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Daily वे॑द Quote #25: 2022 November 5 द॑स्यवेवृ॑क 11/04/2022 (Fri) 18:53:44 ID:309285 No. 2204
त॑त्सवितु॑र्व॑रेणियम्। भ॑र्गो देव॑स्य धीमहि। धि॑यो यो॑ नः प्र चोद॑यात्॥ —ऋग्वेद॑ 3.62.10 . (This is the metrically restored version. The सं॑हिता has a deficient syllable with व॑रेण्यम्. This is particularly ironic since this verse is often called the गायत्री॑, named after the meter, yet the सं॑हिता doesn't follow the meter.) . Translation: "May we attain that desirable radiance of the God सवितृ॑, who shall set our thoughts in motion." . Word-by-word: त॑द् "that", सवितु॑स् < सवितृ॑, व॑रेणियम् < व॑रेण्य "desirable", भ॑र्गस् "radiance", देव॑स्य < देव॑ "God", धीमहि < धा "attain", धि॑यस् < धी॑ "thought", य॑स् < य॑ "who", नस् < वय॑म् "we", प्र चोद॑यात् < प्र॑ चुद् "set in motion". . Meter: गायत्र॑ . Some notes: Nearly all readers will have already encountered this verse, since it continues to be commonly used and held deeply sacred by modern Hindus—despite their having mostly abandoned the worship of the actual God it praises, सवितृ॑. Most Hindus preface the verse with ॐ भू॑र्भु॑वः स्वः᳚ (or सु॑वः), but note that this is a sacrificial formula called the व्या॑हृति prescribed in the तैत्तिरीयारण्यक, and not part of the म॑न्त्र/verse itself. . Though the verse was popular even within the Vedic period, its meaning isn't extraordinary: the verse is a simple prayer to win the brightness of the rising Sun सवितृ॑ for the reciters. Here "win" and "attain" are less-than-ideal translations: what is meant is something like "make our own", i.e. the radiance will serve us or be useful to us. This is evidenced by the subsequent verse, for example, in which the reciters desire the gift of prosperity (भ॑गस्य राति॑म्) from सवितृ॑. . The धि॑यस्/"thoughts" here are more specifically divinely inspired insights, wisdoms, or prayers; this is the normal usage of धी॑. . Interesting Vedic grammar: Many native scholars interpret धीमहि as coming from the root धी "think" and thus give the translation "may we meditate" instead of "may we attain", but this would be an ungrammatical derivation, since धी belongs to the जुहोत्यादिगण / reduplicating class and would turn into दीधिमहि. There are many other instances of धा "weakening" into the vowels इ or ई as part of its conjugation. . This actually makes the verse a nice pun, then, since धीमहि is followed by धि॑यो and the two come from separate roots. Punning is a common poetic device throughout the वे॑द. . Also note that प्र and चोद॑यात् are separate words in Vedic Sanskrit, which is why they are written here with a space. In Classical Sanskrit the उपसर्ग/prefix must be part of the same word as the verb, whereas in Vedic Sanskrit there could be words that come between them.