Most people today are oblivious to who controls their minds or to what degree they are controlled.
We discuss how the use of psychology to manipulate the masses became commonplace in the 20th Century.
Sigmund Freud’s nephew Edward Bernays showed American corporations for the first time, how they could make people want things they didn’t need, by linking mass-produced goods to their unconscious desires. He proposed that by stimulating people’s inner desires and then sating them with consumer products, he was creating a new way to manage the irrational forces of the masses. He called it the engineering of consent.
Some quotes I used:
“We must shift America from a needs to a desires culture. People must be trained to desire, to want new things even before the old had been entirely consumed. We must shape a new mentality in America. Man’s desires must overshadow his needs.” – Leading Wall Street banker Paul Mazer of Leahman Brothers in the early 1920’s
In 1927 an American journalist wrote: “A change has come over our democracy, it is called consumptionism. The American citizen’s first importance to his country is now no longer that of citizen, but that of consumer.
In 1928 President Herbert Hoover told a group of advertisers and public relations men “You Have taken over the job of creating desire and have transformed people into constantly moving happiness machines. Machines which have become the key to economic progress.”
“Bernays had manipulated the American people but he had done so because he, like many others at the time believed that the interests of business and the interests of America were indivisible. Especially when faced with the threat of communism. But Bernays was convinced that to explain this rationally to the American people was impossible. Because they were not rational. Instead one had to touch on their inner fears and manipulate them in the interest of a higher truth. He called it the engineering of consent.” – Ann Bernays – Daughter of Edward Bernays
He was doing it for the American way of life to which he was devoted, sincerely devoted. And yet he felt the people were really pretty stupid. And that’s the paradox. If you don’t leave it up to the people themselves but force them to choose what you want them to choose, however subtly, then it’s not democracy anymore. It’s something else, it’s being told what to do, it’s that old authoritarian thing. Ann Bernays – Daughter of Edward Bernays
“Although the media has undisputed power to influence people’s decisions and they are in control of the public mind, unfortunately, they are for the greater part without any conscience.” – Jagad Guru Siddhaswarupananda ( Stated in the mid to late 1980’s)
The modem economy is propelled by a frenzy of greed and indulges in an orgy of envy, and these are not accidental features but the very causes of its expansionist success. The question is whether such causes can be effective for long or whether they carry within themselves the seeds of destruction. – E. F. Schumacher – British Economist
“It can be seen that while the media and advertising people may not fully appreciate this science, they are aware of how it works and they use it to control people’s minds and exploit them. Due to their own lust for material gain and following, they don’t use their power to good effect. They want a society of animals because animals are easier to control and exploit than intelligent people. This, for example, is the whole strategy of advertising. Excite people’s gross senses and they’ll buy your product.” – Jagad Guru Siddhaswarupananda
“People are already feeling alienated from everyone else in society. They’re already small and powerless in the face of the powers that be. The media should not increase this. They should give people a chance to express what they are really seeing and feeling. But instead, they increase paranoia and separation. They create a feeling of “us” and “them.”” – Jagad Guru Siddhaswarupananda
Aum Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya
So, tonight is the second part in the series, “Who Controls Your Mind,” and I’m titling tonight’s talk The Engineering of Desire.
Most people today are relatively oblivious to who controls their mind or to what degree we are controlled. That might sound like a little bit of a wild statement, but I think if you take this little journey with me tonight you may realize the critical importance of this question. The question is really, “How influenced are we?”
So what I’d like to do to start with is–and I’ve got quite a few things I’m going to be reading tonight. I wanted to just read from something that has just been released in the US. It was two recent surveys done in the month of January of this year, 2022, and they asked people a large number of questions, a really large number; and contained within these, all these questions, were people’s perception on a real large number of things. And in the supporting article in this report it said,
“When people’s average perceptions of group sizes are compared to actual population estimates an intriguing pattern emerges. Americans tend to vastly overstate the size of minority groups.”
So these are the some of the things that I’m just going to focus in on here. And the first example I’ve given you is people were asked to estimate how many vegetarians or vegans there were in the US, and the average response was 30% of the population, but the true figure is only 5%. And so that’s kind of like, whoa, how can people get that so wrong? Because we all have experiences with friends and everything. And of course, what it’s pointing to is the influence of media in all its forms, including social media. The loud voices, I will say, make it so that people develop a distorted perception of what the real situation is.
