[Advaita-l] Bhavani Astakam by Adi Sankaracharya

Sridhar Babu sridhar at amritapuri.amrita.edu
Mon Oct 10 13:12:55 CDT 2005

|| Aum Sri Gurubhyo Namah ||
|| Hari: Aum ||

Dear Advaitins

I am offering Bhavani Asthakam to all of you ...

There are times when we feel lost, hopeless. We surrender to the Divine
Mother then. Adi Shankaracharya shows how we may make our supplication:

Na taato na maataa na bandhur-na daataa

Na putro na putree na bhrityo na bhartaa

Na jaayaa na vidyaa na vrittir-mamaiva

Gatis-tvam gatis-tvam tvam-ekaa bhavaani (1)

   1. O mother Bhavani, you alone are my refuge. None of father, mother,
relatives, protectors, sons, daughters, servants, masters, wife,
learning and occupation can stand by me.

Bhavaabdhaavapaare mahaa-duhkha-bheeruh

Papaata prakaamee pralobhee pramattah

Kusamsaara-paasha-prabaddhah sadaaham

Gatis-tvam gatis-tvam tvam-ekaa bhavaani (2)

   2. O mother Bhavani, you alone are my refuge. I have fallen into this
endless ocean of constant change; I am terribly afraid and have deep
sorrow. I am lusty, greedy and intoxicated. The ropes of this bad world
have tied me down – for ever as though.

Na jaanaami daanam na cha dhyaana-yogam

Na jaanaami tantram na cha stotra-mantram

Na jaanaami poojaam na cha nyaasa-yogam

Gatis-tvam gatis-tvam tvam-ekaa bhavaani (3)

   3. O mother Bhavani, you alone are my refuge. I do not know charity or
the ways of meditation. I know not the system of Tantra, nor some
special hymns or chants. I have no idea of worship or ways to protect
myself through rituals. (or nyaasa can mean ways to renounce).

Na jaanaami puNyam na jaanaami teertham

Na jaanaami muktim layam vaa kadaachit

Na jaanaami bhaktim vratam vaapi maatar-

Gatis-tvam gatis-tvam tvam-ekaa bhavaani (4)
   4. O mother Bhavani, you alone are my refuge. I know not what is merit.
I am ignorant of pilgrimage or holy places. Liberation and dissolution
(of mind) are unknown to me. I do not know devotion or any vows or

Kukarmee kusangee kubuddhih kudaasah

Kulaachaara-heenah kadaachaara-leenah

Kudristih kuvaakya-prabandhah sadaaham

Gatis-tvam gatis-tvam tvam-ekaa bhavaani (5)
   5. O mother Bhavani, you alone are my refuge. Bad actions, bad company,
and bad thinking describe me well. I am a bad servant and have no good
family background, nor good conduct. I am immersed in bad conduct. I
have wrong vision and I am engaged in abusive talk always.

Prajesham ramesham mahesham suresham

Dinesham nisheetheshvaram vaa kadaachit

Na jaanaami chaanyat sadaaham sharaNye

Gatis-tvam gatis-tvam tvam-ekaa bhavaani (6)
   6. O mother Bhavani, you alone are my refuge. I do not know Brahma,
Vishnu, Shiva or Indra. Nor do I know Sun, Moon or any other god. You
are the one who can give me shelter.

Vivaade vishaade pramaade pravaase

Jale chaanale parvate shatru-madhye

AraNye sharaNye sadaa maam prapaahi

Gatis-tvam gatis-tvam tvam-ekaa bhavaani (7)

   7. O mother Bhavani, you alone are my refuge. Please protect me during
any dispute, sorrow, error or travel. Be by my side and protect me when
I am in water, near fire, on a hill or amidst enemies.

Anaatho daridro jaraa-roga-yukto

Mahaa-ksheeNa-deenah sadaa jaaDya-vaktrah

Vipattau pravisthah praNasthah sadaaham

Gatis-tvam gatis-tvam tvam-ekaa bhavaani (8)

   8. O mother Bhavani, you alone are my refuge. I am an orphan, very  
poor and suffer from old age and disease. Extremely weakened and most
miserable, I have almost gone dumb. I am in deep trouble, I am dying.

Sripada Renu
Sridhar Babu
Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavanthu

O! Mother                                 ****
Let my every word be a prayer to Thee,
Every movement of my hands a ritual gesture to Thee,
Every step I take a circumambulation of Thy image,
Every morsel I eat a rite of sacrifice to Thee,
Every time I lay down a prostration at Thy feet;
Every act of personal pleasure and all else that I do,
Let it all be a form of worshiping Thee."

>From Verse 27 of Shri Aadi Shankara's Saundaryalahari

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