Neuroscience and the ‘Sanskrit Effect’

By Azriel ReShel on Friday February 23rd, 2018

Science Proves the Power of Chanting

Many of us have heard the Gyuto Monks of Tibet. With their extraordinary chanting and the low throaty drone of ancient sacred texts, they have kept audiences in the West spellbound with their long, careful and accurate recitations of potent Tibetan Buddhist texts. Sitting in their presence, you feel clarity and a potent spiritual transference of energy and healing. The Buddhist tradition stems from India and the sacred language of Sanskrit. While Tibetan Buddhists have a rich chanting tradition, in India, this age-old tradition goes back even further.

Sanskrit scholars in India learn to chant ancient texts from a tender age. They chant simple mantras, Sanskrit poetry, and prose, along with memorising and chanting the most ancient Sanskrit texts, including the Shukla Yajurveda, which takes six hours to chant. While those listening to these chantings receive the gift of the sacred texts they are sharing with us, the chanting of long texts does, in fact, have an amazing effect on the brain.

Neuroscience shows how rigorous memorising can help the brain. The term the ‘Sanskrit Effect’ was coined by neuroscientist James Hartzell, who studied 21 professionally qualified Sanskrit pandits. He discovered that memorising Vedic mantras increases the size of brain regions associated with cognitive function, including short and long-term memory. This finding corroborates the beliefs of the Indian tradition which holds that memorising and reciting mantras enhances memory and thinking.

An Unexpected Discovery…

Dr. Hartzell, a Sanskrit devotee and postdoctoral researcher at Spain’s Basque Centre on Cognition, Brain and Language, spent many years studying and translating Sanskrit and became fascinated by its impact on the brain.

I noticed that the more Sanskrit I studied and translated, the better my verbal memory seemed to become. Fellow students and teachers often remarked on my ability to exactly repeat lecturers’ own sentences when asking them questions in class. Other translators of Sanskrit told me of similar cognitive shifts.

India’s Vedic Sanskrit pandits train for years to orally memorise and exactly recite 3,000-year old oral texts ranging from 40,000 to over 100,000 words. We wanted to find out how such intense verbal memory training affects the physical structure of their brains.

Dr. Hartzell’s research is the first study to examine the brains of Sanskrit scholars. Using structural Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) at India’s National Brain Research Centre, they scanned the brains of 21 Sanskrit pandits and 21 control subjects.

What we discovered from the structural MRI scanning was remarkable. Numerous regions in the brains of the pandits were dramatically larger than those of controls, with over 10 percent more grey matter across both cerebral hemispheres, and substantial increases in cortical thickness. Although the exact cellular underpinnings of grey matter and cortical thickness measures are still under investigation, increases in these metrics consistently correlate with enhanced cognitive function.

He reports that the right hippocampus of the scholars, a region that plays a vital role in short and long-term memory, and is specialised for patterns, such as sound, spatial and visual patterns, had more grey matter than the brains of the control subjects. The right temporal cortex, associated with speech prosody and voice identity, was also substantially thicker.

Chanting improves brain performanceRegions in the pandits’ brains were dramatically larger than those of controls. Image: Natasha Connell.

Past Studies

Dr. Hartzell is not sure whether the effect relates particularly to the Sanskrit language and plans to conduct further research. The power of sound and chanting is becoming widely documented, and even short chants have an energising and healing effect on the body and mind of those who are chanting sacred mantras or verses. Interestingly, fifty years ago, a French scientist noted that Christian monks who chanted the Gregorian Chants have exceptional memories.

In 1967, Alfred Tomatis, a French physician, psychologist, and ear specialist, studied the effect of chanting on Benedictine monks who had been part of a tradition with a strict schedule of daily chanting of up to eight hours a day. When a new Abbott changed this schedule, cutting out the chanting, the monks became tired and lethargic, even though they were getting extra sleep. In fact, the more sleep they got, the more tired they were. Alfred Tomatis believed that the chanting was energising their brains and bodies, so he reintroduced the chanting and the monks were soon full of energy again.

Dr. Hartzell’s recent study raises the question of whether this kind of memorisation of ancient texts could be helpful in reducing the devastating illness of Alzheimer’s and other memory affecting diseases. Apparently, Ayurvedic doctors from India suggest it is the case and future studies will be conducted, along with more research into Sanskrit.

While we all know the benefits of mindfulness and meditation practices, the findings of Dr. Hartzell are truly dramatic. In a world of shrinking attention spans, where we are flooded with information daily, and children display a range of attention deficit disorders, ancient Indian wisdom has much to teach the West. Even introducing small amounts of chanting and recitation could have an amazing effect on all of our brains.

How do you feel about this article? Join the conversation.

Azriel ReShel

Writer, Editor, Yoga Teacher & Healing Facilitator




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155 Responses to Neuroscience and the ‘Sanskrit Effect’

  1. Maa Narmadha
    At the Sri Ramana Vidya Peedam Ashram in Thiruchuli a week long camp for children between the age group of 10 to 15 years take place. We introduce the children to the Sanskrit chanting of Mantras which creates a resonating vibration of inner peace, joy and abundance of energy. It creates a very nurturing ambience to the children with hyperactiveness and other wise. This study of Mantras reinforces the Power of Divine Sound pervading in the Mantra. Thank you for the information.

