From the Discourses of Bhagavan Sri
Sathya Sai Baba
Gayathri Manthra should be chanted 3
times a day - 4 to 8 AM, 4 to 8 PM are Sattvik times. 8AM to 4PM
is Rajsik. 8PM to 4AM is Tamasik.
The best time to chant Gayathri is around 6AM, 12 Noon and 6PM.
Goddess Gaythri confers the boon of Intelligence as Gayathri,
Protection as Savithri and Learning as Saraswathi. Gayathri is
therefore called Sarvadevata Swarupini.
By chanting at least twice a day - morning and evening - the sin
committed unknowingly that day are destroyed and left over Karma
is burnt. The person gets closer and closer to Divinity.
Chant the Mantra 3 times when you are having a bath - it will
serve the dual purpose of chanting as well as performing Abisheka
to the Mantra. Chant 3 times before eating - you would have not
only purified the food, but also offered the food to the Mantra.
If you do it everyday, you need not chant any other Mantra. It
protects you from calamities and confers upon you intelligence,
learning and success.
Just as the sun dispels darkness, it drives out the ignorance,
indolence and sloth in you. It will aid in developing Prajnana,
Sujnana and Vijnana. I WISH that you chant Gayathri at least 2
times a day during your lifetime."
(from the book 'Sri Satya Sai, Anandadayi')
Gayathri is the
mother of all vedas, protector of all living beings. You should
realize the truth that you have had a second birth after
initiation into Gayathri mantra. This Gayathri mantra has to be
chanted three times a day. The best time to chant Gayathri is
around 6 am, 12 noon and 6 pm. Goddess Gayathri manifests in three
phases and confers the boon of intelligence as Goddess Gayathri,
protection as Goddess Savitri and learning as Goddess Sarasvati.
Gayathri is therefore called sarva devata svarupini. By chanting
the name of the mantra at least twice a day - in the morning and
in the evening - the sins committed unknowingly that day are
destroyed and the left over karma is burnt. The person gets
purified and in the course of time gets closer and closer to
Nowadays many people say they do not have the time for Gayathri
japa. It is not a question of lack of time. It is a lack of
interest. Anyone who has a will to do, can do it atleast twice
daily. Chant the mantra when you are having a bath - it will serve
the dual purpose of chanting the mantra as well as performing
abisheka to the mantra. Chant the mantra thrice befor eating the
lunch - you would have not only purified the food, but also made
the food as naivedya to the mantra. Repeat the same in the evening.
If you do it everyday, you need not have to chant any other mantra.
You will be making your lives sacred. Gayathri is all-powerful and
protects you from calamities and confers upon you intelligence,
learning and success.
- Swami in the book "Sathya Sai Anandadayi"
By Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba
- February 10, 2000
Sanctify Your Life By Chanting
This is the most auspicious moment of
your life. Human life can be compared to a four-storeyed mansion. The
four storeys correspond to four stages of man’s life. namely,
Brahmachaarya, Grihastha, Vanaprastha and Sanyaasa (celibate,
householder, recluse and renunciant.) Today you are laying the
foundation of the mansion of your life. The safety and security of the
mansion is assured once you make the foundation strong and sturdy.
Gayatri – the Mother of the Vedas
Man has four births. His first birth
takes place from his mother’s womb. He gets a second life when he is
initiated into the Gayathri Mantra. His third birth occurs when he
learns the Vedas. He becomes a Brahmin when he recognises the
principle of Brahman. This is his fourth birth. One becomes a Brahmin
not merely by birth, but by knowing the nature of Brahman ., For this,
chanting of Gayatri Mantra is very essential.
Man is the embodiment of all gods. In
fact, the gross form of the food that man consumes refers to the
principle of Brahma. On this basis, it is said. "Annam Brahma, Raso
Vishnu" (food is Brahma and the essence is Vishnu). The subtle form of
the food denotes the principle of Vishnu. The subtlest form symbolises
the principle of Easwara. The gross part of the food strengthens the
body. The subtle part of the food strengthens the mind and the
subtlest part of the food purifies the speech. Therefore, food place a
vital role in strengthening and purifying the body , mind and speech.
