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Books > Hindu > Mantrasara (The Essential Matins) (With Sanskrit Text, Transliteration and English Translation)
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Mantrasara (The Essential Matins) (With Sanskrit Text, Transliteration and English Translation)
Mantrasara (The Essential Matins) (With Sanskrit Text, Transliteration and English Translation)
Description
Back of the Book

Swami Gabhirananda is a senior monk of the Ramakrishna Order. He joined the order in 1951. He has served in various capacities at some of its major centers such as Advaita Ashrama, both at Calcutta and Mayavati, the Ramakrishna Math at Trissur, the Ramakrishna Mission Sevashrama at Kankhal (Hardwar), and the Ramakrishna Math at Mylapore, Madras. In 1982, he was again at Thrissur. From October 1999, he has been the President of the Ramakrishna Math, Vyttila, Kochi (Ernakulam), Kerala.

Swami Gabhirananda has interpreted many scriptural texts. In these, he scrupulously avoids rhetorical flourishes and repetitions, which often mar the effectiveness of the originals and baffle the common reader. His contributions in this field have won whole-hearted appreciation from eminent savants and scholars.

His published works include Shrutigita, Gospel of Sri Krishna, Mandukya-karika, Major Poetical Upanishads, Saundaryalahari, Rasapanchadhyayi, Lalitasahasranama, Wisdom of Vedanta, etc. An edition of Vishnu-sahasranama is in the press.

Publisher’s Note

Swami Gabhirananda has been the President of the Ramakrishna Math, Kochi, since March, 1999. He joined the Ramakrishna Order of Monks in 1951 at a young age, when he was a student at college, and had served at different places such as Calcutta, Kalady, Thrissur and Chennai before joining the Math at Thrissur (for a second time) and becoming head of the Math at Vyttila, Kochi, in 1999. It was partly in fulfillments of his mother’s wish and partly of his own innate urge for tyaga and seva that Swamiji took to Sanyasa. His life has been an open book. Spartan in his simplicity, Swamiji is a symbol of innocence and purity, nobility and compassion. Swamiji has been tireless in spreading the message of Vedanta, of Sri Ramakrishna and of Swami Vivekananda. He has a penchant for poetry with spiritual undertones in scriptural literature. He has taken it upon himself to inspire the people with religious feeling and spiritual fervour.

This book, ‘Mantrasara’ (The Essential Matins) comes last and the latest in the series beginning with the ‘Song of the Soul’, and followed by ‘Towards Surrender’. The book contains selections from the Vedantic texts, the Bhagavad Gita and the Bhagavata. Daily recitation of the selected verses will be a kind of Sadhana which will help the Sadak to move towards the goal that is Moksha or Liberation of the soul.

The unbroken continuity of Indian Culture — Sanatana Dharma — over 5,000 years and more is due to the Saints and Sages who have blessed our Motherland age after age. Swami Gabhirananda of the Ramakrishna Order comes in this illustrious line. May his tribe increase!

Introduction

This is not the time for a long lecture. But I shall speak to you in brief about a few things which I should like you to carry into practice. First, we have to understand the ideal, and then the methods by which we can make it practical. Those of you who are Sannyasins must try to do good to others, for Sannyasa means that. There is no time to deliver a long discourse on “Renunciation”, but I shall very briefly characterise it as “the love of death “. Worldly people love life. The Sannyasin is to love death. Are we to commit suicide then? Far from it, For suicides are not lovers of death, as it is often seen that when a man trying to commit suicide fails, he never attempts it for a second time. What is the love of death then? We must die, that is certain; let us die then for a good cause. Let all our actions — eating, drinking, and everything that we do — tend towards the sacrifice of our self. You nourish your body by eating. What good is there in doing that if you do not hold it as a sacrifice to the well-being of others? You nourish your minds by reading books. There is no good in doing that unless you hold it also as a sacrifice to the whole world. For the whole world is one; you are rated a very insignificant part of it, and therefore it is right for you that you should serve your millions of brothers rather than aggrandise this little self.

Sarvatahpanipadam tat
Sarvatoksisiromukham
Sarvatah srutimalloke
Sarvamavrtya tisthati.