    • Our pleasure Maa Narmadha. Thank you for sharing this wonderful work and knowledge with these children! How inspiring 😀

      Much love to you,
      Team UPLIFT

  2. The root feeds the fruit and the fruit feeds the root too. Imagine yourself as a fully grown plant that is fruit bearing.
    The fruit is human brain. The root is Sabda Brahma or AUM, the premordial sound
    of creation, which exists as microwave back ground noise throught out the universe. When your brain generates that subtle energy by mantra chanting, you are connecting yourself to the primordial energy. This completes information loop – I am That. Subtle sound energy produced by the well evolved human brain can make this connectivity. That is the secret of mantra chanting and scriptural readngs.
    Reciting ther sounds does not make the connectivity, because its frequency is different. Also, some classical music can make the connectivity whose frequency is close to that of mantras. Sabda Brahma is closely associated to Nada Brahma too.
    Read my book- Convergence – Ultra Science and Vefic Spirituality.

  3. This is all false. Vain babbling is not of God. This will lead you to distruction. Jesus is the teeth and the only way to redemption. Call upon Jesus and all of you will be free. The devil wants you to divert you. This is pagan belief. Call Jesus he will give you peace.

    • You should watch Goa inquisition on YouTube. Where was the compassion of Jesus when Africans were captured forcibly converted and shipped to America as slaves. Mind you sick slaves were simply thrown overboard during the voyage. Go Liverpool museum to see the pictures of slaves. Jesus was only a Siddah nothing more.Look up on YouTube Jesus was in Kashmir.

      • Namasthê Shrî Dâs; as a Hindu, one must not drag down ones’ level consciousness when reading comments of the sort posted by Shrî Andrew. Hindus never run down any other faith and one must not comment on low level thinking of the sort of Shrî Andrew. The perpetrators of the Goa inquisition are gone, but their descendants have never apologized for the pogrom; so much for practicing Love Thy Neighbor.

      • Shrî Dr RDX; I am not aware of a study/studies on brain function done when carols are sung. Perhaps I am stooping down to the level of Shrî Andrew in asking such a question; lol.

    • Dear Sir,
      Did we ever say Chanting or reciting bible is not good, We simply said what was proved with scientific reasoning that chanting Sanskrit Mantra improved brain memory power. We never criticised any other religion, then why do you jump in to criticising the Hindu faith. Pl what ever you wish to covey on glory of your religion, pl do it, we Hindus, our religion and faith imbibe a great teachings of listening and learning, we are open, but pl avoid criticism of other faith without knowing anything about which you intend to criticise.

      • Namasthê Shrî Râmanârâyanan; you are kind and courteous in telling to Shrî Andrew the teaching of Sanâthana Dharma as well as of Jesus; whether it is assimilated by Shrî Andrew is not our business/worry. Intolerance is the seed for destruction of the faith claiming superiority.

  4. At some emotionally turbulent period of my life I was lead to listen to Sanskrit…it was the only thing that could stop my thoughts; I listen without understanding on a mental level yet I hear with some other sense; nothing else can stop my thoughts the way Sanskrit does; give it a try – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C718dI28oSg

  5. So, ‘chanting’ for the young developing brain – as in the alphabet, sounds and arithmetic times tables, can be seen as a building stage in their education? Perhaps this is an area that needs to be looked at further as there are many educators who do not push this memorising activity?

  6. Sound and meaning are one in Sanskrit. You can’t invent a word like Zouqilahaw and claim it means God the Supreme Being:-D


  8. Very Good Indeed!This Appears Truly UPLIFTING!!
    Let me spend some time before I Dare to Contribute Proactively and Sensibly.
    But I am Excited at the Possibilities of Healthy Interactions Objectively – Even by ‘Non HINDUs’or Persons belonging to Other Faith’s & Religion !!
    Very Best Wishes and Prayers for Betterment of Humanity through Better Understanding of Basic Truth of Life & Living Irrespective of Ethnicity!!!
    Jai Sanaathana Dharma and the Almighty God- being Worshipped Differently !!!

  9. It is very good & exhaustive study , I want to commend you for that.It is a genuine study and very scientific,that is what modern Investigators want. I would like to see and get more study done on other religious chanting ,like ,Christian and Islam .

    • It is of interest, butt proves nothing about the effects of memorizing.. All that it shows is similar to finding that bike riders have strong thighs.
      Perhaps only those with strong thighs like to take up riding. Or,perhaps biking makes strong thighs.
      It does not provide evidence of the benefit of chanting and memorizing. Perhaps only those with big memories are attracted this pursuit.
      To show cause, or benefit, a study over time is necessary, showing the growth of grey matter, in those who memorized, compared to those who did not.

      • Sanskrit is an oldest language. All the letters in Sanskrit script when pronounced with an anuswar (nasal sound) are known as beej mantras (seed mantras). Beej mantras are single letter mantras. eg. kam, kham, gam, gham …. and so on.Yoga science explains that there are 7 energy centres (7 chakras) in our body. From mooladhar chakra to Sahastrar chakra. These centres radiates and receive the energy as well. These chakras governs the balance of energy in our body. Beej mantras vibrations activate specific chakras. when we recite Sanskrit mantras we recite these beej mantras also and there by these energy centres get activated. That may be the reason behind why we feel energized after reciting Sanskrit mantras..

