Of the numerous mantras in the Vedic tradition, there is none greater than the Gayatri mantra. The ancient Rishis tell us that by chanting the Gayatri mantra our life will be full of prosperity, fufillment and joy. It is said that meditation on the Gayatri mantra burns away all the layers of impurities (karma) covering the mind and grants Self-Realisation.

Vedic scriptures state that meditation with the Gayatri mantra develops a constant awareness of the Divine. When our hearts are completely open to the Gayatri, all the actions we perform will be transformed into highly noble actions dedicated to the Divine. This is in essence, a philospohy and spiritual path called Karma Yoga.

How our Universe was created

The Vedic scriptures state that the non-dual “OM” emerged from the supreme unmanifest absolute originally expressed as the three letters “A”, “U”, and “M.” From these emerged the gross physical (Bhuh), subtle (Bhuvah) and celestial (Suvaha) universes. These three words of the Gayatri, which literally means past, present and future are called Vyahrities. These gave rise to the great Gayatri mantra. Then, from the Gayatri mantra emerged knowledge of the transcendental nature of the Vedas.

Gayatri appears as a verse in the Rig Veda and is the name of the Vedic meter or rhythm in which the verse is composed. Gayatri is said to be the quintessence of the Vedas. Its esoteric meaning is that it gives you the knowledge of the oneness of the Jivatman (soul) with the Paramatman (God).

Gayatri Devi

A form of the Universal Mother

For many years, Gayatri did not have a form. The ancient Rishis would simply chant the mantra or worship the Mother of the Universe in a fire sacrifice known as a yagna. Bhakti Yoga started gaining popularity in India around the 11th century when Ramanujacharya established the Sri Vaishnava Sampradaya.

A key component of Bhakti Yoga is to use a form of God for worship. Using a form of the Divine can help devotional focus and this is one possible reason why we now have a form of Gayatri. The Goddess is portraid as having five heads and 10 arms, with a swan as her vehicle. It is said that she can even be seen in deep meditation by those who have mystic vision. Mother Gayatri is the bestower of all knowledge to those who worship her. In her Goddess form, Gayatri is known as the “Mother of the Vedas”, the essence of Upanishadic wisdom.

The benefits of chanting the Gayatri

Astrologically, the Gayatri protects her children from the negative influences of the nine planets. They include the sun (Surya), moon (Chandra), Mars (Mangala), Mercury (Budha), Jupiter (Brihaspati), Venus (Shukra), Saturn (Shani), Rahu (north node of the moon), and Ketu (south node of the moon). The mantra removes fear, anger and helps you to overcome any challenge in life. As a result, your wishes, including those that have not been expressed yet, will all be fulfilled. She also maintains balance between air, fire, and earth, the three qualities or doshas in the body, ensuring good health.

By meditating on the Gayatri mantra, you will gradually realise that the whole universe is the radiance of the Divine Mother. When you ascend to such an elevated state, you will never fall again. You will always be drenched in an ocean of Divine bliss. This alone is the fulfilment of spirituality, which you can attain effortlessly by meditating on the Gayatri mantra.

The structure of the Gayatri mantra

The Gayatri itself contains twenty four seed syllables:

Tat savitur varenyam; Bhargo devasya dheemahi; Dhiyo yonah prachodayaat.

All of wisdom, knowledge, and the entire Vedas are concealed in these 24 seed syllables. One who has knowledge of these 24 seed syllables has nothing else left to hear, read, learn or enjoy in this  world. There are 70 million supreme mantras contained within the Gayatri mantra. The Gayatri mantra is the essence of all these 70 million mantras. Just as all rivers merge in the oceans, all mantras unite in the Gayatri Mantra. The Gayatri mantra itself then merges in the great ocean of Omkara, the sound of OM.

Learn the Gayatri mantra

Om Bhur Bhuvah Suvaha, Tat Savitur Varenyam, Bargo Devasya Dhimahi, Dhiyo Yo Nah Prachodayat.

Here are several different translations of the mantra:

  • Oh, creator of the universe. We meditate upon thy supreme splendor. May thy radiant power illuminate our intellects, destroy our ignorance and guide us in the direction of enlightenment by purifying our inner hearts.
  • I meditate upon the Supreme Energy, Gayatri Devi, who has the supreme quality of playing in the creation of all the worlds, and who induces noble thoughts in the hearts of everyone.
  • You who are the source of all power, whose rays illuminate the world, illuminate my heart so that it too can do your work. Let us commune with the luminous light of consciousness that sustains all the worlds, that it may inspire our liberation.
  • We mediate on that adorable light which is the self of the supreme Lord of the universe. It is the giver of knowledge and destroyer of ignorance. It is the light of the Supreme Brahman itself. May that light enlighten us. 

The Vedic scriptures say that repeating the mantra 10 times daily removes the sins of your current life, 100 times daily removes the sins of your previous lives, and 1000 times daily removes the sins of three yugas. By meditating with the Gayatri mantra, you will tap into a Divine state which will ultimately lead to Self-Realisation. *Check our events calendar to see upcoming chanting courses.