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This is the invocation to Anuvaka or Lesson one, of a section called 'Shikshavalli' or 'On Contemplation' from the Taittiriya Upanishad. The spiritual quest can be long and hard. There are frequent difficulties and obstacles. The purport of this chant is that we recognize this in advance, and ask for assistance in removing those upcoming impediments. But we at the same time promise that we will make all efforts to focus on the most important task at hand—constantly recognizing the spiritual.
śaṁ no Mitra śaṁ Varunaḥ
शं नो मित्र शं वरुनः।
śaṁ no bhavatvaryamā
शं नो भवत्वर्यमा।
śaṁ na Indro Bṛhaspatiḥ
शं न इन्द्रो बृहस्पतिः।
śaṁ no Viṣṇururukramaḥ
शं नो विष्णुरुरुक्रमः॥
tvameva pratyakṣaṁ Brahmāsi
त्वमेव प्रत्यक्षं ब्रह्मासि।
tvāmeva pratyakṣaṁ Brahma vadiṣyāmi
त्वामेव प्रत्यक्षं ब्रह्म वदिष्यामि।
aum śāntiḥ śāntiḥ śāntiḥ
ॐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः॥
May Mitra (the Sun and the giver of energy) be propitious to us; may Varuna (the oceans and waters, which nourish) be propitious to us.
May the blessings of the ancestors be with us.
May Indra (leader of the gods) and may Brhaspati (sublime teacher of the gods) be with us.
May the all-pervading Visnu be with us.
Salutations to Brahman.
Salutations to Vayu (god of wind)
You alone are the perceptible Brahman (the Creator).
You alone I shall declare as the perceptible Brahman.
I shall declare you as that which is beneficent.
I shall declare you as that which is true.
May That protect me.
May That protect the speaker.
Please protect me.
Please protect the speaker.
Aum shanti shanti shanti.