Gayathri is Sarvadevata Swaroopini
and Sarvamantra Swaroopini (Embodiment of all Gods and all Mantras) It
is said, Gayathri Chhandasam Matha, meaning Gayathri is the mother of
vedas. There is no need to chant any other mantra if you chant the
Gayathri Mantra. Gayathri has three names: Gayathri, Savithri and
Saraswathi. Gayantham Trayate ithi Gayathri (Gayathri protects the one
who recites it). Gayathri is the master of the senses. Savithri is the
presiding deity of the life principle. When Gayathri acts as the
protector of life force, she is known as Savitri. You might have heard
the story of Savithri, a woman of chastity, who brought her dead
husband, Satyavaan, back to life with the power of her prayer.
Savithri protects those who lead a life of Sathya (truth). This is the
inner meaning. Saraswathi is the presiding deity of speech. Man has to
earn the grace of Gayathri, Savithri and Saraswathi to sanctify his
First and foremost, man has to purify
his speech. Only then will his life be safe and secure. If you slip
and fall, the injury can be cured, but the injury caused by the slip
of the tongue is incurable. It will make your life miserable. So, you
should have control over your speech. Excessive talk will lead to
untruth and unpleasantness. That is why the ancient saints and seers
used to observe silence. You can uphold truth and attain fame only by
talking less. Limited talk will confer happiness. Excessive talk will
put you to grave dangers.
Gayathri, Savithri and Saraswathi are
latent in everybody. Bhur. Bhuvah and Suvah in the Gayathri, Mantra
refer to body (materialisation), life-force (vibration) and soul (radiation).
Bhur means Bhuloka (the earth), which is nothing but the combination
of materials. This denotes the human body, which is also a combination
of materials. Bhuvah refers to the life-force which makes the body
vibrate. Suvah refer to Pragnyana Shakti, which sustains the life
force. This Pragnyana Shakti is known as Constant Integrated Awareness.
This is also termed as radiation. All the three, viz. Materialisation,
vibration and radiation are present in man. I tell you often, you are
not one, but three – the one you think you are (physical body), the
one others think you are (mental body) and the one you really are (Atma).
Heart should be Pure and
Human life is the combination of
body, mind and Atma. Body is the basis for attaining wisdom. So, it
should not be misused. One has to purify one’s body and mind by
undertaking sacred actions. The principle of Atma is always pure and
unsullied. Human life is highly sacred. Janthunam Nara-janma Durlabham
(human birth is the rarest of all beings). Sareeramadyam Khalu Dharma
Sadhanam (body indeed is the first medium for the pursuit of Dharma)
Do not underestimate the potentialities of human body. In fact, human
body is the basis for attaining the goal of life.
Work for the redemption of your life
by chanting the Divine Name and undertaking sacred activities. You
need not make any special effort to acquire the human values, namely,
Sathya, Dharma, Santhi, Prema and Ahimsa. They are with you right from
your birth. But you have forgotten them, as you have not put them into
practice. Instead of giving tons of speeches, it is better that you
practise at least an ounce of what you have learnt. Today humanness is
on the decline because man does not practise human values. Man is
developing Asalu (desires), forgetting Adarsalu (ideals). His
attachment to the body is becoming stronger, whereas his attachment to
the spirit is on the decline. No doubt, attachment to the body is
essential. But it is desirable only when it comes to performing
You should give up Dehabhimanam (attachment
to the body) and cultivate Deshabhimanam (spirit of patriotism) After
Ravana was annihilated, Lakshmana prayed to Rama to rule over Lanka.
He said. "Brother, it is not proper on our part to disturb Bharata,
who is ruling over Ayodhya. Moreover, the kingdom of Lanka is more
affluent and beautiful than Ayodhya. So, it is my humble prayer that
you should become the King of Lanka." Vibheeshana too fell at the feet
of Rama, saying, "Swami, I surrender myself, my wealth and the kingdom
at your Lotus Feet." But Rama was not carried away by the affluence of
Lanka. He said, " Janani Janma Bhoomischa Swargadapi Gareeyasi ( the
mothe and the motherland are greater than even the heaven). I cannot
leave my motherland even if it is not that affluent as Lanka." This
shows the love and respect Rama had for His motherland.
Himachala ( the Himalayas) forms the
northern boundary of Bharat. ‘Hima’ means ice. It is white in colour
and melts easily. Whiteness symbolises purity. ‘Achala’ means that
which is steady. Your Hridaya (heart) should also be like Himachala,
pure and steady. It should melt with compassion. Hri + Daya = Hridaya.
