The Beautiful River Mandakini…

Doha:

Ramkadha Mandakini Chitrakoot chitt charu/

Tulsi subhag saneh ban siya Raghubeer biharu//

Tulsidasji says that Sriramji’s story is like the pure river Mandakini; a beautiful, pristine heart is like Chitrakoot, and true love is the forest where Sri Ramji moves about graciously.

**

Ramcharit Chintamani charu/ Sant sumati tiya subhag singaru//

Jag mangal gunagram Ram ke/ Dani mukuti dhan dharam dham ke//

Sri Ramji’s blessed story is the wish-fulfilling, gorgeous jewel ‘Chintamani’.  It adorns the woman embodying the wisdom of the sages. Sri Ramji’s good qualities grant prosperity and joy to the world; and bestow salvation, riches, dharma, and access to the Vishnu dham.

**

Sadgur gyan birag jog ke/ Bibudh baid bhav bheem rog ke//

Janani Janak siya Ram prem ke/ Beej sakal brat dharam nem ke//

The story of Sri Ramji is the sadguru for attaining wisdom, detachment and yoga. It is akin to the twin brothers, Ashwini Kumaras, (who are the vaids of devas) when it comes to vanquishing the dreadful disease of worldly sufferings. The story acts like progenitors for creating love towards Sri Ramji and is the seed of complete penance, dharma and all laws.

**

Saman paap santap sok ke/ Priya palak parlok lok ke//

Sachiv subhat bhupati bichar ke/ Kumbhaj lobh udadhi apar ke//

Sri Ramji’s beautiful story ends all sins, sufferings and disappointments. It looks after this world as well as the next. If wisdom was embodied in a king, then the story is his courageous minister. It is like Agastya who can dry up the oceans of greed and worldly desires.

**

Kam koh kalimal karigan ke/ Kehari savak jan mann ban ke//

Atithi pujya priyatam purari ke/ Kamad ghan darid dawari ke//

The story of the Lord is like the young lions which kill the elephants called kaam (lust), krodh (fury), and other Kaliyug’s sins (lobha/moha/mada/matsarya-greed/ desire/ego/competition et al) which dwell within the minds of devotees. The Lord’s story is the beloved and venerated guest of Lord Shiva; and is like the rain filled clouds which douses the flames of poverty.

**

Mantra mahamani bishay byal ke/ Metat kadin kuvank bhal ke//

Haran moh tam dinkar kar se/ Sevak saali paal jaldhar se//

The story acts as the divine mantra and precious stone for removing the venom of the snake called sensory desires. Sri Ramji’s story can remove even the toughest fate lines (Prarabdh : accumulated karmas of previous births). It is equivalent to the sun’s rays in destroying the darkness of ignorance. It is also like rain clouds when it comes to taking care of the devotees who are like the rice saplings.

**

Abhimat daani devtaru bar se/ Sevat sulabh sukhad Hari Har se//

Sukabi sarad nabh mann udgan se/ Rambhagat jan Jeevan dhan se//

Sri Ramji’s divine story is like Kalpataru (Kalpavriksh-the tree which bestows whatever the devotee desires) in fulfilling the devotee’s wishes. It is like Vishnu and Shiva when it comes to answering prayers and bestowing happiness. The Lord’s story is like the stars illuminating the mind-sky of the good poet called autumn season (Sharad); and is the very life-line of Sri Ramji’s devotees.

**

Sakal sukrit phal bhuri bhog se/ Jag hith nirupadhi sadhu log se//

Sevak mann manas maral se/ Pavan gang tarang maal se//

The divine story results in great punya; akin to the royal feast offered unto the Gods. The story does unpretentious good to the universe just like the sages and saints. The Lord’s story is like the beautiful white swans swimming about in the Manasarovar Lake of the devotee’s mind and purifies one like Gangaji herself.

Doha:

Kupadh kutarak kuchali kali kapat dambh pashand/

Dahan Ram guna gram jimi indhan anal prachand//

Sri Ramachandra’s great qualities shall burn down all the wrong paths, malicious arguments, wrong behaviours, the hypocrisies, arrogance, pretentiousness of Kali Yug like a fiery flame enhanced by fuel.

**

Ramcharit rakes kar saris sukhad sab kahu/

Sajjan kumud chakor chitt hith biseshi bada lahu//

Sri Ramji’s story is appealing and joyful to everyone like the light of a full moon. However, for good souls, it is extremely precious and especially benevolent like moonlight is to water lilies and Chakor birds.

