The Mantra-Tantras of SandhyaVandanam – Taking Bath

The Mantra-Tantras of SandhyaVandanam – Taking Bath

Background

 

In TSV, one lifts mentally into the abode of Atma (with Achamanam/AngaVandanam), invokes peace from the consciousness inside (with Ganapati Dyanam), tames down the body (with Pranayama), takes bath in a protected source of water (say well or river), takes few drops of that water internally, bathes again, invites the ‘Savitr that makes the Sun’ into him, tells himself that the Savitr be manifested in him as the ‘Self-Confidence’,  feels part of the continuum of creation, offers obeisance to the evolution that got him this life, declares the route to the abode of Atman, (remember the abode of Atman is now inside you), tames down the body by continuous pranayama, tames down the mind by Gayatri Japa, invokes that deeply embedded consciousness, salutes the Characteristics of that Consciousness, viz., ‘Change (Sandhyai)’, “Self-driving (Savtrai)”, “Creation (Gayatrai)”, “Fast movement (Saraswatyai)”, declare his/her identity as he/she reaches the abode of Atman, salutes the environment that emanate from the abode of Atman, Salutes the ‘Mortality that forms the basis of evolution’, Salutes the “Dark matter (Purusha) that manifests as our hidden intellect”, Salutes the Primordial matter (Amba), Salutes the manifestation of the Ultimate Atma (Kesava/Narayana) and dedicates all the actions to that Consciousness and feel at peace with ourselves.

 

In those days people would have spent several hours on TSV and would have definitely felt the bliss in everyday life (if they understood what they are doing).

 

TSV leads to ultimate balance of mind and balance of thinking. It invokes Self-confidence, suppresses false-egos, brings in the Big Picture to our mind and make us dedicate our actions with full understanding.

 

As the civilization progressed, procedures have morphed. For eg., Marjanam, Punar Marjanam (taking bath) etc have become sprinkling of water on the head.

 

But I see there is nothing wrong in going back and adopting them for the modern world. More on that in the last section of this blog.

Sankalpam – The Mantra part

Before we start an activity, we are asked to do a ‘Sankalpam’ in any vedic ritual.

 

Keep the right palm inside the left palm and keep the palms on the right thigh and recite the following manthra:-

 

Mamo partha samastha duritha kshaya dwara, Sri Parameshwara preethyartham*,

pratha sandhyam upasishye

(for madhyannikam- ” madhyaynikam karishye “and for evening sandhya vandhanam- “sayam sandhyam upasishye”)

 

Mamo partha – my dear

Samastha – all

Durita – Dangers, Discomforts

Kshaya dwara – to be eliminated

Sri Parameswara – (your favorite god-form)

Preetyartam – according to His wishes

Pratha Sandhyam – Morning Sandhya

Upasishye – in performing

 

My dear Lord, let all discomforts be eliminated in performing this procedure.

Sankalpam – The Tantra part

The position we keep our hands in Sankalpam makes our body and mind become fully ‘alert’.

 

Let’s say you feel sleepy or drowsy in any part of the day. Just sit in this position for few minutes and your drowsiness will reduce. When I feel slightly sleepy and I need to ‘read something’, I keep myself in this position and read it. It makes me remain alert.

 

Again if one has observed keenly, we clasp our hands tightly, when we are awaiting something keenly. Clasping hands is a natural reaction to make us alert. The position of Sankalpam procedure is an improvised version of it.

 

Another utility is when we are listening to a lecture or a presentation and find ourselves in-attentive. Then take this posture of Sankalpam and you will find your attentiveness improving.

Marjanam – The Purification of External body

 

Marjanam simply means washing (taking bath).

 

Sri kesavaya nama (write OM in water with the ring finger)

 

‘Salutations to the Kesava”. The Kesava (which I mapped to string) manifests itself in water to create life. By doing this we invoke that Kesava in the water that we take bath, in the water that is ‘bed’ of our life.

 

This procedure is a bathing procedure, where we bathe in a ‘protected body of water (say a well)’, while reciting this Mantra. But today it is done as a procedure where we sprinkle water on the head when we recite this Mantra.

Marjanam – The Mantra part

 

The mantras recited is from Rg Veda Mandala 10 Hymn 9 on Apa.

