Om Purnamadah: Peace Prayer on the Wholeness of Existence & the Vastness of Being

Here is a peace prayer (shanti mantra) from the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, one of Hinduism’s sacred books, that is an appropriate paean to the wholeness of existence.

Om Purnamadah: Shanti Mantra, Peace Prayer

Om Purnamadah Shanti Mantra (Peace Prayer)

Om purnamadah purnamidam
Purnat purnamudachyate
Purnasya purnamadaya
Purnamevavashishyate
Om shanti shanti shanti hi

Translation

  • Purnam-Adah: “That is complete.” Here, ‘that’ could refer to everything that is not part of one’s perceived sense of self (self-identify.)
  • Purnam-Idam: “This is complete.” Here, ‘this’ could refer to everything that is part of one’s perceived sense of self (self-identify.)
  • Purnat-Purnam-Udachyate: “From one complete entity, another complete entity is born.” The first entity refers to the ‘that’ and the second entity refers to the ‘this’—the two aspects of outer and inner sense of self-identity.
  • Purnasya Purnamadaya: “When a complete entity is taken away from a complete entity …”
  • Purnameva-Vashishyate: “… what remains is also complete.”
  • Om shanti shanti shanti hi “Let there be peace.”

Wholeness of Existence Acceptance: Om Purnamadah: Shanti Mantra, Peace Prayer

Interpretation: Wholeness of Existence & Acceptance

In our relationships, when we engage with one another, if we feel we lack in something or the other person lacks in something, then the engagement will be a transactional one. The very nature of such engagement might cause expectations and might foster feelings, thoughts, and actions that are selfish in nature.

When we engage with each other with the understanding that no one lacks anything and a consciousness that others are whole regardless of mere appearances, then all the feelings, thoughts, and actions fostered by such engagements are complete and selfless.

All of us must be giving, and by being available for others, we do not lose anything and remain complete. At the same time, the other who is receiving does not become “more” for her or she already is complete and stays complete.

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