      • No chance. This is DMK propaganda that has been fed to you for years. Come out of your state and see. Tamil is not even structured or formed properly. Even has missing letters. You pronounce Kanti and Gandhi with the same letters!

        • That is the major defect in thamiழ்.It is lacking letters for many sounds.Ka-Ga,ta-da,pa-ba differentiation,
          za,fa etc.If rectified,it would be the best.

    • Chanting of mantras with perfect pronunciation certainly fill energy. And there’s a custom of chanting Gayatri Mantra regularly. One who follows never get tired and one who overrules never become successful. The study doesn’t mean that discard our duty and creativity, infact keep routine within limited time.

  10. Dear all. I belong to school of analytics
    As per the literature survey the language in question has poor classification of the people. It’s a dead language. I practically see that this language has racial effect and almost the modern civilization has ignored it. Let us not give much weightage to this subject
    Thanks all.

  11. Sanskrit texts have survived well due to chanting and transmission by hearing and repetition. Sanskrit we know is as close to the root of the Indo European family of languages https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indo-European_languages as we can access in modern tines.

    It is a treasure not just for India or for speakers of European languages which are related to Sanskrit. Sanskrit is a precious subject, for the whole world can benefit from that. It belongs to all of us.

  12. Yes, I agree that Sanskrit language has that power of healing and energizing the people as well. We can confidently say that because chanting them on daily basis we get that glow and positive vibes into us. Sounds only can create those vibes. These practices also helps the people to memorize the texts with out refering it. Our ancestors are truly knowledged that’s why they didn’t needed any books to read. Indians are blessed by this language and it’s utility should become more once again.

    • You should also study ancient scriptures of The Avesta, the holy book of the Zoroastrians. Young boys are initiated into this religion at a very early age. They learn this. The Ashem Vohu and Yatha Ahu Vairyo are the powerful prayers recited by Prophet Zarathustra himself. Researchers could look into this or study this too. I too agree with Sanskrit and the Vedas and humbly thank for this language to be amongst us even in 2020. I believe the Gurukul system was the best system of learning in the good old days until it was destroyed completely by the looters if Ancient India

  13. I have a doubt on the claim. Budha’s language was in Pali which was very close to Sanskrit but it is not Sanskrit at all. In all Buddha’s chanting is in Pali. How come one gets Sanskrit chanting in Buddha’s monastery?

  14. A very good article, highlighting the benefits of mantra chanting. I have seen a video about effects of mantras on water on YouTube. Your research is beneficial to mankind


  16. Absolutely trashable. Doubt if uplift has mechanism of verifying the opinions n claims made in these proclamations.
    The results of all the great chants are available verification, did anyone care to do an audit of great claims?
    (Reserving my comments)

  17. Dears n loved ones,
    [email protected]

  18. Extraordinary findings!! A very informative and a useful article. Must be introduced from pre school. Thank you.

  19. I will welcome you all to read my book Understanding Sanatan Dharma. It’s available on amazon.in, amazon.com, amazon.uk etc. The entire process of moving towards Moksha is achieving super intelligence. Each one of us human beings is capable of achieving that super intelligence. Visit
    Book published last year.
    Website under construction.

  20. अभिनंदन मंदार जी
    आपले संस्कृत संवर्धनासाठी चे प्रयत्न प्रशंसनीय आहेत. आपल्याला यश लाभोच आणि इतरांनाही ते प्रेरणादायी ठरोत.

  21. *असे आम्ही.. कसे आम्ही भारतीय !!*

    आम्ही- स्वतःला भारतीय म्हणवणारे (हिंदू म्हणवून घ्यायची लाज वाटणारे), जे ज्ञान शतकानुशतके आपलंच आहे पण इतकी वर्षे हेतुपुरस्सर दुर्लक्षित होतं; आता गोर्‍यांनी सांगितलं ना, मग आम्ही ऐकू.. नव्हे, त्यांचं अनुकरण करु.. कारण अजूनही आम्ही गोर्‍या कातडीचे मिंधे आहोत. ते जी म्हणतील तीच पूर्व दिशा समजतो.
    स्वतःची दिशा, स्वतःचा मार्ग निवडणे किंवा पूर्वीच्या आपल्या ऋषींनी ग्रंथांत लिहून ठेवलेल्या गोष्टींचा अवलंब करणे हे तर करतच नाही उलट जो त्या मार्गावर चालायचा प्रयत्न करतोय, त्यालाही आम्ही (सेक्युलॅरिझमच्या नावाखाली) खाली खेचतो..

    *असे कसे आम्ही भारतीय ?*

    पण, असेही आम्ही भारतीय..
    आपल्या त्याच पूर्वजांची पुण्याई म्हणा किंवा आत्ताच्या काळातल्या काही निवडक कर्त्या लोकांचे अनुशासित धोरण म्हणा; सगळंच अजून मातीत मिळालं नाहीये.
    माझ्या सारख्या ‘तरुण पालक’ वर्गाला याचं महत्त्व समजलंय आणि आपल्या संस्कृत श्लोकांचे श्रवण, पठण आपल्या पाल्यांना सुरू केलंय. एवढंच नाही तर काही शैक्षणिक संस्थांनीही शिशु आणि बालवाडी पासूनच अभ्यासक्रमातच संस्कृतचा अंतर्भाव करून आपला वारसा जोपासण्याचा आणि नवीन पिढीच्या सर्वांगीण विकासास सुरुवात केली आहे.
    श्लोकांचे पठण करून काय, किती, कसा आणि कधी फायदा होईल, याचा कूट पाडत बसण्यापेक्षा आम्ही आजचे भारतीय, आपल्या संस्कृतीचा अभिमान बाळगतो आणि त्याची ओळख आपल्या पुढच्या पिढीला करून द्यायचा प्रयत्न करतो आहोत.

