Tag Archive | mantra

Gayatri Mantra – Tat

Continuing my journey through the Gayatri / GaiaTree Mantra …

Tat — definitions or understandings of the actual word/sound are:

that (the Divine), selflessness, devotion


To know, this is a reminder — in the beginning, at origin — that one is coming into sacred space and sound to honor the Divine without seeking reward or anything for self … selflessness. 

To know that during this mantra–in a time set aside for prayer and devotion–we are honoring and giving thanks to Gaia, the Tree of Life. Seeing Her branches spread like a canopy of love above us and Her earth our bed, Her mantle spread for our feet to walk upon the past into the present. Seems like forever is now when pausing in a sacred moment of pure devotion …. to simply exist in the experience of all that is around and within, to know the sense of self melts away until we are only sitting within the glow of Gaia and Life. 

This can be true anywhere. I used to feel like I had to be out ‘in nature’ — in the yards or fields, parks or forests, to be with Her but now I can be with Her anywhere … close my eyes and I can image Her natural beauty into the the present, feel the warm sand or cool dark trail beneath my feet, smell the pine needles and flowers, hear Her breath rustle or moan through trees or canyon … or open-eyed see Her in the room, how She permeates the walls that wear mineral paints and earthen textures, the furniture that is composite of wood or oil or metal either pure from Her gifts of forest or extracted from Her depths and we give thanks for these creations while honoring the deaths or tragic circumstances that may have brought them into new forms, honoring that all substance comes from her and we are merely the channels of changing form. She is That and we open to receive Her gifts, Her Grace. 

To love and treasure the moments when we pause to know only Her, without distraction of mind and activity. For these moments are sacred in recognition of all we are provided. Amazing. Sounds that return us again and again to attention … to be with Gaia now in gratitude. Feel the words and sounds echo in the room or drift upon the winds, wherever we are, the chant that comes to us from distant past — feel our voices supported and uplifted on generations of voices reverberating through time until we are One, all together in the Sacred Space of devotion to an Infinite Wisdom. Deep thanks. Peace descends, calm wrapping around like a mother’s embrace. In this moment, we release attachment to our external lives of doing and distraction — we come to this space in devotion to Her and leave our ego self set aside.

What is selflessness? How to carry this devotion to Gaia into the world and yet be true to the individual purpose? 

By seeing within, going below the surface existence of the world and seeking out the nearer purposes, the Soul gift that we came here with. When we are the creation of Her and create through Her, building and supporting in love … through “desire not duty” then anything is possible. 

We first must open fully to Her gifts of Life and Love. She has provided all we need, planted within us the seed, and we look within, carefully nurture and fertilize, and we open and grow from that space … and that space is now, part of the space we create to honor Gaia and recognize all are Her gifts … freely given into our care for growth and expansion to care for Her and others. All a circle, we cycle in and out of giving and receiving, falling and getting back up. Allow others to give and our hearts open even more. 

Devotion freely offered to Gaia — without expectation, asking for nothing in this moment — will soften and open our bodies to all gifts in the world of form. Be the space in which giving happens … 

Gayatri Mantra – Swah

Continuing my journey through the Gayatri / GaiaTree Mantra …

Swah — definitions or understandings of the actual word/sound are:

all-pervading, omnipresent, Divine Bliss


She is the background of Joy upon which I play in the world, trying on various roles. Yet, always, if I look around … beyond the scenes of interactive matter and of soul’s purposeful discernment, She is here, within; Her glow pervades all that is, expanding, radiating, and embracing. Imagine if we simply release our fears and drop all the boundaries we’ve created to protect and safe-guard? Her blanket of vibratory elation would envelop all life and we would be free.

We know this sensation of Her Bliss. We know Her in that moment of silence when the mind is still, in the minute of listening with open heart to the words of the dying who are ready and accepting, in the seconds when moving between one yoga posture and another, when gazing into the eyes of an animal who has chosen to spend a thread of its life with us, when enraptured by the diverse gifts of nature. We have all been contained in a bubble of bliss at times. And we have been offered this opportunity to exist within life aware always of that backdrop of life. What if we could see through the substance and feel beyond our own purpose? Would we rest in Bliss? in Gaia?

These are pointers to help guide us into the nature of the Divine … sounds that open us into She who cannot be labeled or known through any one concept or word or note because She is the whole Song of the World, every piece and instrument and pause and phrase. Yet we are drawn to acknowledge and honor Her, to open and seek to catch a glimpse or glimmer of Her Essence that is infused within all life around us and within us. But She cannot be ‘gendered’ or anthropomorphized because She is literally unknowable and ever changing — we are blessed, though, with the ability to feel Her presence everywhere. This is Her gift to us–that we can know Her through all we see and feel and experience just as She expresses Her presence through all the world. 

Imagine … what if we could feel every cell growing and dying and being created within our bodies? All those trillions of cells … and we could fee and know each of them intimately because they are a part of this body, this whole. And what if we could see the thoughts of our minds and the emotions of our beliefs and the feelings of our hearts? What would they look like? We can name them so that we can try to show them to and share them with others, but our words fall short, as does a painting that can evoke different sensations and images depending upon who is looking and what their life story is and from what perspective they are viewing it.

