ASATO MA SAD GAMAYAH :
means that we may walk away from falsehood to Truth. What is Truth ? Truth is that which exists. For instance, as Osho
said , Light is truth as it exists. Darkness is absence of Light. When we remove the source of light, darkness prevails. Falsehood seemingly exists but in the search light of Truth it vanishes. For sustaining a falsehood we have to invent many falsehood. It is like dew which evaporattes when the sun’s rays fall upon it. Falsehood is like Maya which envelopes our life through ignorance. When the light of realization descends , the Reality is revealed. This realization, however, comes through tapasya or meditation , as it did to Swamiji. Knowledge of scriptures does make one wise and learned but the actual realization remains a mirage. No sacred books, no Guru can give us enlightenment unless we ourselves walk the spiritual path alone. The books or Guru , however, show us the way and make the arduous path easier . The ignorant person is like Kasturi Mrig who keeps searching for the scent not knowing that it is in him only. The scriptures or a Guru point to this fact of God being within us and it is left to us to either believe in them and work upon it or to disbelieve in them and to drift in eddy currents of life. TRUTH IS LIKE LIGHT WHICH IS WHITE IN ESSENCE BUT WHEN SEEN THROUGH PRISM OF FALSEHOOD IT GETS SCATTERED IN SEVEN COLOURS. We choose the colour according to our choice and predilection .
TAMSO MA JYOTIR GAMAH :
means that we may walk away from darkness to light. Darkness denotes ignorance , light denotes knowledge, ability to see things as they are, enlightenment. The Vedas are full of hymns to sun god as it gives light and life sustaining energy to living beings. including plants. Gayatri Mantra is veneration of the effulgent light which leads us to wisdom, righteousness and enlightenment. Light is synonymous with godliness. Jesus told the crowd, ‘ I am the light of the world, whoever follows me will not walk in darkness but will have light of life ‘ ( John 8.12 ). Negative qualities in us are symtomatic of darkness. They tend to lead us astray and stumble on the path of life. Light is symptomatic of positivity, of cheerfulness, of righteousness. Hell is another name for abysmal darkness in life indicating pain, suffering , disease, poverty, distress etc. Heaven is another name for new dawn, cheer, affluence, good health and effulgence in life.
MRITYO MA AMRITAM GAMAYAH :
means that we may move away from death to deathlessness. Death is , of course , inevitable unless science is able to ward off death itself , which appears to be impossible. Science has not yet been able to create a seed which encapsulates life in a being. All that it invents is harnessed from nature itself. Eternal life is only a dream. We, however, seek to perpetuate life through our offspring so that we may live through them. It is , however, the least desirable way of being immortal. We may be able to pass on our legacy to our offsprings. This legacy can be in the form of our virtuous deeds or evil deeds. The other way to be immortal is to earn name and fame., which are, however, ephemaral. This is surely a better way to perpetuate one’s memory. Benign kings like Harsh vardhan, Ashoka, poets like Shakespeare and Kalidas,, writers and philosophers like Plato and Aristotle , artists like Michael Angelo, scientists like Newton and Einstein come in this illustrious category. The best example are, however, are those of spiritual figures who gave a message of hope., peace, and harmony to the people of the world through their examples and preachings like Gautam Buddha, Mahavir, Jesus Christ, Sai Baba of Shirdi etc In the context of India, spiritual figures like Adi Shankaracharya, Aurobindo Ghose , Maharishi Raman, Ramkrishna Paramhans, Swami Vivekananda, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Swami Ram, Swami Prabhupad , Osho etc have blazed the trail in the spiritual world. The living legends like Sri Sri Ravi Shanker and Our own Om Swami ji are carrying on the spiritual tradition of waking up the people to the higher dimensions of living.
These Vedic richas give a meaning and purpose to life which is to make it nobler and better. We generally live at the level of sensual gratification. The rishis , however, want us to rise to a higher dimension of living spiritually in the service of society, people in general while at the same time sublimating our inner dormant energies to a vibrant and brighter living. Man, as Aurobindo said, has the potential to godliness.
Om Sarvesam Swasti Bhavatu,
Sarvesam Shanti Bhavatu,
Sarvesam Purnam Bhavatu,
Sarvesam Mangalam Bhavatu.