Adventures in Advaita Vedanta, the philosophy and science of spirit. We are one you and I; are you curious why?..


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Hari OM
'Text-days' are for delving into the words and theory of Advaita Vedanta.

This month we will investigate one of the most-used larger prayers, which masquerades as 'hymn' to some extent, and which offers deeper meanings beyond blessing of actions. It is chanted at every puja, before every endeavour of business or study or such; it is the Great Prayer of Sri Ganesha. The basic translation in verse form is provided HERE if you would like to take a copy.

ïI g[ezawvRzI;R>/ Shri GaneshaatharvashiirshaH

Last week we read the main body of the hymn, now here is the remainder, which completes the invocation for assistance from Lord Ganesh. (All are chanted on that vid clip given previously.) Read this translation very carefully… you will find that it holds a different tone altogether! Whilst the first twelve shloka mantras are in praise and description of the Lord, these remaining five are specific instructions to the shishya (student); benefits of study and chant of the hymn, consequences of misuse. In particular, there is an injunction for it not to be 'given out to the undeserving'… in the same vein as Yeshu's warning not to 'caste one's pearls before swine'; it is simply that there is little point in handing out prayers and scriptures to those who have no interest or respect for them. Any wisdom at any level may be considered as lost if there are not ears open to receive it. Then again, wisdom ought to be available, for at some point, everyone has a need and a desire for it.

एतदथर्वशीर्षं योऽधीते  ब्रह्मभूयाय कल्पते 
 सर्वविघ्नैर्न बाध्यते 
 सर्वत्र सुखमेधते 
Etad-Atharvashiirssam Yo-[A]dhiite Sa Brahma-Bhuuyaaya Kalpate |
Sa Sarva-Vighnair-Na Baadhyate |
Sa Sarvatra Sukham-Edhate |
Sa Pan.cha-Mahaa-Paapaat-Pramuchyate |

He who studies this Atharvashirsha (with genuine faith), will become fit to realize Brahman,
He will not be (permanently) tied down by any obstacles (and his consciousness will become clearer),
(Permanent) Happiness will increase within his consciousness, wherever he is (i.e. at all times),
He will get freed from the five grave Sins (the memory of sins tend to create permanent obstacles within the consciousness for the jivas to sense the Paramatman),

सायमधीयानो दिवसकृतं पापं नाशयति 
प्रातरधीयानो रात्रिकृतं पापं नाशयति 
सायं प्रातः प्रयुञ्जानो पापोऽपापो भवति 
सर्वत्राधीयानोऽपविघ्नो भवति 
धर्मार्थकाममोक्षं  विन्दति ॥१३॥
Saayam-Adhiiyaano Divasa-KRtam Paapam Naashayati |
Praatar-Adhiiyaano Raatri-KRtam Paapam Naashayati |
Saayam PraataH Prayun.jaano Paapo'paapo Bhavati |
Sarvatra-Adhiiyaano'pavighno Bhavati |
Dharma-Artha-Kaama-Moksham Cha Vindati ||13||

Studying this in the Evening will destroy the Sins committed during the Day (including the tendency to commit Sins),
Studying this in the Morning will destroy the Sins committed during the Night (including the tendency to commit Sins),
Joining (the Study and Deep Contemplation) both in the Evening and Morning, will make a Sinful person Sinless(by gradually revealing the deeper consciousness and thereby removing the tendencies to commit Sins),
Studying everywhere (i.e. in all situations) will remove the Obstacles, ...
 (And) the Devotee will obtain Dharma, Artha (Prosperity), Kama (Right Desires fulfilled) and (finally) Moksha(Liberation by discovering the deeper consciousness),

इदमथर्वशीर्षमशिष्याय  देयम् 
यो यदि मोहाद्दास्यति  पापीयान् भवति 
सहस्रावर्तनाद्यं यं काममधीते तं तमनेन साधयेत् ॥१४॥
Idam-Atharvashiirsham-Ashishyaaya Na Deyam |
Yo Yadi Mohaad-Daasyati Sa Paapiiyaan Bhavati |
Sahasra'avartanaad-Yam Yam Kaamam-Adhiite Tam Tam-Anena Saadhayet ||14||

This Atharvasirsha is not to be given to undeserving Persons (Those who do not have any interest or faith in higher life),
If anyone gives this out of attachment to someone (inspite of knowing the person to be undeserving), he becomes a sinner,
When thousand Parayana of this Atharva Shirsha is done by Deep Study (and Contemplation), then by this(Upanishad), Siddhi (Spiritual attainments) will be attained,