Gaia, the Infinite, is all forms and non-forms. She is the wisdom that encompasses the great creation that is our earth, our galaxy. Imagine all those other worlds out there in space? She is those as well, and we are connected to them, too. This spark, this energy that is wise and conscious and separate yet One.

And so we use words, like in the Gayatri and other chants, songs, and prayers, to relate to Gaia, to name the connection we feel or would like to. But the words can separate us from Her if we limit Her to them, so we must be ever watchful to realize that all we use to describe Her are transient, flexible and … not really Her. Only guides. 

And my words are fewer than scholars, philosophers and theo/alogians. But my heart knows more than the words that flow. And so I see Her in the elements and feel Her in the essences of all life and open to Her gifts of nature so that I may feel Her within me. She is unlimited and Hers is the Bliss of communion; all is possible when I allow for time and place to fall away so that only love and faith remain in the world I inhabit within Her.


This completes the first line or part of the Gayatri as most of us recite it. In summary, it is an invocation, or, I prefer the definition of it as “an appeal for inspiration and guidance” as this feels more appropriately humble.

Gayatri Mantra – Bhuvah

free image © Michael Shake | Dreamstime.com

Continuing my journey through the Gayatri / GaiaTree Mantra

Bhuvah — definitions or understandings of the actual word/sound are:

 consciousness, limitless, through Divine Consciousness we are free of illusion


Greater awareness of the boundless grace of the Infinite, this is a counterbalance to Bhur’s physicality and is the opening freely to Source as more than the amazing presence in our world. Where Bhur is more than just an ‘airy’ or ‘spacey’ transcendent energy we could not touch, that is where Bhuvah comes in to awaken us to the unerring mystery of Gaia Spark that is limitless. We can feel Her vibration in every part of our body. She is the catalyst and the inspiration that cannot be named or seen for She is the field of Knowing, She is Consciousness. She shows us the mental constructs of illusion. Gaia, Wise One, holds the keys of instinct and intuition and ‘seeing’ at their Source. 

Gaia parts the limbs blocking our view of the stairway up the side of the mountain next to the cascading waterfall. Gaia shows us the miracle of the granite steps and the moss carpeting them to soften footfalls. She opens our eyes to the space between the matter, and for a moment the step disappears and only a vibratory impression remains–still there but not as we thought it was, and when we step onto the shifting image of the block we see our foot shimmer in and out of existence as well. 

Look up and see the waterfall become a veil that is transparent and not wet at all for the droplets individualize and they are filled with space and can evaporate in the blink of an eye upon the air of a thought. Time slows and we can step through the veil, gently parting the falls like a curtain that drifts closed behind us. Behind is a cave within the mountain we never knew was there–a shelter that had always been present but we never saw it behind the veil. The walls shimmer and gleam with pulsing veins of gold and silver, their pockets filled with turquoise sky and amethyst sunsets. How could we have not known? 

Gaia steps out of the solid rock that never was solid and She is smiling with delight, holding a bobcat kitten in one arm and a fawn in the other. They blink, or do I, and we are all playing as equals upon the floor of the cave, bleached bones of the pain of ignorance scattered like forgotten toys. I see myself in them and through their eyes I see myself reflected. We are all precious, all the same except that they long ago shed the veil and have been walking the earth, yearning to help us experience the joy of the present and the love in the now and the limitless potential we all share. But we–and, thus, they as part of our whole-earth experience–have been held captive to human ignorance that has kept world peace a mere footstep away. 

Splendor rises around me and we are all vibrations in a song being sung by Gaia, Her lovely voice lilting an ancient melody, all the notes of every life form coming together in harmony with no space for suffering in Her Song, only infinite space for compassion. “You can be in the world of form and also know the boundless possibility of Self.” Her words are bliss, like a cool hand upon a fevered brow too long in the driving intensity of the desert sun. Here, then not here. Nowhere and everywhere. Incomprehensible yet absolutely present.

I blink … I am once more on the mountain path gazing at the waterfall, the spray a drenching mist upon my clothes and they cling to my skin. Was it just a daydream? The rock feels solid–I stomp my foot. Was that laughter coming from the woods? There, a movement … I glimpse an agile, leggy brown body wearing white polka-dots scamper away, bounding … boundless? A whispered purr in my ear calls … I look across the river to the canyon wall where a small graceful being with long jowl fur curved around an enchanting face blinks once slowly and then turns, leaping with limitless power and agility onto a ledge, twitching a stub of a tail at me before disappearing into a dark, rocky crevice. I smile. “Gaia … !“ And I hear Her fading laughter upon the cool breeze caressing the back of my neck.

See first post HERE for backstory on the Gayatri / GaiaTree journey.

Gayatri Mantra – Aum Bhur

 Dwelling in sound, we are One, 

becoming the Earth Dance of the Divine Feminine.