    *असेही आम्ही आजचे तरुण भारतीय !!*

    -मंदार दळवी
    ७ फेब्रुवारी, २०१९

  22. It crossed my mind while reading this that stage actors, who have to remember all the lines of the characters they play in an abundance of different productions, might also get similar results. Film and TV actors of former times, before the instant replay was invented, should also have benefitted. And no doubt the poetry my parents’ generation had to memorize had some effect too. This news is a magnification of ‘use it or lose it’.

  23. Reciting things during early childhood helps one in concentrating on an extemporaneous subject in a chaotic surrounding. This is true even in children who are in habit of rigorously reciting Quran or any similar texts.

  24. i am in mid 50s. i can recite sanskrit slokas learned in class Viii-X better than any poems of my curricula. More over the slokas give me mental strength during tough times and i realised that those help reducing my tension and mental disturbance.

  25. Not surprising for those of us in India who do chant Gayatri mantra, atharvashrisha, etc. BUT what is astonishing in your report is the way you “researchers” conveniently forget to name the people who actually have done the Chanting. Just called them “MONKS” like you are studying some lab Rats. And you article could find the space to name the doctors. BUT NOT THE AYURVEDIC DOCTORS who gave you the information. This is why Hindus and Buddhists should be wary of such “Research Teams” who eventually will treat Hindus/Buddhists as lab rats and will claim Nobel prize, claiming that it was THEIR RESEARCH. Have some shame you colonial thieves of Hindu knowledge!!

  26. Even animals can be attracted through music.eg.Flute in the forest . Sea Animals like Dolphins cab be brought to shore by playing instruments or calling them by specific sounds. The problem here is acceptance of such things. Bharathiar words: How many Crores of Happiness made available on this earth by the God.

  27. We are really elated.
    It doesn’t mean that we Indians alone need to be proud of this ancient text to be holding as our Assets and proprietary over these texts.
    in India it is a common phenomena to share with all the human beings and see that all get the benefits of the the research has been longing for for centuries to be shared

  28. In Sanskrit- there is a concept of Aacharyam ( Guru- Value based Leadership) Vichaaram ( Concern) Prachaaram (to recite & propoganda). It’s only by word of mouth that such recitals with precise decibals, intonation, voice modulation, rythms with breathing techniques one could refine the science of both teaching, preaching & learning. Discipline was of core value to adapt routine.Glad that these are now researched & inferences truly heartening.

  29. The findings in the first reading seem corroborated by the fact that when writing was non existent even on palm leaves, chanting to memorize was in practice for all Shruti’s, viz., Vedic and Vedant and spiritual literature transferred from Gurus to shishyas who in turn did so further. Even now, specially in Southern part of India, Vedic chanting is taught by daily practice recitation starting at early childhood.
    I shall like to be associated with your organisation. I am Civil Engineer, engaged in my own R&D and trying to engage in study of our spiritual epical literature. I give here-in-below my name and email ID for kind advice.
    (Krishna Kumar Agrawal)
    ([email protected])

    • Writing was very much in vogue from times immemorial in as much as Jambu Dweepa. The modern European scholars detracted the world to prove that India – a slaave of the British – has no ancient background. In order to curb our culture, they used to highlight Egypt, which was enriched by Takshashila University. Apart from Nalanda and Takshashila Universities, India had more than 50 universities promoted by the then kings. Please go through the ancient unadultrated history of India.
      When many parts of the world did not have script, this part of the Earth had. Please go through the commentaries by European erudite scholars, who accepted Sanskrit to be the mother of all European languages. Unluckily our land was ruled by foreign less educated and less cultured rulers for over 800 years. The last period of 200 years did much devastation not only to the land, but also to the culture, heritage and history of our land. The cite one example, in our Indian history it was stated that Alexander the great defeated King Porus (Purushottam) and was liberal enough to let him free. This is a blatant lie. Browse the history on web, it was clearly stated that Alexander was defeated in India and went back.
      Our inscriptions were on Copper Sheets, Golden Sheets, Stones, Palm Leaves, Bhurjara Patras and so on.
      One straight question – now a day, we have multiple books of varied disciplines. Is it sufficient that books are available, and you need not study, digest and practice?
      The youth of India should explore the truth of our land. I wish our future Indian citizens make definite attempt to find out the truth.
      Script is a storage and study, recitation and practice are for implementation at individual and social level.

  30. Exactly – the greatest spiritual master of the 21 st century / Avatar ( God descends in human form to the Hindus in India) Bhagawan Shri Satya Sai Baba had initiated the chanting of Vedic mantras in the Ashram in Puttarparthy India – he had also encouraged overseas devotees to learn the mantras and recite – now we have devotees from afar – Russians /Americans /Italians /South Africans / Iranians /Malayasians and other countries have starting reciting of these holy mantras – there are various mantras to be learn but the most popular and easiest mantra – THE GAYATHREE is by far the most popular and easiest to recite – these definately increases the power of the brain

  31. Thank you for this article. 🙂 But I believe the Sukla Yajurveda takes much more than 6 hours to chant. Pundits are chanting all 4 vedas simultaneously in our Ashram every year (in a ceremony called the Chaturveda Yajna), and it normally takes 5 or 6 full days to complete.