So this also held true for what were categorized as sexual minorities. So in the question of, “How many or what percentage of the population do you think are gay or lesbian?” the estimate was 30% (that’s the average estimate of everybody that was surveyed) whereas the true percentage is 3%. They were asked to estimate the percentage of population that were bisexual, and the estimate was 29%, whereas the reality is it’s only 4%. They were asked to estimate, “What do you think is the percentage of transgenders amongst the population?” and the estimate given was 21%, whereas the true figure is about 0.6%. So here we’ve got 0.6% is the true thing, and the estimate everybody made was 21%.
The same phenomena was observed with religious minorities. With Muslim Americans, the estimate was about 27% of the population. The true number is 1%. Jewish Americans were estimated to be about 30% of the population. The true figure is 2%.
And similar sort of over-estimates were also there for racial or ethnic minorities. People were asked, “What percentage of the population is native American Indian, or native Americans?” and the estimate was about 27% of the country. The true figure was 1%. Asked about Asian Americans, the estimate was 29%. The true figure is 6%. For black Americans the estimate was 41% whereas the true number is 12%. And astonishingly, amongst black Americans the figure that they estimated was higher than 41%, this was the mean average. This led one media personality to observe that, “American’s perception of reality is not aligned with the truth.”
So, in the analysis and in some of the work that has been done on these types of surveys, and what is behind the psychology of people, they have found that the frequency of a subject appearing in media and on social media can have a strong influence on the outcome of this type of survey.
So, I don’t know if you were kind of blown out at how big the difference is between the perception and the reality? For me it’s incredibly startling.
So, in presenting this series you may question, why am I doing it? My motivation in doing this particular series has to do what my hope and prayer is for all of you. That hope is that you will grow in your autonomy, meaning that you are a free and strong individual that’s making your own informed choices that are leading to a much better life and producing much better outcomes. My hope is that people will actually become more resilient, because over time things have become appallingly bad, and the rates of depression, mental illness and suicide, particularly amongst the young, has just grown astronomically over the last 10 years. My hope is also that you will actually find happiness in this life that you have here, and that you will become more purposeful. So these are my desires, and this is what’s motivating me to speak about it. And why I think it’s really important to be examining these things is because there is a massive erosion of people’s personal autonomy, their resilience, their happiness and this growing sense of purposelessness.
From a yogic perspective it is of critical importance that you are in the driver’s seat of your life, that it is you that is making informed and good choices about your actions, what you’re going to put into your mind, what purpose your life is going to serve. It’s of critical importance.
In the last series that we did where we examined this well-known mantra asato ma sad gamaya, and the second line in that mantra is “Lead me from darkness into the light.” So the ancient Vedic texts say that we currently live in a very unfortunate time. A time of—that has been described the age of chaos, quarrel and confusion. When we are not enlightened then we are, practically speaking, in the dark, and the dark is not a good place to be. There’s like this formula in all of the dharmic traditions, these ancient spiritual traditions, that ignorance equals pain and suffering. If in your life you are experiencing pain and suffering, it is going to be always traceable to being in a state of darkness. The degree to which we are covered by darkness or ignorance, to that degree, we will also be suffering and experiencing pain.
In relation to the topic that we’re dealing with there is also this progression of interconnected realities. The first is that desire always, generally, precedes action. In Sanskrit the word for action is karma. So desire comes first, and then based on the nature of the desire that you have, you will act, you will make decisions, you will speak in certain ways. If you are on a trajectory that is directing you more towards darkness, then it means that your choices in life will produce unhappy and unfortunate outcomes.
And of course, from the yogic perspective the most unfortunate outcome is reincarnation: that you go through your whole life on this emotional roller coaster, then as it goes into your twilight years you are increasingly having to deal with great unhappiness and difficulty in the form of old age, disease and then finally death, and if you have cultivated desires that are not spiritual in nature then it will bind you to the material world and to the cycle of repeated birth and death. So from that perspective what you or I desire is of paramount importance. It is all important.
And so the topic tonight, which is The Engineering of Desire, we look at, at least in tonight’s part, about how we make decisions, and I’m not talking about the details of each individual decision but something that has come to permeate societies all over the world. And what I’m talking about was this discovery of psychology and its use as a tool for mass mind control. And I’m not talking about some wacky conspiracy theory. I’m just looking at the practical reality, the practical realities.