Daya means compassion. God resides in your heart only when it is pure,
steady and full of compassion. But today human heart has lost purity,
compassion and steadiness due to limitless desires. Life is a long
journey and your desires are the luggage. "Less luggage, more comfort
make travel a pleasure". The journey of life will become enjoyable
only when you reduce the luggage of desires. The lesser the desires
are, the happier you will be. The Gaythri Mantra teaches that you
should offer everything to God. Sarva Karma Bhagavad Preethyartham (perform
all your actions to please God). Only then you will be free from all
difficulties and hardships.
Spiritual education is True
The Vedas declare: "Maathru Devo
Bhava, Pithru Devo Bhava" (revere the mother and the father as God.) I
keep telling the students very often that their blood, food, head and
Dhuddu (money) are all the gifts of the mother. So, first and foremost,
one should show gratitude to the mother. You should never forget your
mother who gave you birth after carrying you in her womb for nine
months and brought you up providing all care and comfort, unmindful of
her own discomforts. The mother always has your wellbeing uppermost in
her mind in whatever she says or does. You may be highly educated and
your mother may be illiterate, but still you should have utmost regard
for her. You should consider the teachings of your mother as the Veda
Gayathri is the embodiment of the
mother – principle. You should chant the Gayathri Mantra everyday, in
the morning, noon and evening. These are referred to as Praata Sandhya
, Madhyahna Sandhya and Saayam Sandhya. When your back is towards the
Sun, your shadow will be in front of you. It will fall behind you only
when you stand facing the Sun. Similarly, Maya (illusion) which is
like your shadow, will overpower you when you turn your mind away from
God. It can be overcome only when you turn your mind towards God.
Due to the impact of Kali Yuga and
the advancement of modern education, man’s intellect is getting
perverted. There is no point in acquiring education bereft of
character. Worldly education, which comprises mere bookish knowledge,
can never help you to lead a divine life. No doubt, worldly education
is essential, but along with worldly education one should have
spiritual education too. "Adhyatma Vidya Vidyanam," Spiritual
education is the true education. "Nadinam Sagaro Gatih" ( rivers
ultimatly merge in the ocean). Worldly education is like rivers and
rivulets, while spiritual education is like a mighty ocean. So, of all
the forms of education, spiritual education is the highest and the
noblest. Today even the highly educated parents are acting without any
sense of discrimination. They discourage their children from
worshipping God and participating in Bhajans. They tell them that they
would have ample time to think of God after retirement. This is a
grave mistake. "Start early, drive slowly, reach safely." One can
remember God in old age only when one thinks of Him right from one’s
Childhood is the right age to
contemplate on God. This is the golden age as it is a very sacred age.
Do not misuse it. Some parents want their children to go abroad
immediately after the completion of their graduation. What is there in
foreign countries that is not available in Bharat? In fact, that which
is not present in Bharat is not present anywhere else in the world.
Most of the students who go abroad to pursue higher studies develop
perverted minds and lose their character. I have Myself seen that many
students who went abroad lost their character. Only a few of them
returned to Bharat with good character. People send their children
abroad because they want them to become Dhanavantulu (wealthy), but
not Gunavanthulu (virtuous). Money may provide all the comforts and
conveniences, but can it confer mental peace? No. Only spirituality
can grant peace of mind.
Today people are crazy to go to
foreign countries, whereas the foreigners themselves are coming to
Bharat in search of peace of mind. They have all the material comforts,
but lack peace of mind. They have money in abundance. Excessive money
gives rise to arrogance, which in turn leads to all wicked qualities.
So, one should not go abroad in search of wealth. One should remain in
Bharat if one wants to cultivate noble character. Take Swami’s own
example. Thousands of devotees have been praying to me to visit their
respective countries. But till today I have not even entertained the
thought of going abroad. What is the reason? Bharat is the centre of
all Dharmas. It is the land of sacred rituals and sacrifice. Here is a
small example. The train has an engine in the front and many
compartments attached to it. You will find coal, fire in the engine
only, and not in other compartments. Bharat can be compared to the
engine. (cheers). In Bharat alone you find the sacred fire of Yagnyas
and Yagas. The other countries are like different compartment attached
to Bharat, the engine. Some `compartments’ may get disjoined. What is
the reason? They do not have proper `link’ with the `engine’.
