S V: Dear Swami Ram Swarup Ji, I found your website through a google search. I am a student in US. I have had a very hard year in my life and wanted to find peace. Are there any mandirs near my state where I can stay and volunteer? I find that in this crucial time of my life, I would like to become closer to God and understand Hinduism in more depth. I find myself reaching a very unstable, unhappy place and I would like to regain my strength. Are there any programs or places that I would be able to donate my time in helping others? Thank you for your time.
Swami Ram Swarup: My blessings to you, my daughter. Sorry, I do not know about any mandirs in your state. Spiritual matters have very well been briefed in four Vedas. The aspirant who
followed it got the peace (salvation). You know, the Vedas knowledge emanates direct from God in the beginning of every creation. God is immortal and everlasting truth, so are the Vedas. I would advise you to follow the Vedic path but decision would rest always with you. I would therefore again advise you to study some of my Vedic books and if you know Hindi then listen to some spiritual preach and bhajans of mine from Cd. The books and Cds can be sent to you on receipt of your postal address. In the mean time, you may do-
Hard working, devotion, dedication, honesty, services to the parents and elders to follow eternal religion mentioned in Vedas, practice of Ashtang Yoga, discharging moral duties to get progress in education, science simultaneously with spiritualism like, daily havan, to be in contact with the learned Acharya, to get his advice, are some of the pious deeds which make the future bright and obliterate the sorrows, problems, diseases, etc.
One must wake up early in the morning for early morning walk and exercises, must sit on meditation and chant holy name of God, must be away from any addiction and non-vegetarian. Such pious actions lead to long, happy life and bright future.
Please, start the day by chanting Gayatri mantra in the early morning sitting on suitable asan like Sukhasan, Siddhasan or Padmasan etc. concentrate on the point between two eyebrows which is called “Agyachakra”. The Gayatri mantra should be chanted along with its meaning both times. Also, please try to perform daily hawan even with Gayatri mantra. Then try to study any of my books daily and put up question if any.
After 15 days chant the Gayatri mantra only thrice thereafter do the name jaap of Almighty God-“Om”. The jaap must be done daily by heart and not orally.
The Gayatri mantra is as follows —
OM BHURBHUVAHA SWAHA TATA SAVITUR VARENYAM BHARGODEVASYA
DHIMAHI DHIYO YO NAHA PRACHODYAT
Meaning of Gayatri mantra stating each word is as follows. Its meaning is based on Vedas and Sanskrit grammar. Grammatical hints are in short please.
Om has three Hindi words. Aa, Uu AND Ma. Aa is meant for Aakaar from which three names of God are built, Viraat, Agni, and Vishwadi. From Uu = uukar from which Hirannyagarbha, Vayu and Tejas names occur and Ma = makaar from which Ishwar, Aditya and Praajyan aadi, holy names of God occur. Rigveda mantra 1/164/46 says God is one but His names are several. But here OM the holy name of God is only being explained.
VIRAAT = Viraat word is made from dhatu ‘Rajrideeptau’ i.e., manifest. Therefore Viraat means He who manifests the universe. As God manifests the universe, thus Viraat is the name of God. Rigveda mandal 10, sukta 129 states that like potter makes pot from clay, similarly God creates universe from non-alive matter prakriti. Prakriti is unseen matter. From unseen matter, the whole universe is created in the visible form. Science also says that matter is never destroyed but changes its form. Suppose a paper is burnt, paper changes its form into ashes. Then ashes are crushed and thrown in air. At this moment, the paper changed into ashes becomes invisible but was never destroyed. Similarly the whole universe at the time of final destruction is turned into prakriti i.e., into unseen form.
AGNI = From dhatu, “ANCHU GATI POOJANAYOHO” the word “AGNI is made. Its meaning is: He who is a form of wisdom. “SARVAJAYEN” i.e., Omniscient. That is, knows each and every atom of universe and even beyond universe. He who is to be known, to be gained and is worshipful. So Agni is the name of God.
VISHWA = Vishwa word is made from dhatu, “VISHPRAVESHANE”. Its meaning is He in whom the universe is entering or He who is entering the universe. So being omnipresent, Vishwa is the name of God.
HIRANNYAGARBHA = i.e., ” JYOTIRVAYIHIRANYAM”. Its meaning is, who is the base of all sun, etc., luminous lokas or He who is the living place of all luminous lokas.
VAYU = from dhatu, “VA GATIGANDHANYOHO”, vayu word is made. Its meaning is He who holds, gives life and destroys and is the mightiest amongst all. So the name of God is Vayu.
TEJ = from dhatu, “TIJA NISHANE”, the word Tej is made meaning He who is self made and self-enlightened and gives light to sun, moon, stars etc. God does not take light from anywhere but gives light to sun, moon, stars, etc. so the unbroken, unobstructed/unproduced and eternal form of light is Almighty God and not sun, moon etc. So the name of God is Tej.
ISHWAR = from dhatu, “ISH ASHWERIYE”, the word Ishwar is made. Its meaning is whose knowledge is thoughtful and true and He who has unlimited wealth, fortune and glory etc. Therefore the name of God is Ishwar. Here it is not out of place to mention that soul (man/woman) has limited qualities and are dependent whereas God is independent and has unlimited qualities that is why He is God.
ADITYA = from dhatu, “DO AVAKHANDANE”, Aditya word is made. Its meaning is the one who cannot be broken into pieces and thus cannot be destroyed. So God’s name is Aditya.