**

Keenhi prasn jehi bhanti Bhawani/ Jehi bidhi sankar kaha bakhani//

So sab hetu kahab mai gayi/ Kadha prabandh bichitra banayi//

The way in which Paravtiji asked the question ( about Lord Ram) to Lord Shiv, and the manner in which he answered elaborately, I shall be singing about the unique, wondrous tale now.

**

Jehim yeh kadha suni nahim hoyi/ Jani acharaju karai suni soyi//

Kadha aloukik sunahim je gyani/ Nahim acharaju karahim as jani//

Ramkadha kai mithi jag nahim/ Asi pratiti tinh ke mann mahim//

Nana bhanti Ram avatara/ Ramayan sat koti apara//

Those who have not heard of Sri Ramji’s story, please do not be astonished on listening to it. The wise souls do not get surprised that the story of Sri Ramji is infinite and never ending. They deeply believe that Sri Ramchandra has appeared in many avatars and the narrations of Ramayana – the saga of Lord Rama- is innumerable (hundred crore and more).

**


The Saga of the Lord’s Story

Ram nikayi ravari hai sabahi ko neek/

Jaum yeh saachy hai sada tau neeko tulseek//

‘Sri Ramji, your good heartedness showers grace on everyone.’ If this is true, Tulsidas is also blessed by the Lord’s grace.

**

Ehi bidhi nij guna dosh kahi sabahi bahuri siru nayi/

Barnavu raghubar bisad jasu suni kali kalush nasayi//

In this way, by speaking about one’s good and bad deeds, and bowing to everybody, I shall start narrating the pure glories of Sri Ramji. By listening to His story, all the sins accrued in Kaliyug gets removed.

**

Jagbalik jo kadha suhayi/ Bharadwaj munibarhi sunayi//

Kahihavu soyi sambad bakhani/ Sunahu sakal Sajjan sukhu mani//

The beautiful story which Sage Yagyavalkya narrated to Sage Bharadwaj; I shall be reciting. The good folk may listen to it and experience happiness.

**

Sambhu keenh yeh charit suhava/ Bahura kripa kari umahi sunava//

Soyi siv kagbusundihi deenha/ Ram bhagat adhikari cheenha//

Lord Shiv was the one, who first compassionately narrated the story, to Uma. Then Lord Shiv told it to Kakabushundi, knowing him to be a true servant of Ram and deserving to be told the great story.

**

Tehi san Jagbalik puni pava/ Tinh puni Bharadwaj prati gava//

Te shrota bakta samseela/ Samvadrasi janahim Harileela//

Kakabushundi then passed on the story to Sage Yagyavalkya. He told the story of Ram to Sage Bharadwaj. Both the speaker and the listener (vakta and shrota) were of same spiritual nature and similar in their philosophical outlook; knowing the playfulness (lila) of Sri Hari very well.

**

Janahim teeni kaal nij gyana/ Kartal gat aamalak samana//

Auravu je Haribhagat sujana/ Kahahim sunahim samuchahim bidhi nana//

The two divine sages are ‘Trikalagyani’ (knowing the three time zones) and like a gooseberry on one’s palm, they can see what’s happening in any time-zone in front of them. They are great devotees of Sri Hari (deeply cognisant of Hari leela); and they narrate , hear and understand this beautiful story in many ways.

**

Doha:

Mai puni nij gur san suni kadha so sukarkheth/

Samuchi nahim tasi balpan tab ati rahevu achet//

I heard this story in the realm of Varaha avatar from my blessed Guru. However, since I was very immature, I could hardly discern the depths of the beautiful story.

**

Shrota baktha gyannidhi kadha Ram kai gudh/

Kimi samuchaum mai jeev jad kali mal grasit bimoodh//

The narrator and listener of Sri Ramji’s glorious story has to be the treasure house of wisdom. How could someone like me, swathed by all sins of Kaliyug, stupid and foolish to the core, lifeless and barren, ever hope to decipher the enigmatic story?

**

Tadapi kahi gur barahim bara/ Samuchi pari kacchu mati anusara//

Bhashabaddh karbi mai soyi/ Morem mann prabodh jehim hoyi//

When my Guru repeated the story of the Lord many times, I started comprehending it partially. Now what I have understood, I shall narrate in the vernacular language, so that my mind becomes happy.

