naivedhya - the science behind the mantras chanted during naivedhya

i am here going to share about our amazing fantabulous information about the mantra we use during naivedhya.

okay, for beginners, what is naivedhya?

naivedhya is a sanskrit word that means offering to our deities or nature. so, in practice naivedhya means food offered as part of a worship ritual, before we eating it.

as such, tasting during preparation or eating the food before offering it to god is strictly forbidden. again this is science. the jataraagni in us will get quenched when we taste even a tiny qty & your hunger & digestive system will get confused. hence tasting is never done while preparing.

so, according to ritual, the food is first placed before a deity and specific naivedhya mantras are offered with accompanying rituals. afterwards, the food is considered as having been blessed and has officially become the blessed prasadh. so, we end up eating prasadh not the normal food that we had cooked. the food gets cleansed in this ritual and does good to us when we eat.

there’s a lot to share about the science of naivedhya itself. let me here stick to information only about the mantras we use while naivedhya. why? i am super excited to share with you the super intelligent of our vedic gurus.

in today’s practical & modern life, at home, we do naivedhya only on festival days. and there’s a specific mantra to be chanted during naivedhya and that is

om pranaya swaha,
om apanaya swaha,
om vyanaya swaha,
om udanaya swaha,
om samanaya swaha,
om brahmane swaha

there are also specific mudras to be held during each of the above lines. each mudra is very important. most of us simply wave our hand showing the food to deity. omg.. i was definitely doing this before i knew about the significance of mantras & mudras. but, that’s not the right way. the mudras connect & activate our koshas & energies.

now, the amazing thing is have you observed & realized what you chant in naivedhya mantra? these are the names of the pancha prana or the 5 names of the major vayus in our body

now, what is praana? it’s not our breath. it’s the vital life energy.

let me not go in very intricate detail.. but quickly let’s know about our 5 sheaths – koshas. kosha is a sanskrit word meaning sheath, moving from the gross physical body to the subtle spiritual body. each kosha signifies a more refined dimension of consciousness. the koshas are known as

annamaya kosha – composed of food
pranamaya kosha – composed of energy
manomaya kosha – composed of intellect
vijnanamaya kosha – composed of intuition
anandamaya kosha - composed of bliss.

here, we are talking about the naivedhya mantra. ideally we should have mantras relevant to annamaya kosha. but, no. that’s how fantabulous our vedic system was. they imbibe science in our day to day rituals. and, when these mantras are combined with the right mudras prescribes, they activate the pancha koshas too.

ok.. so, the naivedhya mantra is specifically about  pranamaya kosha.  look, how smartly they have connected the food that we consume as symbolism & showed us as the source of energy. hmm.. okay we know this sheath is composed of prana, the vital life energy which organises the body parts and provides movement for mental and physical expression

pranamaya kosha is made up of five major pranas, which are collectively known as the pancha, or five pranas or called main 5 vayus of 49 vayus. - 1. prana, 2. apana, 3. samana, 4. udana and 5. vyana – now chant or read the naivedhya mantra

om pranaya swaha,
om apanaya swaha,
om vyanaya swaha,
om udanaya swaha,
om samanaya swaha,
om brahmane swaha

 

i am jumping out of joy knowing how our vedic gurus have brought in science in the simple task of offering food to nature or deity.

om pranaya swaha – here, prana represents to just one flow of energy, governing the thoracic area between the larynx and the top of the diaphragm. it is associated with the heart and organs of respiration together with the muscles and nerves that activate them. it is the force by which the breath is drawn inside.

om apanaya swaha - apana governs the abdomen, below the navel region, and provides energy for the large intestine, kidneys, anus and genitals. it is concerned with the expulsion of waste from the body and is the force which expels the breath

om vyanaya swaha - vyana pervades the whole body, regulating and controlling all movement, and coordinating the other pranas. it acts as the reserve force for the other pranas,

om udanaya swaha - udana governs the neck and head, activating all the sensory receptors such as the eyes, tongue, nose and ears. u dana also harmonizes and activates the limbs and all their associated muscles, ligaments, nerves and joints. it is responsible for the erect posture of the body, sensory awareness, and the ability to respond to the outside world

om samanaya swaha - samana is located between the heart and the navel. it activates and controls the digestive system: the liver, intestines, pancreas and stomach, and their secretions. samana is responsible for transformation. on a physical level this relates to the assimilation and distribution of nutrients. on an evolutionary level it relates to kundalini and expansion of consciousness

om brahmane swaha – offering all that i am ( which i am not )

if you have read till here, i am sure you are keen in understanding what these mantras mean. so, the rule of not tasting food before offering naivedhya & the mantras designed to accompany this ritual is pure science that’s made to look like ritual because atleast this way we will be consistent in doing this

if you dive deep about all our rituals & practices, the intent of everything is to keep us healthy & that we can focus in evolving ourselves.

and, about this mantra, let me summarize in simple easy words here, so that you can explain your family & friends

om pranaya swaha,
om apanaya swaha,
om vyanaya swaha,
om udanaya swaha,
om samanaya swaha,
om brahmane swaha

 means
i offer this food to prana, so that it does good to my respiratory system
i offer this food to apana, so that it does good to my excretory system
i offer this food to vyana, so that it does good to my circulatory system
i offer this food to udana, so that it does good to my sensory system
i offer this food to samana, so that it does good to my digestive system

yes, the actual complete naivedhya mantra is longer and those mantras are also pure science & nothing religious. those mantras also talk only about how the ladle, cookware, fire used to cook, literally everything is part of the creation & we are offering back everything to the creator before we consume to express our gratitude & the food does good to us.

then other parts of mantra explain the offered food types and the way we eat. the 4 kinds of food mentioned are –

1 – that which is chewed by teeth like rice and vegetables
2 – that which is swallowed like water, milk
3 – that which is sucked like mango, sugar cane.
4 – that which is licked like honey

 

i shall continue to learn & share with you. let our kalya tribe keep growing & evolving with knowledge & wisdom. we have responsibility to transfer the right knowledge to our next generation. 

did you like this information? pl share your thoughts & life experiences on the naivedhya mantra. gratitude to all my gurus, masters, teachers who have helped me learn & share.

wishing you health & happiness in abundance.