 

Aapo hishta mayo bhuva

thana oorje dadha thana

Mahe ranaaya chakshase

Yova shiva thamo rasa

Thasya bhajaya thehana

usatheeriva mathara

Thasma aranga mamava

Yasya kshayaya jinwadha

Aapo janayadha jana

Om bhorbuvassuva

 

(Sprinkle water on the head)

 

Apoh  Hi– Oh, On the basic medium of life (that is called Apa)

SthA – stand firmly (placed)

Mayo – bhuvas  – refreshes the galaxy

 

On Apa, the ‘base medium of life’ stands the delights of this galaxy (gas-clouds from which our galaxy originated)

 

TAna – monotonously, thinly

Urje – eminent, strong, powerful

Dadha – giving

Tana – offspring, posterity

 

Monotonously (single-mindedly) and powerfully giving rise to posterity

 

Mahe – great

Ranaya – going, motion, fighter

Chaksase – originating from Caksu (in Aitareya Upanishad – Aditya originates from Caksu, I have interpreted Aditya as the cloud from which our galaxy is formed11)

 

That Great Mover originating from Caksu (Aditya, whose representation is Sun to us, but Aditya in itself represents the cloud from which our Galaxy and the solar system are formed).  Aditya originates from Caksu.

 

Yo va – that honorable one

Shiva – weaves/spreads lying down or Ziva the force of purusha on Prakrti that triggers the preponderance of Sattwa, after which Tamas acquires preponderance

Tamo – mass, heaviness

Rasa – sap or juice or property

 

That honorable one  (Apa) that spreads the property of mass (Tamas originated after Satwa according to Sankhya philosophy)

 

Thasya – his, of him

BhAjaya – service, worship (bhajya – Divide, distinguish)

Te – unto you, they, thy, such people

Hana –  becoming, becomes

 

That becomes the divider (That gives the property of mass by dividing)

 

Usa – dawn, birth

Tira – furthering

Va – honorable

Mathara – (like) mothers

 

Birth furthering honorable mother

 

Tasma – unto

Aranga – the  bed of life

MAmava  – protect

 

Unto protect the bed of life

 

(Sprinkle water on the feet)

 

Yasya- of one, one whose

Kshayaya – for the sake of destruction/diminishing, the dwelling, residence

 

Yasya Ksayaya – On which resides

 

Aksata – unbroken, ksata – broken into, ksaya – broken into it, residing, ksayaya – on whom resides (on whom broken into and living).

 

Jinvatah – arousing

 

(Sprinkle water on the head)

 

On which resides the arousing

 

Apo – medium of life

Jana – causing birth

yadha – after

Jana – birth

 

Apa causing birth after birth.

 

The meaning of the above is

 

On the ‘base medium of life’ stands the delight of this Galaxy, (which is)  monotonously (single-mindedly) and powerfully giving rise to posterity.

 

That Great mover originating from Caksu (the Aditya, the gas-cloud that makes our galaxy) spreads the property of massiveness by being the divider and giving birth (this birth is more a dawn of matter)  like mother, protecting the bed on which resides the arousing ‘base medium of life’ (that is Apa) that causes life’s birth after birth.

 

This sloka says Aditya protects the ‘bed’ on which resides Apa the base medium of life that gives rise to birth after birth

Marjanam – The tantra part

For us, Sun is the representation of Aditya and Water is the representation of Apa. The sloka says ‘Apa’ the medium of life is protected by the Aditya. Likewise ‘Water’ for us is protected by the ‘Sun’ and is purified by it.

 

In this procedure we are supposed to take bathe in water from a ‘protected source’, which is a ‘well’ in backyard of our house, that is exposed to Sun.

PrAsanam – Purification of Internal organs

In this, we sip a droplet of water, reciting one of the below mantras based on day or night.

 

Ahascha mA Adithyacha punatu swaha

 

IN the morning we invoke the Sky and Aditya (Sun) to purify the water we drink.

 

Ratrisch mA varunascha punatu swaha

 

In the evening we invoke the Varuna to purify the water we drink.  I had mapped Varuna to electrons in my blog on Rudra Chamakam. Even according to science, sunlight and electrons do purify water by ionization.

Marjanam – Another way of doing it

Marjanam and Punar Marjanam can be done as part of our bathing procedure.

 

In fact from Achamanam to Punar Marjanam, in my view, we can do it as part of taking bath. After we come out of our bath, we can  start from Aikya-anusandhanam, proceed to Deva tarpanam, Pranayamam, Gayatri Japam etc.

 

This would save a lot of time. Our bathing also becomes more meaningful. This means TSV starts right in our bathroom!  It would be easy for kids also, as TSV becomes a compulsory post-bath habit, as it gets synchronized with Bathing.

 

In fact TSV is exactly meant as a post-bath habit.

-TBT

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