As the world faces increasingly challenging times day after day it is the recommendation of Hindu spiritual teachers that everyone should cloak himself with the powerful Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra. By the sincere chanting of this death-conquering mantra, one is protected from harm, illness and untimely death. This mantra is a Divine armour and should be chanted with utmost sincerity by everyone every day.
Here are some facts on this mantra:
The great mantra dedicated to Shiva as Mrityunjaya is found in the Rig Veda, where it is attributed to the sage Vasistha. Also mentioned in Shiva Mahaa Puraana, it is one of the five mantras given by Lord Shiva at the time of creation. It is called Maha Mrityunjaya mantra, the Great Death-Conquering mantra.
It is a mantra that has many names and forms. It is called the Rudra mantra, referring to the furious aspect of Shiva; the Trayambakam mantra, alluding to Shiva’s three eyes; and it is sometimes known as the Mrita-Sanjivini mantra because it is a component of life-restoring practice given to the primordial sage, Shukra, after he had completed an exhausting period of austerity. The Maha Mrityunjaya mantra is hailed by the sages as the heart of the Vedas. Along with the Gayatri mantra it holds the highest place among the many mantras for contemplation and meditation.
Mrityunjaya means victory over death. Mrityunjaya Bhagavan is another name of Lord Shiva. This mantra seeks the protective help of Lord Shiva against difficulties, accidents, illnesses and untimely death.
The mantra is divided into four lines, each containing eight syllables. Translation varies considerably. A bit of research will make it clear that no single translation can ever do justice to all its levels of meaning. The multileveled nature of Sanskrit words makes this impossible. The individual words of the mantra convey its nourishing quality and, even in English, they are life-sustaining. They fill us with the sense that a great force of goodness is at work within us, supporting our growth, lifting us up during most times of trouble, and helping us recall, even in the midst of our busy lives, the higher aim of life itself.
The Mahaa Mrityunjaya mantra attracts these forces and creates an inner environment to enhance their effectiveness. Thus the mantra can be used whenever any restorative process is undertaken.
Proper recitation of Mahaa Mrityunjaya mantra rejuvenates the body, bestows health, wealth, long life, peace, prosperity and contentment. The mantra can be recited when taking medications, for it prepares the body and mind to make the best use of it. Chanting of this mantra generates divine vibrations that ward off all negativities that thwart general uplift. It creates a powerful, protective armour and shields the one who chants it from any misfortune. It has that power to cure diseases, even those diagnosed as incurable by doctors.
In India, when ash (‘bhasma’) is applied to the body (as either a medicinal or a spiritual act) the mantra is recited. And so, whenever matters of health, vitality, nurturance or freedom from the fears associated with death arise, the Mahaa Mrityunjaya Mantra naturally surfaces as a remedy and comfort.
It is also said that those in healing professions will benefit from reciting the Maha Mtiyunjaya mantra regularly. Through it, they will draw from an infinite reserve of energy and thus prevent burnout while opening a channel of healing from which life can be nourished. The mantra can be used whenever any restorative process is undertaken.
Whether used to enhance one’s life or to assist in the transition to death, this mantra connects individuals to their own inner divinity. It is ultimately a means of self realization. This consciousness it inspires is none other than the deep, unending consciousness of the Indweller Himself.
Mahaa Shiva Puraana recounts incidents in the lives of many individuals who overcame serious challenges and even death by the simple but sincere recitation of this mantra. It is advisable that every Hindu should learn it and so shield oneself from every difficulty that may come one’s way.
The story of Markandeya, who used this mantra to conquer death, is allegorical, a reminder to us that the temple of human life is the body; that prayers and acts of worship culminate in meditation and that the inner lingam which blesses us with immortality is the energy flowing from the base of the spine to the crown of the head. Awakening that energy was Markandeya’s act of faith.
This Mahaa Mrityunjaya mantra can be chanted at anytime in a pure environment. It should be part of everyone’s daily practice.
MAHAA MRITYUNJAYA MANTRA
Om Trayambakam Yajaamahay
Sugandhim Pushti Vardhanam
Uravaarukam Iva Bandhanaan
Mrityor Moksheeya Maamritaat
Trayambakam – The Three-Eyed One, an epithet of Shiva,signifying the deep and pure consciousness of the universe that pervades and transcends the past, present and future.
Yajaamahay – I worship, adore or revere.
Sugandhim – Sweet fragrance
Pushti – Well-nourished condition
Vardhanam-One who nourishes, strengthens, restores to health, seeks one’s welfare.
Urvaarukam – Literally means a cucumber-like plant that grows as a creeper. More generally the word stands for disease, attachment, obstacles in life and other forms of bondage.
Iva – Just as
Bandhanaan – Unhealthy attachment
Mrityor – From death
Mokshiyaa – Free me
Maa – Not
I humbly bow to the Three-Eyed Lord of Auspiciousness, whose sweet fragrance is ever-present, and who sustains the world. O Lord, please protect me from untimely death and release me from the bondage of this never-ending cycle of birth and death.
It is recommended that this mantra should become a daily prayer.