  32. Very interesting. Hope to read more about the vagus nerve and reduction of systemic inflammation in the context of chanting.

  33. We have experienced it our selves the above research is true.
    I have observed changes in our behaviour. Ex it helps in increasing our awareness.
    After the chanting we can feel the vibrations in surroundingsthis hleped me learn more
    Thank you

  34. Namaste: I am very delighted to read the intriguing information. I am very happy to see the prayer to Mother Saraswati written in the Devanagari script of Sanskrit. I am providing an English Transliteration. It is very difficult to achieve a good facsimile and impossible to transmit the prosody and convery the cadence. I chant three times a day – a collection of prayers and one specific Upanishad from Krishna Yajur Veda in detail. I believe the statements about the changes in energy and stamina that was noticed among monks. I am in my seventies- I can sit cross legged and chant for a long time at the temple or adopt tree pose and with a Walking Cane chant scripture with my eyes closed. i alternate the legs that is load bearing. I chant inaudibly while walking or slow jogging on the track. I switch directions every two rounds[800 meters] to ease the load stress on my inner leg. I can keep going a long time in my younger days I could run/ jog or walk briskly 25 times around the track in about 60-70 minutes. it especially fun when it is drizzling and especially great if Rainbows some times double break out or if the sky is lear see circling eagles or scores of wild gesse doing their stuff as a great flock. I was amazed how good they are in posting sentries two or three necks are straight while 20 are bent and the birds are feeding. They make certain noises- their own mantras as I approach different sectors of the great flock in the middle of the large field. They become quieter and quieter just as my mind gets quieter and my movements steady and regular. I remember how the Geese alerted me and other geese with a different pitch and cadence of their calls when my son – little boy had wandered away towards them and the geese noticed a fox in bushes nearby. I was able to get to the spot and bring back my son. Over the years I have noticed different aspects of natures and creatures great and small have their own sound systems like the dolphins and whales, Kites,Sparrows, Falcons, Hawks and Eagles to manage their social needs and to gather food, procreate and threats from the environment.
    We talk about Sabda Brahman and Nada Brahman when we discuss chanting OM and mantras like the Gayatri Mantra or the Veda and prayers to Deities and Intercessory prayers. I always begin and end prayers especially in the public domain and if the prayers are offered audibly.
    Om Saha Nau-Avatu | Saha Nau Bhunaktu | Saha Viiryam Karava-Avahai |
    Tejasvi Nau-Adhii-Tam-Astu Maa Vidviss-Aavahai |
    Om Shaantih Shaantih Shaantih ||
    Om, May God Protect us Both (the Teacher and the Student), May God Nourish us Both,
    May we Work Together with Energy and Vigor, May our Study be Enlightening, not giving rise to Hostility,
    Om, Peace, Peace, Peace.

  35. In French school we used to memorize entire pages of literature of Molière, Shakespeare, etc, and had to recite them in front of the whole class. Great exercise since I still remember 54 years later.

  36. Sanskrit is most powerful & Richest language of world … and origin of max language in World in India 5-10 language are Devoloped from Sanskrit Language itself …. Originated from India proud of it

    • How do you arrive at this fantastic conclusion? It can be dismantled with a little more awareness about othe languages e.g. Latin, Greek, Slavic. etc etc .
      Let me point out another aspect: while all other languages enriched lives of EVERYONE, Sanskrit is the only one that had prohibition with severe punishment for a vast number of population from learning. It is racist and discriminatory aspect by the holders of such primitive tradition that makes any universal claims invalid. Such claims are similar to Nazis pointing out greatness of their creations. Study Dr. Ambedkar to know more about devastating discrimination and how the embedded culture is not useful
      in modern times

      • On your second point.
        The prohibition related to the vedas. Sanskrit was used by carpenters, temple builders, craftsmen and vaidyas(not Boiddos) mostly low caste and for this there is evidence.You are free to use incendiary language when you have not gone into the history of the language. Dr Ambedkar’s was a well meaning political tract certainly useful for its purpose.

  37. Extraordinary i also practice Chanting one hrs a day for mahamrityunjay jap & Ganesh Mantra and one more daily for one hour it has my increased my energy level by at least 50-100% … Mantra chanting increases your concentration level as well as memory power

    My Practical Experience in my own life

    • I also believe the vibrations one sends out when chanting can improve overall health and wellness both physically mentally and of course spiritually

  38. every Language is special for its speakers. Absurd to create conflicts using language. It is not the lang, it is the content what u are communicating to others and make them understand it without ambiguity.

    • Sanskrit is used as language for communication, prose/poetry and finally for chanting/rituals. This is not the case with other languages.More over sanskrit words convey multiple meanings when coupled with respective narratives.

      • Venkat,
        Highlighting the greatness of Sanskrit is one thing but one should not undermine Dravidian languages.

