Blog Mantra and Music Videos

Mahamrityunjaya Mantra for the Spring Equinox

With spring equinox approaching in the southern hemisphere, a new rendition of the Mahamrityunjaya mantra has been added to the resources area as it is a mantra associated with the vernal equinox.

The Mahamrityunjaya mantra comes from hymn 59 of the ancient Hindu text the Rigveda, the oldest of Hindu sacred texts (composed around 1500 BCE)1. It is also known as the Tryambakam mantra.

From Sanskrit, “mahamrityunjaya” translates as follows:

  • the word “maha” means “great”
  • mrityu means “death”
  • and “jaya” translates as “victory”2

This mantra is therefore known as “Great Death-Conquering mantra”, and appears in a passage where the nectar of immortality is offered.3

This mantra can be incorporated into spring equinox celebrations and can be sung in a variety of ways. One beautiful rendition of it sung by Hein Braat is below:

Another variation of it from Ravi Shankar’s Chants of India album is as follows:

The words of the mantra are:

Om Tryambakam Yajamahe
Sugandhim Pushtivardhanam
Urvarukamiva Bandhanan
Mrityor Mukshiya Maamritat

Translated as:

We Meditate on the Three-eyed reality
Which permeates and nourishes all like a fragrance.
May we be liberated from death for the sake of
immortality,
Even as the cucumber is severed from bondage to the
creeper.4

The lyrics of this mantra are symbolic, and on the resources page for the book The Path of the Spiritual Sun it is explained that,

“The reference to the cucumber is significant, as a cucumber does not fall or separate from the vine like other fruits; it will grow, ripen, and then wither and die on the vine, producing seeds for the next generation of plant without ever leaving the vine. This is symbolic of the cycles of birth, death, and rebirth. To leave the vine it must be picked, which is to be freed from the cycle of birth and death, and attain immortality.”

The above Mahamrityunjaya mantra renditions can be found in the mantras and music resources page here:

Another beautiful version recorded by Jon and Jenny Alswinn has been shared in the forum section recently:


Featured image is a screenshot from the video above.


  1. “Rigveda.” Encyclopædia Britannica. Accessed July 04, 2017. https://www.britannica.com/topic/Rigveda.
     

  2. Mahamrityunjaya Mantra – Door into Eternal Life. Accessed July 04, 2017. http://www.yogamag.net/archives/2007/ajan07/mrit.shtml.
     

  3. “The Path of the Spiritual Sun Resources.” Belsebuub.com. Accessed July 04, 2017. https://belsebuub.com/path-of-the-spiritual-sun-resources

  4. Ibid 

About the author

Jenny Belikov

Jenny Belikov is a researcher and practitioner of the ancient religion of the sun and the Managing Editor for The Spiritual Sun, where she also researches and writes about ancient sacred sites; spiritual texts and practices; the latest discoveries in archeology, archeoastronomy, and related sciences; as well as the exploration of various facets of the lost civilization of the sun.

15 Comments

  • Thanks for posting all of these different renditions of the Mahamrityunjaya mantras. It’s great to see so many different ways it can be expressed and to be able to find a version that resonates best to make it more enjoyable to chant. I agree with Justin in that the first version/video posting is my favorite, perhaps for the same reasons: it was the first version that I was taught for the spring equinox and that particular celebration where I first practiced it was really special. It brings me fond memories of it. Jon and Jenny A. – I had no idea you two had such incredible musical talent – your version was such a lovely surprise and addition.

  • This is such a nice mantra, thanks for sharing although may take a bit to learn the words and sing it correctly ; )

  • This mantra has been very moving for me in the past, more so than any other mantra its meaning and its feeling appeal to me. For me it’s like calling on our higher forces within to intervene and it brings forth that ‘overcoming-power’, making it happen against the odds, in the churning and in our struggle to reach the heights.

    I would often sing the first rendition that is posted. But after hearing and liking this one (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=adyjwFgXRNY) as well. I combined the two in a bit of a personal mix.

