This is part of a longer chant or sequence, giving honor to the Guru (who brings us from darkness to light).
The repetitive part that we sing together is simple “Om Guru Om.”
When I was 13 or 14 years old, I first heard George Harrison’s “My Sweet Lord.” Along with the Alleluias and Hare Krishnas and Hare Ramas, there were some words that seemed a complete mystery, but they sank in to my heart anyway.
Gurur Brahmā Gurur Viṣṇur Gurur devo Maheśvaraḥ
Guruḥ sākṣāt paraṁ Brahma tasmai śrī gurave namaḥ
All these years later, they mean more to me than I can express. They represent, as closely as anything can, a statement of my own faith and devotion.
“To the Lord who creates us, the Lord who sustains us and the Lord who takes us back home. To the Lord who is always with us, but is also beyond the beyond. I make my offering to the One who leads us from darkness to light. It is to You that I bow, and offer my life.”