The culture of Bharat is highly sacred. The Bharatiyas should be
attached to their motherland; they should practise and propogate its
Upanayan Necessary at Early Age
Gayathri is known as Panchamuki,
meaning `five faces’. What are they? Om is the first face; Bhur Bhuvah
Suvah, the second; Tat Savitur Varenyam, the third; Bhargo Devasya
Dheemahi. The fourth; and Dhiyo Yo Na Prachodayat is the fifth.
Gayathri Manthra has three parts: praise, meditation and prayer.
First, the Divine is praised, then it is meditated upon in reverence
and lastly, prayer is offered to the Divine to dispel the darkness of
ignorance and to awaken and strengthen the intellect. Dheemahi relates
to the meditative aspect. Dhiyo Yo Na Prachodayat relates to the
prayer. Chanting of the Gayathri Mantra purifies the mind and confers
devotion, detachment and wisdom. Young men must necessarily chant the
Gayathri Mantra. Today we find that they get initiated into the
Gayathri Mantra at an advanced stage of their youth. Intellect will
blossom and shine in all its splendour after initiation into Gayathri
Mantra. That is why it is essential that Upanayanam is done at the age
of eight. One who is initiated into the Gayathri Mantra at an early
age will become highly intelligent. Man’s life will be sanctified by
chanting this Mantra.
It is because man does not think of
God with devotion and sincerity that fear and restlessness have become
the order of the day. Chanting of Divine Name alone can make one
fearless. God is referred to as Hiranyagarbha. Hiranya means gold.
Only when you place this ‘gold’ in your heart, can you get the jewels
of Sathya, Dharma, Santhi and Prema. Once God is installed in your
heart, only Divine feelings will originate from it. When sweet pudding
is poured into a vessel with a number of holes, what comes out of the
holes will also be sweet puddings. Likewise, when you fill your heart
Divinity, all your actions will become Divine. But man lacks faith in
Divinity. He has Swasa (breath), but Viswasa (faith). Such a life is
Evil Qualities are Gateways to
The youth should work for the
progress of the country. They should always help their fellowmen. Sage
Vyasa gave the essence of 18 Puranas thus:
Paropakara Punyaya Papaaya
Parapeedanam (one attains merit by serving others and commits sin by
hurting them). So, Help Ever, Hurt Never. This is the true devotion
and surrender. Devotion does not mean offering worship or doing
Bhajans. They are all external activities. All these are futile if
there is no inner purity. So develop Love.
Love is God, God is Love. So, :live
in Love. Love your parents. Serve them, obey their commands and
satisfy them. They have immense love for you. But, sometimes they may
try to put you on the wrong path unknowingly. In such a case, explain
to them, what is right and what is wrong and convince them. If they
want you to go abroad to earn more money, tell them that character is
important, not money. If you explain to them in a proper way there
will certainly be a transformation in them.
If you chant the Gayathri Mantra
wholeheartedly you will never face difficulties or hardship in life.
Chant the Divine name incessantly. You know the story of Prahaladha.
His father Hiranyakasipu commanded him to stop chanting the name of
Lord Narayana. Prahaaladha never argued with his father. He smilingly
listened to all that his father said but ultimately followed the
dictates of the his conscience. Huge elephants were let loose to
trample him under their feet, poisonous snakes were set on him to bite.
He was also pushed down from mountain cliffs, thrown into deep sea.
But never did he give up the chanting the Lord’s name. As a result,
the elephants, the poisonous snakes, mountain cliffs and the mighty
ocean transformed into Lord Narayana Himself. The Lord came to his
rescue whenever he was put to danger. Likewise, if you have Divine
feelings in your heart, God will protect you wherever you are. You
should have unwavering faith in Him and chant His name with Love.
Do not give scope to the evil
qualities of desire, anger and greed. They are like gateways to hell.
Ravana was highly educated and powerful. But he ruined his entire clan
and kingdom as he became a victim of Kama (desire). Hiranyakasipu
symbolised anger and ultimately ruined himself. Duryodhana was greed
personified and he too suffered the same fate as that of Ravana and
Hiranyakasipu./ You may have immense knowledge, wealth and valour, but
you are bound to suffer if you become a slave to anger, desire and
greed. Do not take pride in your wealth, physical strength and
education. Develop the strength of love. Love can transform even a foe
into a friend. Only through love can your life be redeemed.
