The wisdom-teachings of humanities great luminaries runs like a beautiful river of knowledge through our lives, vibrant in their writings, expressed in their legacies of art and music and poetry, nourishing in each of us our hunger for happiness, enlightenment, knowledge.
One of the most prolific composers of spiritual songs in history, the late spiritual master Sri Chinmoy left humanity a vast treasure of over 22,000 songs, each a tiny gold nugget of beauty, each a wisdom-drop reminding us of our spiritual essence, each a signpost pointing the way back to our oneness with God.
In July, I was fortunate to be able to join other members of the international a cappella men’s choir ‘Oneness-Dream’, all of whom came together in Reykjavik, Iceland from many parts of the world. We were there to record 80 of Sri Chinmoy’s songs, offering them in a final public concert in a city church.
The songs were selected from a unique collection of short Bengali songs with their companion English translations – simple mantric like songs that captured some of the profound truths and wisdoms of the spiritual journey, the quest for enlightenment and Self-knowledge.
Learning, rehearsing and perfecting these songs involved 5 hours a day of group practice, with our group leader taking us through a preliminary hour of vocal exercises! The songs are contemplations, deceptively simple yet profoundly deep, songs of the heart and soul. When learnt and often sung, like mantras they seep down into our minds and hearts – they bring us back to the essences of life; like inner friends they whisper great secrets. Listen:
‘Sakaler prane… In all hearts my seeker-heart is blossoming today’. Yes, your own heart’s aspiration and hunger will spread to others, your own inner awakening will nourish and inspire this world.‘Naba rupe asi phire’… there is no death, only endless life, and we are travelers returning again and again in different forms.
Music provides one of the gateways into meditation. These songs, composed and offered to the world by one of the great luminaries of our time, have universal and timeless relevance, transcending place and culture. May these recordings from the beautiful landscapes of Iceland touch every awakening heart, their wisdom-teachings a polestar on the perennial journey.