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By Swami Harshananda

Sometimes transliterated as: Manasa-snana, MAnasa-snAna, Maanasa-snaana

Mānasa-snāna literally means ‘mental bath’.

Before the performance of any ritualistic act, taking snāna or a bath is compulsory. However, sometimes due to some valid reasons like illness, decrepitude (due to old-age) or non-availability of facilities to take bath, it is not possible to fulfill this requirement. Under such circumstances, the dharmaśāstras have provided some alternatives like mantra- snāna and mānasa-snāna.

  • In mantrasnāna one has to sprinkle a little water on the head with the repetition of the mantra ‘āpo hi ṣṭhā mayo bhuvah....’[1]
  • In mānasa-snāna, one has simply repeat in the mind any name of Lord Viṣṇu and feel that he has been purified by that divine name.


  1. Ṛgveda 10.9.1-3
  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore