Today's Beautiful Gem: Bhumi Sukta (Hymn to the Earth) from Atharva Veda.

"Earth, in which lie the sea, the river and other waters,
in which food and cornfields have come to be,
in which lives all that breathes and that moves,
may she confer on us the finest of her yield.
Earth, in which the waters, common to all,
moving on all sides, flow unfailingly, day and night,
may she pour on us milk in many streams, and endow us with lustre.
May those born of thee, O Earth,
be for our welfare, free from sickness and waste,
wakeful through a long life, we shall become
bearers of tribute to thee.
Earth my mother, set me securely with bliss
in full accord with heaven,
O wise one, uphold me in grace and splendour."

Note: As `Today's Beautiful Gem' enters its second year and third
century (the present one is the 201st posting), I thought it
appropriate for all of us to worship the Mother Earth during the
transitional period of the vernal equinox. I thank the readers for
their unceasing encouragement and constructive criticism and the
Digest staff, in particular Ms Uma Ramamurthy, for their grand
support. I urge the readers again to go to the original sources
either by borrowing books from their libraries or buying them and
peruse them and enjoy the spiritual comforts offered by literary
works. Finally, may all of us be granted joy and plenitude as well
as peace and wisdom!

om s'aantih: Peace! - J. K. Mohana Rao