“With hands and feet everywhere, with eyes, heads, and mouths everywhere, with ears everywhere in the universe, That exists pervading all.” (Gita, XIII.13)

Thus you must die a gradual death. In such a death is heaven, all good is stored therein — and in its opposite is all that is diabolical and evil.

Then as to the methods of carrying the ideals into practical life. First, we have to understand that we must not have any impossible ideal. An ideal which is too high makes a nation weak and degraded. This happened after the Buddhistic and the Jam reforms. On the other hand,. Too much practicality is also wrong. If you have not even a little imagination, if you have no ideal to guide you, you are simply a brute. So we must not lower our ideal, neither are we to lose sight of practicality. We must avoid the two extremes. In our country, the old idea is to sit in a cave and meditate and die. To go ahead of others in salvation is wrong. One must learn sooner or later that one cannot get salvation if one does not try to seek the salvation of his brothers. You must try to combine in your life immense idealism with immense practicality. You must be prepared to go into deep meditation now, and the next moment you must be ready to go and cultivate these fields (Swamiji said, pointing to the meadows of the Math). You must be prepared to explain the difficult intricacies of the Shasta’s now, and the next moment to go and sell the produce of the fields in the market. You must be prepared for all menial services, not only here, but elsewhere also.

The next thing to remember is that the aim of this institution is to make men. You must not merely learn what the Rishis taught. Those Rishis are gone, and their opinions are also gone with them. You must be Rishis yourselves. You are also men as much as the greatest men that were ever born - even our Incarnations. What can mere book-learning do? What can meditation do even? What can the Mantras and Tantras do? You must stand on your own feet. You must have this new method— the method of man-making. The true man is he who is strong as strength itself and yet possesses a woman’s heart. You must feel for the millions of beings around you, and yet you must be strong and inflexible and you must also possess obedience; though it may seem a little paradoxical — you must possess these apparently conflicting virtues. If your superior orders you to throw yourself into a river and catch a crocodile, you must first obey and then reason with him. Even if the order be wrong, first obey and then contradict it. The bane of sects, especially in Bengal, is that if any one happens to have a different opinion, he immediately starts a new sect, ‘he has no patience to wait. So you must have a deep regard for your Sangha. There is no place for disobedience here. Crush it out without mercy. No disobedient members here, you must turn them out. There must not be any traitors in the camp. You must be as free as the air, and as obedient as this plant and the dog.

Preface

Hear, ye children of immortal bliss! even ye that reside in higher spheres! I have found the Ancient One, who is beyond all darkness, all delusion: knowing Him alone you shall be saved from death over again.
Swami Vivekananda

The Song of the Soul, published in 1993, was welcomed by people from far and near. A second edition came out in 1996. One who was specially benefited by it was keen to have a smaller Prayer Book. Hence this volume.

Svadhyaya (study), sadhana (struggle), and seva (service) form the three Sa’s of spiritual life. Of these, svadhyaya is basic. It is the repetition of and meditation on the sacred texts containing the precepts of sages for stabilizing human life. These wise sayings enable us to practise sadhana and to engage ourselves in seva to the world seeing it as the mainfestation of God.

Remember your divine origin and reorganize your lives accordingly. See the Atman or Self in all and serve them as your own. Shun the self-seeking, selfish, and separatist superstitions— cultural, racial, religious, or scientific — and practise the divine vision envisaged by the Mantrasara, the Essential Matins. May you be peaceful, perfect, and whole, even as your origin or source is Peace, Perfection, and Wholeness.

The Preamble by Swami Vivekananda is his divine manifesto which sets a guideline for all workers in the vineyard of the Supreme. (Vide complete Works, Vol.1.257. VI.81-82) The Wisdom of Vedanta contains the four Peace Chants (santimantras) of the four Vedas, offering rules of conduct for humanity.

The Mantrasara, the Essential Matins, contains fifty-four verse& from the main texts of Vedantic knowledge, namely, the Vedas, the Bhagavadgita and the Bhagavata. It was a Herculean task to choose these verses representing the quintessence of wisdom of sages garnered through millenniums. These basic texts exhort us to divinize ourselves and dedicate ourselves to the service of God in man. Only when a few sadhaka-scholars approved the contents, I felt confident. They wrote: ‘The selection is superb’; ‘A healthy and wonderful recipe for an erring world engaged in self-destructive programmes — a divine voice to save mankind from losing its way in the shifting sands of widespread scepticism and atheism!’; ‘The selection is done thoughtfully it would bring to the readers not only spiritual enlightenment but material prosperity as well.’

