Welcome to the Home of Tibetan Mantra Healing.
Mantra is a form of healing that dates back to antiquity. The mantras described here arise out of the ancient Tibetan medical and spiritual traditions. They are simple to use, profoundly effective, and are immediately accessible to everybody – regardless of age, gender, ethnic or spiritual background.
This is the official website for Tibetan Mantra Healing - as taught and transmitted by Dr Nida Chenagtsang. These mantras, in turn, have been transmitted to Dr Nida as a part of a long oral and written tradition, largely stemming from the Ngakpa lineage, of which Dr Nida is a direct lineage-holder.
The purpose of this site is to explain, in brief, the use ofMantras for healing of disease as well as for maintaining and optimizing health. In this way, anyone who is interested can then find out how to receive these teachings and immediately put them to use on healing themselves and others.
All courses are presented by the International Academy for Traditional Tibetan Medicine (IATTM) in conjunction with Ngak-Mang Institute.
What is Tibetan Mantra Healing?
Tibetan Mantra Healing is a powerful form of healing dating from ancient times, which is based upon the philosophy of Interdependent Origination of all Phenomena. The philosophy of Interdependent Origination purports that all phenomena in the Universe are intimately interconnected: no single object, person or event can exist in isolation; every action, thought or event impacts on all other existent phenomena. Through a greater awareness of Interdependent Origination, we can become co-creators of our own reality, and influence important aspects of our lives, such as our health. We can also use these methods to heal manifestations of energy disturbance such as accidental injury and disease.
Modern physics confirms what many ancient cultures have known for many years - that energy and form are interchangeable; they are simply different manifestations of the same universal constituents.
Traditional Tibetan Medicine describes these universal constituents, or potentialities, as the Five Elements. In their most subtle form, these Five Elements have a psycho-physical function which energises the mental, emotional and spiritual aspects of our being, as well as - in their more gross aspect - forming the basis of our physical existence. In order to interface with these subtle universal energies, Traditional Tibetan Medicine utilises the five modalities of sensory perception - and their objects, namely form, sound, touch, taste and smell - as a part of its therapeutic approach.
Mantra Healing focuses specifically on the energy of sound as a healing medium. Tibetan Mantra Healing utilises ancient and secret mantras: sometimes encapsulating the essence of natural sounds, and often using ancient words from the Sanskrit and Tibetan languages.
What is a Mantra?
Mantra is the pure essential energy of Sound. Sound in its most essential and pure manifestation has infinite potentiality, therefore reciting a mantra is a way of connecting with and manipulating very specific subtle energies. Tibetan Mantra Healing utilises this technique for healing effect.
Mantra is a Sanskrit word, deriving from ancient India. It means literally, ‘To save the mind from suffering and illness’. The Tibetan term for Mantra is Ngak (Tib. sNgags), and a practitioner of this form of healing is called a Ngakpa.
Often when people hear the word Mantra, they think of the Buddhist or Hindu religions and they associate Mantra with some form of prayer. In general, this is because these religions utilise the energy of Mantras to achieve a spiritual goal. There is another application of Mantras, however, that is less well-known. This is Mantra Healing - the use of specific Mantras for the Healing of diseases. There are many different Mantras for a wide variety of physical and mental problems.
How does Mantra Healing Work?
Mantras have their healing effect through the function of Interdependence.
In Traditional Tibetan Medicine, the target of healing is never a single point, as it is in Western medicine. Each organ, or specific point of the body, has associations with many different and inter-related points. Therefore, Tibetan Medicine - instead of focusing simply on one point - is more likely to focus on ten points: the major problem area and the related points, as well as addressing the relationship between these points.
In Tibetan Medicine it is assumed that, for disease to be present, there is some form of underlying subtle energetic disturbance. Mantra Healing utilises the energy of sound to remedy this underlying energetic disturbance, treating the root cause, as well as the related and perpetuating factors, in preference to simply treating the symptoms.
What can I use Mantra Healing for?