Some of the biggest businesses in the world are in the business of advertising where they are grossing hundreds of billions of dollars every year—single companies! And the reason they can do that is because they are clearly demonstrating that they have the power and the ability to affect the way people make choices, the way people consume, the way people spend money, that they can move the dial, that they can actually, with focused campaigns, even predict how many more people are likely to buy a particular product. Of course, there’s always going to be some limitation on these things, but the fact that they can predict such things and the fact that they are increasingly becoming more and more wealthy are a clear indication. People are not going to throw money if there is not some result. Advertisers spend money because they experience directly the result of spending that money with increased sales. And so this is clearly, not just an indication, it establishes as a fact that on a subtle level we are being hugely influenced.
The roots of the use of psychology in advertising was explored in a really brilliant BBC documentary that I’ve spoken about a number of times, The Century of the Self, where they really explored, and I’ll just read some passages from that documentary. The first one is that The Century of the Self, the series, is about,
“… how those in power have used Freud’s theories to try and control the dangerous crowd in an age of mass democracy.”
It’s like, okay, that sounds a little dark! Most people are not at all aware that in the beginning of the 20th century most of the world’s population did not exist as democracies. That they were ruled by a variety of autocracies, and there was a pervasive view (and Freud himself was strongly supporting this view) that the average individual, as part of a larger mass of people, that they were fundamentally a dangerous crowd who could become swept away by animal instincts and cause chaos, and confusion, and death, and injury, and trouble.
And one of the things that supported this idea, or theory, was the Bolshevik revolution, how in Russia the masses of people were–they rose up and overturned government and order, and the way–and tradition, and there was this period of amazing cruelty and senseless killing. Anybody that was a landlord for instance. There was a period where all landlords, or vast numbers of them, were killed along with their wives and children, and land was just taken over for the masses of people. What went on was startling to the average person. And so there was this idea, “Where did it come from?”
And of course, Freud, being very influenced by the early development of the theories of evolution, said that people all contained within themselves, on a cellular level, a tendency towards being animal-like, and there was a need to curb these tendencies and control them. And so the ideas of using psychology to manipulate the masses was a very popular idea amongst the political elites and the industrialists, the wealthy class.
So probably the first person (and we’re talking about in the world) who was to take Freud’s ideas about human beings and use these ideas to manipulate the masses was a nephew of Freud. His name was Eddie Bernays. Now most people have never heard of him, and he was probably one of the most influential people in modern history in the last few hundred years. He has done more to change the world and to influence people’s lives than almost anyone else, and yet he’s hardly known.
And what he did was to show American corporations, for the first time, how they could make people want things which they didn’t need. You make people want things that they don’t need by linking mass-produced goods to people’s unconscious desires. So–and I’ll give you some examples of this.
But there was this pervasive—amongst the elites, the ruling elites of the world—there was this pervasive political idea of how to control the masses. And it had to do with “satisfying people’s inner selfish desires,” by doing that, “one made them happy and thus docile. It was the start of the all-consuming self which has come,” as they stated in this documentary,“…has come to dominate our world today”; the importance of the self, the individual, and my personal appetites.
And they stated that,
“By stimulating people’s inner desires and then satisfying them with consumer products, [Bernays] was creating a new way to manage the irrational force of the masses.”
And he called it engineering consent. And we’re talking here about the 1920s, when these ideas came into bloom. Prior to the 1920s advertising existed but it was simply—advertisements were simply to show people a product’s practical virtues and nothing more. They just showed what it could do, and how long it could last, and that was what advertising was, practically speaking.
Eddie Bernays had already become a consultant to the president of the United States, and he had utilized these techniques of mind control to convince the American public that it was a good thing to become involved in the 1st World War. And then after that he used similar methods in the media to promote Woodrow Wilson as being (if it was Woodrow Wilson? I think it was Woodrow Wilson) to being like the saviour of the world, and to promote the idea of democracies throughout Europe. Because up until the first world war Europe was largely ruled by kings and limited parliaments or houses of representatives.
