domenica 18 settembre 2011

Gayatri, the most sacred of all mantras

Bhur bhuvah svah
Tat Savitur varenyam
Bhargo devasya dhimahi
Dhiyo yo nah prachodayat


It's the most sacred mantra of the Vedas, the most powerful prayer of the Hindu tradition. That is the Gayatri, the hymn addressed to Savitri, the Sun (sometimes called Surya), the gifter of life.

The correct Sanskrit pronunciation should be as follows:
Bur buva suaà,
Tat Savitur variniam
Barga-ever devasiadi
God Iona praciodayàt
This is one translation:

Glory to Savitri, the excellent, the effulgent of the divine,
let us meditate upon it.
May it inspire us with understanding, who is Gayatri

Other free translation:

Terrestrial sphere, the sphere of space, the celestial sphere!
Contemplate the splendor of the spirit solar
the divine creator.
May he guide our spirits.
We could find this mantra in the Rig Veda, the oldest of all Vedas (Rig Veda III, 62-10), and we could say that the Gayatri is the Lord's Prayer in Hinduism, the dvija, the twice-born, i.e. the adults of the three the upper castes must play at least twice a day, preferably three.
The Gayatri - as also taught the Manusmriti, the Treaty of Manu on ethical standards - are taught and assigned to the boy at the time of initiation during the sacrament of Upanayana for those who become so dvija (brahmana, kshatriya and vaishta) and it is recited in two twilights: at aurora, standing and facing east until you see the sunrise and sunset, sitting and facing west until you can see the constellations.
"Whoever recites this verse every day for three years - continues Manu - reach the ultimate reality" and in any case, repeating this mantra takes away past sins.
This prayer takes its name from the classic to the Vedic twenty-four syllables (three times eight).
This is called Gayatri mantra  when it is recited at aurora, and Savitri, when it is recited at noon and Saraswati at sunset.
The Gayatri is also known as Vedmata, mother of the four Vedas because it contains the essence of Vedas and Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita says "Amongst mantras, I am the Gayatri".
From a mythological point of view Saraswati and Gayatri are goddesses, wives of Brahma.

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