You, like everyone in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection. “Buddha.
Self love. We all need more of it.
The teachings of yoga are great on self-love because of a spiritual truth: You cannot fully love others until you fully love yourself.
And why should we love each other? Our ego asks that so often. So often we have very little self-compassion for our own weaknesses and fears.
But these "negative" aspects of ourselves are only part of being human. We come into this world as little innocents, we are not afraid of anything and are curious about everything. It is the experiences and traumas of life that create our fears and vulnerabilities.
We can use yoga and mantra meditation to see them for what they are and cultivate self-love for ourselves so that we can live from our soul – our place of truth – free from fear and full of unconditional love.
Then we can help others do the same by seeing them for who they are – spiritual beings in a physical body riding the ups and downs of this roller coaster called life.
How do we cultivate more self-love?
One effective way is the profound practice of mantra meditation. Mantras specifically designed to cultivate self-love are some of the most effective yoga tools for creating lasting grooves in our minds and hearts.
Grooves that tell us We are beautiful, lovable and enough – just the way we are.
A little time that you spend every day practicing mantras to build your self-love will work wonders! Not only will you learn that you are naturally lovable, but you'll also see the exact same love in everyone you meet.
Why do mantras work?
Mantras are remedies for the mind. When you repeat a mantra, you change the state of your brain and transform your state of consciousness. When you still the mind during mantra meditation, you are opening up space for the mantra to plant its seeds in your consciousness.
The more you do it, the stronger these seeds will grow. And finally your mind becomes a beautiful garden of loving thoughts. This is the power of the mantras.
3 mantras to build your self-love
No two people will ever live the same life story. This makes each of us unique. You are a collection of unique talent, and no one on the entire planet is exactly like you. Only you have something special to offer the world that no one else has.
When you really understand this truth in your heart, you can appreciate the beauty in yourself (and others) in every moment.
We will explore three mantras to embed this sense of knowledge deeply in our state of consciousness.
1. Aieem namah – "My true nature is love and joy."
This mantra opens your awareness of the true essence of who you are. You are the source of all strength, love and joy. Let this mantra work as you prepare to sit in meditation.
While sitting, repeat the mantra over and over – aloud or in your mind's eye. You can repeat the mantra in Sanskrit or English – whichever resonates at the moment.
Every moment is different. Some days you may prefer English, others Sanskrit. Listen to what you want and let your soul be your guide.
2. Aham Brahmasmi – "I am wholeness."
You are whole – just as you are. Nothing needs to be added. Nothing has to be taken away. Build your self-love by meditating on this mantra for a few minutes every day.
In time you will come to rest in this state of inner knowing and self-love. As you repeat the Aham Brahmasmi mantra, let yourself be led into an expanded state of consciousness with each repetition. In time, you will understand how complete and complete you really are.
3. Aham prema – "I am love."
We are all on this planet to express every aspect of love that exists. All it takes is a tiny change in the way we see ourselves to live on a state of pure love. And that is exactly what happens when you repeat aham prema. They are changing the way you see yourself on a deep level – from your state of deep awareness.
Unlock your kind, open, and generous heart with this mantra for self-love. The poet Tagore wrote that love is the only reality and the only truth that lies in the heart of creation. This mantra leads us to our true selves, our source, which is divine love.
To connect with love as the quality of your true mind, repeat this mantra in Sanskrit or English for a few minutes each day.
Recharge with a mala
To recharge these mantras, get hold of a beautiful set of mala beads and practice your mantra 108 times while sitting. This is the sacred number that is said to be holy and auspicious. If your mind wanders, just bring it back to the mantra and the pearls.
This is your practice. Allow yourself to fill yourself with deep states of peace, compassion, and of course, self-love.
Editor's note: This is a guest post by Aimee Hughes, an advanced yogi, age 21, and mindfulness lover. She earned her B.A. in French from Tulane University and then PhD in Naturopathy (ND) from Clayton College. She is a lead author for Yogapedia.com and has authored more than 500 holistic articles on health and spirituality for a number of worldwide publications including Gaia TV, DOYOUYOGA, "The South African Journal of Natural Medicine," "OnFitness" "Magazine," Longevity Times "and more. Aimee has also authored a self-published vegan cookbook entitled" The Sexy Vegan Kitchen: Culinary Adventures in Love and Sex ".
Photo credit: Erriko Boccia