A practice that I picked up a couple years ago, during my training in Ayurveda/Yoga, was the beautiful use of mantra. I found that mantra practice returned me to the meditation practices initially begun within pagan philosophies, and into the peace they engendered. When beginning my day with a spiritual focus — Sadhana, a spiritual practice or technique of disciplining yourself * that might include gentle Yoga, soft mantra chanting, prayers, Reiki healing, or empowerment rituals — I dwell more easily throughout the rest of the waking hours in a soft backdrop of self-realization and self-healing.

 I was subsequently led directly into both greater opening of my contemplative/stream-of-consciousness writing (usually done immediately following Sadhana) and creative writing, as well as a simple awareness in the joy of living each moment fully. With every step I take, accepting the gifts along my path, it seems Gaia is guiding me toward interconnection and inspiration.

 So with the above as back-story, for the next several posts, I will be exploring a word/phrase in the Gayatri Mantra each morning after Sadhana.

The Gayatri Mantra goes back thousands of years, and I felt the intense vibrations of its historical as well as spiritual energy the first time we chanted it in class; I continue to chant this mantra on a regular basis (well, sing it would be more accurate because I play Deva Premal’s version). Because it has a religious context, I am also reflecting it’s essence through the lens of my own Divine Feminine mirror on the Gaia Path … perhaps Gayatri becomes Gaia Tree?

 Aum Bhur Bhuvah Swah

Tat Savitur Varenyam

Bhargo Devasya Dhimahi

Dhiyo Yo Nah Prachodayat

 Aum or OM — This is a seed (bija) mantra, also referred to as the primordial sound, and the name of God/dess. This sound has not called to me for an exploration or explanation at this time. She is self-explanatory, yes?

Bhur — definitions or understandings of the actual word/sound are:

 existence, eternal, Earth, Prana (life, breath)


The existence of the Infinite is manifest here on earth as we live and breathe, die and are reborn.

From within the form comes our eternal existence, the spark that is Source, the flame and the shadow are One within the Infinite.

She breathes into the stars and our world is born, and She is in us and part of us and we in/of Her without separation … except perhaps through our own delusions of duality from our need to identify and know unique existence in Her grand web.

And so we have Bhur — the Divine come to exist within all creation in the earth and from the earth. 

This word-sound feels very immanent and present — very much a sense of Unity of Spirit and World — not at all transcendent or untouchable.

These definitions of the Divine through world and words — they are the sounds of Gaia speaking to us; they are the song of the world, the gift of the very essence of our lives. 

That Goddess comes to/into us through form and energy. The eternal ‘body’ of the Infinite creates form through which to grow and experience a different way of Being yet continues on — changing, evolving, disappearing. 

And the vital force of life, the life force of all form, is the breath of the Infinite that heals and loves and endures. The Divine Breath rides upon our physical breath and when we stop breathing, Prana becomes One with the Infinite without form. 

Eternal existence comes into form on earth–as Earth–and breathes. Vital to understand, to fully engage with and realize that Gaia is the Divine whether in me or earth or air or space. All are simply imagined energies from the finger-painting of Source with Her own blood, Her own essence of existence.

Bhur … existence, eternal, earth, life force … all are the same within the experiences of each other and portray Gaia in Her diversity, that She cannot be captured and labeled and put in a box. 

I love this about many of the mantras … they are words-sounds that resonate (rather than stories we listen to) and are used to remind our souls and bodies that we exist in form in which a soul travels, that our form changes, but we are eternal vibrational energies; we are always and forever also a piece of the Infinite. We are not so shallow as to have been created hollow and empty — we as women embody the Divine Feminine. 

This is why the world has been created — so that Gaia can exist in form and experience life through independent consciousness. We were given will/ego so that each of our forms could move both independent and interdependent — a beautiful illusion of separation so that we can experience as much as possible. All of our movements become a whole dance that is inspired and spontaneous, changing from instant to moment to here and over there. There is an ultimate thematic choreography but without rigid design, more like improvisational dance, always in flux and flexible with infinite variety. 

This is why we may see a potential future but may not arrive there because our own essence changes, our energies shift, with every aspect of life we are interconnected and they–the other lives, beings, entities, elementals–are also dancing. And when we dance in light and love, then we are attracted to similars and they to us. Not the outward appearance of worldly opposites led by egos — although there is a dance within them as well — but led by harmonious desire to create, sometimes through transformation (destruction and rebirth), a beautiful world one flower at a time. We can see our dance of two, and then draw back and see the threads of more dancers and their Prana flowing into us and us to them. The future is not set.

A beautiful dance of Divine form is Bhur —

existence, eternal, earth, life force.


* (see http://www.kundalini-yoga-info.com/Sadhana-defined.html )

*** I have referred to web resources for translations as I do not know Sanskrit; my apologies for any misinterpretations as to the Indian teachings and/or word-by-word meanings, and my thanks to the various web sites that have been of assistance, including: Eaglespace.com and Gayatri.info