Some people may argue that it is
foolish to believe in the existence of God whom you cannot see. But,
in fact, you are seeing God all the time, because the entire Universe
is the form of God. Right from microcosm to macrocosm, all forms are
His. The Vedas declare, "Eswara Sarva Bhoothanam"(God is present in
all beings). You are unable to see Him because you see nature from the
physical point of view. Give up the worldly feelings and see nature
with divine feelings. Then God will certainly manifest before you.
Just as fragrance is present in the flower, Divinity is latent in you.
Flower can be seen by the naked eye, but can anyone see its fragrance?
Mother loves the child, she has a form but her love has no form. That
Love is God.
Gayathri Mantra is highly sacred. As
Shahstrigaru pointed out, Gayathri Mantra contains the essence of all
the Mantras. Gayathri is the embodiment of all Gods and Goddesses.
Just as a single thread runs through all the flowers in a garland the
same divine power exists in all the God forms. Understand this unity
in diversity. One who has understood this unity will never be put to
suffering. Develop faith in God. Do not get carried away by what
others say. Follow the dictates of your conscience.
Today is a sacred day. In fact, it is
the foundation day of your life. Make this foundation strong and
sturdy. Then the mansion of life raised on this foundation will also
be strong and secured. This will give strength to the grand edifice of
our Nation. You should develop national and patriotic feelings. The
spirit of nationalism is absent in the youth of today. This is due to
the influence of those politicians who keep their self-interest above
the interest of the nation. But, you should be ready to sacrifice even
your life for the nation. This should be your ideal in life. If you
develop such lofty ideals, you are sure to experience Divinity.
If you have the strong desire to see
God, contemplate on Him with unwavering faith. Then you can certainly
see Him. Never doubt His existence. He exists for those who believe in
His existence and does not exist for those who deny His existence. He
acts according to your feelings. So, develop faith in Him. Chanting
the Gayathri Mantra three times in a day, that is, morning, noon and
evening, is not enough. You should chant this mantra perpetually. Why
should you stipulate a particular time period for chanting His name
who is beyond time. Sarvada Sarvakaleshu Sarvatra Harichintanam
(contemplate on the name of God at all places, at all times and under
Bhagawan concluded His Discourse with
the Bhajan, " Harri Bhajan Bhina Sukha Santhi Nahi…."
From Sanathana Sarathi, March 2000
Bhagavan's discourse on
significance of Gayathri
The below article is compiled from
Divine Discourses of Sri Sathya Sai Baba during Upanayanam Ceremony -
Translated & Published for Free Distribution by Sri Sathya Sai Centre,
No: 6, Police Park Terrace, Colombo 05 Sri Lanka
OM BHUR BHUVAH SWAH
TAT SAVITUR VARENYAM BHARGO DEVASYA DHIMAHI
DHIYO YONAH PRACHODYAT
||Brahma, the creator of the universe
||Embodiment of vital breath
||Destroyer of miseries and symbol of bliss
||All pervading, blissful God
||That (Supreme being)
||Destroyer of sins
||Bestower of divine power
||To adopt, to acquire
||Inspires to righteousness
We meditate upon the glorious splendor of the Vivifier Divine.
May He Himself illumine our minds!
GAYATRI MANTRA, SHABDA BRAHMA,
MOTHER OF VEDAS
Aum Bhuh Bhuvah Suvah Tat Savitur
Bhargo Devasya Dheemahe Dhiyo Yo Nah Prachodayat
WE MEDITATE ON THAT ISVARA'S GLORY WHO HAS CREATED THE UNIVERSE WHO IS
FIT TO BE WORSHIPPED WHO IS THE EMBODIMENT OF KNOWLEDGE AND LIGHT, WHO
IS THE REMOVER OF ALL SINS AND IGNORANCE. MAY HE ENLIGHTEN OUR
The ancient mansion of Hindu tradition and custom is built on the four
walls of Karma, Janma, Dharma and Brahma. Regardless of its size, a
house needs four supporting walls. It follows therefore that in the
huge mansion of ancient Hindu thought, customs and traditions should
have a point of meeting together somewhere.
It is not possible for anyone to escape from the consequences of what
one does knowingly or otherwise. You have to face up to the
consequences of all your actions, whether good or bad. Clearly,
therefore, the doctrine of Karma stands as a cardinal principle that
governs a person's life. One has to live and die with this principle.