        • The dravadian / aryan devide was maliciously created by the European historians, there is no real proof of the aryan invasion theory , both languages are native to India and sanskrit may well have its origins in the south of India

          • Vinay Pasricha
            the first part is certainly right. Please refer to the last chapter of David Shulman’s Tamil which even otherwise is a modern classic about a great language
            I agree with you and you might find this book illuminating

  39. Sanskrit language is undoubtedly a great language.
    It is nothing but science of sound, having extraordinary capability to make poetries since sequence of words are not important. Moreover, the grammar is systematic in such a way that there is no chance of committing any mistakes if you understand it well,without any ambiguities. Thanks to Panini the great, an ancient Indian sage.

    • OM ,seems to be the first natural sound,created in the universe.When you close ur ears,the only sound ,heard by mind is OM.This is the origin of all languages,I believe.

        • you are talking about a narrow sound bandwidth of humans… 20 to 20000 Hz. OM is beyond that. The real OM sound can not be listened by human ears, but only by mind. OM vibrates at 7.83 Hz. Our earth also vibrates at this frequency

  40. Very interesting research. But I sincerely feel that there is a lot more to dig into.
    My mother tongue is Tamil and my ancestors are the Australian aborigines . There are many resemblances between Tamil and the language spoken by the Australian aboriginal people. In addition to this, Tamils have developed a music system based on micro-tones. And they have been using chants in their places of worship as a matter of fact for a long time, even before the arrival of Sanskrit in India.

    In their music system, (Tamils) they have 72 unique scales out of which at least one third of them are unique chromatic scales involving micro tones that don’t exist in Western Music. Also they use certain scales to heal sleeplessness …. eg: Scale known as “Saarugesi” or “Neelambari” in Tamil. Another interesting aspect in their music system is that certain scales can be sung or played during certain time of the day…eg: Scale “Poobalam” is meant for dawn and “Kalyaani” is meant for dusk.

    Best regards

    Amal Fernando

    • There is no proof that there were Tamil chanting before sanskrit. I’m a tamil and the chanting system is derieved from sanskrit. In fact both the languages have been in the land of Tamilnadu for 3000 years. It’s a modern day politics that tries to split and create conflict between both of them. Oldest Tamil grammar tolkappiyam mentions sanskrit.

      • yes sanskrit is indian languange not came from outside Amal has mixed up the what lies his white christian masters have told him in sunday school

      • Rajesh is right. Its nice to hear a tamil who isnt brainwashed by this modern politicaly charged anti northern bias. There is so much in common with tamil music and the raga music of north. Practically the same and sanskrit thats another story. Rajesh probably knows more but shastras seams to say sanskrit is original.

      • Rajesh, I am a mallu. Sorry to say that you are not informed well about Tamil. Many tantric rituals are derived out of Tamil and blended with Sanskrit. Take Lalitasahasranamam, Goddesses beauty description will not align with what you find elsewhere.

    • This whole myth about lemur and kumari kanda and Tamils and aborigines being related is a fraud perpetrated by vested interest to divide Indians. Read Rajeev Malhotra’s Breakung India where me gives data backed and chronicled facts on how this fraud is being perpetrated. By the way I am also a Tamil . Carnatic music that you are referring to has lots of similarities with Hindustani music . Also if aborigines were Tamils and their land separated by submerging of Lemur why are there not as many temples in aborigine land as much as you find in Tamilnadu ?

      • Kumari kandam may not be a myth. There is still a lot of archaeological research that needs to be done to ascertain the facts. I live in Australia and am a tamilian too and I can strongly say that there is a connection between the Tamil people and the Australian Aborigines. Their languages have many Tamil words and even their rituals have similarities to rituals of the Tamils.The late Shankaracharya of Kanchi has mentioned that he has seen a photograph of the Aborigines dancing with a third eye drawn on their forehead with the subtitle ‘Siva dance’. There are many sacred and secret sites in the Australian outback known only to the Aborigines and nobody can access those sites without their permission. The later Kanchi acharya who passed away recently had also mentioned that Australia is a place of Shiva. The fact that there aren’t any temples in Australia could be because it is a very ancient land far before any temple worship even started in India. As for Rajiv malhotra, it is true that there are forces trying to separate Tamil nadu from the rest of India with the kumari kandam account but at the same time, kumari kandam cannot be dismissed as myth.

    • My dear Amal Fernando, Thank you for your comment. When India and Africa were united – known as Gondwana Region, Tamil – the most ancient language compared even to Sanskrit (not Geervana – used in Vedic Scriptures; this Geervana is down-cultured to simplify the process of pronunciation by removing the tone syllables like udaatta, anudaatta, svarita and pluta. Hence the Geervana is “Sanskrit”. This took place after Tamil came into use). The Cameroon in the present African Continent is considered to be the origin. Peculiarly even today they speak Tamil which is almost like the Tamil spoken in India. Unluckily many alphabets of Tamil extincted because of not using. Even Tamil sounds are also specific in pronunciation. They too have almost similar effect compared to Sanskrit almost. Yet Geervana (the language used in Vedas) is the most efficacious in the Universe (not only the earth).

      • I think sanskrit too has its roots in the south of India.
        Most people think that sanskrit originated in the north some even link to to people who migrated from the north into the gangetic plains – however there are many factors that indicate that the language actually originated in the south and was later adopted in the north well before the vedic times .

