You know all those birthday emails you get from different businesses? Well last year I got one from a yoga teacher from where I used to live, offering a free yoga class on my birthday. I wrote back telling him I moved, and asked if knew of any chants that were specific to birthdays.

Ok, did that last part come out of left field? I should tell you that I have been a fan of chanting for some time. It’s gotten me through some of the hardest parts of my life. I don’t think I could be a student of silent meditation, but chanting works for me. So it seemed appropriate to ask for a birthday chant. This is what he sent me:

I am the light of my soul.
I am beautiful.
I am bountiful.
I am bliss.

I was taken back by the chant, mostly because it is in English. I’m not sure what language I’ve been chanting in, but English it is not. In fact, the foreign sounds helped me in the beginning, because chanting in English would somehow make me feel ridiculous. Go figure.

But I looked at the words he sent and they were beautiful. And they were what I needed. So even though it was in English, I gave it a try. It was the first time anyone ever gave me a Birthday Mantra, even if I asked for it.

And this is what I found, after chanting it a few times, it stayed with me. I’d be making dinner, or doing laundry, and this mantra was the tape playing in my head: I am the light of my soul. I am beautiful, I am bountiful, I am bliss. In a year, where I was getting older, certainly broke, and often saddened, it was a great message. Much better than some of the negative thoughts it crowded out.

So now it’s my gift to you. Try it out. I swear, it works. (Swearing, not good yogi behavior!) If you are uncertain, try it for three minutes. Find a quiet place, and say the words over and over. You can also find the words set to music on You Tube.

Honestly, one of the best Birthday gifts I ever got.