Anniversary of Transcendence Perfection Poetry Book Observed
- The date and time above the subject line for this post lists Sunday Nov. 1st at 12:33 am - just a half hour after Sri Chinmoy began his poetry marathon in which he wrote an extraordinary quantity of 843 poems in 24 hours from midnight on November 1, 1975 until the following midnight which ushered in November 2nd.
Tonight at Aspiration-Ground (or should I technically say last night!) the highlight of the function was a tribute to this magnificent book of poetry.
Rain came and went throughout the night but stayed away in patches long enough to enable all activities but the play performances scheduled for the evening. Even though I call "running in the rain" an example of a creative approach to life in an upcoming article on creativity, I must confess that I "cheated" on my own philosophy and took shelter during the duration of the evening's program under a canopy over some of the benches in the seating area. :-)
This my first visit back to Aspiration-Ground since the October 11th Mahasamadhi weekend almost took my breath away because the scenery is much the same and the very air and environs seem to shimmer with a tapestry of light, sacredness and beauty. Can the very meditations themselves linger long after they finish? I almost felt as if last Wednesday's function described by Arpan still vibrated around me - and yes October 11th as well.
When the rain puddles on the green clay of the ground surrounding the Mahsamadhi shrine, it reflects the flowers and candles like the mirror effect on a still lake. Then I start thinking about Lake Manasarovar and the swans and Mt. Kailash...
Tonight Aspiration Ground was stunningly inspiring. Candles flickered in the darkness, lighting up the bouquets of flowers visible in every direction. Seated even up high under the canopy, I could smell the fragrance of flowers.
We could have just sat there in silence and enjoyed a visual feast worthy of stirring inner awakening. Yet something emerged to take the beauty to another level - a recording of Sri Chinmoy singing a cappella songs he composed from some of the Transcendence-Perfection poems.
Then we were treated to recitations of some of the poems and a slideshow of photos showing Guru at functions held to celebrate the achievement.
We are lucky to have the entire volume of poems in the Sri Chinmoy Library online. Here is a link to it:
Without remembering that it was the anniversary this weekend, I chose to bring this very book with me to New York this weekend and was reading from it briefly this afternoon before going to the evening function. Like playing the game "Name that Tune", I found myself saying oh I remember reading that one at the centre meeting last Wednesday or I remember reading that one this afternoon. ;-)
It truly boggles imagination to fathom the density of poems from this volume which expound and express a myriad of windows into the inner life, wisdom, and poetic expression all created in a single 24 hour period.
A Mere Glance
Just a mere glance of the Lord
Can erase the music
Of his inhuman life.
Just a mere glance of the Lord!
Did centres around the world also have activities related to this anniversary?
p.s. in looking for previous posts about Transcendence Perfection poems, this seems to be the main one:
- Thank you for that account of this very special day. I started to write something but ran out of time and focus so I am glad you were able to share this with everyone.
Two other things I do want to share that about this very special achievement of Guru's is that he later asked for anyone who wanted to take the challenge to pick any 100 poems from Transcendence-Perfection and memorize them perfectly for a test. I think we had a week to do so and I took the challenge.
The test was administered by Guru himself at Annam Brahma. He handed out blue University style exam booklets and we had over an hour to write down the poems if I recall. Guru would walk around and look at us, blessing us as we took this very serious but enjoyable test. We had to get every punctuation, spelling, etc. exactly correct for all 100 poems.
In the end I believe two girls, or maybe more, got everything perfectly correct. I think I got only a few minor mistakes but that did not matter as the experience was quite fulfilling, outwardly and moreso inwardly. Having that kind of experience with Guru and his poetry was a real privelege and honor.
We did it again with 27,000 Aspiration-Plants poems many years later at Progress-Promise.I was more daring and sharper mentally back then and it was always a great experience to take on a challenge like that directly from Guru. We should try something like that again for one of these celebrations of his poetry as I think Guru would like that alot and those who get involved will see how rewarding to take a challenge like that could be.
Now for the other point I wanted to share about November 1, 1975, the day Transcendence-Perfection was born. Our dearest brother Mahiruha Klein was also born on that exact same day and year. It's no wonder he is such a soulful reciter of Guru's poems.
Happy Birthday Mahiruha!!!!
- ... and here you can find the cover of the original volume "Transcendence-Perfection" which was published less than 24 hours after the completion of the poems:
- Inspired by all the postings here (thank you to everyone who is keeping this group alive!) tonight we included the Anniversary of Guru's Transcendence-Perfection Poems into our Center meditation. After half an hour of invocation, silent meditation and some chanting, we read out around 20 selected poems twice each, person after person, for about 15 minutes, with some of Guru's flute music playing softly in the background. Afterwards we sang two beautiful but quite difficult songs of the 99 Transcendence-Perfection songs over and over, "My Birthday-Song" and "Your Soul Will Help You" (Guru had set music to 100 of the 843 poems only a few weeks after he wrote them).
Quite a short observation for Guru`s standards, true, but it was still very beautiful and powerful. I personally love to hear disciples soulfully reading out or reciting Guru`s poems, everyone carries their own fragrance like flower petals, it creates a feeling of oneness and brings back memories of the Christmas trip.... And I know others feel the same. Our reading was a little bit faster than Guru`s composing them - he must have averaged close to 40 poems per hour for 24 hours. Absolutely unbelievable how any human being (or any being in a human body) could keep creating not only just meaningful sentences for such a long time at a stretch, but such amazingly beautiful and deep spiritual poetry at that. To maintain a flow of creative consciousness of this calibre for 24 hours is proof of a rare free access to deep inner worlds.
Thank you everyone for keeping us inspired to honour and celebrate Guru's incredible achievements, his offerings to the world, even in little ways, thus claiming them as our own and feeling our oneness with them and keeping them alive.
I still remember the poetry competition in PS 86 sometime in the early 80ies. Guru corrected our notepads in his own handwriting - there was just a little bit to correct on mine :) - and Guru even wrote the person`s name (my old name!) on top of the pad! What a treasure.
Some of the Transcendence-Perfection poems we read out tonight:
THERE AND HERE
I am there
I am here.
I am there
To sing God's Vision-Song,
An easy song.
I am here
To play God's Game,
A difficult game.
Excerpt from Transcendence-Perfection by Sri Chinmoy
STOP AND START
Lo, your cosmic game is over!
FOUR PETALS OF DELIGHT
Four petals of delight:
- Thank you so much for these beautiful postings! I would like to get a very special calendar with all of Guru´s sacred anniversaries to be observed from now on so I won´t forget any next time!
I love sharing familiar and personal sweet experiences on the infinite ways Guru loved, created, fulfilled and transcended his supernatural achievements on earth. It is something so good to read once and again!
- Dear Vasanti,
Hearing about your centre's observance of the book's anniversary inspired me tremendously. I think the republishing of this book for last August's Celebrations has created a kind of rebirth for this book.
Thanks to Kedar as well for scanning the book's cover and posting it on one of his blogs. The painting by Sri Chinmoy on the cover is in itself a "thing of beauty".