The Opening Prayer is a blessing of gratitude offered to the lineage of teachers and their students who have enabled this ancient practice to survive through thousands of years so that we can experience its benefits today. The recitation of this mantra cleanses the energy of the space we have chosen to practice yoga, as well as preparing the mind, body and emotions for the forthcoming Ashtanga sequence.
Vande Gurunam Charanaravinde
Sandarshita Svatma Sukava Bodhe
Nih Sreyase Jangalikayamane
Samsara Halahala Mohashantyai
Sahasra Sirasam Svetam
I bow to the lotus feet of the Supreme Guru
which awaken insight into the happiness of pure Being,
which are the refuge, the jungle physician,
which eliminate the delusion caused by the poisonous herb of Samsara (conditioned existence).
I prostrate before the sage Patanjali
who has thousands of radiant, white heads (as the divine serpent, Ananta)
and who has, as far as his arms, assumed the form of a man
holding a conch shell (divine sound), a wheel (discus of light or infinite time) and a sword (discrimination).
The Closing Prayer brings the practice to a peaceful end; sealing in the work done and offering the efforts of our practice to improve the state of the world.
Svasthi Praja Bhyaha Pari Pala Yantam
Nya Yena Margena Mahim Mahishaha
Go Brahmanebhyaha Shubamastu Nityam
Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu
Om Shanti Shanti Shantihi.
May the rulers of the earth keep to the path of virtue
For protecting the welfare of all generations.
May the religious, and all peoples be forever blessed,
May all beings everywhere be happy and free
Om peace, peace, perfect peace.
Some of the common words we hear in chants are:
OM or AUM
A simple translation of this word is GOD (the true meaning is so much more). Om means omniscience, omnipresence and omnipotence which are all attributes of God. It is the universal primordial sound represented in all living matter. When you chantthe word OM you are actually chanting God.
This means peace.
LOKHA SAMASTHA SUKHINO BHAVANTU
May people around the world be happy and prosperous
OM NAMAN SHIVAYA
I bow down to the feet of my teacher/guru.
The teacher/guru could be whoever you choose. If you are a Christian, this could be Jesus Christ.
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