**

Buddh bishram sakal jan ranjani/ Ramkadha kali kalush bibhanjani//

Ram kadha kali pamnag bharni/ Puni bibek pavak kahu arni//

The story of Sri Ramji rests the minds of the learned; delights everyone who listens to it. It vanquishes all the sins accrued in Kaliyug. Sri Ramji’s story is the female peacock which kills the snake embodying Kaliyug. It is also the ‘arni’ (the wood used to kindle holy sacrificial fire) which shall kindle wisdom and discrimination. (Through this story, inner wisdom shall arise.)

**

Ram kadha kali kamad gaayi/ Sujan sajeevani moori suhayi//

Soyi basudhatal sudha tarangini/ Bhay bhanjani bhram bhek bhuangini//

 In Kaliyug, Sri Ramji’s beautiful story is like Kamdhenu, the divine cow who bestows whatever you desire. For the good folk, it is like the life-giving Sanjeevani herb, which acts as the elixir of life. On earth, it is like a river of amrit; it destroys the fear of life and death; and is like the female serpent which eats the frogs of illusions.

**

Asur sen sam narak nikandini/ Sadhu bibudh kul hit girinandini//

Sant samaj payodhi rama si/ Biswa bhaar bhar achal chama si//

The Ram Kadha is like Durga, who vanquishes the narak equivalent to an army of asuras; and protects the sages and their clan. For the milky ocean (ksheer sagar) embodying the society of saints, the story of Sri Ramji is like Lekshmi herself. For carrying all the burdens effortlessly, the story acts like Mother Earth (Prithvi)herself.

**

Jam gan muh masi jag jamuna si/ Jeevan mukuti hetu janu kasi//

Ramahi priya pavani tulsi si/ Tulsidas hith hiyam hulsi si//

To combat the Yamudoota (to put ink on the face of Yama’s messenger, literally), the story of Ramji is like the dusky Yamuna herself. For salvation of the soul, Ram kadha acts like Kashi.  Narrating his story is beloved to Sri Ramji like tulsi. And as for Tulsidas, the story of the Lord does good from the heart; like ‘Hulsi’ herself (his mother’s name).

**

Sivapriya mekal sail suta si/ Sakal siddhi sukh sampati rasi//

Sadguna surgana amba aditi si/ Raghubar bhagati prem parmiti si//

This story of SriRam is as beloved to Shiv as Parvati (Narmada) herself. It augurs all siddhis and prosperity. The story is like Mata Aditi in birthing and looking after the devas called good qualities. The ultimate horizon of the love and devotion to the Lord is encapsulated in his story.

**


The Name of the Lord is the Kalpataru

Dhyanu pradham jug makhbidhi duje/ Dwapar paritoshat prabhu pujem//

Kali keval mal mool maleena/ Paap payonodhi jan mann meena//

In the first Yuga, Satya Yug, by meditation one can cross the bhav-sagar; in Treta Yuga it is through yagya (sacrifices); in the Dwapar Yuga, it is by means of puja (prayerful rituals). However, in Kali Yuga, sins have enveloped every mind and is deep rooted. The human minds are like fishes swimming in the ocean of sins in Kali Yuga. (Hence meditation, sacrifices and prayerful rituals do not become effective)

**

Naam kamataru kaal karala/ Sumirat saman sakal jag jala//

Ram naam kali abhimat data/ Hit parlok lok pitu mata//

In this Kaliyuga which is formidable and fearsome, the Name of the Lord is like Kalpavriksha-which grants all which the heart desires. Remembering the Lord’s Name, all worldly desires and sufferings are burned to cinders. Ram Naam gives everything which is benign: in this world it protects like one’s own parents; and grants access to Vishnu Dham in the yonder world (parlok).

**

Nahim kali karam na bhagati bibeku/ Ram naam avalamban eku//

Kalnemi kali kapat nidhanu/ Naam sumati samaradh Hanumanu//

In Kali yuga, there is neither karma, nor devotion, or discrimination/wisdom. The sole refuge is the Name of Ram. The Lord’s Name is the capable and intelligent Hanumanji who can kill the embodiment of all sins of the wicked Kaliyuga called Kalnemi.

**

Doha:

Ram naam narkesari kanakakasipu kalikaal/

Japak jan prahlad jimi palihi dali sursaal//

Ram’s divine Name is the Narsimha avatar; the sins of Kaliyuga is Hiranyakashipu; and the devotee chanting the Ram Naam is like prince Prahlad. The Ram Naam kills the asura called Kaliyuga and protects the chanters of the Lord’s Name.

