The Gayatri Mantra
Ishwar Stuti Prarthana Upasana
Prayer for General Happiness
Samarpan Mantra (Salutation and Surrender)
Prayer for Health
Prayer for Family Welfare
Meal Time Prayer
Shanti Path (Hymn of Peace)
Also see: Family Prayers - Pictorial (PDF)
Prayer for Unity (English)
Prayer for Unity (Hindi)
Prayer is the path that takes us to God. During prayer a person thinks of God with devotion and faith and tries to feel His presence. Prayer is the call from the heart of the devotee. One wants to open one’s heart and place it before God. One feels that one is weak, makes mistakes and has needs, therefore surrenders to God and asks for His help and guidance for which one prays and sings in praise of Him. God gives protection and comfort to those who pray to Him daily.
Prayer helps people to get away from evil actions and to raise themselves to become better persons. They find mental and spiritual peace. During prayer we must take a serious vow not to repeat our mistakes, to get rid of bad habits and make our life good. Many times we, knowingly, do not give up wrong habits. This is due to the weakness of the mind. By prayer we develop strength of the soul and decide firmly to improve our lives. By prayer we are able to conquer our weaknesses.
The effect of prayer is seen in the character of a person. The prayer can only be regarded as useful if it has been able to bring about good changes in the devotee. Prayer is essential to every individual person in happiness or in sorrow, in hope or hopelessness, in strength or weakness. Prayer is necessary for one to follow the path of truth.
We must pray daily. If possible the whole family should join in prayer at a set time every day. Learn the correct pronunciation of the mantras and recite the mantras paying attention to their meaning. Their meaning is noble, purifying and brings peace and strength to the mind. Repeating of the mantras like a parrot without understanding will not give full benefit. During prayer there should be complete concentration. Give up all other thoughts. Think that God is present within your heart and pray with devotion.
THE GAYATRI MANTRA
Aum Bhur bhuvah swah. Tatsavitur varenyam bhargo devasya dhimahi. Dhio yo nah prachodayat. (Yajurveda 36/3)
God, the Giver of life, Remover of pains and sorrows, the Bestower (giver) of happiness, and Creator of the Universe, You are most luminous (brilliant), pure and adorable (lovable). We meditate on You. May You inspire (encourage) and guide our intellect in the right direction.
ISHWAR STUTI PRARTHANA UPASANA MANTRA
1. Aum vishwani deva savitar duritani parasuva. Yad bhadram tanna asuva. (Yajurveda 30/3)
0 All-creating, Almighty, Pure- natured God You are the giver of all pleasures, please keep far from us all evils, bad habits and pains and make us attain whatever be beneficial to us
2. Hiranyagarbhah samavartatagre bhutasya jatah patireka asit. Sa dadhara prithivim dyamutemam kasmai devaya havisha vidhema. (Yajurveda 13/4)
The Divine Power who is refulgent (brilliant) by nature and who possesses all the luminous worlds within Himself and existed before creation of this world and from the very eternity (endless time) is the only one conspicuous and animate Lord of all the created objects. He is sustaining this earth and the sun etc. To that All-blissful Divinity we offer our humble worship with attainable yogic concentration and devotion.
3. Ya atmada balada yasya vishwa upasate prashisham yasya devah. Yasya chhaya mritam yasya mrityuh kasmai devaya havisha vidhema. (Yajurveda 25/23)
He who is the giver of spiritual inspiration and physical, spiritual and social vigour. He who is worshipped by all, whose governance and order is carried out by all luminous bodies and enlightened, whose shelter (grace) is immortality , whose disfavour and disobedience is the cause of pains like death etc. To that All-blissful Divinity who is the giver of all knowledge we offer our humble worship with conscience and spirit and be ready to obey His commandments.
4. Yah pranato nimishato mahitwaika idraja jagato babhuva. Va ishe asya dwipadashchatushpadah kasmai devaya havisha vidhema. (Yajurveda 25/11)
He who by His sublimity (glory) is the sole ruler of the living and non-living beings existing in this world, He who governs the bipeds and quadrupeds; to that All-blissful Divinity we offer our humble homage dedicating to Him all that belongs to us in obeying His command.
5. Yena dyau rugra prithivi cha dridha yena swah stabhitam yena nakah. Yo antarikshe rajaso vimanah kasmai devaya havisha vidhema. (Yajurveda 32/6)
He by whom the resplendent Sun and the earth have been made firm, who has held under His possession the pleasure and the bliss of salvation, who has measured, created and gave motion to all the worlds in the unbounded space moving in the manner as birds fly in it, to That All-blissful Divinity we offer our worship with our full devotion.
6. Prajapate na twadetanyanyo vishwa jataniparita babhuva. Yat kamaste juhumastanno astu vayam syama patayo rayinam. (Rigveda 10. 121. 10)
Lord of entire creatures, there is no other entity besides You who can maintain command over and surpass all these created animate and inanimate objects, i.e. You are Paramount. Aspirant of whatsoever we offer our worship to You, please grant them. We may by Your grace be possessors of all kinds of wealth and high possessions.
7. Sa no bandhurjanita sa vidhata dhamani veda bhuvanani vishwa. Yatra deva amritamana shanastritiye dhamannadhyai rayanta. (Yajurveda 32/10)
He is giver of all prosperity to us like brother, He is our procreator and He fulfills all of our aspirations, He knows all the worlds , all the names, localities and created objects of this universe, it is in Him where the person of wisdom obtaining salvation move freely after having been free from worldly pleasures and pains in the third stage of their divine life. He is our preceptor, teacher, ruler and administrator of justice. We with all devotion offer our worship to Him.
