Mouna - The Silent Yogic Language Of Gods

Submitted by Jerry Parker on September 13, 2012

Speech is part of human nature. The way we speak, how we speak, and the amount we speak all determine our personality. Speech is also a way by which we express and communicate our thoughts, beliefs, and desires. The practice of Mouna or the Yoga of Silence questions, 'what happens to us when we take away our speech?' The answer according to this school of thought is that silence brings about the infinite.


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The word 'Mouna' is derived from the Sanskrit root 'mun' meaning 'to measure'. The system or practice of Mouna believes that God or the Living Force resides in silence. It is only through silence that we will experience strength, peace, reality and the ultimate purpose of our existence.

To this end, the Yoga of Silence encourages us avoid unnecessary talking in order to have better control over our mind. There are devotees of this practice that don't speak at all while others may not speak but communicate by writing or gestures. There are also those who don't speak or communicate with anyone else through words, gestures or eye contact.

Mouna teaches us that if speech is taken away, we are forced to focus on ourselves. In today's crazy communication-driven world, being alone for even an hour may seem impossible. Mouna promises you that if you give yourself the gift of silence, you will slowly begin to observe and understand the way your mind works. As you become more aware of your own thoughts and emotions, you may get closer to a deep and meditative contemplation of the self. Silence also allows for more work to be done. With a peaceful and calm mind, it becomes easier to complete tasks undistracted as well as control emotions such as anger, irritability and sadness.

The practice of Mouna recommends that a person spend at least one whole week in a year in solitude. During this time there should be no interaction or communication with anyone else. But before you make this leap, the Yoga of Silence encourages you to spend some time in silence every day - an hour is ideal. This will improve your willpower and mental strength in small manageable doses. This hour of daily silence should be combined with chanting of mantras, pranayama, meditation, or reading of spiritual literature. Following are some suggestions that may help with your practice of Mouna:

  • The best times to practice Mouna is first thing in the morning or last thing at night.
  • Don't force yourself not to talk. Let things happen naturally.
  • Slowly increase the amount of time spent in your practice of Mouna. It is unrealistic to expect that you will be able to complete an entire hour in silence on your first few attempts.
  • Apart from your time spent in silence, be aware of your speech. Curb long conversations and unnecessary chatter. Only with constant discipline will Mouna become part of your life.
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