**

Bhayam kubhayam anakh aalasahu/ Naam japat mangal disi dasahu//

Sumiri so naam Ram guna gadha/ Karavu nayi Raghunadhahi madha//

Whether you utter the Lord’s Name with love, hatred, anger or even laziness, the auspiciousness/goodness spreads across the ten directions. I remember that blissfully divine Ram Naam, bow my head before Sri Ramji and shall sing about his great glories.

**

Mori sudharihi so sab bhanti/ Jasu kripa nahim kripam aghati//

Ram suswami kusevaku mosu/ Nij disi dekhi dayanidhi poso//

Sri Ramji’s compassion is indescribable; He shall correct all my life’s fault-lines (Grace me with abundant blessings). Such a great Lord like Sri Ramji and such a lowly servant like me! Even then, that embodiment of kindness, has taken pity on me and guards me with compassion.

**

Lokahu beda susahib reeti/ Binay sunat pahichanat preeti//

Gani gareeb gram nar nagar/ Pandit moodh malin ujagar//

In the world, and in the Vedas the ways of the good king are stated thus: on hearing the polite request, he recognises the love and sincerity. Whether rich or poor, illiterate or sophisticated, pandit or fool, notorious person or famous man…

**

Sukabi kukabi nij mati anuhari/ Nripahi sarahat sab nar nari//

Sadhu sujan suseel nripala/ Ees ans bhav param kripala//

Good poet or bad poet; all men and women praise the ruler as per their intelligence. The sage, the wise, the good natured one and the king, formed from a part of Brahma himself…

**

Suni sanmanahim Sabahi subani/ Bhaniti bhagati nati gati pahichani//

Yeh prakrit mahipal subhavu/ Jaan siromani Kosalravu//

 (They…as mentioned above) Listen to everyone and discerning the words, devotion, humility and sincerity answer with sweetness and grace each with rewards. Now, this is the nature of ordinary good rulers, whereas Lord Sri Ramchandra is the crown jewel of all wise kings!

**

Reechat Ram saneh nisotem/ Ko jag mand malinmati motem//

Sri Ramji is pleased only by the purest love. But in this world, where is a fool and sinner bigger than my own self?

**

Doha:

Sadh sevak ki preeti ruchi rakhihahim Ram Kripalu/

Upal kiye jaljaan jehim sachiv sumati kapi bhalu//

But the generous, compassionate Sri Ramji will still bless this wicked servant (and indulge his imperfect love and devotion to the Lord). After all, He is the one who made stones float on the ocean and anointed monkeys and bears as his wise counsel of ministers.

**

Hauhu kahavat sabu kahat Ram sahat upahas/

Sahib Sitanadh so sevak tulsidas//

Everybody says that I am Ram’s servant ; and I too, losing all shame and hesitation, do not dare to correct them. The great Lord tolerates this indignity of a wicked man like me being the servant of the incomparable Sri Ram!

**

Ati badi mori didayi khori/ Suni agh narakahu naak sakori//

Samuchi saham mohi apadar apnem/ So sudhi Ram keenhi nahim sapnem//

There is no limit to my stubbornness and sins that even the Narak has no place for a sinner like me. I am horrified by myself, yet the kindest Lord, Sri Ramji simply ignores all my multifarious faults and sins.

**

Suni avaloki suchit chakh chahi/ Bhagati mori mati swami sarahi//

Kahat nasayi hoyi hiyam neeki/ Reechat Ram jaani jan jee ki//

After listening and seeing all my faults with his pure eyes, Lord Ram is pleased with my devotion and acumen! In spite of whatever one says, what matters is the purity of a devotee’s heart. The Lord gazes inside one’s heart and showers His abundant graces.

**

Rahit na prabhu chit chuk kiye ki/ Karat surati saya baar hiye ki//

Jehim agh badhevu byadh jimi bali/ Phiri sukand soyi keenhi kuchali//

The good Lord never remembers the sins of the devotees and only retains the memories of their good deeds. Indeed, the sin which Bali committed and which made Sri Ramji kill him like an animal; Sugreev continued to commit the same! (Take the brother’s wife as his own)

**

Soyi kartooti bibheeshan keri/ Sapnehu so na Ram hiyam heri//

Te Bharatahi bhentath sanmane/ Rajsabham Raghubeer bakhane//

Vibheeshan too committed the same sin; but not even in his dreams did the Lord take affront. When he returned to Ayodhya, he praised his brother Bharat with such generosity of spirit in the royal court.