PRAJAYEN (PRAGYA) = from dhatu, “JYEN AVABODHANE”, Prajayen word is made meaning whose wisdom is totally without any misunderstanding and thus he who knows every matter and behavior of whole universe without misunderstanding. So God’s name is Prajayen. So here also it is not out of place to mention that illusion can never attack on God and God is totally free from illusion.
BHUHU = “BHUHU ITI VAYEE PRANAHA” i.e., He who is the base of lives of universe, is most beloved, even more than Prann i.e., breath. So Bhuhu is the name of God.
BHUVAHA= “BHUVAHA ITI APANAHA” i.e., He who is totally free from any sorrow, and the soul removes his own all sorrows after coming in contact with Him. So the name of God is Bhuvaha.
SWAHA = i.e., “SWAHA ITI VYANAHE” who is omnipresent in the universe and is holding the same. So the name of God is Swaha.
SAVITUHU = He who creates the universe. So the name of God is Savituhu.
DEVSYA= who gives all pleasure/merriment, so the name of God is Dev.
VARENNYAM = He who is the most supreme and acceptable. God is most supreme and acceptable for worship.
BHARGAHA = the purest entity (though God is formless, but finding no suitable English word of Sanskrit word, “SHUDH SWARUPAM” the word entity has been used.)
TAT = i.e., the God i.e., of the purest entity.
DHIMAHI = i.e., we must hold (sort of meditation) because
YAHA = the God
NAHA = our,
DHIYAHA = mind(i.e., in our minds)
PRACHODYAT = by inspiration (fulfil the mind with wisdom)
“We meditate the God who is the base of lives’ of universe, totally free from any sorrow, omnipresent, creates the universe, gives all pleasure/merriment, most supreme and acceptable, purest entity; May the God enlighten our minds with wisdom by His inspiration”.
Here it is not out of place to mention that idea of a (one) Ved mantra is based on ideas of several Ved mantras. So in the above Gayatri mantra, there are three things —-
Bhuhu, Bhuvaha, Swaha, Savituhu, Bhargaha, Devsya are some qualities amongst unlimited qualities of God. These are called Stuti i.e., to say about God with His real qualities and not self made etc.
Secondly Dhimahi means meditation i.e., one should always sit in meditation and do hard and pious deeds for which he will have to study Vedas in full, while discharging moral duties towards family and nation.
Third and last is DHIYO YO NAHA PRACHODYAT. It is a prayer to God explanation of which is cited above.
How to do havan
Please sit in the morning to perform havan. Havan must be in sunlight then it is more beneficial. Then half a bowl of fresh water with a tablespoon must be with you with small twigs especially of mango tree if possible, havan samagri, ghee, camphor and match box must be there with you. Please sit on sukh asan on four times folded blanket and blanket must be on mat.
Sukh asan i.e., sit on duly folded feet in comfortable position. Then first close your eyes and concentrate between two eyebrows and chant Gayatri mantra three times within heart and not by mouth. Then open your eyes.
Take one spoon of water in right palm. Chant this mantra, OM AMRITO UPASTRANMASI SWAHA and drink the water which you have put in your palm. Then again take the spoon of water in right palm then chant the next mantra, OM AMRITA APIDHANMASI SWAHA, and drink the water. Then again take the water in right palm and chant the mantra, OM SATYAM YASHAH SHRI MAYI SHRI SHRAYTAAM SWAHA, and drink the water. Then wash the right palm while sitting, with the same water kept in bowl.
Then put the twigs into havan kund with one piece of camphor and burn it. During this process chant the Gayatri mantra again and again till such time the fire is lighted sufficiently. Then chant the Gayatri mantra and at the last add the word Swaha and offer ghee with tablespoon, quantity equivalent to 4 to 5 drops. And if you are alone then also offer in fire pinch of havan samagri from your right hand’s finger and thumb avoiding forefinger. So this offering may be of 11 times, 21 times or 51 times as the time suits. It is the simplest way and I have not quoted the complete method of Yajyen. The havan with Ved mantras are always offered as the best worship of God only please. Do havan daily and both times
According to Vedas, there is only One Formless, Omnipresent, Omniscient and Almighty God Who creates, nurses and destroys the universe; He alone is to be worshipped by doing daily hawan with Ved mantras, name jaap of God-‘OM’, practice of Ashtang Yoga under the guidance of learned acharya of Vedas and Ashtang Yoga Philosophy. Yet, if you are not interested in Vedic culture then you may locate temple on internet or seek help of local pandit etc.
Gautam: I want to stay in your ashram for a period. My question: where from can I learn the Vedic method of performing havan?
Swami Ram Swarup: You are welcome here and after reaching you will be told about
daily hawan, Yajyen, method of name jaap of God and practice of Yoga Philosophy which is the best worship of God, say the Vedas. If you cannot spare time immediately then the guidance can be given on e-mail.
HR: Swamiji, My father expired on recently, the 10th day rites fall due on
on a weekday but due to some reason the guruji insisting on doing the rites of 10th day on 9th day. Being Sunday its convenient for all, but is right to do it? Please reply.
Swami Ram Swarup: I’m sorry to hear about your father’s demise. May God rest him in peace. Yes, you may perform the required rites on Sunday. I would also like to tell you that in Vedas only, the pious deeds of cremation is done and next day the ashes are gathered and made to flow in running river. Thereafter, no deed remains to be done. Yet, people have made their own custom, so they may go ahead, to do the same any day, any time.