It is this Karma which determines one's joys and sorrows. And it is
through Karma that you are endowed with this life itself. What is the
secret of this Janma? This body has been given to you so that you
could undertake your Karma and therein lies the point- that through
the body you have to uphold Dharma. When you conduct yourself in
keeping with Dharma, you qualify to attain Brahma. The Gita proclaims
that when Dharma declines God incarnates as an Avatar. Truly, what you
see in the form of a body is nothing but a manifestation of God
himself. God takes the form of a huan beng to restore Dharma. What you
call 'creation' is a manifestation of the Cosmic Principle. We also
refer to it as nature. Whoever is born in this nature will certainly
have the same atribute of this nature. Man who has the same qualities
of this Cosmic Principle, this creation, this nature, is offering all
that is embedded in this creation to someone for some purpose. To whom
is he offering it? Is it for the sake of one's own selfish ends? Or is
it for the benefit of the fellow beings around him? It is not right to
act that way. Whatever you do and whatever you may perform, if you
were to be inspired by the feeling that it is for the Ananda of God,
then it is bound to reach him. Therefore, the abiding feeling in you
should be that whatever you do, you are doing it as worship of the
Lord. This principle contains the very essence of Karma.
Chanting of Gayatri
When an individual is first born from
the mother's womb, this is the natural type of birth. This is the
natural state. This is the first birth as such. After you have been
given the Gayatri Manthra, the dawn of a second birth emerges in your
life. What is this Gayatri Manthra? It is the very quintessence of the
Vedas. Verily it is the mother of the Vedas. The meaning of the
syllable "Ga" is Jiva. Gayatri is that which protects and fosters all
life forms. You must realise therefore that on being given this
Gayatri Manthra, you have been given a second birth.
When you start chanting this Manthra in conformity with certain rules
and code of conduct, you will certainly be able to reach a state in
fulfillment of this Manthra. You arrive at a new stage, the third
stage, which is called the Vipra. At this stage you begin to chant the
Even as you try and understand and chant the Manthras in the Vedas,
you must realise their significance end start practicing the
underlying principle and thus live the Vedas every second of your
life. In this way you will certainly succeed in attaining Brahma. It
is only when you understand this Brahma Thathwa and perform your
actions in accordance with this understanding can one be called a
Brahmana. It is not by birth alone that one becomes a Brahmana. It is
necessary that one's actions should correspond to this understanding.
We really deserve to be called a Brahmana only when we understand the
Time For Chanting
It has been laid down that this
Gayatri Manthra has to be chanted three times every day: during the
sandhyas of early morning, afternoon and evening. Sandhya means the
conjunction of two stages of time. Pratah Sandhya is the time when
transition from the night to the day takes place. Likewise evening
sandhya is the time when the day slides into the night. Madhyanna
Sandhya is the time when the morning and afternoon are connected.
Man is the embodiment of three Gunas. These three attributes are not
onfined to man as such; even time has these attributes. Time also has
Sathwa, Raja and Thamo Gunas. What do we mean by time having Sathwa
guna? All these three attributes have 24 hours to go by in a day. Each
of these three Gunas takes up 8 hours by itself i.e , Sathwa has 8
hours, Rajasik has 8 hours and Tamasik has 8 hours. What are these 8
hours of Sathwik time? When you designate the period from 4 a m to 8 a
m the intervening 4 hours are Sathwik. In like manner, the time
between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. is also Sathwik. These two stretches of 4
hours apiece are Sathwik hours. The time from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.is
Rajasik. It is during this time that all lifeforms keep doing whatever
has to be done by them. Not only men, but also animals and the like do
what is expected of them during these 8 hours. The factory worker, the
farmer, the agriculturist and anybody that one can think of has to
work during these 8 hours of Rajasik time. So we find that every
individual has an experience of this Rajasik time
Then we have the time from 8 p.m. to 4 a.m. during the night. This is
the Thamasik time. That it is indeed Thamasik we know from our
experience. The chief quality that is associated with this time is
sleep. Sleep is being equated to Thamasik in this analysis.
It is during the Sathwik time viz., from 4 a.m to 8 a.m and from 4
p.m. to 8 p.m. that we should undertake our sacred and noble duties.
This will sanctify our life. We should understand and appreciate how
time has been divided for various activities and only then can we
realise the true nature of our existence. This Gayatri Manthra has to
be taken up for chanting at any time during the period of from 4 a.m.
to 8 a.m., and then at any time between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.