There are literally hundreds of different Mantras for Healing. Some mantras are for specific problems, such as:
Diarrhoea, Vomiting, Constipation, Viruses, Influenza, Infection,
Pimples, Broken Bones, Childbirth, Bleeding from an open wound.
There are also Mantras to cover more generalised conditions, for example:
Disorders of the Solid Organs such as the Heart, Lungs, Liver, Spleen, Kidneys; disorders of the Hollow Organs such as the Gall Bladder, Stomach or Colon; disorders of the Senses such as Sight, Hearing; or to alleviate Pain.
There are Mantras to rebalance the 3 Humours (Wind, Bile and Phlegm). In Tibetan Medicine, the 3 Humours are considered to be the 3 vital energies in the body; disease manifests when the 3 Humours become imbalanced.
There are also Mantras for "One Hundred Diseases". Tibetan Medicine speaks of all diseases as being variations of different basic energy disturbances. These Mantras have the ability to heal any sort of problem; they are very effective for illnesses which are complex, or where the cause of the illness may be unknown.
Important examples of this type of mantra are:
Dorje Gotrab - ‘Mantra of the Indestructible Armour’
Pawa Dru Nga - ‘Mantra of the 5 Warrior Symbols’
Bat Shima - ‘Mantra of the Four Powers of Destruction’
What is Meant by ‘Transmission of Mantras’?
Receiving a Mantra is referred to as receiving a Transmission. This is because Mantras are actually a form of energy in sound. Through listening to the Mantra being recited we receive the ability to recite the Mantra for ourselves, in order to experience the healing benefits and to heal others.
Mantras have traditionally been handed down from Master to student.
Normally, in the Tibetan spiritual tradition, transmission of teachings is a three-fold activity:
The Master gives an oral explanation of the teachings, khrid, giving very precise instructions on how to perform the practices.
The Master gives a recitation of the root text, lung; the students receive the transmission through the act of listening and hearing. Master and student make a special connection through the sound.
The Master performs the actual ritual of empowerment, wang (Tib. dBang), giving the power and permission to do the practice. In the spiritual tradition of Vajrayana, this is the most important part of the transmission.
In the Mantra Healing tradition, however, the process of transmission is much more simple, and consists of only one of the above steps. What is vital to receiving the transmission is that the student must hear the Mantra being recited aloud by the Master. In this process, the sound vibrations of the Mantra encapsulate the essence of the healing power - not just of the Mantra itself - but also the accumulated wisdom and healing power of the entire Lineage of Healers who have used and empowered this Mantra before.
Someone who does not have this transmission - or connection of energy - cannot receive the benefits associated with using the mantra, even though they may chant the mantra many times. Using the mantra without transmission may either bring about no effects at all; or it may actually cause adverse effects.
The effects of Mantra Healing can be surprisingly powerful, profound, and sometimes much more far-reaching than the effects of pharmaceutical drugs. Mantra Healing often gives very rapid results, which may be particularly evident in diseases where other medicines have been tried and appear to be ineffective.
What are the Origins of Mantra Healing?
Healing through the use of Mantras has been performed for thousands
of years. Its origins can be traced through early Tibet, Mongolia and India.
The most ancient knowledge of Mantra Healing is considered to be held by the Bonpo tradition in Tibet. Bonpo literally means ‘One who Chants’. There are also Healing Mantras that originated through the Hindu and Buddhist religions. While spiritual Mantras are generally considered ‘closed’, meaning that only a follower of that faith can receive them, Healing Mantras generally do not have such a restriction placed upon them. Anyone who is interested can receive the transmission of Healing Mantras.
The first record of Mantras being used in healing practices is found in the famous Tibetan Medical Text the "Bum Shi" (‘Many Oral Instructions on Medicine’). The author of this text was Chebu Trishe, the first Tibetan physician. He was the son of Shenrab Miwoche - the founder of the philosophical Bon tradition - who lived approximately 3,900 years ago. Buddha Shakyamuni also transmitted many Healing Mantras in a Sutra referred to as the "Zhang Dus" (‘Collection of Mantras’), nearly 2,500 years ago.