The ‘Song of the Sannyasin’ by Swami Vivekananda is experiential estimate of Sri Ramakrishna. Being the very essence of scriptures, it offers mantras in English for meditation; it therefore, appended.

The first Appendix, Nine Stanzas on Freedom, is the translation of the Nirvanashatkam and three verses from the Vivekacudamani (408-410) of Sankaracarya by Swami Vivekananda. The second appendix contains shining gems from the Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna and the Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda corroborating the message of the Mantrasara.

Finally, let us listen to the mottoes suggested by Swami Vivekananda, the prophet of the twenty-first century, which should adorn the banner of every movement:

Help and not fight.
Assimilation and not destruction.
Harmony and peace and not dissension.

Let us live as the descendents and for bearers of the Teachers of humanity. May we overcome the differences created by ignorance which obstruct and Divine Vision, practised and proclaimed by them.

I offer my heartfelt thanks and pranams to the most revered Swami Ranganathanandaji Maharaj, the venerable President of the Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission for his benediction.

My heartfelt gratitude t all ‘who supported the project and to the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Mumbai and its Executive Secretary and Director General Sri S. Ramakrishnan for producing the book perfectly.

Contents

Dedication v
Publishers’ Note vii
Benediction ix
Preamble xiii
Introduction xv
Preface xix
Wisdom of Vedanta 1
Gayatri-mantras 5
Invocation 9
Mantrasara – The Essential Matins
From Vedas 11
From the Bhagavad Gita 54
From the Bhagavata 59
Conclusion 65
Submission 67
Appendix I – The Song of the Sannyasin 79
Appendix II – Modern Testimony 73
A The Master and the Disciple Confirm 73
B Sri Ramakrishna: the Fulfillment of Religions 79
Appendix III- Nine Stanzas on Freedom 85
Notes 91

Mantrasara (The Essential Matins) (With Sanskrit Text, Transliteration and English Translation)

Item Code:
NAC286
Cover:
Paperback
Edition:
2001
Publisher:
Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan
ISBN:
8172762143
Language:
With Sanskrit Text, Transliteration and English Translation
Size:
8.5 Inch X 5.5 Inch
Pages:
113
Other Details:
Weight of the Book: 170 gms
Price:
$12.00
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Back of the Book

Swami Gabhirananda is a senior monk of the Ramakrishna Order. He joined the order in 1951. He has served in various capacities at some of its major centers such as Advaita Ashrama, both at Calcutta and Mayavati, the Ramakrishna Math at Trissur, the Ramakrishna Mission Sevashrama at Kankhal (Hardwar), and the Ramakrishna Math at Mylapore, Madras. In 1982, he was again at Thrissur. From October 1999, he has been the President of the Ramakrishna Math, Vyttila, Kochi (Ernakulam), Kerala.

Swami Gabhirananda has interpreted many scriptural texts. In these, he scrupulously avoids rhetorical flourishes and repetitions, which often mar the effectiveness of the originals and baffle the common reader. His contributions in this field have won whole-hearted appreciation from eminent savants and scholars.

His published works include Shrutigita, Gospel of Sri Krishna, Mandukya-karika, Major Poetical Upanishads, Saundaryalahari, Rasapanchadhyayi, Lalitasahasranama, Wisdom of Vedanta, etc. An edition of Vishnu-sahasranama is in the press.

Publisher’s Note

Swami Gabhirananda has been the President of the Ramakrishna Math, Kochi, since March, 1999. He joined the Ramakrishna Order of Monks in 1951 at a young age, when he was a student at college, and had served at different places such as Calcutta, Kalady, Thrissur and Chennai before joining the Math at Thrissur (for a second time) and becoming head of the Math at Vyttila, Kochi, in 1999. It was partly in fulfillments of his mother’s wish and partly of his own innate urge for tyaga and seva that Swamiji took to Sanyasa. His life has been an open book. Spartan in his simplicity, Swamiji is a symbol of innocence and purity, nobility and compassion. Swamiji has been tireless in spreading the message of Vedanta, of Sri Ramakrishna and of Swami Vivekananda. He has a penchant for poetry with spiritual undertones in scriptural literature. He has taken it upon himself to inspire the people with religious feeling and spiritual fervour.

