My Favorite Mantra: Ek Ong Kar Sat Nam Siri Wahe Guru


by Shakti Parwha Kaur Khalsa

I have a great personal attachment and affection for this mantra, because Yogi Bhajan taught it to me in December of 1968, when my 19 year old son was in serious trouble. Yogiji told me, “There is nothing more powerful in the world than the prayer of a mother for her son, and if you will chant this mantra for one hour before sunrise every day for 40 days, he will be all right.” I asked, “What about all the other things I’m doing, my Sufi visualization, my Hopi mantra, and my Vedanta meditation?” He said, “Fine, do them, but try this also.”

Suffice to say, it worked! On the second day of chanting, the power was so obvious, I realized I didn’t want to do anything else. This was “it.” And it has been “it,” for over 40 years. Now, many people chant this mantra for seven minutes a day as part of the 3HO morning sadhana, but it’s still “my” mantra.

It is said that chanting Long Ek Ong Kar’s, also known as Morning Call, Long Chant, and the Adi Shakti Mantra, opens all the chakras, charges the solar centers, connects the soul to the Universal Soul, and liberates us from the cycle of karma.

How it Works and What it Does

This was almost the only mantra Yogi Bhajan taught during his first year in the United States (plus Sat Nam, of course). It is extremely powerful and energizing when done correctly. (Correctly means with full concentration, accurate rhythm, and proper pronunciation—and Neck Lock applied!) These eight syllables are the “code” letters, the direct personal phone number connecting you, the creature, with your Creator. It has been said that a person can attain liberation by chanting this ashtang (eight-part) mantra correctly for 40 days, for two and one-half hours before sunrise (the ambrosial hours).

The ambrosial hours are the ideal and most effective time of day to chant this mantra.

The Mantra

Ek Ong Kar Sat Nam Siri Wahe Guru

(Ek Onnng Kaaar, Sat Naaam S’ree, Wha HayG’roo)


1)     Sit in Easy Pose with a straight spine. Or, you may sit in a chair with a straight spine and both feet flat on the floor.

2)     Place the hands in Gyan Mudra or rest them in the lap in Venus Lock.

3)     It is best to use a light blanket or shawl to keep the spine free from drafts.

4)      Apply Neck Lock.[*]

5)     Close the eyes.

6)     Optionally, as you chant each syllable, you can concentrate on each chakra, from the first to the eighth.

The Meditation

Ek (One) Ong (Creator) Kar (Creation)

Sat (Truth) Nam (Name or Identity) Siri (Great)

Wahe (Beyond description, “Wow!”) Guru (Dispeller of darkness, Teacher)

1)     Inhale deeplyand chant Ek Ong Kar

Ek is vibrated briefly and powerfully at the Navel Point (not shouted). Ong is chanted in the back of the throat, vibrates the upper palate, and comes out through the nose. Keep the sound continuous as you move without a pause from Ong to Kar. Give equal time to Ong and Kar.

2)     Inhale deeply again and chant Sat Nam until you’re almost out of breath, then reach for the Siri, which is brief.  Sat is briefly and powerfully chanted at the Navel Point. Nam vibrates at the heart center.  Siri is pronounced as if spelled S’ree; it is a short syllable.

3)     Inhale a short half breath and chant Wahe Guru. Wahe is broken into two syllables, Wha and Hay. Wha is somewhat aspirated. Hay is extremely short. It becomes part of Guru which is pronounced as G’roo. Remember this is an “ashtang” mantra, in other words, it has eight, count ’em, eight keys, eight syllables, so the “hayg’roo” should be all run together, almost like one syllable.

4)     Inhale deeply again to repeat the cycle. Continue for 7, 11, 31, or 62 minutes or 2 ½ hours.

To Finish

Inhale deeply, hold the breath, and focus at the Brow Point for several seconds, then exhale and relax.


1)     Don’t let the tone drop, and if it does, bring it back up.

2)     Don’t let the head tilt back, keep Neck Lock applied.

Editor’s Note: Yogi Bhajan said, “If you must do sadhana by yourself, then while you are chanting, imagine a million others all around you. Hear them all chanting, with you in the middle, not moving at all. Feel that you do not chant physically, and yet are leading the chant and letting the chant lead you. As you imagine this, continue chanting.”

[*] Lift the chest and gently stretch the back of the neck straight by pulling the chin toward the back of the neck.

shaktiparwhak_200Shakti Parwha Kaur Khalsa was Yogi Bhajan’s first student in the United States. She has been teaching Kundalini Yoga since 1969. She is the author of Kundalini Yoga: The Flow of Eternal Power; Kundalini Postures and Poetry; and Marriage on the Spiritual Path: Mastering the Highest Yoga. She is a frequent movie-goer in the City of Angels.




View a demonstration of Long Ek Ong Kar’s by Krishna Kaur


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  1. Monica Kapoor says:

    Dear Noble Soul, I have only recently found Sikh Dharma International. I live in Chicago, Illinois. I have been doing the 60 second breathing technique when I sit to honor the goddesses and gods. I am a Hindu, but I honor Mother Mary, Lady Fatima, Lady of Guadalupe, Sheikhnah (of the Jewish faith), and others. When I do the 60 second breathing steps (20 seconds inhale, 20 hold, 20 exhale) I feel better. I feel as if the breath has gone over and into my back. I’m still unable to inhale for an entire 20 seconds. I do this for 10-12 minutes. Recently I have added saying the mantra Ek Ong Kar Sat Nam Waheguru. I am unsure if I am doing it correctly in 8 syllables. And, frankly I just do it 10-12 times, not for an hour before sunrise. I am seeking guidance if I am following this properly. Thank you for any advice and guidance.

    • Pritpal Singh Khalsa says:

      Sat Nam, Monica – the above post has all you need to get this right. The important thing is to use the 2 and a half breathing with this mantra. Then you divide the 8 sounds into the 2 and a half breaths. With the first deep breath you chant “Ek Ong Kar” – the first three sounds. Then you inhale deeply again and chant the next three sounds, “Sat Nam Siri”. Then you inhale only half of your normal deep inhale, and chant the remaining four syllables as two sounds, “Wahe” and then, “Guru”. As you are in Chicago where there are many certified Kundalini Yoga instructors, I suggest you search for a class that you can attend so that you can check with the instructor if you are practicing this technique correctly. Blessings with your practice.

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