Chant Box lowdown
November 11, 2008 10:37 AM   Subscribe

On a whim I bought a cheap electronic Buddhist Chant Box off Ebay--Not FM3's Buddha Machine, but one of the myriad (so I'm led to understand) cheap boxes sold outside temples in China.

My son has become obsessed with the thing and will sit for hours listening to the chanting loops on it. He and I both would be very interested in finding more info about them, as well as further resources to acquire other examples. My google-fu has failed terribly in finding anything more than cursory mentions of them on various websites. So:

1. Can anyone point me to websites which might have more in-depth discussions of these things. Non-English sites would be fine.

2. Are there places online besides ebay and specialty Buddhist websites which sell a wide variety of them?
posted by Chrischris to Society & Culture (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Our local Buddhist center sells them. You might try that in your area or more asian product oriented stores.
posted by nougat at 11:08 AM on November 11, 2008

They're just a speaker in a box with a chip that's been loaded with seamless loops of sound, so while you cannot hear when it begins or ends, it's actually just playing one track (for FM3's they are usually <1min in length) over and over again ad infinitum.
posted by tybeet at 2:00 PM on November 11, 2008

Best answer: Hope this isn't telling you something you already know, but they're usually set to repeat a phrase using the Chinese name of Amitabha (Namu O-mi-tuo-fo), a practise that is regarded as accumulating merit (Buddhanet has some mp3s of various styles of chant). Your son is almost certainly destined to be a great lion of compassion :p
posted by Abiezer at 3:29 PM on November 11, 2008

Best answer: sells a number of different buddha boxes - I bought the 12-song version earlier this year and enjoy listening to it now and then. I'm tempted to try the Tibetan version!
posted by moonmilk at 7:36 PM on November 11, 2008

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