mediate on the lovely Glory of the god Savitr That he may
stimulate our minds. Rigveda III.57.10 tat savitur varenyam
bhargo devasya dhimahi dhiyo yo nah pracodayat. I include
the Gayatri Mantra here because there are many passages in
the Upanisads that cannot be understood without it. It is
regarded as the most sacred hymn of the Rigveda, and in some
sense as containing the essence of the Vedas. For many Hindus
it forms the basis of their daily practice. (For some of the
ways in which it is used in meditation and worship, see Taimni,
Properly speaking, the hymn is called Savitri, the invocation
of the solar deity Savitr, whose name means 'the one who arouses
or inspire'. Gayatri is the distinctive metre in which it
is composed, containing three lines of eight syllables each.
(In Vedic Sanskrit, varenyam was pronounced vareniam.) The
Savitri is by far the best known verse in that metre.
It appears impossible to create a usable English version which
divides the content between the three lines as the Sanskrit
does: 'The of Savitr lovely/glory of-the-god we-mediate-on/so
that that [God] may inspire our mediations.' I felt it necessary
to keep in the translation the 3 x 8 syllable form (Which
is important in accounts of the symbolism of the Gayatri,
for example BU V.14) and the carrying on of meaning between
the first and second lines. Within that framework I could
find no way of reproducing the two uses of the root dhi, in
the verb dhi, to think/meditate, and the noun dhi, thought/meditation.
I hope that 'meditate' and 'mind' have a comparable effect,
though the two words are not derived from the same root."