Gayatri Mantra: Illumine us

Last updated on Nov 21, 2008

Posted on Nov 21, 2008

VK has mentioned Gayatri mantra that his family recites at almost every time – meals and other times.  Let us talk about the mantra.  Here it is:

ॐ भूर्भुवः स्वः ।
   तत् सवितुर्वरेण्यं ।
   भर्गो देवस्य धीमहि ।
   धियो यो नः प्रचोदयात् ॥

Or in English:

oṃ bhūr bhuvaḥ svaḥ
   tat savitur vareṇyaṃ
   bhargo devasya dhīmahi
   dhiyo yo naḥ prachodayāt

Here is the word for word translation:

* om The mystical Om syllable.
   * bhū “earth”prithvi
   * bhuvas “atmosphere”antariksha
   * svar “light, heaven”beyond antariksha
   * tat “that”
   * savitur devasya “of Savitr, the god” (genitives of savitr-, ‘stimulator, rouser; name of a sun-deity’ and deva- ‘god’ or ‘demi-god’)
   * varenyam accusative of varenya- “desirable, excellent, fit to be adopted”
   * bhargo “radiance, lustre, splendour, glory”
   * devasya “divine”
   * dhīmahi “may we attain” (1st person plural middle optative of dhā- ‘set, bring, fix’ etc.)
   * dhiyaḥ naḥ “our prayers” (accusative plural of dhi- ‘thought, meditation, devotion, prayer’ and naḥ enclitic personal pronoun)
   * yaḥ pracodayāt “who may stimulate” (nominative singular of relative pronoun yad-; causative 3rd person of pra-cud- ‘set in motion, drive on, urge, impel’)

And a little easier meaning is:

We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May He enlighten our Intellect.

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