Coming back to America, and during the war the industrialists, there was this explosion in production because when you make stuff for war, and everything gets blown up, it’s fantastic, then you just have to make new stuff again. And the people that are paying for it, they go out on a limb, because everything is such a crisis. They have to win, and so hook or crook, they will come up with funds. And so the manufacturers were all in heaven. It was just like there had never been a time like this. They were working practically 24/7 a lot of places, manufacturing everything that you could think of. And so there was this now gloomy state that now that the war was over what’s going to happen to all the industrial production?
Bernays proposed that he could use his techniques, based on Freud’s psychoanalysis of people and of the masses, and now alter people’s consumption habits. This was his proposal. And he was engaged to—the first thing that he was engaged to do was to persuade women to smoke cigarettes. The tobacco industry were a little unhappy because women generally didn’t smoke. It was considered a male thing, and so they were missing out on half of the potential consumer population. And so Eddie Bernays said, “Okay, I’ll take the job if you will allow me to engage psychologists.” And so they agreed, and there was budget for this. And what he did was, in consultation with them, developed a strategy to bring this change about, in one foul swoop.
It was an Easter day parade in New York, which was always considered a big social event. Everybody came out. There were floats and marching bands and everything. And this was at the time of women’s suffrage movement, women demanding the right to vote. And a large number of socialites were going to be—rich debutantes—they were going to be involved in marching in this parade as a protest. So Eddie Bernays approached them, and he had them—convinced them to hide cigarettes in their clothing. And then he was going to give them a signal, and on his signal they would all pull out their cigarettes and light them up in front of everybody and march down the road smoking in this parade. And that was considered utterly scandalous.
And Eddie Bernays spoke with the media. I mean he was a master of media manipulation. He got a pool of media together, and he told them something of great importance was about to take place; that they should stick with him, and he said that what was going to happen would be an extraordinary display of protest by women who were going to be lighting up “torches of freedom.” That was the words that he used. And so on his command all the women whipped out the cigarettes, lit them up and puffed away down the road. And every single major newspaper, not just in America, but in Europe as well, carried photos of women marching down the road smoking, and all of them used the term women were “lighting up torches of freedom.”
And of course, this became the—with the rise in the early feminist movement this was a way to stick it to men, and so it became a display of how you were equal to a man. And of course, what people didn’t see behind it all was just gross manipulation, that you were going to now become addicted to nicotine, a powerfully addictive substance, and you were going to line the pockets of the cigarette companies for decades to come, and it would become a great cause of death for people.
So he displayed his ability to do this, and everyone jumped on board. Now he became fabulously wealthy by designing ways in which people could use advertising as a way to create desire. In the very early 1920s these ideas that he was promoting were really picked up by everybody in business industry and in the banks, especially the banking industry. And a leading wall street banker, his name was Paul Mazer of Lehman Brothers, in an article that he wrote in one of the leading newspapers, he openly stated,
“We must shift America from a needs to a desire’s culture. People must be trained to desire, to want new things even before the old have been entirely consumed. We must shape a new mentality in America. Man’s desires must overshadow his needs.”
I mean it’s about as blatant as you can get. And we’re talking about a massive social shift where people were generally quite frugal, they didn’t buy things that they didn’t need, they wouldn’t replace things until they were worn out, and of course all of that was to change, where people learned first that, “Yes, I should buy things.”
I mean it was Eddie Bernays who introduced the idea that the clothing that you wear should express your individuality. This is just a concept that he dreamed up, and he sold it to the world. And up until today everybody is very much engaged with that idea, not knowing that it came out of Eddie Bernays’s head, and he has sold it to the world.
So by 1927, just a few years later, the transformation was so pronounced it was like they unleashed this consumption monster. It became so pronounced, the change, that an American journalist wrote,
“A change has come over our democracy. It’s called consumptionism. The American citizen’s first importance to his country is now no longer that of a citizen, but that of a consumer.”
What an extraordinary transformation! I mean just from a sociological point of view, and more so from a spiritual point of view, where the importance of the individual to a country was not that you were a citizen within that country, that society, but rather that you were a consumer.
Just one year later the whole business of advertising and public relations, which was a term Eddie Bernays called—when he was earlier using the term, described his craft as propaganda, but after the 1st [World] War that was like a bad word. It became a bad word. So he dreamed up a word to replace it. It was called “public relations.” And then it become so powerful that at a convention of public relations and advertising people, they invited the President, the newly elected President of America, Herbert Hoover to attend and to speak. And they were already so powerful that the president gladly came, and in his address to these people he said,
“You [meaning all the people here and this craft] have taken over the job of creating desire and have transformed people into constantly moving happiness machines. Machines which have become the key to economic progress.”