It is absolutely necessary that you chant this Gayatri Manthra either
in the early hours of the morning or in the evening hours. During the
mid-day also it can be taken up for chanting, but for certain
purposes. When you look upon it as a Sadhana, it is the morning and
evening hours which are sacred for chanting.
You should chant this Manthra at least three times in the morning
hours and three times in the evening time. When you do this, you can
certainly free yourselves from the fruits of your Karma. It is said
that a day's chanting takes care of all the ill effects of the day's
Karma. To illustrate this point, let me cite an example.
When you go and buy a certain thing on loan, not only does the loan
amount increase, but also the interest on it goes up. On the other
hand, if you were to barter something for the item at the shop, there
is no loan to be cleared, nor is there any interest to be paid. When
you have borrowed something on loan, then you find that whatever you
have earned has to be given for repayment of the loan, and the
interest thereof. So, when you try and clear your debts as and when
you buy a certain thing, then there is no loan nor is there any
interest to be paid back. In the same manner, chanting Gayatri three
times in the morning and three times in the evening hours before you
go to bed would take care of all your errors in the form of loan and
interest to be cleared off. By chanting this Manthra with this feeling
you can certainly transcend Your Karma, you can even reach the state
of Nishkama Karma. You can sanctify your life in this manner.
Therefore, in order that you may understand the significance and reap
the benefits of chanting Gayatri, you should know the significance of
the morning and evening hours. There are those who feel that they do
not have the time either in the morning or in the evening, to chant
Gayatri. You do have the time indeed! Where there is a will, there is
a way, it is said. We do fritter away a lot of our time. A fraction of
your time that you waste, if directed to chanting Gayatri, can purify
your life. You do have a bath every day. So, even as you bathe, if you
chant this Manthra, you are not only chanting this Manthra and
deriving the benefits thereof, but it becomes a form of worship. So
also, in the afternoon, if you were to chant this Manthra as you eat
your food, the meal becomes sanctified - the food becomes a Naivedya.
You may or you may not chant any other Manthra, but do remember that
chanting the Gayatri is beneficial and you can experience this
Explanation of the Manthra
Gayatri is the embodiment of all
forms of Godhead - Sarva Devatha Swaroopam. Gayatri does not belong to
any caste, to any sect or to any religion as such. It is universal in
Gayatri has nine important
attributes. These are:
- Aum: Sound as the basis
of Creation, Brahman
- Bhuh: The Earth, the
- Bhuvah: The Atmosphere,
the Ether, the Subtle.
- Suvah: Heaven, the
region beyond Bhuvah the Causal.
- Tat: Stands for That.
The Ultimate Reality is simply referred to as That because it
defies description through speech or language.
- Savitur: Stands for
Divine Savitri, equated with the vivifying power contained
within the Sun.
- Varenyum: Adore
- Bhargo: Radiance,
- Devasya: Divine
Radiance or Grace.
Dheemahi signifies worship of
or meditation on the Lord. Dhiyo Yo Nah Prachodayat as the last
syllable, is a prayer. Therefore, in the Gayatri, there is Varnam,
Dhyanam and Prathana (description, meditation and a prayer) - these
aspects converge in the Manthra.
Gayatri And Advaitha
What goes on within you, depending
upon the circumstances, are classified as follows - we talk of
Sankalpa and for this we use the manas or the mind. When we talk of
the aspect of "wavering" we have the Chithha. When you think of
discrimination, Vicharana, we use the term Buddhi, the intellect. When
you have the motive of selfishness, you talk of Ahamkara or ego. What
you have to understand is that basically one entity is described as
mind, chithha, intellect and ego. We will do well to understand the
basic difference between the mind on the one hand and the intelligence
on the other. Mind is something that has got in its nature a divisive
tendency. The intellect is beyond such divisions. Therefore this
intellect is associated with the principle of Adwaitha. When there is
a division taking place in understanding the phenomena, we are
assailed by the Dwaitha bhava. When you have this divisiveness in you,
when you tend to see more than one thing, it is the mind that
perceives this duality. The intellect tries to see the one among the
many. What you should try and do is see the underlying unity in the
diversity and not the other way around. This Gayatri is a sacred
Manthra which tells you about this underlying unity in the diversity
of things. It is through this vision on unity that we can perceive
divinity and sanctify our lives.