**

Doha:

Prabhu taru tar kapi dar par te kiye aapu saman/

Tulsi kahu na Ram se sahib seelnidhan//

Is there any comparison between the supreme Lord Ram and the monkeys frolicking on the tree branches? Yet, the Lord treated them as equals. Tulsidas vouches that there is nobody as kind or good hearted as the embodiment of compassion Sri Ramji.

**


The Ultimate Punya…

Ram ek tapas tiya tari/ Naam koti khal kumati sudhari//

Rishi hith Ram suketusuta ki/ Sahit sen sut keenhi bibaki//

Sahit dosh dukh das durasa/ Dalayi namu jimi rabi nisi nasa//

Bhanjevu Ram aapu bhav chapu/ Bhav bhay bhanjan naam pratapu//

Sri Ramji gave moksha to Ahalya. But His ‘Name’ ensures that crores of wicked souls are shown the right way. For the benefit of Vishwamitra Sri Ramji killed the daughter of Suketu (Tataka) and his son Subabhu along with the army. But His ‘Name’ ensures the extinction of all miseries, faults and bad desires of the Lord’s devotees just like the sun conquering the night. Sri Ramji broke the mighty bow of Shiva. But His ‘Name’ destroys all the fears in the universe.

**

Dandak banu prabhu keenh suhavan/ Jan mann amit naam kiye pavan//

Nisichar nikar dale raghunandan/ Namu sakal kali kalush nikandan//

Sri Ramji turned the fearsome Dandakaranya into a welcoming place. But His ‘Name’ has purified the hearts of innumerable people. Sri Ramji killed scores of asuras. But His ‘Name’ can destroy the root of all sins committed in Kaliyuga.

**

Doha:

Sabari geedh susevakani sugati deenhi Raghunath/

Naam udhare amit khal bed bidit guna gaath//

Sri Ramji granted moksha to Sabari, Jatayu and many great souls. But His divine ‘Name’ has converted countless wicked into good people. The Vedas eulogize the greatness of the Lord’s Name.

**

Ram sukand bibheeshan dovu/ Rakhe saran jaan sabu kovu//

Naam gareeb anek nevaje/ Lok bed bar birid biraje//

Sri Ramji granted refuge to two: Sugreev and Vibheeshan. But His ‘Name’ has granted happiness to countless of needy souls. The world and Vedas are replete with the beautiful stories relating to the Lord’s Name.

**

Ram bhalu kapi kataku batora/ Setu hetu shramu keenh na dhora//

Namu leth bhavsindhu sukhahim/ Karahu bicharu sujan mann mahim//

Sri Ramji had to equip an army consisting of monkeys and bears; and their toil to build the bridge across the ocean was not small. But on taking his name ‘Ram’ the whole worldly ocean of sufferings dries up instantaneously! Now, good folk, ruminate on which is greater? (The form or the name of the Lord)

**

Ram sakul ran ravanu mara/ Siya sahit nij pur pagu dhara//

Raja Ramu avadh rajdhani/ Gavat guna sur muni bar bani//

Sevak sumirat namu sapreeti/ Binu shram Prabal moh dalu jeeti//

Firat sanehu magan such apnem/ Naam prasad soch nahim sapnem//

Sri Ramji killed Ravan and his clan in the battle; and returned to his kingdom with Sitaji. Sri Ramji reigned as the king of Ayodhya and the devas and sages sing about his glories. On remembering Ram’s name with pure love, the devotee vanquishes the army of desires in a moment. He is immersed in bliss, and by remembering Ram’s divine name, nothing disturbs his mind even in dreams.

**

Doha:

Brahma Ram tem namu badh bar Dayak bar dani/

Ramcharit sat koti mah liya mahes jiyam jani//

The name of the Lord is thus more powerful than Nirguna Brahma and Saguna Ram. It can give boons to the boon giver himself! That is why Lord Shiv chose ‘Ram’ as the quintessential divine name to recite amongst the crores of descriptions of the Lord.

**

Naam prasad sambhu abinasi/ Saaju amangal mangal rasi//

Suk sanakadi siddh muni jogi/ Naam prasad brahmasukh bhogi//

It is because of the blessings of taking the Lord’s name that Lord Shiva is indestructible and though dressed in a non-propitious manner, is the Lord who showers abundant grace.

