plexus chakra - ram
Anahata, or heart chakra - yam
Vishuddhi, or throat chakra - ham/hum
Ajna, or third eye chakra - om
Sahasrara, or crown chakra - silent om
For maximum benefit, lam should be chanted 108 times daily. In order to enhance concentration, mala beads can be used to count each recitation of the mantra.
Lam chanting may be practiced in any stable seated posture in which the spine can remain upright, such as sukhasana (easy pose) or padmasana (lotus pose), and can be chanted at any time of day. It is important to focus on the inner vibration of this mantra whilst chanting, in order to connect with the divine power within.
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