Introduction to Gayatri … Continued from the previous issue
Chandas is the Meter of the Mantra and defines its particular mantra structure which may belong to any number of types of meter. It underlines the form and determines the nature of the sound. The gross form of the world has come out of vibrations created by sound. Om is said to be the cause for creation – of the entire universe, and therefore mantras being the creation of sound vibration, by proper intonation and meter are useful tools to achieve the desired result. The result of mantra depends on the competencies of the Guru and shishya. These mantras are sacred and ought to be chanted efficiently through regular practice under the instruction of a Guru. Mantras are in the Sanskrit language having 50 mathrukas (sound) which other languages don’t have. Other languages don’t have these many the sounds or syllables. These mantras which are sung by a combination of sounds of words composed by rishis through their meditative and intuitive power cannot be translated into other languages. Gayatri mantra cannot be translated.
It has a particular combination of syllables of the Sanskrit language which has a mysterious power hidden within to unfold consciousness and to bring about certain results when chanted in a particular manner. For example, Om pronounced in a particular manner by Brahma could create the material world, and the cosmos is a world of 50 sounds called matrikas. Mantras are used and repeated for invoking different forces and the purpose is the attainment of moksha, liberation from Maya (illusion). Mantras serve to worship and to connect with the deities. On repeating the mantra, it leads to attainment of that form which is true knowledge of the Universe and liberation from bondage of Maya.
Every follower of the Vedic philosophy depend on or even lives on the mantras – starting from the moment of conception in the mother’s womb until the disposal of the body, even at the funeral.
Gayatri mantra, in the early Vedic times, was perceived by Prajapati called Vishwamitra. This mantra was revealed through the seven rhythms, as a gift to Vishwamitra. Vishvamitra was the sage who practiced tapas (meditated) for several thousands of years ...(to be continued)