In this world we have mud or clay in one form or another. This clay
can be one but the forms that it can take are multifarious. Likewise,
gold is one, but the ornaments could be many. Milk is one, but the
cows can be many in description. So also the Atma is one, but the
forms that it indwells are many. In the world around you, beyond the
names and forms, there is no third entity. This world is nothing but
the convergence of name and forms. One form, one name. Between these
two viz., the name and form- is the form that changes continually,
something which withers away and fades away and finally disappears.
Though the form disappears, though the form undergoes change, the name
as such remains the same at all times (Nithya Sathya); it remains
changeless. For example, you have given the name cow to an animal. Tho
cow, the animal, will disappear with the passage of time. But the name
will remain. Forms will disappear but the names will last for ever.
The sanctity of the name needs to be understood properly. It will be
difficult for you to try and identify a person in a crowd by means of
his form. However even in a huge congregation of people, if you were
to call out the name of an individual, he would respond to your call.
Through this name, therefore you can recognise the individual. In the
same way if you take up the Lord's name as the basis, you can
understand that forms in various hues and sizes have taken that name.
If you know the name of the station, you can ask for a ticket for that
station and undertake your journey. When you are not aware of the name
of the station, how can you possibly proceed on the journey? Therefore
it is the name that is important, and not the form as such. When you
understand the full efficacy and the significance of this Gayatri, you
will be in a position to understand the true nature, the underlying
unity, the Atmic principle dwelling in all different forms.
Its Great Beneficial Effects
Who is this Gayatri? She is the
personified unity of the triumvirate divinity - Gayatri, Savitri and
Saraswathi. Gayatri is also known as the five faced divinity. The
first face signifies Om. The second is Bhur Bhuvah Suvah. Thath
Savithur Varenyam is the third face. Bhargo Devasya Dheemahi is the
fourth face. Dheeyo Yo Nah Prachodayath is the fifth face. This is the
Pancha Mukhi Swaroopam, the five-faced divinity. From these five faces
emanate the five life forces, Pancha Pranas. These five life forces
are fostered and protected by Gayatri and therefore She is called the
benefactor and the protector. During the time She is protecting thus,
She is called Savitri. You may have read about the story in the epics
that Savitri protected Satyavan.
Who is this Savitri? She is the Pancha Prana Swaroopini. This truly
means that Savitri protects and guides those who lead a life of
truthfulness. When She tries to improve your qualities, She is called
Gayatri; when She protects and fosters your word, She is called
Saraswati. Therefore, this Goddess protects the intellect, the life
force and the word, and thus in every way She protects the individual
at all times.
Today you have been given this Gayatri Manthra. It is verily a day
when you are having your second birth. Purify and sanctify your second
life and then you become eligible for the third stage of Viprathwa.
From there you will proceed to the stage of attaining Brahma.
Brahmavid Brahmaiva Bhavathi - how do you attain this state? You can
attain in only when you have understood your own nature. When you ask
the question, `when do we become deserving to attain the state of
Brahma?' then can you understand this. Before being married, a girl
would be an ordinary person. After the marriage, she has the privilege
of claiming half of whatever her husband has, as a matter or right.
What is it that marks out from the earlier stage of being an alien and
the latter stage of married life when she can claim something by
right? That right is conferred on her by a sacred thread tied to her
neck, the Mangal Sutra. In the same manner, so long as you have not
reached the state of surrender, you are an alien to the Lord. Once you
have put the thread of surrender around your neck, you become One with
Him, and you have earned the right to, and can demand from God, half
of whatever He has. Therefore, through your own efforts you should try
and reach the state of surrender to GOD. How is it possible, you might
ask, by chanting this Gayatri continuously, to reach the state of
fulfillment and sense of feeling that you have received something?
There is an inner meaning in giving this Gayatri Manthra to young
people. We have in this Manthra the concluding words, Dheeyo yo nah
Prachodayat. The meaning is this: Before you were given this Manthra,
you may have been backward intellectually, or were a bit lazy. But now
that you have been given this Manthra, you become sharper in
intellect, become more zealous, more enthusiastic, and certainly
become more qualified for scaling greater heights in acquiring
Before the sun rises, everything is
enveloped in darkness. Even as the rays of the Sun dispel this
darkness, so also the chanting of this Gayatri dispels all darkness
and ignorance. The rays of this Sun dispels the area of darkness.
Darkness has no place where the rays of the sun reach out. So also
once your intellect blossoms forth by virtue of your having been given
this Manthra, your intellectual rays will dispel the ignorance which
has been persisting in you, will drive away all darkness and endow you