The ancient Om Mani Padme Hum mantra is one of the most frequently recited mantras, or prayers, amongst those who follow Buddhism. While this mantra is known to be powerful, at its core there is not one simple translation or explanation for it. This very important mantra is the six-syllable mantra of Avalokitesvara, who is the bodhisattva of compassion. A bodhisattva is an individual who is wise but who has not yet become wholly enlightened enough to be considered Buddha; Avalokitesvara can often be considered to be on the cusp of enlightenment but is choosing to remain bodhisattva until he has helped all beings to become free from suffering.
Reciting the Om Mani Padme Hum mantra is said to invoke the compassion of Avalokitesvara, and help to ease suffering and pain. Buddhists also hold the belief that when the ancient and powerful mantra Om Mani Padme Hum is inscribed, onto jewelry or even a decorative stone for example, it invokes compassion. Whether uttered out loud, inscribed, or said silently to oneself, the mantra is said to be powerful no matter the way in which it is used.
With no one translation for the mantra, it can be broken down into a few more understandable aspects in English. The basic translation in English is, Om Jewel in the Lotus Hum. This can be taken to mean 'Praise to the Jewel in the Lotus.'
* Om is first recited because it is the essence of the five wisdoms.
* Mani is translated to jewel, while Padme is translated to lotus.
* Hum is recited at the end of the mantra because it translates to 'being mindful of this.'
However, a common interpretation of the mantra is that each of the six syllables in the Om Mani Padme Hum mantra is associated with one of the six realms of existence. By reciting or inscribing the mantra, Buddhists will be able to avoid rebirth in that undesirable realm and at the same time purify the vice associated with that realm.
* Om will purify the vices of pride and bliss, which is the realm of the gods.
* Ma will purify need for entertainment and jealousy, which is the realm of the jealous gods.
* Ni will purify desire and passion, which is the human realm.
* Pad will purify the vices of prejudice and ignorance, which is said to the be animal realm.
* Me will purify possessiveness and poverty, which is said to be the realm of the hungry ghosts.
* Hum will purify the vices of hatred and aggression, which is said to be the realm of hell.
Another Buddhist scholar has said that the simplicity of this powerful mantra helps to inspire perfection in the practice of generosity (Om), perfection in the practice of pure ethics (Ma), perfection in the practice of patience and tolerance (Ni), perfection with perseverance (Pad), perfection in the practice of concentration (Me), and perfection in the practice of wisdom (Hum).
Avalokiteshvara is said to have been reincarnated as the Dalai Lama. As a result, this mantra is recited often by his followers.
If you are interested in items featuring the mantra, Om Mani Padme Hum, please check out these items,
Om Mani Padme Hum Copper Mala
Om Mani Padme Hum Bone Necklace
Om Mani Padme Hum Pendant
Om Mani Padme Hum Tingshas
White Metal and Brass Om Mani Padme Hum Bracelet