Meditation is todays trend in new style. But in Sandhayvandam or Sandhyopasana is very old from centuries.
How to do Sadhyavandanam according to Vedas.
One becomes eligible to do Sandhyopasana by getting up before Arunodaya (twilight), attending to calls of nature, purifying the body with soil, water etc. as laid down, brushing the teeth and taking bath. Even in times when it is not possible to bathe by dipping in river or with hot water from a bucket, one of ten different forms of bath should be undertaken. (In addition to water, the other nine forms are: Aagneyam, Vaarunam, Braahmam, Vaayavyam, Divyam, Maanasam, Paarthivam, Kaapilam and Saarasvatam). Karmas mentioned in texts of dharma like Veda do not purify one who does not practise Achara (basic rules of conduct). After bath, one should wear dry clothes, apply religious marks (pundras) on forehead etc., wash feet, have upavita (sacred thread), tie tuft of hair (sikha), do Achamanam twice as per rules and perform Sandhyopasanam facing east (or north).
In Sandhyopasana, Dhyanam (meditation) is important. In the morning Sandhya, one has to meditate that he is same as Sandhya Devata, who is Aditya Deva of red colour and named Gayatri. In the noon prayer, he mediates that he is same as Devata of white colour, of the form of Rudra and named Savitri. In the evening, he meditates that he is same as Sandhya Devata, who is Aditya Deva of black colour, of the form of Vishnu and named Saraswati
Some say that four parts of Sandhyopasana, viz. offering Argya, meditating as mentioned above, chanting Gayatri and doing upasthanam, are important. In the Mahabharata war, Dharmaputra et al did meditation alone scrupulously, when they were unable to do Prokshanam (sprinkling) etc. as water was not available. From this it is clear that meditation (dhyanam) is very important. Further in view of the fact that Dharmaputra et al did not leave Sandhyopasana completely even in times of danger to life and did dhyanam at least, it is certain that people, who are not in situations of emergency of that type, should perform all aspects of Sandhyopasana in proper time as per rules laid down.
It is good to meditate on Rishi, chandas, Devata and Viniyogam of different mantras; it is beneficial to meditate on the meaning of mantras too. It is very good to understand and perform Bhutasuddhi, Pranaprathishtha, mudras etc. The greatness of Pranayama is immeasurable. It is important even for healthy life in this world.
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