    There’s something very special about this mantra when I was doing it strongly, as if something is really happening and something out there is hearing me. When chanting it the words and meaning seemed to come alive as well as you can start to pick up on nuances and insights. Adding visualisation of the things the mantra describes seemed to make it more potent.

    One of the insights that reached when doing this mantra was that the death it speaks about could also be interpreted on another level.

    Nice as well Jon and Jenny for creating a pretty unique version of this mantra! Very different style, but I think it’s very cool what you did and it’s great that this powerful mantra spreads to people.

    • Thank you for sharing that version, Karim — it’s a really nice one. I just added it to the post and will add it to the resources section in a second.

      And I agree, the different versions definitely bring out interesting elements in the mantras.

      I’d like to hear your hybrid version some day 🙂

    • I love it Karim! Doing mantras as a Kirtan — a call and repeat song, where someone leads the singing and a chorus of people reply, is another variation of doing mantras that seems to be popular in India. It’s a nice way to do a mantra and sing a song at the same time — or it can just be nice to listen to.

    • Ah I had come across that one a few years ago Karim, and I love it too. I had forgotten about it.

      I think making new versions of mantras is great, and it can become perhaps a bit more personal that way.

      • Hi Jon,

        Interestingly a few friends and I were trying to create a version of the mantra IAO recently. As we were trying to emulate (in very humble ways 😉 I might add ) a ‘heavenly choir’ for the sunrise ceremony this summer. I feel we we’re coming closer to something towards the end. Although it’s probably not quite up to scratch both musically and technically (recording wise) the process itself was very enjoyable, engaging and a good learning experience I found.

        Hope more versions of ancient mantras can be created in the future. I think there’s so much potential there, and in general so much potential of things that can come forth from the information presented on this website.

    • @Jenny. Thanks for adding that one Jenny, it seems to have become quite popular this version, but I find it really nicely done.

      @Matthew. I agree Matthew there’s something special about using the call and repeat, sometimes it works very well and I’ve enjoyed doing it in the past.

      @David. Good luck with it David. I find the main singer adds a certain emotion to the words in a way that’s not unpleasant. I also wondered about that intro 🙂 it seems like good information, but I also can’t understand it. Perhaps explaining the ‘science’ of mantras a bit and possibly the meaning of this particular one? I don’t know.

  • Thanks for sharing all those Jenny!

    I find the same thing too Matthew, that different versions or ways of singing / listening to the mantras speak to me in different ways.

    Glad there are so many different ways of doing the mantra out there to experiment with.

    Thanks for the heads up on where the track is from Justin.

  • Thanks for posting this. The first video in the post is the way I first heard this mantra when I was participating in a ceremony to celebrate the spring equinox. It had a very special resonance for me at that time and seemed to express very well the hopefulness of life awakening at spring and the spiritual significance of achieving immortality.

    I really enjoy these other two versions as well. Like you Matthew I also find the different performances can help you reflect on the significance of the mantras in different ways.

    The Chants of India album that the second version comes from is quite interesting. It is a collaboration between Ravi Shankar and George Harrison (of the Beatles) to present a variety of Hindu mantras. There’s a number of tracks on it that I really enjoy.

    Jenny and Jon – that was beautifully done!

  • Thank you for this. Great work Jenny and John; a different rendition that is really lovely to listen to.

    I like the reference of the cucumber for what it means. Indeed very symbolic.

    thanks again!

    • I also really like the meaning of this mantra. To be as a cucumber, stuck on the vine, or ripen and be picked and ultimately released. Very mysterious and chilling.

      I would also like to very much echo the applause for the beautiful rendition by Jon and Jenny Alswinn. There is something so moving to listen, hear and experience the uplifting and mystical melodies created. Keep them coming 🙂

  • Beautiful. It’s nice to hear different renditions because each good version, in whatever style, seems to communicate the essence of the mantra to me in a different way. I can get something different out of different renditions — some are better suited to ceremonies and practices it seems, while some renditions work well as an inspiring spiritual song to listen to.

    My compliments again to the Alswinn’s for their lovely musical performance. Nice arrangement Jon. I enjoy just listening to it, but it could work in a practice too — as long as people sing in tune like you two do 😉

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