Invocation

 

तेजस्वि नावधीतमस्तुtejasvi nāvadhītamastu

 

Translations:

 

Effective may our study prove!

— Invocation to Dakṣināmūrti Upaniṣad, A.M. Sastry

May our study be thorough and fruitful.

— Invocation to Kaṭha Upaniṣad, Swāmī Śarvānanda

Let what we are studying be invigorating.

— Invocation to Kaṭha Upaniṣad, Swāmī Gambhīrānanda

May our study be vigorous and effective.

— Invocation to Taittirīya 2.1, Swāmī Śarvānanda

Let our study be brilliant.

— Invocation to Taittirīya 2.1, Swāmī Gambhīrānanda

May our study be full of light.

First Lessons in Sanskrit, Judith Tyberg

 

 

Word-by-Word Analysis

 

पदानि ॥ तेजस्वि नौ अधीतम् अस्तुpadāni ॥ tejasvi nau adhītam astu

तेजस्वि । neuter nominative singular of adjective tejasvin
tejasvinMW 454c mfn. brilliant, splendid, bright, energetic.
[Pāṇini: बहुलं छन्दसि ॥ ५ । २ । १२२ ॥ In the Veda the affix -vin is variously introduced in the sense of matup (“belonging to this”, “existing in this”).]
tejas — sharp (edge of a knife); point or top of flame or ray, glow, glare, splendor, brilliance, light, fire;
tijMW 446a to be or become sharp.

Dh.P.तिज भ्वादिगण आत्मनेपद सेट् । निशाने ।
niśānaMW 561a n. sharpening, whetting; observing, perceiveing.

Comment:Tejas is a name given to the subtle element of fire, having qualities of heat and light. With reference to our study of Sanskrit, this may be understood as the heat that burns off the dross of ignorance and allows the light of understanding to shine through.

नौ । genitive dual of personal pronoun “I”, giving the meaning “of us both (student and teacher)”, or simply “our”.

अधीतम् । neuter nominative singular of adhītam. (The past passive participle used in the sense of an abstract noun.)
adhītaMW 22c mfn. attained, studied, read; well-read, learned.
adhi-i, to turn the mind towars, observe, understand.
adhiMW 20b prefix expressing above, over and above, besides.
i — to go, walk; to flow; to blow; to advance, spread, get about; to go to or towards, come; … to succeed, to arrive at, reach, obtain; … to undertake anything; to be employed in, go on with, continue in any condition or relation …

Dh.P.इक् अदादिगण आत्मनेपद अनिट् । स्मरणे ।
smaraṇaMW 1272b n. the act of causing to remember, reminding, calling to mind.

Dh.P.इङ् अदादिगण परस्मैपद अनिट् । अध्ययने ।
adhyayanaMW 22c n. reading, studying, especially the Vedas.

Dh.P.इङ् अदादिगण परस्मैपद अनिट् । गतौ ।
gatiMW 347c f. going, moving, gait, deportment, motion in general.

अस्तु । first person singular imperative of √ as (to be), i.e. “let it be”, “may it be”, or simply “be!”
asMW 117a to be, live, exist, be present, take place, happen.

Dh.P.अस अदादिगण परस्मैपद सेट् । भुवि ।
bhūMW 760c f. the act of arising or becoming.

 

 

Treating adhītam as a neuter noun and tejasvi its complement, this gives a rather plodding translation of “Let our study be bright”. Using poetic license to convey the sense of the whole, rather than the literal word-by-word translation, we have:

”May the Light1 Shine upon our Studies.”

  1. The light of understanding / knowledge / truth.