Zitierweise / cite as:
Payer, Alois <1944 - >: Dharmashastra : Einführung und Überblick. -- 10. Sakramente und Übergangsriten (samskara). -- Anhang B: Yugnopavit (Upanayana) - Its Significance / by Pushkarnath Nehru. -- Fassung vom 2004-02-18. -- URL: http://www.payer.de/dharmashastra/dharmash10b.htm -- [Stichwort].
Erstmals publiziert: 2004-02-18
Anlass: Lehrveranstaltung 2003/04
Unterrichtsmaterialien (gemäß § 46 (1) UrhG)
©opyright: Dieser Text steht der Allgemeinheit zur Verfügung. Eine Verwertung in Publikationen, die über übliche Zitate hinausgeht, bedarf der ausdrücklichen Genehmigung der Herausgeberin.
Dieser Teil ist ein Kapitel von:
Payer, Alois <1944 - >: Dharmashastra : Einführung und Übersicht. -- http://www.payer.de/dharmashastra/dharmash00.htm
Dieser Text ist Teil der Abteilung Sanskrit von Tüpfli's Global Village Library
Quelle: http://www.koausa.org/Festivals/Yagneopavit/article1.html. -- Zugriff am 2004-02-14
Reproduced from: Kashmir Pandit International (KPI) Newsletter (http://www.koausa.org/KPI/index.html. -- Zugriff am 2004-02-14)
Yugnopavit or Upanayana is by far the most important event for a Kashmiri Pandit. There is no equivalent to it is the Western religions. KPI in an effort to educate its US born KP's is reproducing a paper that highlights the significance of this important samskar. The article was received through the courtesy of Moti Kaul, President of Kashmiri Pandit Association Bombay.
By virtue of the performance of the Upanayana ceremony, which connotes the taking of the charge of the student by the teacher, the student is supposed to have Second Birth (Dvija) in the world of knowledge through education. This is done after staging symbolically all the previous events (Samaskaras) right from his or her birth. In this Vedic birth of the student, symbolized by wearing the "Girdle" and the sacred thread, Savitri becomes the mother and Guru the father.
The Upanayana in the present form is the investiture of the sacred thread ("Yugnopavit") on the child which involves the initiation and symbolically staging all the said Samaskaras. The most important part of this ceremony is the wearing of the sacred thread to the accompaniment of the recitation and teaching of the Gayatri (Savitri) Mantra which is one prayer that is the crux of the whole Vedic wisdom
The wearer of
this thread is supposed to be constantly reminded of his commitment to
the secular and spiritual goals which he has set upon himself on this solemn
occasion; that this life may not pass away just in unconscious striving
but become a means of the expansion of our "being"; that it may provide
a view of one's self and the world without being in conflict with the action
that comes by; that life, even at its worst, may still provide us a source
of sharing the joyousness of our existence; this is the greatest art of
life, which comes, not through wanton experimentation, but through prayer
and humility alone and through that the divine grace.
Gayatri Mantra (Also Called Savitri)
"The focal point of
the whole Upanayana ceremony is the recitation of the Gayatri Mantra and
teaching its essence to the initiated. The Mantra is considered to be the
most sacred and according to Manu `there is nothing more exalted than the
Om tat savitur varenyam
bhargo devasya dhimahi
dhiyo yo nah prachodayat
The Gayatri Mantra derives its name from the metre in which it is written, the Gayatri being a Vedic poetic metre of 24 syllables which, as per tradition, is authored by the sage Vishvamitra. The Mantra consists of three sections (PADS) having eight syllables each and has to be recited in a particular cadence. Therefore the Gayatri Mantra is not a magic formula nor is it merely a logical sentence. It connects in a very special way the objective and subjective aspects of Reality. It is neither a mere sound nor sheer magic. Words have not only sound but also meaning which is not apparent to all those who simply hear the sound. Such living words have a power that transcends the mental plane. To acquire this energy of the word one has to grasp not only its meaning but also its message, or its vibrations, as they are sometimes called in order. Therefore the phonetic quality of the Mantra demands that it be recited in a particular way. Faith, understanding and physical utterance as well as physical continuity (Since the Mantra is supposed to be handed down by a master) are the essential requisites. Every word links up with the source of all words. The ultimate character of the Word (Shabada Brahma) is a fundamental concept in spirituality.
Abhid (The Alms) The alms giving (Abhid) is now a symbolic act reminiscent of ancient institution of obtaining voluntary contributions for the sustenance of the guru's ashram in which the initiated students used to study. Presently during the Yugnopavit ceremony the act of alms giving is symbolically staged and is known as Abhid. This has now taken the complexion of "dakshina" for the presiding guru.
Relevance of Yugnopavit in the Present Times
The Yugnopavit ceremony used to be one of the most exalted functions in the life of a Brahmin, particularly in respect of the Kashmiri Brahmins. But due to massive changes in the social and economic factors its importance in the course of time has significantly dwindled. In recent times it has lost its vitality and sublimity. It has unfortunately now been reduced to a social "Tamasha" without any attempt by us to restore its former sanctity. This sacrament used to be one of the most important instruments for inculcating and imparting discipline, values of life and the principles of right conduct.
Now, in the aftermath of our exodus from Kashmir it is doubly important to try and restore the intrinsic sanctity and usefulness of this samaskara so that we are able to give a worthy gift unto the young. Whereas modern education with its scientific spirit and vocational training is important for our children, but at the same time cultivation of matrices of right conduct, overall personality development with humane values of life so as to develop a vibrant ethos are the very essential credentials that would enable us to face the challenges of the present world. At present our children are facing a cultural cul-de-sac which suggests a drifting and a meaningless existence.
A sense of direction is needed more than ever before. The infusion of the spirit behind the "Yugnopavit" ceremony which also aims to promote compassion, love, benevolence, non-violence, fraternity, self-discipline and finer human relationship etc. in addition to the urge to meditate on the refulgence of the Supreme Consciousness can act as one of the most important instruments for achieving this goal.
The intrinsic message of the Gayatri Mantra engulfs a wide gamut of ideals such as what the Isha Upanishad says: