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In Guru Granth Sahib all new chapters, titles and subtitles start with an invocation, which is called a mangal in Sanskrit language.

 

An invocation or a mangal is a prayer to God before the start of any work.

 

This tradition is also found in the holy Quran and Hindus scriptures.

 

Five different types of invocations have been used in Guru Granth Sahib and they vary in length and substance.

 

The classification of these invocations is as follows:

 

1. Ik Oankar – (One Almighty Creator)

 

This mangal has been used in the concluding hymns.  The mangal literary means that there is One God, who is all powerful and the sole Creator and we all need his protection.

 

2. Ik Oankar Satguru Prasad

 

This mangal has been used for 519 times.  It has three more syllables added to the first mangal. The three syllables stand for three qualities of God:

 

·         Sat means Truth: the permanent entity.

 

·         Guru means Teacher: the giver of knowledge

 

·         Prasad means Grace: the blessings.

 

 

3. Ik Oankar Satnam Gurprasad

 

This mangal has been used only twice. It has one new syllable in it and one slightly changed syllable The meaning of these syllables are:

 

Satnam also mean Truth (whose name is Truth): the permanent entity,

 

Gurprasad means God’s Grace: He can be realised only by his grace.

 

4. Ik Oankar Satnam Kartapurkh Gurprasad:

 

This mangal has been used 9 times. It has one new syllable when compared with mangal (3), the meaning
of this syllable is:

 

Kartapurkh: God is the greatest designer and creator of this world.

 

 

5. Ik Oankar, Satnam Kartapurkh Nirbhau Nirver Akalmurat Ajoone Saibhau Gurprasad. 

 

This mangal has been used 33 times. And is also called the Mool Mantr and used for deep and powerful meditation.  The Siri Guru Granth Sahib Ji opens with this invocation and 26 out of 31ragas also open with this invocation. The meaning of it is as follows:

 

·         Ik Oankar – God is One, Almighty and Creator
·         Satnam – His Name is “The Truth”
·         Kartapurkh – he is the Designer and Creator
·         Nirbhau- he is beyond fears
·         Nirvaer- he is beyond enmity
·         Akalmurat – he is beyond deaths
·         Ajoone- he is beyond births
·         Sebhau- he is self illuminated
·         Gurprasad – he is realised with His own Grace.

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