If you haven’t read my original Mind Cleanse post, you might want to give it a read before continuing here. Because this post is all about how the little mind purification practice I initiated four months ago to help me through a difficult time facilitated a BIG shift in my life. Specifically, how the daily mantra component it prescribes catapulted me forward in a decision I’ve LONG needed to make. And then kept me focused, strong, and nurtured as I put one foot in front of the other on the rocky, uncharted path I stepped onto.
It’s a new year, but this turning of the year marks something much bigger for me. A new LIFE. I’ve been on quite a journey since I last posted here on my blog. In that article, I promised to offer, via Instagram, “positive, inspiring messages that correlate to my own mind-cleanse process” as I progressed through it. However, due to a swift change in my life circumstances, I wasn’t able to follow through on that promise. So instead, I’m going to share a bit about how it unfolded – in retrospect – with you here.
This is a testimony to the power of the mind. And to the importance of keeping our mind clear and aligned with our highest intentions, no matter what’s happening around us. I hope it serves your journey, in whatever way you need it most at this moment in your life. And that it inspires you to explore a daily mantra repetition practice, if you’re not already doing one.
My Mind Cleanse In Retrospect
I closed my last article with a powerful intention-setting for my mind cleanse:
At the time I wrote that, I was already in the middle of some upsetting circumstances. My marriage was hanging by the last, fraying strand my heart wasn’t yet ready to let go of. My son had already moved out. Because I’m still in the middle of a divorce, and out of respect for everyone’s privacy, I won’t go into the details of all that transpired. I’ll just say I was in the position of being forced to face the reality of how unhealthy my marriage was (and has been for a very long time).
For many years, my practice of compassion and my commitment to unconditional love led me to stay, when all the facts of my circumstances were screaming GO! I’d been gradually breaking the cycle of co-dependency for a long time, but there was still one giant step I needed to take. And at the time I committed to my mind cleanse – and more specifically, to my daily mantra practice – the undeniable need to take that step was already crystallizing for me. But I wasn’t quite there yet.
My Daily Mantra & How I Got There
My marriage was a mess. Our little family was broken. And I was almost paralyzed by the uncertainty of what I should do. Despite this, I stuck with my mind cleanse practice, trusting the intention I set for myself at the start of it would somehow illuminate my way forward.
If you read my previous post, you know daily mantra repetition is a key component of the mind cleanse I embarked on. I’m not talking about sitting down for a mantra meditation practice once a day, but rather, repeating my mantra all throughout the day. Or at least, as often as I can remember to. Like when I’m driving, walking, doing the dishes, brushing my teeth, and doing pretty much any task that doesn’t require me to be actively thinking.
In the midst of the recent upheaval and uncertainty in my life, this practice ended up serving two key purposes for me. First, it helped me take out the trash in my mind. Not just once a day, but repeatedly throughout every day. Which meant, I didn’t get bogged down with worries. And I didn’t get sucked into old, familiar thought patterns that could bind me to old, familiar life patterns.
Secondly, by regularly feeding my being wholesome, light-infused mind stuff – my daily mantra – I opened the space for some refreshing things to emerge. Vital things – like hope and clarity in the midst of chaos, and the courage to act that comes with them.
Four days after I published my last post, and 8 days after I began my mind cleanse, I put my foot onto the uncertain path that is my new life. That is, the life of a single woman, at the age of 47, who has a bundle of hopes and dreams wrapped up in a bandana. And who carries the peace that comes with clarity of body, heart, mind, and spirit – all pointing in one direction – for a compass.
Daily Mantra Repetition: Subconscious Work
When we take charge of what our mind is doing at a conscious level, it can create powerful ripples at the deeper level of our subconscious mind. This is especially true when we sustain that conscious control of our mind’s activity over a period of time. Long enough to start rewiring our brain to respond to life in new ways. And to start interrupting old, habitual patterns of thought, so we may open up the space to see our self, our life, the world and everyone in it in a different light.
You can learn more about what science has to tell us about the power of mantra repetition here. But what I’d like to share with you are some powerful subconscious shifts my daily mantra practice facilitated for me.
You may recall the mantra I use is Om mani padme hum. It means, praise to the jewel in the lotus, in which the jewel refers to enlightenment. Working with this mantra aligns one’s whole self with the intention to purify body, mind, and speech with the process of enlightenment. It waters the seeds of compassion, love, and wisdom, so they may bloom in your heart and mind.
After repeating this mantra all throughout the day over a period of about a week, two surprisingly counterintuitive and pivotal things happened for me. First, I had a dream. It was the kind of dream I spoke of in my Dream Interpretation post a while back. The kind that demands my attention, even as I’m dreaming, so I’m sure to remember and contemplate it the next morning. I call it a healing dream.
Daily Mantra Repetition: Profound Shifts
In my dream, a counselor moved into my house and told me it was time for me to move out. He said he would be taking my room now. I resisted this abrupt change in the dream. But when I awakened and contemplated what it meant, I realized my subconscious was trying to tell me something important.
There had been a BIG shift at a very deep level, and I needed to own it in my conscious, waking life. It was the very shift I’d been needing in order to take the step I knew, deep down, I had to take. And when I realized what had shifted, I felt it in every cell of my being:
It was time for me to let go of the counselor role I’d assumed in my marriage. Even though I knew doing so would cut the last thread that was keeping me bound to it.
It has been this knowing that has gotten me through some of the most difficult events of the past few months. And I know it was my daily mantra practice that helped me access it. (I’ll discuss this more in a bit.)
