गुरवे नमः (Salutations to Guru)

December 12, 2009

गुरुर्ब्रह्मा गुरुर्विष्णुः गुरुर्देवो  महेश्वरः |
गुरुस्साक्षात्  परब्रह्म तस्मै श्रीगुरवे नमः ||

This is probably one of the most common and widely recited shlokas in Indian households and schools. As can be seen, it is very simple; but at the same time, it is often written and recited wrongly.

The above can be re-written after splitting the sandhis as below:

गुरुः ब्रह्मा गुरुः विष्णुः गुरुः देवः महेश्वरः |
गुरुः साक्षात् परब्रह्म तस्मै श्रीगुरवे नमः ||

Here are some examples of common mistakes done in this shloka:

गुरुः looses विसर्ग and becomes just गुरु

and hence, गुरुर्ब्रह्मा or गुरुः ब्रह्मा becomes गुरु ब्रह्मा (similarly with विष्णुः and महेश्वरः)

गुरुस्साक्षात् or गुरुः साक्षात्  becomes गुरुसाक्षात् or गुरुर्साक्षात्

गुरवे  very commonly becomes गुरुवे
(Note that when saluting, चतुर्थी विभक्ति is used for whom salutations are done. चतुर्थी विभक्ति form of गुरु is गुरवे)

परब्रह्म becomes परं ब्रह्म or परब्रह्मा or परब्रह्मः
(Note that in “गुरुः ब्रह्मा”, ब्रह्मा is the प्रथमा विभक्ति एकवचन form of पुल्लिङ्ग (Masculine gender) ब्रह्मन् शब्दः which goes as  ब्रह्मा, ब्रह्माणौ, ब्रह्माणः ‘while in “परब्रह्म” it is the नपुंसकल्लिङ्ग (Neuter gender) form of ब्रह्मन् which goes as ‘ब्रह्म, ब्रह्मणी, ब्रह्माणि’. ब्रह्मा is used to denote the 1st God of the Trinity (Brahma Vishnu Maheshwara), but परब्रह्म is used to denote the Supreme Brahman.

ಕನ್ನಡದಲ್ಲಿ ಈ ಶ್ಲೋಕವನ್ನು ಸಾಮಾನ್ಯವಾಗಿ ಹೀಗೆ ಕಾಣಬಹುದು:

ಗುರು ಬ್ರಹ್ಮ ಗುರು ವಿಷ್ಣು  ಗುರು ದೇವೋ ಮಹೇಶ್ವರಃ |
ಗುರು ಸಾಕ್ಷಾತ್ ಪರಬ್ರಹ್ಮ ತಸ್ಮೈ  ಶ್ರೀಗುರುವೇ ನಮಃ ||

ಮೂಲ ಸಂಸ್ಕೃತ ಶ್ಲೋಕಕ್ಕೆ ಹೋಲಿಸಿದಾಗ ಇದು ಅಶುದ್ಧ ಎನಿಸಿದರೂ, ಕನ್ನಡದ ದೃಷ್ಟಿಯಿಂದ ಇದು almost ಸರಿಯೆನ್ನಬಹುದು! ಗುರುವೇ (ಗುರವೇ ಗೆ ಬದಲಾಗಿ) ಎಂದು ತಪ್ಪಾಗಿ ಬಳಸಿದರೂ, ಕನ್ನಡದ ಮಟ್ಟಿಗೆ ಇದು ಸರಿ. (ಇನ್ನೂ ಸರಿ ಎಂದರೆ ಗುರುವಿಗೆ ನಮಃ ಎನ್ನಬೇಕು, ಸಂಸ್ಕೃತದಲ್ಲಿ ಇದ್ದ ಹಾಗೆ ಚತುರ್ಥೀ ವಿಭಕ್ತಿಯಲ್ಲಿ)

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Shlokas in daily life

December 6, 2009

Recently I was referring to some course material (learning Sanskrit through correspondence) from Samskrita-Bharati  and I came across this set of nice and simple shlokas that are useful in day-to-day life for various occasions.

1. After getting up in the morning, looking at the arms:
कराग्रे वसते लक्ष्मीः करमध्ये सरस्वती |
करमूले स्थिता गौरी प्रभाते करदर्शनम
् ||
[Lakshmi resides at the end of the arms, Saraswati in the middle and Gowri at the base. (Hence need to) look at the arms in the morning]

2. When you step on the Mother Earth:
समुद्रवसने देवि पर्वतस्तनमण्डले |
विष्णुपत्नि नमस्तुभ्यं पादस्पर्शं क्षमस्व मे ||

[Vishnu’s wife Mother Earth has ocean as her clothes, mountains as her chest.  Devi, pardon me for stepping on you]

3. To be chanted during morning times seeking a good beginning for the day from Trinity and Navagrahas:
ब्रह्मा मुरारिस्त्रिपुरान्तकश्च भानुः शशी भूमिसुतो बुधश्च |
गुरुश्च शुक्रः शनिराहुकेतवः कुर्वन्तु सर्वे मम सुप्रभातम् ||

[Trinity and nine planets, brighten my day]

4. While taking bath:
गङ्गे च यमुने चैव गोदावरि सरस्वति |
नर्मदे सिन्धु कावेरि जलेऽस्मिन् सन्निधि
ं कुरु ||
[Hey Ganga, Yamuna, Godavari, Sarsaswati, Narmada, Sindhu, Kaveri – please be part of this water]

Note the use of गोदावरि सरस्वति कावेरि – here you are addressing these rivers. These should not be be pronounced as गोदावरी सरस्वती कावेरी. The former are in संबोधन प्रथमा विभक्ति and the latter are in प्रथमा विभक्ति.

5. Before starting a meal:
अन्नपूर्णे सदापूर्णे शङ्करप्राणवल्लभे |
ज्ञान
वैराग्यसिद्ध्यर्थं भिक्षां देहि च पार्वति ||
[Hey Annapoora Parvati, grant me Bhiksha for getting knowledge and Vairagya/renunciation]

6. After lighting evening’s light/Deepa:
दीपमूले स्थितो ब्रह्मा दीपमध्ये जनार्दनः |
दीपाग्रे  शङ्करः प्रोक्तः संध्याज्योतिर्नमोऽस्तुते ||

[Brahma resides at the end of the flame, Vishnu in the middle and Maheshwara at the base.  Salutations to evening’s light]

7. When receiving teertha (holy water):
शरीरे जर्जरीभूते व्याधिग्रस्ते कलेवरे |
औषधं जाह्नवीतोयं वैद्यो नारायणो हरिः ||

[When the body is sick and suffering, Water from Ganga is the medicine and Lord Narayana is the doctor]

8. Before going to bed:
रामं स्कन्दं हनूमन्तं वैनतेयं वृकोदरम् |
शयने यः स्मरेन्नित्यं दु
ःस्वप्नस्तस्य नश्यति ||
[Those who remember Rama, Shanmukha/Skanda, Hanuman, Garuda and Bheema before sleeping will not get bad dreams]

I am sure there are many such Shlokas which are useful in daily life for various situations. Let me know if you know other such Shlokas.