Traditionally, the Surya Namaskara is a form of sun worship. It is ideally performed in the Brahmamuhurta, the period before sunrise. Performed with the intention to invoke the divine consciousness and power that sustains the universe, a shloka to worship the sun is recited before initiating the Surya Namaskara. This helps connecting the physical and mental energy, thus awakening a spiritual aspect and leading to good health, mental and emotional stability and increased concentration.
Om Suryanarayanam Devam,
Vande Sarvatakam Ravim
After the shloka, before each cycle of the sun salutation, one of the twelve names of the Lord Surya Narayan is chanted. According to Hindu mythology, these twelve mantras contain with them the basic eternal energy of the sun. By repeating the twelve mantras, it leads to mental and spiritual uplifting.
- Om Mitraya Namaha – Salutation to the lord who is a friend of all
- Om Ravaye Namaha – Salutations to the one who shines and offers divine blessings
- Om Suryaya Namaha – Salutations to the one who induces activity and activates potentiality
- Om Bhanave Namaha – Salutations to the one who illuminates our life
- Om Khagaya Namaha – Salutations to the one who moves in the sky
- Om Pushne Namaha – Salutations to the one who nourishes and sustains
- Om Hiranya Garbhaya Namaha – Salutations to the golden cosmic self wherein the entire universe is embodied
- Om Marichaye Namaha – Salutations to the lord of the dawn
- Om Adityaya Namaha – Salutations to the son of Aditi, the cosmic mother
- Om Savitre Namaha – Salutations to the stimulating power of the sun
- Om Arkaya Namaha – Salutations to the one who is fit to be worshipped
- Om Bhaskaraya Namaha – Salutations to the one who leads to enlightenment