The Gayatri Mantra is the universal prayer enshrined in the Vedas, the most ancient Scriptures of Man. A Universal prayer is that which is to be chanted with devotion for one's spiritual benefit in all the ages in any part of the world. We have to recite the Mantra as follows.
" OM BHUR BHUVA SVAHA TAT SAVITUR VARENYAM BHARGO DEVASYA DHEEMAHI DHI YO YONAH PRACHODAYAT "
The Gayatri Mantra can be translated as
OM - Para Brahman
BHUR - Bhu Loka (Physical Plane) - This refers to the five elements this body is made up of
BHUVA - Bhuva Loka (Middle Plane) - This refers to the power in man which animates the body. This is actually the Prana Sakthi
SVAHA - Swarga Loka (Heaven)
TAT - That, this refers to God, or Paramatma.
SAVITUR - That from which all is born
VARENYAM - Fit to be worshipped
BHARGO - The Radiance, the Spiritual Effulgence, the light that bestows wisdom.
DEVASYA - Divine Reality
DHEEMAHI - We Meditate
DHI YO - Buddhi, Intellect
YO - Which
NAH - Our
PRACHODAYAT - Enlighten
The Gayatri Mantra may be translated as follows :
OM (OM) - We meditate (DHEEMAHI) upon the Spiritual Effulgence (BHARGO) of THAT Adorable Supreme Divine Reality (VARENYAM DEVASYA), the Source (SAVITUR) of the Physical (BHUR), the Astral (BHUVA), and the Heavenly (SVAHA) Spheres of Existence. May THAT (TAT) Supreme Divine Being enlighten (PRACHODAYAT) our (NAH) Intellect (DHIYO) (So that we may realise the Supreme Truth).
Sage Vishwamitra discovered the Gayatri Mantra. This mantra enabled the sage to use rare weapons, which bowed to his will, when this mantra was invoked with faith. Through the power he attained, this way he was able to create a counterpart of the cosmos. The Gayatri Mantra is addressed to the energy of the Sun - Surya. It is addressed to the Immanent and Transcendent Divinity. This mantra has infinite potentiality; it is a vibrant formula. It has immense powers, which are truly amazing, for the Sun is it's presiding Deity.
The Gayatri Mantra is enshrined in the Vedas, the most ancient Scriptures of Man. Gayatri is the Mother of the Vedas and Gayatri redeems the chanter of the Mantra. Ma Gayatri is present wherever the Mantra is chanted. Gayatri has three names - Gayatri, Saavitri and Saraswati. These three are present in each one of us. Gayatri is the master of the senses, Saavitri is the master of Prana (Life Force). Saavitri signifies Truth. Saraswati is the Presiding Deity of Speech (Vaak). Theses three represent purity of Thought, Word and Deed. One who practices the purity and harmony of Thought, Word and Deed will have Gayatri, Saavitri and Saraswati in him.
The most recommended time for chanting the Gayatri are :
1. When we get up from bed in the morning
2. Before every meal
3. When we go to bed in the evening
After the Gayatri one should chant 'OM' and 'Shanti' Three times. The Gayatri Mantra protects the chanter wherever he may be.
The importance of the mantra are given as follows:
If Gayatri Mantra is not recited correctly it has opposite effect of enveloping the chanter in darkness. If it is chanted with Love, God will accept it. Each word should be pronounced clearly and distinctly, without undue haste or hurry. Gayatri is the very basis of Vedas. It is also called Veda Mata (Mother of the Vedas). Gayatri is the mantra, which preserves, protects and rescues the chanter from mortality. The Gayatri mantra is a Universal prayer, which asks for a clear Intellect so that the Truth may be reflected therein without distortion. Men, Women of all climes and creed, can chant Gayatri Mantra. The heart needs to be cleansed atleast three times a day with Gayatri. The Gayatri Mantra is synonymous to the Divinity and therefore must be approached with humility, reverence, faith and love towards the Mantra. Chanting with humility, reverence, faith and love is more important than mechanical repetition while the mind wanders. Full faith in the power and potency of the Gayatri Mantra will be generated only when the seeker has developed requisite degree of enthusiasm, reverence and love towards the Mantra. the more one chants the Mantra, the greater benefit the chanter gets.