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February 2, 2006



At around age seven, a brahmin boy is given the Sacred Thread [1,2]. During this rite-of-passage, the boy's father whispers the Gayatri Mantra into his ear. As a brahmin, he will then recite the mantra one-hundred-and-eight times a day for the rest of his life.

Krishna says in the Bhagavad Gita [3,4]: "Of the mantras, I am the Gayatri."

The Gayatri Mantra (in Sanskrit):

om bhur bhu-vah sva-ha
tat savee-tur vara-nee-yam
bhargo de-vasya dhee-mahi
dhee-yo yo na-ha pracho-dayaat

This is my, quite unconventional, understanding of it:

Oh my sweetness.
You caress my body.
You fill my heart.
You occupy my mind.
You touch my soul.
You are the goddess.
I worship you.
You are the light that dispels all darkness.
I think of you constantly.
You are my inspiration.

[1] The brahmin caste is the highest caste in India. It is the priestly caste.
[2] The sacred thread is circular, hangs on the left shoulder, and passes under the right arm.
[3] Krishna to a Hindu is like Jesus to a Christian.
[4] The Bhagavad Gita is the Hindu Bible.


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