I mean when we hear about these things, and some of you have heard me speak about it before, I mean it’s—the history of this is just astonishing, and people today just have no idea of this transformation that has taken place, because most of us grew up in an era where this had become the standard, this had become what everybody was doing, and we didn’t actually know what it was like to live in another time when these weren’t the values.
I’m going to read you a little passage from the film, and I think it’s important to listen to because what it does, it demonstrates the arrogance and the contempt that the elites of society have for you and I, for the masses in general.
“Bernays had manipulated the American people, but he had done so because he, like many others in the time believed that the interests of business and the interests of America were indivisible…”
So that’s pretty astonishing, that he’s basically thought the more business can prosper the better it is for the America’s interests.
“…and especially when faced with the threat of communism.”
So this was a period of time when the world had divided now into two spheres: the capitalist and the communist world.
“…But Bernays was convinced that to explain this rationally to the American people was impossible because they were not rational. Instead one had to touch on their inner fears and manipulate them in the interest of higher truth, and he called this the engineering of consent.”
And then a really interesting comment from Eddie Bernays’s daughter Anne. Later in life she said that Eddie
“… was doing it for the American way of life to which he was devoted, sincerely devoted,” she stated, “…And yet he felt the people were really pretty stupid. And that’s the paradox. If you don’t leave it up to the people themselves but force them to choose what you want them to choose, however subtly, then it’s not democracy anymore, it’s something else, it’s being told what to do. It’s the old authoritarian thing.”
So I mean pretty interesting, and a bit of a revelation, from Eddie Bernays’s own daughter later in life, who spoke that way of her father.
What we saw come out of this time was—and what is happening up until today—is a real loss of autonomy. We don’t realize that other people are deciding for us what is fashionable and what is cool and what is important. And that is not good. I mean it was amazing how you see—like here in New Zealand and Australia the surfer thing is big time; and as that market grew, then companies came out with the “rad” stuff, I mean, Stassi and Quiksilver and… And what people don’t see, what people actually don’t see is, in all the fields—and not just in that, I mean in fashion itself, that you have people deciding what, in a year and a half from now, are going to be the fashionable colours, and what are going to be the fashionable styles. And they sit around and agree on things, and then everybody pretty much goes with it.
And so when the autumn season comes, or the summer, or the spring, or whatever, and you get the new lines of clothing with the new colours, and you are told, it is very fashionable, it’s very cool to have this kind of sneakers to wear, these kind of articles of clothing, to wear this kind of hat and put it sideways on your head. It’s not happening spontaneously. We are being fed all of these things, and people are buying into it, and everybody’s buying into and not realizing that we’re just like dumb puppets who are told, “Okay this is cool. This is far out. This is desirable.” And everybody nods their head and goes along with it.
One of my spiritual teachers spoke about (and this was back in the mid to late 80s) he spoke about how media was so powerful, and yet at the same time it was very frightening how that power was exercised. He stated,
“Although the media has undisputed power to influence people’s decisions and they are in control of the public mind, unfortunately they are for the greater part without any conscience.”
This is what Eddie Bernays had started. You do things fundamentally to make money, and you don’t consider whether things are good or bad. If they produce wealth, if money is generated and people are kind of like, having their desires, which were created by others, satisfied, then everything is good. Everything is good. We’re all happy-happy. Just getting along.
And so increasingly we saw through the 20th century this erosion of moral principles, the abandonment of religion, because it became all about the individual and their desires, and anybody that wanted to rain on your parade and tell you something was not good, or bad, they were rejected. And so a lot of guiding principles that have guided societies for so long (maybe not perfectly, but they were of enormous value. They may not have been applied perfectly, but the principles are amazingly wonderful) became thrown out.
There was a famous economist from Britain, E.F. Schumacher, who spoke about this transformation in a book that he wrote in the 70s. He felt that society had now embarked upon a course that will lead to its destruction. And we’re seeing this with the fact that everybody’s complaining about climate change and the need to do all of these things to try and save the planet, yet nobody can stop using and consuming. They want to try and find green ways to do stuff, but they don’t want to change their lifestyle. They don’t want to change the course that we’re all heading on. And E.F. Schumacher spoke about how economists had promoted the idea, how envy of what others have and greed for more are the two things that need to be cultivated in the world, in society, in order to propel economic growth. And he wrote,
“The modern economy is propelled by a frenzy of greed and indulges in an orgy of envy, and these are not accidental features but are the very causes of its expansionist success. [the expansion of the economy] And the question is whether such causes can be effective for long or whether they carry within themselves the seeds of destruction.”