In addition to these famous historical people, there have been many highly realized spiritual masters living in Tibet who have discovered their own Healing Mantras. This practice of ‘spontaneous discovery’of Mantras is referred to as gTerma (literally ‘hidden treasure’), and has been occurring in Tibet - in both the Bonpo tradition and the Buddhist religion - for more than a thousand years. Famous gTertons (individuals who discover such ‘hidden treasure’) include Dranpa Namkha, Sangje Lingpa, Dorje Lingpa, Padma Lingpa, Mingyur Dorje and Dudjom Lingpa.
How are Mantras used for Healing?
Healing Mantras can be used to heal oneself or to heal others. Traditionally, there are 6 main ways of using the Healing Mantras; the method used depends upon the nature of the disease and the specific means through which the Mantra functions. In general terms, the Mantra is recited a certain number of times to activate its power, then the breath – which represents the essence of the Voice, and therefore contains the subtle energy of Sound – is used to energise a healing medium. This is done in the following ways:
Ngak Chu ‘Mantra Water’. The breath is blown onto water which is consumed.
Ngak Mar ‘Mantra Butter’. The breath is blown onto butter which is either consumed or rubbed on the problematic area.
Tsa Ngak ‘Mantra Salt‘. The breath is blown onto salt which is then applied to the problematic area. In some cases the salt can be heated and then applied.
Ngak Phu ‘Blowing Mantra‘. The hands are rubbed together and the mantra is blown onto them, then they are placed on the body on the problematic area.
Chag Ngak ‘Metal Mantra‘. Hot metal is used to generate the healing energy.
Ngak rDo ‘Mantra Stone‘. The breath is blown onto warm stones which are applied to the problematic area.
Healing Mantras are extremely versatile, and can be utilised in many other ways in addition to these methods. Sometimes the practitioner may simply chant the mantra themselves, at other times the patient may be encouraged to listen to the sound of the Mantra being chanted. Certain body-parts can be empowered by drawing on them mantras in specific colours; mantras can be made into amulets to be worn for protection from disease; specific mantras can be painted onto rice-paper and eaten for internal healing effects; incense which has been empowered with Mantras may be burned for purposes of healing or purification. In general, authentic Tibetan Medicines and incense and have been empowered with Mantras.
How is Mantra Healing Related to Tibetan Medicine?
Tibetan Medicine is a natural herbal medical science which focuses on maintaining balance of the Three Humors (Wind, Bile and Phlegm), subtle energies which permeate and sustain the physical body. When the Three Humors are balanced, the body and mind maintain wellness; when there is imbalance of the Three Humors, illness manifests.
Tibetan Medicine has two primary goals:
- Prevention of Disease - through healthy diet and correct habits of lifestyle.
- Treatment of Disease - when illness has manifested.
In Traditional Tibetan Medicine, Treatment generally falls into Four basic categories:
- Therapeutic Diet
- Modifications to lifestyle factors
- Use of Medicines
- Application of External Therapies
In some texts, Mantra Healing is mentioned as the fifth method of treatment.
Mantra Healing can be used separately as a treatment in its own right, or it can be combined with any of the four above-mentioned treatment modalities in order to enhance their effects.
When used in conjunction with diet, Mantras can be used to empower foods for therapeutic purposes, or to detoxify contaminated foods. Mantras can be used around the home to create a more comfortable living-space, or in the work environment to enhance communication and to increase productivity. Written Mantras can be worn as amulets in order to protect from accidents, injury, or to ward off spirit provocations. Mantras can be combined with herbal medications to enhance their effects; in fact, during the compounding of Traditional Tibetan medicines, many healing mantras are recited, incorporating the energy of sound into these complex combinations of herbs and minerals, in order to enhance their healing properties. Mantras can also be used in conjunction with Traditional Tibetan external therapies, such as Ku Nye massage, acupuncture, moxibustion, cupping, and laying of heated stones or herbal compresses.