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A doubt on Gayathri mantra

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Shri Ram,

Women can chant Gayatri mantra. But since you are mentioning about "teaching this mantra" I do not know whether you intend a formal "upadesam" or simply teaching the mantra and its intonation.

Our smritis do not approve women reciting gayatri, or for that matter, any Vedic mantra or even any mantra with "beejaakshara" like Om, Hraam, Hreem, etc. Women are allowed only to recite "namaH Sivaaya" without adding "Om", or "naaraayana", again not "Om namo naraayanaaya"; this is the orthodox position. But now times have changed and these rules are no longer observed. I am told that in Pune there is a group of female "purohitaanis" who perform various rituals even during the days of their monthly course!!

So, it is up to you to decide where, in this wide spectrum of practices and beliefs, you want to locate yourself.
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