  41. Sanskrit is Sacred Heritage mother of all languages!
    Every alphabet is great impact and powerful on Body, organs and on surroundings if use with understanding much more powerful or without understanding means just chanting also great impact!
    To reach ultimate goal in life Sanskrit language is ultimate and true language.
    Human brain will work Super

    • where do we get information for those songs in tamil or sanskrit which cd be used for sleeplessness and sleep apnea

      incase if you have found such songs please reply me

  42. Th chanting system comes from our hindu mythology not India.So in nepal most of us are hindu and sanskrit chantings were very popular in Nepal

    • In historical times, Nepal was also part of India (or greater India, akhanda Bharat) so were countries such as Pakistan etc and vedic chanting did originate from India, you will know this if you read authentic historical sources.

  43. For those who said any thing could be chanted: syllables affect neurons, no doubt, but sounds also create emotions. Better to chant auspicious words of Veda,Talmud, Khuran and Bible. They will create positive emotions and healthy vibrations. You will attract good things of life from the Universe.

    • Not all sounds crate emotions.In fact sounds with certain frequencies can make you lunatic.Vedic chantings are formulated to give resonence to the molecules in body, and few selected chantings make your consciousness elevate.No chanting of other religious texts have a bearing on body or mind and they simply convey meanings.

    • In my state, if you don’t know english, you don’t get a job in any company. Iam a Sanskrit student myself and luckily I have learnt 13 other languages apart from english.

      As a passion, one could learn many a language and specially Sanskrit because you will get to the this of our culture. More so since the mantras uttered in Sanskrit have a very soothing and balancing effect on the mind and body.

      Yes Sanskrit learning is good but that does not fetch a job

      • If you are searching from within
        Your Higher consciousness will direct you. Ultimately, the destination is one for all. Its the paths that lead you to that destination thats most important.Chanting mantras is like getting onto a traveltor instead of walking yourself physically. Your journey becomes clearer and speeds you to your destination. Though this is one of many paths, I personally have found it has helped me in thinking clearer.

  44. Science shows that chanting helps medically but it does not matter what is chanted: e.g. PHUUUUUUU’KING AHAHAHAHAH SOUL.

    • This is true, and sure you can make up your own chants, but there is also an ancient system (Sanskrit) already in place for those looking to get into it. Plus, Sanskrit syllables are more connected to what they represent in the world. It was designed that way, unlike the randomness of our spelling systems that have nothing to do with the actual thing.

    • Not entirely true. In Sanskrit, especially the Vedas, the pronouncing correctly, the words utilizes different parts of the organs used to produce those specific sounds and each is supposed to activate certain neurons and parts of the brain.

    • Please importantly note that every sound can not create positive impact. First of all you should know the origin of each sound – the sound of alphabets which are classified into vowels and consonants. Specifically in Sanskrit – also for all Indian languages whith Indian origin, consonants were classified into 7 groups. Of the seven groups five groups have 5 letters in each and all the sounds are pronounced in the same way from the same place. The last two groups have different places of origin for the sound. Sound can create positive energy, negative energy, mutilate the system and so on. Luckily to prove all these facts no-a-day scientific instruments are available. You can use TONO-METER. Even varied experiments were conducted by Japan and other countries proving the influence of different organised, unorganised and meaningless sounds on water, plants and various other matters. So do not draw conclusions just like that. Please study a bit in this direction, try and then experience. Vague comments may detract the aspirants. It is my suggestion.

    • Hundreds of years of practice of “modern medicine” with electronics enhancing it with gadgets , Pharma companies pouring millions into research and all governments investing heavily on public health has , however, neither found cures for many of our health problems nor given definite solutions to existing problems ! Could the reason for this be that so far an abyssmal progress seems to have been made in using the “psycho” aspect of the the expected overall “psycho-somatic” line of medical treatment till date ! There are “Psychlogists” and “Psychiatrists” studying and researching those subjects independently but yet very little of its knowledge is used in combination with the “clinical” ( “somatic” ) medical practice , the latter is simply a “symptomaitc ( ” I guess one you guess another “) line of treatment of diseases ! So , we have conveniently coined words like ” plasebo effect” or ” a syndrome” et al
      Homeopathy , “faith healing” and alternative therapeutic methods are being followed by millions of people all around the world ! This being the “reality” today , then , why pooh-pooh the use of “sanskrit mantras” as a “psycho” part of the overall “,psycho-somatic” line of treatment for human diseases and not have a fresh look at it through the lens of “modern medicine ” ? Why simply brush aside the suggestion that the structured sound bites of Sanskrit mantra/shloka could also be of use in that “psycho” part of “psycho-somatic” treatment ?

      • A very positive response to the OP. Study the suggestion that chanting Sanskrit Humes improves one’s cognitive abilities using modern tools. Claims of other languages and cultures can also be put to similar tests. Then share the outcome for the betterment of humanity.

  45. When my daughter first shared with me that she wanted to try smoking. I told her about my experience visiting a cigarette factory and watching tobacco become brown sludge with over 400 different chemicals added and then being put through more processes to make it look more like tobacco again.

    And then I asked her to go to the Internet and get all the info she could about tobacco and if she still wanted to smoke, I’d buy her a pack of American Spirit.

    To my surprise she came back with info and still wanted to try it. So we arranged a time and a place to do it.