8. Agne naya supatha raye asman vishwani deva vayunani vidwan. Yuyo dhyasmajjuhurana meno bhuyishthante nama uktim vidhema. (Yajurveda 10/16)
O Self-refulgent Divinity You have All-knowledge and illuminator of all the universe. Please lead us on the path of virtue for the acquirement of physical and spiritual wealth inclusive of science, Kingdom etc., You know all the procedures of works and wisdom underlying therein and please grant all this to us leading us on the path of righteousness. Please keep us immune from sinful acts which violate nature and its law. We may remain ever-engaged in uttering Your praises in various ways.
PRAYER FOR GENERAL HAPPINESS
1. Aum sarve bhavantu sukhinah, sarve santu niramayah, sarve bhadrani pashyantu, ma kashchit dukha bhagbhavete.
0 Lord! May all be happy. May all be free from misery. May all realise goodness and may no one suffer pain.
SAMARPAN MANTRA (Salutation and Surrender)
2. Twameva mata cha pita twameva.
0 Lord! You are our Mother and Father.
Twameva bandhuscha sakha twameva.
You are our Brother and Friend.
Twameva vidya dravinam twameva.
You are our knowledge and wealth.
Twameva sarvam mama deva deva.
You are everything to us.
3. Aum sahanavavatu sahanau bhunaktu saha viryam karva vahai. Tejaswi navadhitamastu ma vidwisha vahai. (Taitiriye Arnayak 8/1)
0 God! Let us all unite and protect ourselves. Let us provide service to others and let our studies be beneficial and effective. Let there be no hatred among us.
PRAYER FOR HEALTH
We should say this prayer daily for our health and also offer this prayer at the bed-side of a patient.
1. Aum tanupa agne si tanvam me pahi.
Aum ayurda agne syayurme dehi.
Aum varchoda agne si varcho me dehi.
Aum agne yanme tanva unam tanma aprina. (Paraskar grihasutra (2.4.7))
O God ! Make my body healthy. Give me a happy, long life. Make me strong. Remove from my body whatever illness and weaknesses that may be present in it.
2. Aum tachchakshur devahitam purastach chhukram uchcharat. Pasheyma sharadah shatam jivema sharadah shatam shrinuyama sharadah shatam prabravama sharadah shatam adinah syama sharadah shatam bhuyashcha sharadah shatat. (Yajurveda 36/24)
O Protector of devotees: I concentrate on your pure energy. Give me perfect health. May my eyes, ears, tongue and the other organs function in a strong and healthy way for a hundred years. May I not be poor and dependent during this time. May we live for more than a hundred years in happiness.
3. Aum apah shivah shivatamah shantah. Shantastama staste krinavantu bheshajam. (Paraskar griha sutra 1.8.8)
God! You are kind; make me well. You are the giver of peace, cure me of my illness. By your mercy may the germ- destroying medicines prove effective in curing me speedily.
4. Aum tryambakam yajamahe sugandhim pushti vardhanam. Urvaruk miva bandhanan mrityor mukshiya ma amritat. (Yajurveda 3/60)
O Supporter of all the three worlds, destroyer of illness and helper of all! As a ripe mango breaks away from its stalk, so free us from disease and give us long life.
PRAYER FOR FAMILY WELFARE
This prayer should be made a part of daily prayer of the family.
1. Anuvratah pituh putro matra bhavatu sammanah. Jaya patye madhu matim vacham vadatu shantivam. (Atharvaveda 111.30.2)
May the son be obedient to his father and may his relationship with his mother be full of love and sweetness. May the wife and husband speak with each other lovingly and in sweet tones.
2. Samani prapa saha vonnabhagah samaneyoktre saha vo yunajmi. Samayanchognim saparyatara nabhi mivabhitah. (Atharvaveda 111.30.6)
O Family Members! May you partake of the same food and drink in this family. May the consumer goods and services be enjoyed equally by all. Just as the spokes of the wheel are equal and meet at the centre to give it motion, in a similar way, united and equal, make progress towards your common goals.
MEAL TIME PRAYER
Aum annapate annasya no dehyanamivasya shushminah. Prapradataram tarisha urjam no dhehi dvipade chatushpade. (Yajurveda 11/83)
O Lord, the Giver of Food! May you provide us with healthy and energy producing food. Grant happiness to those that give food in kindness. May this food give us strength.
SHANTI PATH (Hymn of Peace)
Aum dyauh shantirantariksham shantih prithivi shanti rapah shantiroshadhayah shantih. Vanaspatayah shantir vishwedevah shantir brahma shantih sarvam shantih shantireva shantih sa ma shantiredhi. (Yajurveda 36 / 17)
Aum shantih shantih shantih.
There is peace in the planetary region; there is peace in the atmosphere; there is peace on earth; there is coolness in the water; the medicinal herbs are healing; the plants are peace giving; there is peace in the planets; there is perfection in the eternal knowledge; everything in the universe is peaceful; peace pervades everywhere. May that peace come to me.
May there be peace, peace, peace.
The Shanti Path (Hymn of Peace) is recited at the conclusion of a function or at the end of a school day.
Why do we say Shanti three times?
The hymn of peace is concluded with the word Shanti recited three times. There are three kinds of suffering in this world and we wish to be freed of them. They are:
(a) Spiritual Suffering: Suffering of the soul, wickedness and suffering of the mind, like worry, hatred, jealousy, madness, evil thoughts, sorrows, illness such as fever, smallpox, poor eyesight, hearing problems, etc.
(b) Suffering caused by agents outside the body: Such as snake bites, attack by a dog, a robber or an enemy.
(c) Suffering by natural causes: Such as earth-quake, floods, cyclones, drought, fire, etc.
Also see: Family Prayers - Pictorial (PDF)
Prayer for Unity (English)
Prayer for Unity (Hindi)