Does one have to leave existing spiritual practice to start chanting?

The Spiritual Science Research Foundation (SSRF) recommends chanting the Name of God as a foundation to one’s spiritual practice. However some of our readers may find this difficult to adopt especially if they are already doing some form of spiritual practice.
The reasons may include:

  • Liking for their type of spiritual practice like ritualistic worship, recitation of Holy verses, reading Holy texts, visiting temples, mosques or churches,  doing meditation or yoga, etc.
  • Thinking that they have to stop their current form of spiritual practice in order to start chanting the Name of God as a spiritual practice.
  • Resistance in exploring something new.

The following are our suggestions to our readers in such cases:

  • Augment any spiritual practice: To begin chanting the Name of God, one does not have to give up one’s current form of spiritual practice, but in fact, can augment it with chanting.
  • Improves current spiritual practice: It is the experience of many seekers that chanting has, in fact qualitatively improved their current form of spiritual practice. For example, seekers have noticed a greater level of concentration and devotion when chanting during ritualistic worship, studying Holy texts, meditation, etc.
  • Continuity in spiritual practice: Continuity in spiritual practice is very important for spiritual growth. Continuity in spiritual practice can be accomplished best through chanting. Since one can chant mentally, it can be done anytime, anywhere and even during other activities. Thus it helps one to maintain continuity in whatever form of spiritual practice one is following currently. Regular and continuous chanting:
    • Results in the tranquillity of mind thus benefitting one, both at a mental as well as physical level.
    • Further facilitates development of faith and devotion thus acting as a spiritual remedy.
  • Recommended for the current era: According to the science of spirituality, chanting the Name of God as per ones religion of birth is the recommended foundation of spiritual practice in the current era i.e. the Era of Strife (Kaliyug). Hence, seekers who are already doing some form of spiritual practice are encouraged to commence the spiritual practice of chanting as a tool to augment their current spiritual practice. Refer to the 5th basic principle of spiritual practice.
  • Added benefit: Only if one tries something new for sometime can they see if it benefits them. Else one may pass up a good opportunity to strengthen their spiritual practice.
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