[Advaita-l] Gayatri [was Re: Advaita-l Digest, Vol 110, Issue 7]

Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at braincells.com
Mon Oct 14 23:51:30 CDT 2013

On Thu, 3 Oct 2013, Bhaskar YR wrote:

> But all gAyatri is not veda base...can we use different gAyatri for deity
> which does not have veda base??  For example, hanumAn gAyatri, skanda
> gAyatri, sarpa gAyatri ( nava nAga gAyatri) navagraha gAyatri ( for all
> the navagraha-s) etc. donot have reference in veda-s I think, unlike
> vishnu, shiva, nArasimha, durga, gaNapati, sUrya, shaNmukha, nandi etc.
> for which we have the veda reference in upanishads like mahAnArAyaNa.
> Kindly clarify.

Well some are also found in tantras and agamas but you are specifically 
speaking of the "modern" ones I presume.

> I recently heard a latest gAyatri on circle mAramma ( a famous deity here
> in Malleshwaram circle, Bangalore), the priest who was performing
> 'mAramma' hOma chanting 'circle mAramma' gAyatri maNtra in loud speaker
> while giving gudAnna  Ahuti, gAyatri was something like :  mahAkAlyaicha
> vidmahe, shiva patnaicha dheemani, tannO mAramma prachOdayAt.. :-))
> can we use ready made gAyatri-s like this to propitiate the sthaLa devata
> or kshetra devata prabhuji ??   Kindly clarify.

>From the sociological viewpoint it is an interesting phenomenon. 
Historically many of these deities were worshipped by the lower strata of 
society who are now coming up in the world.  When the bhakta has a Gucci 
handbag, and ipad and fancy house and car, the devata must also be 
properly equipped.  It will not do for uptodate people to worship in the 
same way as illiterate country grandmothers!  To such people I would ask 
for a moment of contemplation.  Is what they are doing really from a 
sattvika bhakti bhava where one acts purely out of love for ones ishta 
without expectations or is it a rajasika sense of self-aggrandizement? 
Those country grandmothers might not have known a gayatri from a ghazal 
but did Maramma accept their devotion any less?  In the end isn't that 
what truly matters?

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>

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