The Vedas however are not as well known for pre-senting historical and scientific knowledge as they are for expounding subtle sciences, such as the power of mantras. We all recognize the power of sound itself by it’s effects, which can be quite dramatic. Perhaps we all have seen a high-pitched frequency shatter an ordinary drinking glass. Such a demonstration shows that loud sounds can produce substantial reactions.
It is commonly believed that mantras can carry hidden power which can in turn produce certain effects. The ancient Vedic literatures are full of descriptions of weapons being called by mantra. For example, many weapons were invoked by mantra during the epic Kuruksetra War, wherein the Bhagavad-Gita itself was spoken.
The ancient deployment of Brahmastra weapons, equivalent to modern day nuclear weapons are described throughout the Vedic literatures. Additionally, mantras carry hidden spiritual power, which can produce significant benefits when chanted properly. Indeed, the Vedas themselves are sound vibrations in literary form and carry a profound message. Spiritual disciplines recommend meditational practices such as silent meditation, silent recitation of mantras and also the verbal repetition of specific mantras out loud.
A clinical test of the benefits of mantra chanting was performed on three groups of sixty-two subjects, males and females of average age 25. They chanted the “Hare Krsna Maha Mantra” twenty- five minutes each day under strict clinical supervision.
Results showed that regular chanting of the Maha Mantra reduces stress and depression and helps reduce bad habits & addictions. These results formed a PhD Thesis at Florida State University. Tests performed with similar mantras have produced corresponding results.
Spiritual practitioners claim many benefits from Mantra Meditation such as increased realization of spiritual wisdom, inner peace and a strong com- munion with God and the spiritual realm. These effects may be experienced by following the desig- nated spiritual path.
Most of the evidence given in this presentation is for the apara vidya or material knowledge of the Vedic literatures. The Vedas however, are more renowned for their para vidya or spiritual knowledge. And even superior is the realized knowledge of the Vedic rsis or saints — that which is beyond the objective knowledge of modern science — knowledge of the eternal realm of sat, cit, ananda — eternality, blissfullness and full knowledge.