अनेन गणपतिमभिषिञ्चति  वाग्मी भवति 
चतुर्थ्यामनश्नन् जपति  विद्यावान् भवति 
ब्रह्माद्यावरणं विद्यान्न बिभेति कदाचनेति ॥१५॥
Anena Gannapatim-Abhishin.chati Sa Vaagmii Bhavati |
Chaturthyaam-Anashnan Japati Sa Vidyaavaan Bhavati |
Ityaatharvanna-Vaakyam |
Brahma-Adyaavarannam Vidyaan-Na Bibheti Kadaachaneti ||15||

He who anoints Ganapati with this Upanishad (i.e. worships Ganapati as Brahman-Consciousness) becomes a fluent Speaker (Vagmi),
He who fasts on Chaturdasi and recites this Upanishad becomes filled with Knowledge (becomes Vidyavan),
This is the word of the Atharvana Rishi,
He (finally) gains the Knowledge of the envelop of Brahman (i.e. understands Brahma Vidya), and thereafter does not have any Fear anytime (i.e. he becomes free from the fears caused by the ego),

यो दूर्वाङ्कुरैर्यजति  वैश्रवणोपमो भवति 
यो लाजैर्यजति  यशोवान् भवति 
 मेधावान् भवति 
यो मोदकसहस्रेण यजति  वाञ्छितफलमवाप्नोति 
यस्साज्यसमिद्भिर्यजति  सर्वं लभते  सर्वं लभते ॥१६॥
Yo Duurvaangkurair-Yajati Sa Vaishravannopamo Bhavati |
Yo Laajair-Yajati Sa Yashovaan Bhavati |
Sa Medhaavaan Bhavati |
Yo Modaka-Sahasrenna Yajati Sa Vaan.chita-Phalam-Avaapnoti |
Yas-Saajya-Samidbhir-Yajati Sa Sarvam Labhate Sa Sarvam Labhate ||16||

He who worships (Ganapati) with tender Durva Grass will become Prosperous like Kubera,
He who worships (Ganapati) with Parched Rice will become Glorious (i.e. will have Name and Fame),
He will (also) become Medhavan (filled with Medha or retentive capacity of the mind),
He who worships (Ganapati) with thousand Modakas (a type of Sweetmeat), he will obtain his Desired Fruits,
He who worships (Ganapati) with Twigs dipped in Ghee, he obtains Everything, he obtains Everything,

अष्टौ ब्राह्मणान् सम्यग् ग्राहयित्वा सूर्यवर्चस्वी भवति 
सूर्यग्रहेमहानद्यां प्रतिमासन्निधौ वा जप्त्वा सिद्धमन्त्रो भवति
महाविघ्नात् प्रमुच्यते 
महादोषात् प्रमुच्यते 
महाप्रत्यवायात् प्रमुच्यते 
 सर्वविद् भवति  सर्वविद् भवति 
 एवं वेद 
इत्युपनिषत् ॥१७॥
Ashttau Braahmannaan Samyag Graahayitvaa Suurya-Varchasvii Bhavati |
Suuryagrahe-Mahaa-Nadyaam Pratimaa-Sannidhau Vaa Japtvaa Siddha-Mantro Bhavati
Mahaa-Vighnaat Pramuchyate |
Mahaa-Doshaat Pramuchyate |
Mahaa-Pratyavaayaat Pramuchyate |
Sa Sarvavid Bhavati Sa Sarva-Vid Bhavati |
Ya Evam Veda |
ItyUpanishat ||17||
Om ShaantiH-ShaantiH-ShaantiH ||

He who makes Eight Brahmins receive this Upanishad (i.e. either teaches this Upanishad to eight Brahmins or recites this in the company of eight Brahmins in the satsang of pure-souled persons) becomes filled with the splendour of the Sun,
He who recites this during Solar Eclipse on the bank of a great River (Nature providing the backdrop of the greater consciousness) or in-front of the image of Ganapati, becomes Mantra-Siddha (i.e. Mantra gradually reveals the deeper consciousness),
He becomes free from great Obstacles (i..e. when Brahman-Consciousness frees one from inner obstacles, the effect of outer obstacles also tend to loosen their grip),
He becomes free from great Vices (i.e. the Upanishad will gradually release from the Sins of the past Vices and remove the evil tendencies to create new Vices),
He becomes free from Sins or situations which as if drowns the life in a River (i.e. the Upanishad will gradually lift up one's spirit amidst overwhelming life situations),
He becomes All-Knowing, He becomes All-Knowing (Brahman being the underlying essence of everything, knowing Brahman is knowing the essence of everything),
This indeed is the Veda (the ultimate Knowledge),
Thus ends the Upanishad (giving the message of the all-freeing Brahman Consciousness embodied as Ganapati and fresh hope to all)
Om, Shanti, Shanti, Shanti (May this bring Peace to all at all the three levels - Adhibhautika - in the world, Adhidaivika - in our fate, and Adhyatmika - body, mind, spirit)

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