by Swami Sivananda of Divine Life Society
The Divine Name, as with any name, enables us to retain a particular form or object or concept in our mind. In this case, it is the conception of the Supreme Being, who is known by different names and forms in different times and climes. But the Supreme is infinite and beyond perception and conception. So, the infinite is symbolized through various forms, symbols or objects, and these are referred to by associated Names. Repetition of the Names with the focus on Divine Consciousness ultimately leads to the dropping of distinction between the Name and the associated idea. Intuitive knowledge of the Supreme reveals in the Name itself. There are many names, but the basis of all names and forms is the one Primal Being. Deep-rooted impressions form in the mind through continuous repetition of the Names of God. The depth, sweetness and charm of the Divine Names is beyond the explanation of the limited intellect. It is a thing knowable only through experience. In the beginning, in ordinary self-consciousness, there is the duality between the repetitioner and the name, but ultimately, the ordinary self-consciousness elevates into transcendental experience, into a state of superconsciousness. The repetitioner and the name become one. The eternal Truth is revealed. Oneness with the Supreme is realized. One’s only experience is delight in the Divine. It is but love for God. One is not conscious of anything other than God. Everything is only the manifestation of God. The whole universe presents itself only as God. All Glory to God’s all-blissful, all-pure, omnipotent Name that liberates one from the shackles of earthly bondage and leads to the illimitable domain of peace, bliss and immortality! All glory to those blessed ones who take delight in the Divine Name, sustain themselves by the Name and live to merge in the Name! Kirtan is the easiest, quickest, and surest way to attain God-realization. Even highly intellectual people will derive immense benefit by doing kirtan. Their minds will be elevated for practicing meditation. The tossing in their minds will also be removed. The sincere devotee loses himself in divine ecstacy. The Lord’s Name is all-bliss, and when it is chanted, the mind merges in this bliss, it loses its individual identity: it becomes one with the bliss itself. When several people join together and practice kirtan, a huge spiritual current or Mahashakti is generated. This purifies the hearts of the aspirants and elevates them to the sublime heights of divine ecstasy or Samadhi. The powerful vibrations are carried to distant places. They bring elevation of mind, solace, strength to all people and work as a harbinger of peace, harmony and concord. Repetition of God’s Name enables the devotee to feel the Divine Presence, the Divine Glory and the Divine Consciousness within oneself and also everywhere. When one sings God’s Name or hears It sung, one is unconsciously raised to sublime spiritual heights. One is immersed in joy, and gets divine intoxication. How sweet is God’s Name! How powerful is God’s Name! What an amount of joy and peace and strength it brings to those who repeat It!