Thomas Ashley-Farrand translates the Gayatri Mantra (long form) as follows:
In that realm of truth which is beyond human comprehension, in that place where all
the celestials have received enlightenment, kindly enlighten our minds. Light that
has given birth to the luminous planes of consciousness, that informs these lokas and
appears through the spirtual lens of the sun, also illumine our intellect. Such a state
is worthy of enlightenment, so, light, come, and inform our intellect in every way.
Further, '...it is the most revered mantra of the Vedic tradition, called supreme in bestowing enlightenment. For pure spiritual potency in the accumulating of the highest spiritual light, there is nothing to compare with the Gayatri....it brings luster to the aura, and promotes the accumulation of spiritual light at the cellular level... Where there is spiritual light, there can be no disease...It invokes spiritual light into your heart, mind, and body, producing the highest state of spiritual illumination.'
There is a profound relationship between sound and light. As a vibration, metaphysically,
sound produces light. And God 'said', "Let there be light". In a spiritual sense, enlighten-
ment is literal, not a metaphor, however, we have Jesus as the light of the world, the
Buddha as the light of wisdom, Moses was bathed in light as he came down from the
mountain, and others have been portrayed surrounded by a halo.
To acheive spiritual advancement is to refine our level of vibration. Higher forms of vibration, therefore, lead to a state of enlightenment. The significance of the Gayatri is that it arouses the vibrations of the seven upper, luminous spheres of light, each one progressively more advanced than the previous one, and, chanting it, we begin to make an attunement with each one of them.
Earth, Bhu, is the lowest of the upper luminous spheres. It represents the 1st chakra, and
the sound of the earth plane. Bhuvaha represents the earth to the sun, through the atmosphere, and the 2nd chakra. Swaha, the sun, and 3rd chakra, spiritually represents both a door ( to the upper non-physical luminous realms), and a lens (through which the energy from those realms reaches us). Maha, the 4th chakra, represents the 1st spiritual, non-physical, realm beyond the sun. In Janaha, the 5th chakra, the power of the Divine word becomes manifest. Tapaha, the 6th, represents the sphere of the progenitors. It is the realm of the highest possible spiritual understanding, while still identified with an individual existence. Satyam, the 7th, is absorbtion into the Supreme, where we can choose to dissolve into the Supreme, or come back, and retain existence at the 6th chakra, where we have individual existence. Consequently, the Gayatri calls for the celestials to shine their light of awakened consciousness on all of the physical and spiritual realms, as represented by our chakras.