I wrote this for my yoga teacher, you (yes, you) should read it……
It’s a good question. Why do we chant? And also, why don’t we chant English words, why are they a different language?
There are answers to all of your questions. The Why….
We chant because it produces cellular changes within the body. Particularly it causes stimulation of the pituitary gland and hypothalamus. These parts of the brain are heavily involved in controlling emotions. When you chant, your tongue hits (or should hit) the roof of your mouth. This stimulates certain meridians that live on the roof of the mouth. There are 84 meridians there. Meridians are points on the body that when stimulated cause a certain internal structure to activate. That’s what acupuncture and acupressure are all about.
Chanting also causes vibration. A chemical called nitric oxide (better known as laughing gas) is produced in the sinuses and when you chant that chemical is shaken loose and allowed to enter the bloodstream. Result – feeling a lot happier.
So why do we chant in a different language? Because the English language can’t get it done. There are no words in the English language that can produce the vibration that the Gurmukhi language produces. Sounds are incredibly important. Has your mood ever been changed by the sound of a babbling brook, a thunderstorm, birds chirping? That’s why it is vital to pronounce the words correctly and have proper form of the mouth. Here, read this.