In Up-Date Vol III, Issue 3/4, December 1979 p. 21ff we published the TM initiation ritual in the English version, which is known and used by the TM teachers who initiate. On p. 25 in the same issue we published a transcription of the Sanskrit ritual. Since TM teachers normally do not know Sanskrit, even if they reproduce the ritual in Sanskrit, they are only to be held responsible for the contents of translation, which they know.
Still it is of general interest to get the real meaning of the Sanskrit version, and we therefore asked the scholar C.G. Diehl from Lund, Sweden to give us such a translation. We are happy to publish the translation in this issue.
Constantly I am respectfully saluting Narayana, Padmabhava, Vasista and Sakti and her son Parasara, Vyasa, Suka, the Great Gaudapada and then Govinda Yogindra his disciple Padmapada and him, whose teaching is clear from every point of view (Hastamalaka), that Trodaka, exponent of rules and other Gurus of ours.
I bow to the abode of the sacred words,the tradition and the puranas, the abode of grace, the most glorious foot of the Lord, conferring happiness to the world, the Propitious Sankaracarya, Kesava, Badarayana. The Venerable Ones who have accomplished the Sutra commentary, I salute You again and again ! The Lord who is the soul of the guru in a form free from disunion, Hail ! Daksina Murti, He whose body is spread like the sky, Hail !
Through whom all the assembly of divinities bring about imperishable perfection, having paid respect to the foot of the World Guru, with whom the glorious Laksmi has appeared and thus obtained the soul's satisfaction, the leader who is splitting the cloud of worldly ignorance, the venerable Sankara who gives Happiness, on him, Brahmananda Sarasvati, I meditate, the best of gurus, having the light in fullness.
Whosoever, impure or pure or in whatever condition he may be, may reflect on Vishnu he is indeed inwardly pure.
I present bathing, hail the lotus feet of the guru !
I present garment, " " " "
I present sandal, " " " "
I present grains of rice, " " " "
I present flower, " " " "
I present incense, " " " "
I present light, " " " "
I present water for rinsing the mouth, " " " "
I present eatables, " " " "
I present water for rinsing the mouth, " " " "
I present areca nut and betel leaf, " " " "
I present bilva fruit, " " " "
I present the waving light, " " " "
The Camphor white, the Incarnation of Mercy, the Essence of Samsara, who wears the king of serpents as a garland and always dwells in the heartlotus, arising in union with Parvati, to him I bow ! I present the waving light, hail the lotus feet of the Guru !
Guru Brahma, Guru Vishnu, Guru god Mahesvara, Guru who is visibly the supreme Brahma, to this venerable Guru hail ! Through whom the aggregate of all things was created in the world, movable and immovable, through whom this footmark has become visible, to this venerable Guru hail !
The glorious Brahmananda who gives the highest happiness, the perfect manifestation of wisdom, who goes beyond everything like the sky and is recognizable by "That Thou Art" etc. the One everlasting, spotless and immovable, having become a witness to the all-intellect,going beyond existence, endowed with three qualities, the true Guru I worship. Hail the venerable Guru through whom the eye is painted with the stick which creates wisdom to the one who is blind and darkened by ignorance.
I present flower salutation, hail the lotus feet of the Guru !
LINE 1. The word GURUDEVA does not necessarily imply divinity. Cp. PATIDEVA used by a wife to her husband. I chose the word "worshipful" as a term of the most deep respect.
LINE 3. "Her" son is motivated by the fact that SAKTI is always feminine.
LINE 6. HASTAMALAKA is (according to Winternitz, "Geschichte der Indischen Litteratur") not the name of a person, but of a philosophical poem reputed to "clear all doubts".
LINE 9. It seems reasonable to classify the VEDA as "sacred Scripture" as different from the SMRTI.
LINE 12. The commentators of the SUTRAS are mentioned in dualis.
LINE 17. The plural form TRPINGATA causes problems. I have tried to make the translation as literal as possible, without any efforts of emendation of the text.
LINE 25. I believe my interpretation Of the difficult SAVAHYABHYANTRA can be defended as SAU AHVA ... but I am in doubt and have tried SAVA and AHI: "sun and earth". An emendation of the text may be necessary here.
LINE 8. FROM THE BOTTOM. I agree to the translation as of TAT TVAM ASI.
Generally speaking the text causes some doubts as to the meaning intended. Sanskrit words do often permit different interpretations. My intention has been to be true to the common translation given in dictionaries.