Gayatri Mantra

Posted January 25th, 2013 by Erin under Chants, Yoga Philosophy.

Om bhur bhuvah svah
tat-savitur varenyam
bhargo devasya dhimahi
dhiyo yo nah pracodayat

The Gayatri Mantra is a sanskrit verse based on a hymn from the Rigveda. Savitur means ‘of the sun’. This chant is a chant to the God of the sun, Savitri. It is said to be a prayer that brings the sun into the heart. As a poetic verse, there are many translations available. Often is is a nice practice to look at multiple translations an see which one is resonant for you. Here is a translation of the words [1]

tat–that (God)
savitur–of the sun
varenyam–the best
bhargo (bhargas)–light, illumination
dhimahi–let us meditate (a verb)
dhiyo (dhiyah)–thought(s)
yo (yah)–which
nah–of us, our
pracodayat–May it push, inspire (a verb)

This mantra can also be used in meditation, or samyama, on Sutra III.26 (or III.27 in some translations) from The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali:

bhuvana-jnanam surye samyamat

By performing samyama on the sun arises knowledge of the different realms in the universe.

(Translation: Edwin Bryant)

By Samyama on the sun the yogi will have knowledge of the seven worlds, and of the seven cosmic centers of the body*

(Translation B.K.S Iyengar)

*the seven chakras: muladhara (seat of the anus), svadhistana (sacral area), manipuraka (navel), anhata (heart), visuddhi (throat), ajna (eyebrow center), sahasrara (crown of the head)

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