    She inhaled… she coughed… she laughed… she got a little dizzy… she liked that… she got a little more dizzy… she didn’t like that… then she got nauseous… she really didn’t like that…

    She said: why do people do it!

    They like the dizzy feeling… the nausea dissipates after awhile… but you know there is another way to get dizzy: spinning!

    So she became a Sufi!

  46. How fascinating that the monks were getting more sleep, and yet were feeling far more tired than before! I loved the energizing nature of it. How wonderful that online now we can benefit from these tones and notes. Just a note, if you feel so inclined, check out Green Red Productions and their researched music and tones. Don’t take a sleeping pill ever again!

    • Hinduism defines divinity as sound energy ie SHABDA BRAHMAN. While chanting sanskrit mantras, the human thought process gets linked to sound frequencies of divinity and the divine energy flows into the body.

      Memorising is the fundamental process of learning sanskrit and also CORRECT prononciation.A hindu priest has to chant mantras non stop for hours through memory while performing a ritual.For better insight visiting a vedic school will clarify on this topic.

      True not only London Cap drivers, but cap drivers all over the world have memorised roads and street and building names.But that doesnt qualify them to get the grey matter enhanced in their brains.

      • There is no magic or divinity involved in this.
        Fact is that the more senses we involve in learning… The more we learn.
        So combining sound with movement and adding deep emotion (through religious beliefs) just hits the jackpot.

        • It’s not about ‘magic’ it is about subtle ‘energies’ that are beyond the perception of our physical senses. When we do more spiritual practices, we can become aware of these more subtle energies. Perhaps part of the problem is that we want don’t admit that maybe some people have developed these sensitivies where as others have not—which is a truth. Then as scientists and researchers if we have not had any experience like the ones described by others we dismiss it as something else.

          I can say this from experience. I completed a master degree in aerospace engineering and grew in the United States — I have memorized tons of popular music, statics, theorems, etc. in my late twenties I left my career and everything I had worked for to live in India and study meditation and Vedic chanting (in Sanskrit). Today when I recite these ancient Sanskrit text I can feel their subtle effects—particularly in my brain and head area. If I enter a building where mantras have been chanted, in can feel how the air is charged. These experiences don’t occur in concert halls or when I recite a songs or nursery rhymes.

          We view this Universe through our own tiny knothole of perception. And some of us have a broader view than others.

        • It’s not about ‘magic’ it is about subtle ‘energies’ that are beyond the perception of our physical senses. When we do more spiritual practices, we can become aware of these more subtle energies. Perhaps part of the problem is that we want don’t admit that maybe some people have developed these sensitivies where as others have not—which is a truth. Then as scientists and researchers if we have not had any experience like the ones described by others we dismiss it as something else.

          I can say this from experience. I completed a master degree in aerospace engineering and grew in the United States — I have memorized tons of popular music, statics, theorems, etc. in my late twenties I left my career and everything I had worked for to live in India and study meditation and Vedic chanting (in Sanskrit). Today when I recite these ancient Sanskrit text I can feel their subtle effects—particularly in my brain and head area. If I enter a building where mantras have been chanted, in can feel how the air is charged. These experiences don’t occur in concert halls or when I recite a songs or nursery rhymes.

          We view this Universe through our own tiny knothole of perception. And as scientists we sometimes forget that—and have it too ‘figured out’.

          • Opera produces the same effect.The latin verses in Christianity produce the same effects.

            Sound does have ,apart from the sense of smell and focused vision (with proper understanding)can do the same.That explains the incense burned in many religious places along with singing and various symbols such as Kali and Ganesh etc.

          • I totally agree with this article about the wondersess effects of chanting in Sanskrit. I was born in Los Angeles, CA. And came to India in 1969. I met all these amazing saints and holy persons all these years. And I live here still. Naturally, one has been chanting Sanskrit mantras and Stotras everyday. All these years… Only if one is properly taught this whole science and corolating sciences and has a practice, then one knows without a doubt this is TRUE. Om Tat Sat ~*~

        • The difference between the memory of a cabby and the memory of people who chant and or meditate silently is a peaceful state of being. Cabbies do develop a large memory but that is where it stops. The peace within the mind and body of meditation from chanting and music lifts you to higher inner feelings of bliss and joy. A cabbie can have the direct opposite, stuck in a noisy traffic jam where his temper grows, his bp goes up, his passenger gets angry and so on.

    • Sanskrit is only language which is easy for memorization.When we recall verses from memory,verses come out with out any effort from the brain or any omissions of words.In short it is easy to recall.


        • The Sanskrit phonetics are so versatile that the mantras pronounced by the priests from anywhere in India sound similar when they are heard but for other languages it is much different.For example English spoken by a South Indian , a Punjabi man or by a Bengalee sound different.However, for Arabic the phonetics are not so versatile & so, the verses of the Quran uttered by Maulavis/Ulemas in the different parts of India are so different when heard. It is unfortunate that in the name of modern education or of late, for the sake of secularism (?) we have been discarding so scientific a language like Sanskrit.

    • It is Sanskrit. Modern Education has lot of mugging up to do but it does not help. Sanskrit mantras as enumerated above truly have powers which Neuro-Science has just started to recognize.

    • But there is a clear distinction between the areas of the brain affected by these two activities.plus there is only things to gain in chanting, unlike hectic cab drives

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