**

Narad janevu naam pratapu/ Jag priya Hari Hari Har Priya aapu//

Namu japat prabhu keenh prasadu/ Bhagat siromani bhe prahladu//

Sage Narad knows about the greatness of reciting the Lord’s name. The universe adores Hari, Hari in turn adores Hara (Shiva), and Narad is beloved to both Hari and Hara. When young Prahlad took the Lord’s name with utter devotion, the Lord showered his grace instantaneously. We know that Prahlad is eulogized as the crown gem of all devotees. (Bhaktshiromani)

**

Dhruv sagalani japevu Hari navu/ Payavu achal anupam davu//

Sumiri pavansut pavan namu/ Apne bas kari rakhe Ramu//

When little Dhruv recited the name of Hari with pain (having been hurt by his step mother’s words) he attained ‘Dhruv-Lok’, due to the power of the divine name. By remembering Sri Ramji’s name devoutly, Hanuman has captured Ram within his own heart!

**

Apatu ajamilu gaju ganikavu/ Bhaye mukut Hari naam prabhavu//

Kahaum kaham lagi naam badayi/ Ramu na sakahim naam guna gayi//

The wicked Ajamila (He called out his son’s name ‘Narayana’ and his sins were forgiven as he breathed his last), the elephant (Gajendra moksha), and a fallen woman- all received salvation by taking the name of Sri Hari. How much can I (a mere mortal) elaborate on the greatness of the Lord’s divine name; even Ram ji himself will not be able to laud to perfection, the greatness of Ram’s name!

**

Doha:

Namu Ram ko kalpataru kali kalyan nivasu/

Jo sumirat bhayo bhang tem tulsi Tulsidasu//

In Kali yuga, reciting the name of ‘Ram’ is like a kalpataru (tree which grants every boon) and the residence of all joy and prosperity. By remembering the Lord’s name, the lowly Tulsidas (as lowly as bhang/ marijuana/ intoxicant) has attained the purity of Tulsi (basil leaf).

**

Chahu jug teeni kaal tihu loka/ Bhaye naam japi jeev bisoka//

Beda purana sant math ehu/ Sakal sukrit bhal Ram sanehu//

 (It is not just in Kali yuga) In all four yugas (Satya, Treta, Dwapara, Kali), three time-zones, three worlds, the living being (jeev) becomes free of sufferings by reciting the Lord’s name. The vedas, puranas and sages extol that the ultimate punya is to love Sri Ramji  (be devoted to Ram Naam).


The Greatness of His Name

Naam jeeh japi jagahim jogi/ Birati biranchi prapanch biyogi//

Brahmasukhahi anubhavahim anoopa/ Akadh anamay naam na roopa//

The Yogi who has completely detached from this world (of illusion) created by Brahma, by reciting the ‘Name of the Lord’, awakens into deep spiritual wisdom and experiences Brahma-sukh, eternal bliss which is beyond name and form, incomparable, ineffable, perfect.

**

Jaana chahahim goodh gati jevu/ Naam jeeh japi janahim tevu//

Sadhak naam japahi lay layem/ Hohim siddh animadik payem//

The one who wishes to know the cryptic ways of the creator, needs only to recite the name, ‘Ram’ to become aware of it. The one who wishes to attain worldly fame and name (siddhis) need only to light a lamp and recite the name, ‘Ram’ in order to attain all the siddhis.

**

Japahi namu jan aarati bhari/ Mitahim kusamkat hohim sukhari//

Ram bhagat jag chaari prakara/ Sukriti chaarivu anagh udara//

The ones who cry out his name ‘Ram’ to seek refuge from the pains and troubles which ail them, find that all their heavy miseries are immediately removed and attain peace and joy. There are four types of Ram devotees/Ram Bhakts in this world. ( Ardharthi: Those who wish for prosperity and prays to the Lord; Aarth: those who pray to free themselves of worldly sufferings; Jigyasu: those who wish to gain insight into the nature of the Lord; Gyani: those who understands His beautiful nature and lovingly prays to Him) All the four are sinless, pure souls and generous.

