"Andhiyar Basanar" – Arrangement by Kamalakanta Nieves

Last modified June 28, 2006

Sri Chinmoy‘s songs touch me to the core of my being. I like his old songs, where he used to offer his own translation.

This particular song, “Andhiyar Basanar Bedanate”, is most compelling, for in it Sri Chinmoy identifies himself with spiritual seekers who, in the journey towards the Goal, sometimes find that the road is arduous. While walking along Eternity’s road, the seeker will sometimes feel that the road is very beautiful, surrounded by flowers, etc. But the seeker may also feel sometimes that he is in a desert, seemingly endless. My father tells me that a certain Western saint went through a spiritual desert that lasted 18 years!

To illustrate this point, Sri Chinmoy uses the analogy of the sun and the clouds. Let us take the sun as the light of our soul, as our inner cry. Some days it is sunny, and all is bright. On other days, however, the clouds may be covering the sun. They may even be very dark clouds; there could be a storm, and the sun remain unseen for a long time. But the sun is still there, shining brightly, although unseen by the human eye.

Similarly, the spiritual seeker must maintain his/her faith, even through so-called hard times. Sri Chinmnoy has defined patience as “Eternity’s strength”.

Coming back to this song, in it the Truth seeker and God-lover is addressing God in a very personal way:

“In the sufferings of dark desire
I worship You all day and night.
You never, O cruel one, shed tears in silence
In the depth of my heart
And bind me in Your Heart.”
-Sri Chinmoy

Now, the seeker is placing the onus on God, accusing Him, as it were, of cruelty and indifference. At first sight one can say that it is not right to talk to God like that, etc. And this is correct, in a way. But for me the beauty of this is the intimacy that is implied in the poetry, for one would certainly not talk like that to a stranger, but to someone whom one feels close to, someone who one might make claims on, someone whom I might claim as my own, as dear to me.

And this is an aspect of the spiritual life which I adore: devotion. Meditation is an act of love, deep spiritual love. The inner cry that we call aspiration is a love for something deeper, higher, vaster. But if this Truth is universal, it must reside within me also. I claim everything that I have inside as my own: my stomach, my lungs, my feelings, my thoughts. Then how come this Reality that exists within me I do not claim? When we meditate, we try to feel the living presence of God in our heart.

From my near and dear ones I can claim certain things that I cannot claim from a total stranger. So when the seeker is talking to God like this, it is implied that God is near and dear, someone whom we can talk to like this.

It reminds me of a story from Spain, where a lady had a very sick child, and she prayed and prayed, but the child was not cured. Finally, one day at church, she lost her patience completely. Standing in front of the altar, she shouted: “Very well, if You do not want to cure him, then You take him! He is Yours!” And with this she presently threw the child at the altar. Lo and behold, a miracle occurred; the child was cured immediately! She certainly was not talking to God as to a stranger!

I hope you all enjoy this song as much as I do.

Kamalakanta Nieves
June 2006

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