Sadhguru explains the meaning of the Brahmananda Swarupa chant, and explains how it is a consecrated sound. The chant is available as part of the Vairagya album and can be downloaded for free. It is also available as part of the Isha Chants app.
Sadhguru: See, what is a chant? Why a chant? A chant means it's a certain clever arrangement of sounds. The meaning itself doesn’t matter. We give it in such a way that the meaning also enhances because after all you have a mind and emotion, which is also a major part of you. If you were all energy, if you were just energy, your mind and emotion was completely kept aside, there would be no issue at all, I would just take you on an express highway. But you have a mind and emotion which is as dominant or more dominant than the energy actually, so meaning also matters to you. If I just make a clever arrangement of sounds which is actually a beautiful chant but in meaning it means that you are fool and God is a fool and everybody is a fool. (Meditators Laugh) Suppose it means like this, even though the chant works on the energy level, mentally, emotionally you will develop resistance towards this. ‘What am I saying?’ Isn't it? So you also want a pleasant meaning attached, a meaningful meaning attached. It is needed. For you no, because you anyway don't understand the chant. (Meditators Laugh) That’s the advantage of not knowing the language, (Laughs) otherwise people would also like the meaning also to enhance their mind and emotion. If they are willing to keep the meaning aside we could arrange various sounds like this.
So now we say AUM, actually it doesn’t mean anything. It is just touching a certain aspect of creation through a certain arrangement of sounds. It doesn’t really mean anything but people have gone about giving meaning, Aum means this, Aum means that, Aum means whatever. All these meanings just to enhance your emotional involvement in the chant because without emotion you don’t know how to involve yourself in anything, isn't it so? Isn't it so? It takes a completely different kind of mind to be involved deeply in something without any emotion about it. Most of you cannot involve yourself into something deeply enough unless there’s emotion for it, isn't it? Yes? It is so. Without the assistance of emotion you can't really get involved, you need some working up of passion to be involved otherwise your involvement is lukewarm. So always a chant has a meaning too. Let's first explore the meaning, because exploring the sound would take a practical session, not talking.
Brahmananda Swaroopa means, Swaroopa means the image or a reflection of that - image of that rather. Brahmananda means ultimate joy or ultimate bliss. So this is the image of ultimate blissfulness. Isha means boundless, I mean, Isha means that which rules. Jagadisha means, it’s like enforcing that, saying that. Jaga means existence, again Isha means, Jaga-disha means, the one who rules the existence is ultimate blissfulness, that’s what it is saying. The same thing is said in a different way. Akhilananda Swaroopa means, Akhila means everything, all inclusiveness is Akhila. That which is everything, he is the image of that, is Mahesha. Mahesha again means an auspicious ruler which is the same thing or it is also, Shiva is also referred to as Mahesha.
So you must understand this, this is a tradition which is not, which is not a his-story, which is a her-story, (Meditators Laugh) ok? This is not a tradition of history. We are not looking at these things, ‘Oh you called… oh you said Mahesha, are you talking about Shiva?’ That’s not how it is. Anything auspicious in the world, all those names we will give to Shiva. Shiva has a million names and we say ultimately he is nothing. Because he is nothing we can call him anything we please. If he was something we could have only called him one thing. Because he’s nothing we can call him whatever we want. Everything that we like we call as Shiva. Shiva is called as what, Bhairava, means he’s very fierce one. Shiva is called as Sundaramurthy, that means he is the most beautiful one. Shiva is called as Bhuteshwara which means he is the master of the five elements or another meaning is he is the hideous one.
So like this it goes on. Shiva is called the most intelligent; Shiva is called the most simple and innocent. He is called Bholenath. So whatever we like, every name you can attach to him because he’s a nobody, he’s nothing. Because he is nothing we can call him whatever we want. So in this context the mantra is just that. The meaning-wise it is just saying it is ultimate ecstasy or ultimate blissfulness which is the Lord of the existence. That which rules the existence is ultimate ecstasy. (Microphone crackles) Doesn’t agree with me. (Meditators Laugh) But in terms of sounds it is a certain sound arranged in a certain way.
So this particular thing, this particular chant that we did, we have consecrated it. You utter this and see what it does. Has anybody done it for a certain period of time by yourself? Anyone? What does it do?
Meditator: It makes me happy.
Meditator: It makes me joyous.
Sadhguru: It is supposed to take you towards ultimate blissfulness. You can just use this as your Sadhana. 24 hours if you can chant that’s your Sadhana. It’ll take you there. Nothing else, simply chant. It will just take you there because the sound is consecrated, it is energized, it’s alive, it’s not just sound. If from nadha to nadha yoga that’s the difference, you can consecrate the sounds. As you consecrate objects, you consecrate spaces, you consecrate certain sounds. The moment you utter the sound it creates a completely new reverberation altogether.
Meditator: If I say this backward __ certain singers have such an impact like Pandit Jasraj... (Inaudible)
Sadhguru: That is just nadh. That nadh itself is powerful. That… See nadh itself is very powerful but if they are singing a particular sloka or something which has been consecrated in the past then it’ll take them well beyond their capabilities. He himself doesn’t know what is happening. It takes there because the chant has been consecrated in a certain way. That is the reason why most of the musicians stick to these ancient chants, because if they leave that their music will sound empty. It will be just nadh, it won't have that extra in it.