Roshi Jan Chozen Bays on Emergency Measures

If our mind is headed in a direction that we know is leading to suffering and is already causing suffering, we need some emergency measures. And mantra is just such an emergency measure. It qualifies as distraction and it qualifies as substitution. So we take words that are wholesome… leading to our happiness… ultimately to our enlightenment. And we use those wholesome words to substitute for words that are causing us distress.”

— Roshi Jan Chozen Bays