And of course, it was the methods—while the economists very much approved of the idea—of cultivating envy. I mean that’s what advertising is based on. You look at what somebody else has got and how more perfect they are becoming in their happiness and their life, and you desire it, you envy what they have, and you want it. This is envy. And greed means, even though I have enough, I will not stop consuming. I must go on to the next thing—that these things were cultivated consciously. The use of psychology to engineer people’s desires is the foundation of modern life.
And once again another quote from my spiritual master, Jagad Guru Siddhaswarupananda,
“It can be seen that while the media and advertising people may not fully appreciate this science, the science of manipulating others, they are aware of how it works, and they use it to control people’s minds and to exploit them. Due to their own lust for material gain and following, they don’t use their power to good effect. They want a society of animals because animals are easier to control and exploit than intelligent people. This, for example, is the whole strategy of advertising. Excite people’s gross senses, and then they’ll buy your product.”
Create desire. In the Bhagavad-gita there is an amazing verse that speaks to this process. The foundation of lust or intense selfish desire develops in this way. It is stated that,
“By contemplating the objects of the senses one develops attachment, from attachment comes lust.”
So this is the beginning of a process that’s talked about. And so they know that just by dangling things in front of people that they stimulate desire. Finding the right way to dangle them, finding the right lighting, the right appeal, the right persons who say, ‘Yeah, this has changed my life.” or “I’m a really successful star, and I’m using this.” They don’t say it that way but that’s what the message is. And of course, it leads and is leading to a real breakdown of the world and of people’s happiness and this rise in purposelessness.
Yet another quote from one of my spiritual masters,
“People are already feeling alienated from everyone else in society…”
—and this this is another statement that was made in the 1980s. It was already evident then and so much worse now.
“People are already feeling alienated from everyone else in society. They are already small and powerless in the face of the powers that be. The media should not increase this. They should give people the chance to express what they are really seeing and feeling. But instead they increase paranoia and separation. They create a feeling of ‘us’ and ‘them.’”
And so that’s become even more pronounced with social media now and all of these different sociological sort of changes that are happening and the attempt to build a better world without any clear guidelines. I mean that’s practically what’s going on now. The guideline is desire. Their God has become desire. If I desire to do it, I not only should be allowed to, but you should support me in my wanting to do it, whatever it is. Desire has become like God. And much of the desires in people’s minds have been engineered in different ways. They are not organic, and they’re often not at all spiritual, but leading in another way.
So this is the foundation of where things are now and where things are heading, and I think it’s important for people to be aware of these things. We need to be more conscious and purposeful in our life and our life’s choices.
And so this is what, as I mentioned, my wishes for you, for all of us, is that we grow in our autonomy, in our resilience, in our happiness and in becoming more purposeful, having a more purposeful life. And the way that is going to happen is with a growth of spiritual understanding and spiritual principles that lead people from the darkness of ignorance into the light of enlightenment.
So next week we’ll be looking at the current time in which we live, and how the science of mass mind control has grown in this world of social media and the “metaverse.” Of course, we’re going to talk about solutions; that’s a really big part of it. But while some of these things may seem a little bit dark and gloomy, we need a wake-up call. If we don’t, if we don’t wake up, then it’s like a herd of, as they say in the saying, herd of lemmings going over the cliff. Not a good sight.
I may re-post that brilliant cartoon that’s done to the, (what do they call? Moby and the Pacific something choir?) and the song is called Lost in the World. So I will re-post it, and do take a look at it again because it’s a powerful critique of what’s happening to society, how, in the world of becoming more connected, we are actually becoming more disconnected; disconnected from each other, disconnected from the earth upon which we live, disconnected from our spiritual identity, disconnected from God. It’s very sad, but it doesn’t have to be that way.
So I invite you to join with me, and we will chant. I’ll use the mantra ‘Aum Hari Aum.’ I’ll sing the mantra twice and then you can join.