This book, ‘Mantrasara’ (The Essential Matins) comes last and the latest in the series beginning with the ‘Song of the Soul’, and followed by ‘Towards Surrender’. The book contains selections from the Vedantic texts, the Bhagavad Gita and the Bhagavata. Daily recitation of the selected verses will be a kind of Sadhana which will help the Sadak to move towards the goal that is Moksha or Liberation of the soul.

The unbroken continuity of Indian Culture — Sanatana Dharma — over 5,000 years and more is due to the Saints and Sages who have blessed our Motherland age after age. Swami Gabhirananda of the Ramakrishna Order comes in this illustrious line. May his tribe increase!

Introduction

This is not the time for a long lecture. But I shall speak to you in brief about a few things which I should like you to carry into practice. First, we have to understand the ideal, and then the methods by which we can make it practical. Those of you who are Sannyasins must try to do good to others, for Sannyasa means that. There is no time to deliver a long discourse on “Renunciation”, but I shall very briefly characterise it as “the love of death “. Worldly people love life. The Sannyasin is to love death. Are we to commit suicide then? Far from it, For suicides are not lovers of death, as it is often seen that when a man trying to commit suicide fails, he never attempts it for a second time. What is the love of death then? We must die, that is certain; let us die then for a good cause. Let all our actions — eating, drinking, and everything that we do — tend towards the sacrifice of our self. You nourish your body by eating. What good is there in doing that if you do not hold it as a sacrifice to the well-being of others? You nourish your minds by reading books. There is no good in doing that unless you hold it also as a sacrifice to the whole world. For the whole world is one; you are rated a very insignificant part of it, and therefore it is right for you that you should serve your millions of brothers rather than aggrandise this little self.

Sarvatahpanipadam tat
Sarvatoksisiromukham
Sarvatah srutimalloke
Sarvamavrtya tisthati.

“With hands and feet everywhere, with eyes, heads, and mouths everywhere, with ears everywhere in the universe, That exists pervading all.” (Gita, XIII.13)

Thus you must die a gradual death. In such a death is heaven, all good is stored therein — and in its opposite is all that is diabolical and evil.

Then as to the methods of carrying the ideals into practical life. First, we have to understand that we must not have any impossible ideal. An ideal which is too high makes a nation weak and degraded. This happened after the Buddhistic and the Jam reforms. On the other hand,. Too much practicality is also wrong. If you have not even a little imagination, if you have no ideal to guide you, you are simply a brute. So we must not lower our ideal, neither are we to lose sight of practicality. We must avoid the two extremes. In our country, the old idea is to sit in a cave and meditate and die. To go ahead of others in salvation is wrong. One must learn sooner or later that one cannot get salvation if one does not try to seek the salvation of his brothers. You must try to combine in your life immense idealism with immense practicality. You must be prepared to go into deep meditation now, and the next moment you must be ready to go and cultivate these fields (Swamiji said, pointing to the meadows of the Math). You must be prepared to explain the difficult intricacies of the Shasta’s now, and the next moment to go and sell the produce of the fields in the market. You must be prepared for all menial services, not only here, but elsewhere also.

The next thing to remember is that the aim of this institution is to make men. You must not merely learn what the Rishis taught. Those Rishis are gone, and their opinions are also gone with them. You must be Rishis yourselves. You are also men as much as the greatest men that were ever born - even our Incarnations. What can mere book-learning do? What can meditation do even? What can the Mantras and Tantras do? You must stand on your own feet. You must have this new method— the method of man-making. The true man is he who is strong as strength itself and yet possesses a woman’s heart. You must feel for the millions of beings around you, and yet you must be strong and inflexible and you must also possess obedience; though it may seem a little paradoxical — you must possess these apparently conflicting virtues. If your superior orders you to throw yourself into a river and catch a crocodile, you must first obey and then reason with him. Even if the order be wrong, first obey and then contradict it. The bane of sects, especially in Bengal, is that if any one happens to have a different opinion, he immediately starts a new sect, ‘he has no patience to wait. So you must have a deep regard for your Sangha. There is no place for disobedience here. Crush it out without mercy. No disobedient members here, you must turn them out. There must not be any traitors in the camp. You must be as free as the air, and as obedient as this plant and the dog.

