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On broken cups and old violins

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  • kamalakanta47
    Today I am reminded of two parallel pieces of writing: one a poem, the other a story. What unites them is the common theme: how the touch of the Master
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 6, 2008
      Today I am reminded of two "parallel" pieces of writing: one a poem,
      the other a story.

      What unites them is the common theme: how the touch of the Master
      chooses and transforms....and how, when we receive countless
      blessings, we wonder if it is really happening, if we did something to
      deserve this...

      It is not uncommon in Indian stories to hear a devotee saying, "I must
      have done something good in a previous life, for I do not see what I
      did in this life to receive such blessings", and so on...

      I feel the same way with Sri Chinmoy. I am SURE I did not do anything
      extraordinarily good to deserve all the love that he bestowed and
      still bestows on me. I shall spend the rest of my life trying to be
      worthy of his love, his compassion and his forgiveness.

      But which are the two pieces of writing I am referring to?

      The first one is a story, a Sri Ramakrishna story. I can only write
      what I remember; I believe I lent that book and never got it back
      (they say there are two types of fools; those who lend books, and
      those who return them!)

      The Broken Cup

      Sri Krishna went to the house of a devotee, and the devotee served him
      a meal. Each item of the meal was in a different cup. Sri Krishna
      chose one of the cups, and started eating from it. It so happened that
      this cup was broken.

      Immediately the devotee burst in tears and said, "Do you do the same
      thing with men, Oh Lord, that you choose the broken ones first?"


      I feel that when I met Sri Chinmoy, life had already "broken" me. And
      it is not that I went through any traumatic experiences, but "life" as
      it was presented to me, did not make much sense at all. I could feel
      that there was something more, and I wanted to know what it was, but I
      did not know what "knowing" really means, and I did not have the tools
      to know. Armed with my mind's doubt and negation, I was attempting to
      "know" by denying the validity of established values or customs. This
      "Neti Neti" process only left me bereft of anything. Only gratitude, a
      positive feeling, was able to bring me back to the right path. It is
      not, I believe, a coincidence, that Sri Chinmoy holds gratitude in
      such high regard! He calls it a "miracle-action", and it is!

      Here is the second piece:


      'Twas battered and scarred, and the auctioneer
      Thought it scarcely worth his while
      To waste much time on the old violin,
      But held it up with a smile.
      "What am I bidden, good folks", he cried,
      "Who'll start the bidding for me?"
      "A dollar, a dollar", then two! Only two?
      "Two dollars, and who'll make it three?
      "Three dollars, once; three dollars, twice;
      Going for three...." But no,
      From the room, far back, a grey-haired man
      Came forward and picked the old violin,
      And tightening the loose strings,
      He played a melody pure and sweet
      As a caroling angel sings.

      The music ceased, and the auctioneer
      With a voice that was quiet and low,
      Said: "What am I bid for the old violin?"
      And he held it up with the bow.
      "A thousand dollars, and who'll make it two?
      Two thousand! And who'll make it three?
      Three thousand, once; three thousand, twice;
      And going and gone," said he.

      The people cheered, but some of them cried,
      "We do not quite understand
      What changed its worth?" Swift came the reply:
      "The touch of a master's hand."

      And many a man with life out of tune,
      And battered and scarred with sin,
      Is auctioned cheap to the thoughtless crowd,
      Much like the old violin.
      A "mess of potage," a glass of wine;
      A game- and he travels on.
      He is "going" once, and "going" twice,
      He's "going" and almost "gone."
      But the Master comes and the foolish crowd
      Never can quite uunderstand
      The worth of a soul and the change that is wrought
      By the touch of the Master's hand.'
      -Myra B. welch

      No comment needed for this one!


      "O Master-Musician,
      Tune me for life again.
      The awakening of new music
      My heart wants to become.
      My life is now mingled
      In ecstasy's height."
      -Sri Chinmoy

      Gratitude poem for today, April 6

      "My gratitude
      Immediately increases the power
      Of God's Blessings."
      -Sri Chinmoy



      [quotes by Sri Chinmoy unofficial]
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