Mantras, Shlokas & Stotras

"Mantras" derived from the Sanskrit word 'man', meaning 'to think'. Mantra literally means 'instrument of thought'. Mantras are hymns, which are believed to benefit that chants them. Vedic mantras are said to have been divinely 'heard' (shruti) by ancient sages. These hymns are mostly invocations to the gods for protection against evil, or for assistance in performing one's duties or specific functions. The effectiveness of the mantras is said to depend on the mental discipline involved in its correct recitation, and the accompanying mode of breathing. According to the Agni Purana, if a mantra is recited quietly or in the mind, it is very effective. We here describe some of the most commonly used mantras & shlokas in our daily life.