Preface

Hear, ye children of immortal bliss! even ye that reside in higher spheres! I have found the Ancient One, who is beyond all darkness, all delusion: knowing Him alone you shall be saved from death over again.
Swami Vivekananda

The Song of the Soul, published in 1993, was welcomed by people from far and near. A second edition came out in 1996. One who was specially benefited by it was keen to have a smaller Prayer Book. Hence this volume.

Svadhyaya (study), sadhana (struggle), and seva (service) form the three Sa’s of spiritual life. Of these, svadhyaya is basic. It is the repetition of and meditation on the sacred texts containing the precepts of sages for stabilizing human life. These wise sayings enable us to practise sadhana and to engage ourselves in seva to the world seeing it as the mainfestation of God.

Remember your divine origin and reorganize your lives accordingly. See the Atman or Self in all and serve them as your own. Shun the self-seeking, selfish, and separatist superstitions— cultural, racial, religious, or scientific — and practise the divine vision envisaged by the Mantrasara, the Essential Matins. May you be peaceful, perfect, and whole, even as your origin or source is Peace, Perfection, and Wholeness.

The Preamble by Swami Vivekananda is his divine manifesto which sets a guideline for all workers in the vineyard of the Supreme. (Vide complete Works, Vol.1.257. VI.81-82) The Wisdom of Vedanta contains the four Peace Chants (santimantras) of the four Vedas, offering rules of conduct for humanity.

The Mantrasara, the Essential Matins, contains fifty-four verse& from the main texts of Vedantic knowledge, namely, the Vedas, the Bhagavadgita and the Bhagavata. It was a Herculean task to choose these verses representing the quintessence of wisdom of sages garnered through millenniums. These basic texts exhort us to divinize ourselves and dedicate ourselves to the service of God in man. Only when a few sadhaka-scholars approved the contents, I felt confident. They wrote: ‘The selection is superb’; ‘A healthy and wonderful recipe for an erring world engaged in self-destructive programmes — a divine voice to save mankind from losing its way in the shifting sands of widespread scepticism and atheism!’; ‘The selection is done thoughtfully it would bring to the readers not only spiritual enlightenment but material prosperity as well.’

The ‘Song of the Sannyasin’ by Swami Vivekananda is experiential estimate of Sri Ramakrishna. Being the very essence of scriptures, it offers mantras in English for meditation; it therefore, appended.

The first Appendix, Nine Stanzas on Freedom, is the translation of the Nirvanashatkam and three verses from the Vivekacudamani (408-410) of Sankaracarya by Swami Vivekananda. The second appendix contains shining gems from the Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna and the Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda corroborating the message of the Mantrasara.

Finally, let us listen to the mottoes suggested by Swami Vivekananda, the prophet of the twenty-first century, which should adorn the banner of every movement:

Help and not fight.
Assimilation and not destruction.
Harmony and peace and not dissension.

Let us live as the descendents and for bearers of the Teachers of humanity. May we overcome the differences created by ignorance which obstruct and Divine Vision, practised and proclaimed by them.

I offer my heartfelt thanks and pranams to the most revered Swami Ranganathanandaji Maharaj, the venerable President of the Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission for his benediction.

My heartfelt gratitude t all ‘who supported the project and to the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Mumbai and its Executive Secretary and Director General Sri S. Ramakrishnan for producing the book perfectly.

Contents

Dedication v
Publishers’ Note vii
Benediction ix
Preamble xiii
Introduction xv
Preface xix
Wisdom of Vedanta 1
Gayatri-mantras 5
Invocation 9
Mantrasara – The Essential Matins
From Vedas 11
From the Bhagavad Gita 54
From the Bhagavata 59
Conclusion 65
Submission 67
Appendix I – The Song of the Sannyasin 79
Appendix II – Modern Testimony 73
A The Master and the Disciple Confirm 73
B Sri Ramakrishna: the Fulfillment of Religions 79
Appendix III- Nine Stanzas on Freedom 85
Notes 91
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