So Hum Meditation

March 28, 2023

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This is a very simple meditation practice and can be used by anyone. Whether you are brand new to meditation or are an experienced meditator, I truly believe you’ll find a spark of beauty with this practice. 

Sanskrit: “So” —> English: “I”

Sanskrit: “Hum” —> English: “am that”

In Vedic philosophy, it means identifying oneself with the universe or ultimate reality. The So Hum meditation is a simple but powerful technique that uses the breath and the repetition of a mantra to quiet the mind and relax the body. This meditation will help you move beyond your mind’s busy chatter and provide a sense of focus.

The words “So” and Hum” are like the perfect one-syllable mantra, inhaling “So”, and exhaling “Hum”. A gentle reminder that “I am that” (I am awareness, I am consciousness).

How to Practice:

  • Sit comfortably with your spine straight* (either on the floor or in a chair with your feet flat on the ground, you could even walk while doing this meditation). 
  • Place your hands on your knees (your palms can face up for expansion, or down for grouding) or gently place your hands in your lap.
  • Your eyes can be closed or you can gaze gently toward the ground (please keep them open if you’re walking 😉 ).
  • Take a few deep yet comfortable breaths, and pay attention to the flow of the air coming through and out of your nose.
  • See if you can let your awareness rest with the rising and falling of the diaphragm.
  • Try to inhale at a count to 5 – hold at a count to 5 – exhale at a count to 5.
  • Now take a slow, deep breath through your nose, while mentally saying “So”.
  • Then slowly exhale through your nose while mentally saying “Hum”. 
  • Continue to allow your breath to flow easily, as if your inhale was saying “So” and your exhale is saying “Hum”, with each inflow and outflow of the breath.
  • Whenever your attention drifts to thoughts in your mind, sounds in your environment, or sensations in your body, gently return to your breath, silently repeating the mantra “So – Hum”.
  • When you feel like the practice time is up, sit with your eyes gently closed, taking a moment to be present and aware of the stillness in your body, mind, and soul. 

*Curious why you should have your spine straight? Having your spine straight allows prana (the life force energy) to move freely throughout the body. 

Life Hack:

This was the first meditation I personally learned. I would sit in my car before going into the office and practice this for 2 minutes. It was a real game changer as I was transitioning from morning mommy mode to morning working woman mode ;-).

Also, there really is no time limit on how long or short you can do this meditation practice. I would start out with 2 minutes and gradually increase the time to what works best for you.

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