Do you want to know the meaning of Asatoma Sadgamaya? Then, you’re in the right place. Here is a thorough explanation of what Asatoma Sadgamay means and how you can incorporate it into your life.
Asatoma Sadgamaya, often referred to as Om asatoma is the opening line of ancient prayer from Brhadaranyaka Upanishad. It is a popular prayer Indians say at schools, during religious gatherings, social events, and others. Many believe that these verses bring peace to its reciter.
The meaning of Asatoma sadgamaya is “Lead me from ignorance to truth.” The complete Mantra goes thus;
asato ma sadgamaya
Tamaso ma jyotir gamaya
Mrtyor ma amrtam gamaya
Om shanti shanti shanti
असतो मा सद् गमय
तमसो मा ज्योतिर् गमय
मृत्योर् माम्रतं गमय
ॐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः
What Asatoma Sadgamaya means in English:
lead me from ignorance to knowledge
From darkness, lead me to light;
From death, lead me to immortality
Om peace, peace, peace
|Asat||Unreal, not true, ignorance, non-existence|
|Sat (sad)||Reality, truth|
|Gamaya||move or lead|
|Tam (tamas)||Ignorance, Darkness|
|Jyoti (jyotir)||Clarity, Light, Purity|
|Amrita (amritam)||Deathlessness, ambrosia|
|Om||holy word, word of creation, holy vibration, god|
Asatoma Sadgamaya: The Meaning Of These Holy Words
All of the words in this prayer inspire the practitioner to be their best selves and to live in a state of awareness. Rather than seeking to fulfill the practitioner’s worldly desires such as material gain and personal requirements, the practitioner is encouraged to depart from the anguish of ignorance and death of this world. Instead, they should reside in the celestial realms of wisdom, light, and immortality, as this mantra encourages.
In the same way that most Sanskrit prayers begin with the word om, the Pavamana mantra does as well. Om is a sacred sound that is believed to signify the Divine in Hinduism. It is also a universal sound, and its utterance is the sound of creation itself because we hear it everywhere.
The proverbial phrase “Asato ma sad gamaya” means ‘Lead me’ or ‘guide me’ from “ignorance to knowledge.” To do so urges us to release ourselves from the grip of our own ignorance, which blinds us to the ultimate truth and prevents us from recognizing it. Then, to live in a state of complete knowledge and comprehension of all that we encounter.
“Tamaso ma jyotir gamaya” translates to “From darkness, lead me to light.” While the word jyotir literally translates as “light,” the term “darkness” alludes to one’s own inner negativity and negativity in others. Therefore, this sentence expresses our potential to rise beyond our circumstances and into the light of the world around us.
“Mrityor ma amritam gamaya.” encourages us to be free of death’s shackles and to live in our eternal state of immortality.
“Om shanti shanti shanti” is a Sanskrit phrase that means “peace, peace, peace.”
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Words Of A Wise One
It’s critical to remember that this mantra isn’t a physical movement. In other words, we don’t need to travel far to find the Atma, nor must we undergo any significant changes in order to become one. Atma is a Sanskrit term that signifies “self.” so, we don’t have to change who we are to become the person we want to be.
We are also under no obligation to go anywhere to transform ourselves. We are who we are and our journey is one that depends on knowledge. What we believe to be our true selves is actually a journey to discover who we truly are.
A wise one once said that the first step toward attaining the knowledge for which one is praying when chanting these mantras is to attend satsang (listening to spiritual talks) and read spiritual books. A practitioner should also spend time in the company of spiritual seekers or masters, all of which require no money.
According to the wise one, “we need to be nourished by a realization that our essential essence is Atma, not the body, mind, or intellect. As we continue to practice satsang, our attachment to the asat gradually weakens. As you come to comprehend that everything in the world—all worldly relationships, all worldly things—is ever-changing and fleeting, your view on the world progressively shifts.
Because we understand that the things of this world are fleeting and cannot offer us long-term pleasure, our appetites naturally diminish. As a result, we become more detached from these pleasures. As the urges subside, the mind becomes less and less angry and agitated. It brings about feelings of relaxation, tranquillity, and serenity. Once we have this stilled, delicate, piercing mind at our disposal, we will be able to realize our true nature in its entirety.”