Buddhist Chant, a How-to

Buddhism- How to Chant

A Buddhist chant is a great way to connect with oneself and with others
on many levels.  You might wonder what it is, or how to do it?
   There are many answers to these questions.

First, you can chant alone or
with others.  Both have
its benefits and its rules.  The effects are different for
and it’s a good idea to do both, if you can.

Buddhist chant when alone is the easiest.  All you need is
your throat,
mouth, tongue and ears.  You can do it in the car while
driving (my favorite) in your shower or while walking the dog, if
you’re not afraid of looking out of place.

 In it’s basic
form, you just empty your mind, recites your chosen Buddhist
chant  (or one assigned by a
teacher) the number of time required.  It is important
not to shout it as you will strain your vocal cords and shouting has
nothing in it to calm your mind.  The ideal volume of voice is
the one you would use to talk to someone accross the table from you
during dinner.  

If you are in a place where there are others in ear range, you can
sub-vocalize your mantras.  You lose the benefits 
the sound
waves has on your body but the calming and meditative effects remain.

a Buddhist rosary can be used to count the mantras

without nenju lacks respect and is like grabbing 
the Buddha with your hands
. . . .
. . . . . . . . . . .
       (1415-1499 )

Some people use a nenju, a set of beads or
a rosary to count the
number of times they recite the mantra.  Usually these
rosaries have 108 koshu
beads  (children beads) used to count the mantras.
 There are also 2 boshu
(parent beads)
splitting the 108 beads in 2 sets of 54.  
You don’t count them when you chant your mantras.  Each sect
has its own style, for example the Shingon school (depicted here) has
extra smaller beads used as counters and extra strings attached to it.
 It is stored as seen in the picture above.

I recently found this great book on Buddhist chants on Amazon and warmly
recommend it to
anyone interested in chanting.