Suppose we were given a sacred formula, a powerful mantra for awakening consciousness. Say that this open sesame came from one who had the most profound understanding of the creative and evocative power of sound. Were we to use this inspired prescription, would it be effective?
Perhaps the answer is in the analogy of art. We may have the finest instrument, but unless we are able to access our creative powers, the instrument is of limited usefulness. In a meditative sense, we are the instruments and our ability to focus consciousness in a certain way is crucial. Therefore, soulless repetition—even of a great formulation–will have little meaning or power. Likewise, a great song sung without enthusiasm is stripped of most of its value. A great artist puts themselves into their work in a profound way, and they sing or speak from a higher space where true consciousness is behind voice. So also with sound and the art of meditation.