One of my favorite words in the Sanskrit language is mangalam. It has a nice ring to it, in fact if you repeat it ten times, mangalam, mangalam, mangalam... it could be beneficial to your health. The closest word we have in English by translation is auspicious, another nice word that goes left unused mostly today. The word implies good fortune, well-being or an omen of some kind. Its auspicious to chant in the morning, to sit for 20 minutes with your heart wide open, to extend metta to all the people you meet today and to listen to Beethoven’s 5th lying in savasana with your iPhone on your chest the way my concert pianist friend Steve Porter does.
Invoking the Auspicious: A Practice of Good Fortune
It is auspicious to wish a stranger well and to replay again and again the most vital moments of a dream like when U2 came to rehearse at our yoga center and my job was to bring Bono tea. The more you invoke mangalam in your practice the more you make yourself available to the raw, mysterious, inconceivable gift of goodness. Jung called it synchronicity and made mention of the paranormal, not like an alien invader but something that happens outside the realm of the familiar like the day after our son was born, when back from the hospital a falcon landed on the gutter of our roof. Weird but totally awesome.
Of course some people are suspicious of the auspicious and won’t really get the drift of this at all. But if you keep your nose out for goodness, if you open your band width to pick up signals outside your normal range then mangalam may just come your way.