Daily Mantra Repetition: Clear Vision
The second pivotal thing happened the day before I left. I passed a billboard on the road. It had a picture of some beautiful land, with an invitation to “Envision Your Dream Home Here” splashed across it. I don’t know why I accepted that invitation. It’s not something I ordinarily would do. But that day, I visualized my dream home. I let myself really go for it, too. Exactly what would I want in my dream home? It seemed foreign for me to even consider it.
What I envisioned was a small home with open space. Everything about it said, calm and peaceful. There was a vegetable garden out back, along with a little spot for meditation and wind chimes. And – dare I dream it? – a chicken coop. But most notably, there was just me.
When I realized that, it felt odd. Not just because I had never – since the time I left my mother’s home – lived without my husband. But because it somehow felt like my real future. It’s like I already knew, at some level I wasn’t yet fully acknowledging, what I would have to do. Not sometime in the distant future, but soon.
And then, the next night, something happened that squashed any dwindling hope things would (or even could) get better. I knew what I had to do. I packed up my bags and left. And just like that, 30 years together came to an end.
I haven’t doubted my decision since. Of course, in saying that, I don’t mean there haven’t been difficult emotions – like grief and anger and fear – to work through. They have definitely arisen and swelled, sometimes to the point it feels unbearable. But they always subside, never touching the truth that this is the right decision for me. I know this is because I cleared the way for a profound shift deep in my psyche. And I opened my eyes to an empowered vision of what my life could look and feel like.
My Daily Mantra: Om Mani Padme Hum
I’ve thought a lot about how my daily mantra – one that’s intended to align me with compassion, love, and wisdom – could have facilitated such a shift within me. How can something like divorce arise from such intentions? It seems counterintuitive, to say the least. And yet, it happened.
Of course, how a particular mantra affects each of us – with the uniqueness of our life circumstances at any given point in our journey – will be diverse. But for me, at this pivotal moment in my life, working with om mani padme hum as part of my intentional mind cleanse served to remove the blinders that were keeping me from seeing some painful truths about my marriage.
I realized, caring enough about the suffering my marriage was causing to take decisive action was a compassionate step. Recognizing the dynamics of my marriage weren’t truly serving my wellbeing (or my husband’s) was a wise insight. And making the self-loving decision to leave, while never losing touch with the love I’ll always have for my husband, challenged me to reassess what it means to love unconditionally. Which means, this shift within me and in my life circumstances falls right in line with the intention of my daily mantra.
Furthermore, because this mantra ultimately aligns us with the process of enlightenment, I can see how my intensive work with it during my mind cleanse helped clear the way for an awakening. It removed some big barriers to my inner peace and equanimity by helping me see my way out of a mental trap I’ve been entangled in for years. That is, the trap of believing I can change someone else’s deeply engrained patterns of thought, speech, and behavior.
The only thing I can ultimately change is myself – my own thoughts, words, and actions. And though many of us may know this truth rationally in our heads, it can be really hard to convince our hearts of it. Such was the case for me for a very long time.
Daily Mantra Repetition: A Practice For Emotional Stability
As I said at the start of this post, my daily mantra practice didn’t just help facilitate a giant step in my life. It stabilized and nurtured me as I took it. It’s still doing so today, as I adapt to newness in just about every dimension of my life.
If you’ve been through any kind of big life disruption – like a divorce, loss of a loved one, loss of a job, etc. – you know how unsettling it can be. The old adage the mind can be your best friend or your worst enemy holds extra weight at such times. In the case of my divorce, it’s been an incredibly bumpy ride. And that’s putting it kindly.
I’ve had moments that range from the general discomfort of not knowing to complete crises swirling around me. Yet my daily mantra repetition has brought me back to center every time I remember to do it. It reminds me – beautifully, lovingly – nothing is permanent. I’m only passing through here. I’m a process unfolding, an awareness blossoming. As I compost the muck of my life experiences and allow them to fertilize new growth and wisdom, I am consciousness evolving and awakening.
Om mani padme hum reminds me I didn’t come here to live in turmoil or to cling to people or things. And God didn’t create me to get lost in the darkness and confusion this world sometimes gives rise to. I was created to seek and find the light, and let it guide me to and through my unique purpose on this planet. I am thankful for that and find strength in my trust in that.
Let The Adventure Begin
A couple of months ago, I turned forty-seven. For my birthday, I was blessed to be surrounded by friends and family who all reached out to make sure I felt loved, appreciated, and not alone. My mother took me out to lunch and timidly asked how I was feeling. I could tell she was worried about me, because she looked so relieved when I told her, I’m feeling adventurous.
And it was true. Waking up that morning, and all throughout that day, I felt the energy of possibility in the air. I was sitting on the edge of a new beginning…a new birth, if you will. I wasn’t sure what was going to happen. But I knew whatever happened, I was going to do more than just survive it. I was going to thrive.
Of course, that feeling of adventure in the air has by no means been my constant these past few months. Divorce has been tough, and I’m not going to sugarcoat it. But, my mind cleanse practices – especially my daily mantra – have kept me connected to my peace and contentment. They keep bringing me back to the wiser perspective that arises when I trust and stay aligned with my highest intentions.
As I think about what lies ahead, I feel invigorated by a renewed vision for my life. I’m excited for the new direction I’m envisioning and already working toward. I’ll be updating you more on what this means in the coming months. Be on the lookout for some new offerings I think you’re going to love here on my blog.
What about you? Did you embark on a mind cleanse journey too? Have you tried working with daily mantra repetition? I’d love to hear what shifts it facilitated for you. Or, if you haven’t yet tried it, are you feeling inspired to do so? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.