Śrī Rāma embodies total integrity, virtue, goodness, and divine protection. He is also the sacred power behind dharmic leadership and government.
During any kind of political change (for example, elections), and especially when there is turbulence in our government or other leadership, we invoke Śrī Rāma’s energy and blessings. We pray that together we may experience Rāma-rājya – the kingdom of righteousness. We hold a vision that our leaders will be able to act from a place of dharma and in a way that protects and nurtures all creation. This includes all people, and also all the animals, plants, rivers, and the earth herself.
In the summer of 2016, Śrī Vivek Godbole performed a yajña for Śrī Rāma in Oakland, California. A yajña is an ancient fire ceremony where we offer our prayers and intentions to the sacred fire, and subsequently, the universe.
During this particular ceremony, we offered 1001 rounds of Rāma-bhagavān’s mantra into the fire, followed by the Vedic mantra for fire offerings, “svāhā”.
The mantra is:
Śrī Rāma Jaya Rāma Jaya Jaya Rāma Svāhā
In the following video, you can chant along with Vivekji and the other yajna participants 27 times. If you do four rounds, this makes an auspicious number of 108. Of course, you can also do more or less – it’s up to you.
Traditionally, before practice, we try to wear clean clothes and also sit somewhere that is clean. You can also sit in front of your home altar if you have one.
Once you’re comfortable, take a few moments to breathe deeply and center your attention into your body and into the space. If you are using a japa māla (mantra beads) for your practice, you can place it in your hands now.
Feel your heart, and feel your clear intention for dharma to be nourished inside of you, and within our governments and leaders, for the upliftment of all beings. If you have another intention that you would like to practice with, that is also fine. It is also acceptable to practice with no intention at all, as simply an offering.
You can chant along with the video with eyes open or closed. If you choose to close your eyes, you can also visualize the fire inside your own being, and offer each round of mantra to the fire to be nourished and witnessed through the cosmos.
The fire can be understood as the inner light of consciousness and as the supreme witness, that which sees everything. The rice, ghee, and black sesame seeds carry the energy of nourishment, purity, and healing medicine, and give power and radiance to the fire. As you chant, you can also visualize yourself offering these to the fire.
When you are finished, mentally offer your gratitude and bows to Śrī Rāma. You can also physically kneel or bow if you like.
This practice is very deep and meditative and we do not recommend listening to this in the car, while operating machinery, .
Also, please remember that dharma is universal and timeless: it does not bend to the whims of any particular agenda or viewpoint. So it’s best if we keep our intentions for practice clean, clear, and focused on the highest good.
Thank you for your practice. Together, let us build a peaceful, just, and virtuous world for all.
Oṃ Śāntiḥ Śāntiḥ Śāntiḥ