Sorrow, Joy, Determination, Awakening – Kamalakanta Nieves

Last modified November 28, 2006

Dear brothers and sisters, friends, I present you here with a combination of four of Sri Chinmoy‘s songs.

Sri Chinmoy’s songs have a very peaceful and soothing vibration, and I seek to share it by playing his music. I like to do arrangements which are expansive, sweet and peaceful in their character.

Perhaps because I grew up listening to my parents singing romantic music together, my tendency in the past has been to arrange Sri Chinmoy’s songs in the same way, as a romantic ballad. Now I am trying something else: arrangements in which the melody is not harmonized. There will be one fundamental chord or “drone”, which can be either static or rhythmic, but there will be no chord progression.

This allows me to let the melodies themselves create their own harmony, and I like it very much. It allows for the arrangement to become more “cosmic”, more of a universal landscape, where galaxies and planets are moving…

Sri Chinmoy’s songs express the different states of consciousness that a seeker experiences on his or her way to the Ultimate Goal. In the same way that the darkest hour of night precedes the brightest dawn, in that same way oftentimes the Truth-seeker and God-lover has to pass through what St. John of the Cross described as “the dark night of the soul”.

The first song in this arrangement, as you will see, has one of the saddest meanings that I have found in Sri Chinmoy’s songs. Yet it combines so well with the other three songs, which have such a determined and illumining feeling to them! I love the fact that Sri Chinmoy, in his poetry, is able to express the myriad feelings of human existence.

All of these four songs are from Sri Chinmoy’s songbook titled “Supreme, Teach Me How To Cry”.

The first song is a sorrowful song, in which the seeker is expressing a difficult state of consciousness and existence:

#99. Jani Ami Jani
“I Know, I know, my life is a false dream,
An endless expanse of sorrow.
I know, I know, my heart pangs touch nobody’s heart.
Yet helpless I cry day and night.
Only one friend I have:
A totally smashed heart.”

The second song is to the Mother aspect of God, a celebration of the life-transforming power of the Supreme.

# 28. Janani Amar
“Mother, my life-river is flowing towards You
With simplicity’s song
And with the flood of heart’s devotion-aspiration.
Mother, even for a fleeting second
When I receive Your Love divine
In the twinkling of an eye,
All my hope-world reaches
Its satisfaction-life.”

The third song is similar to the second one, reflecting on the transforming power of God’s Feet, and the determination of the seeker to conquer himself:

#24. Tomar Charana Tale
“At Your Feet divine
Is blossoming beautifully
The tree of my self-sacrifice.
At my thunder-feet
I shall destroy the mad clamour
Of dark ignorance-night.”

The fourth and last song is an affirmation of the seekers awakening and spiritual achievements:

#10. Ghum Bengeche
“My sleep has come to an end.
My mistakes have come to an end.
My attachment-net is smashed asunder.
My life divine has blossomed.
My song divine has blossomed.
In me the Time eternal is awakened at last.”

These four translations are all by Sri Chinmoy (unofficial).

I hope you all like the beautiful and soothing energy which these songs emanate. I find them very conducive to meditation. Enjoy!

Kamalakanta Nieves
November 2006

Artist: Kamalakanta Nieves
Release year: 2006
Duration: 6:22
Acknowledgements: Sri Chinmoy
Format: Advanced Audio Coding
Image: Pavitrata Taylor

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