PART II: An Introduction to the Gayatri Mantra

Gayatri Mantra (GUY-ah-tree) is one of the most known and beneficial of the ancient Sanskrit mantras. Gayatri is a mantra of physical, emotional, and mental healing, purifying the subtle karmas, protection from the onslaught of obstacles, and of spiritual awakening or Self-realization.

Aum Bhur Bhuva Svah
Tat Savitur Varenyam
Bhargo Devasya Dhimahi
Dhiyo Yo Naha Prachodayat

On the absolute reality and its planes,
On that finest spiritual light,
We meditate, as remover of obstacles
That it may inspire and enlighten us.

———————————————————————————

For further Analysis:

The First Word Om (Aum)

It is also called Pranav because its sound emanates from the Prana (vital vibration), which feels the Universe. The scripture says “Aum Iti Ek Akshara Brahman” (Aum that one syllable is Brahman).

When you pronounce AUM:
A – emerges from the throat, originating in the region of the navel
U – rolls over the tongue
M – ends on the lips

It is the sum and substance of all the words that can emanate from the human throat. It is the primordial fundamental sound symbolic of the Universal Absolute.

The “Vyahrities”: Bhuh, Bhuvah & Svah

The above three words of the Gayatri, which literally means “past,” “present,” and “future,” are called Vyahrities. Vyahriti is that which gives knowledge of entire cosmos or “ahriti”. The scripture says: “Visheshenh Aahritih sarva viraat, praahlaanam prakashokaranh vyahritih”. Thus, by uttering these three words, the chanter contemplates the Glory of God that illumines the three worlds or the regions of experience.

There are a number of meanings of the three main words of this mantra given in the scriptures:

Various meanings of the words used in the Gayatri Mantra

Bhuh Bhuvah Svah
Earth Atmosphere Beyond Atmosphere
Past Present Future
Morning Noon Evening
Tamas Rajas Sattwa
Gross Subtle Causal

 

The Remaining Words

  • Tat simply means “that” because it defies description through speech or language, the “Ultimate Reality.”
  • Savitur means “Divine Sun” (the ultimate light of wisdom) not to be confused with the ordinary sun.
  • Varenium means “adore”
  • Bhargo means “illumination”
  • Devasya means “Divine Grace”
  • Dheemahi means “we contemplate”
  • Dhi means intellect
  • Yo means “who”
  • Nah means “ours”
  • Prachodayat means “requesting / urging / praying”

The last five words constitute the prayer for “Final Liberation” or Moksha through the awakening of our true intelligence.

 

Reasons for Reincarnation

Hindus provide several reasons why the jiva takes on various physical bodies:[99]

Ultimately goal is the attainment of moksha: By the grace and compassion of God or a God-realized guru, a jiva, soul, gets a human body to purge itself of the layers of base instincts.[100]

 

Source:

http://hinduism.about.com/od/prayersmantras/a/The-Gayatri-SourceMantra.htm


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