**

Chahu chatur kahu naam adhara/ Gyani prabhuhi biseshi piyaara//

Chahu jug chahu shruti naam prabhavu/ Kali biseshi nahim aan upavu//

All the four types of devotees have one foundation called ‘Ram Naam.’ Of these, the Lord’s favourite is the Gyani bhakt. In all four yugas and all four Vedas, the power of the ‘Ram Naam’ is high; but it is highly significant in Kali Yuga. Because, in Kali Yuga, there is no other alternative other than recitation of the Lord’s Name!

**

Doha:

Sakal kaamana heen je Ram bhagati ras leen/

Naam suprem piyush hrid tinhahu kiye mann meen//

Those who are immersed in the bhakti of Ram, without any desires, (of material prosperity or even salvation), have made their minds akin to fishes that swim about every moment; in the loving, beautiful amrit-filled lake of Ram Naam.

**

Agun sagun duyi brahma saroopa/ Akadh agaadh anaadi anoopa//

Morem mat bad naamu duhu tem/ Kiye jehim jug nij bas nij butem//

Nirguna and Saguna are two forms of Brahma- both are indescribable, deep, without origin, and unique. But in my opinion, the ‘Naam’ of the Lord is bigger than both, since they dwell under its power.

**

Praudi sujan jani janahim jan ki/ Kahavu pratiti preeti ruchi mann ki//

Eku darugat dekhiya eku/ Pavak sam jug brahma bibeku//

Ubhay agam jug sugam naam tem/ Kahevu naamu bad brahma Ram tem//

Byapaku eku brahma abinasi/ Sat chetan ghan anand rasi//

The good folk should not mistake my words as stubbornness or even poetic logic. I am speaking about my mind’s faith, love and interest. The knowledge about both Nirguna and Saguna Brahma is like Agni or fire. Nirguna is like the sparks of fire inside the embers; essentially invisible; and Saguna is the flame itself. (Both are same in principle.) To distinguish between them is still very difficult. Only through by means of the ‘name’ or ‘Naam’, does the venture becomes easy. That’s why I exposit that the ‘name’ is bigger than Nirguna Brahma and Saguna Ram.

Brahma is omnipresent, unique, indestructible; and is the treasure house of power, radiance and happiness.

**

As prabhu hridayam acchat abikari/ Sakal jeev jag deen dukhari//

Naam niroopan naam jatan tem/ Sovu pragatat jimi mol ratan tem//

Though they reside in the heart of the Nirguna Brahma, the mortal creatures of the universe are fretful and unhappy. The preciousness and value of a gem is understood by a person on hearing its name. In the same way, by taking the ‘Naam’ or ‘name’ of the Lord, the Brahma appears to the devotee.

**

Doha:

Nirgun tem ehi bhanti bad naam prabhavu apar/

Kahavu naamu badh Ram tem nij bichar anusar//

In this manner, the ‘Naam’ is bigger than Nirguna Brahma. Now, I state as my belief that the ‘Naam of Ram’ is bigger than Saguna Ram too.

**

Ram bhagat hith nar tanu dhari/ Sahi sankat kiye sadhu sukhari//

Namu saprem japat anayasa/ Bhagat hohim mudd mangal basa//

 Lord Ram took the human avatar for the good of his devotees. He bestowed happiness to the sages while suffering much pain during his life time (the miseries of a human life).  Now, the devotees simply chant his beautiful name and amass all joys and prosperity! (That is the power of Sri Ram’s divine name!)
**


The Gem-Studded Lamp of the Lord’s Name

Jaan aadikabi naam pratapu/ Bhayavu suddh kari ulta japu//

Sahas naam sam suni siv bani/ Japi jeyim piya sangh bhavani//

Valmiki, the poet, knew about the powers of the Lord’s name. That’s why he recited ‘Ma Ra’, ‘Ma Ra’ and attained purity. When Lord Shiv said that one recitation of ‘Ram’ is equivalent to thousand recitations of any other god’s name, His consort, Devi Parvati started reciting ‘Ram, Ram’ along with Him.

**

Harshe hetu heri har hi ko/ Kiya Bhushan tiya Bhushan thee ko//

Naam prabhavu jaan Siv neeko/ Kaalkoot bhalu deenh ami ko//

Lord Shiv was thrilled by the devotion shown by Parvatiji and made her His ‘Ardhangini’. Though He drank the deadly Kaalkoot poison, it had the effect of amrit on Lord Shiv, because He knew the power of the reciting ‘Ram’.

**

Doha:

Barsha ritu Raghupathy bhagati tulsi sali sudas/

Ram naam bar baran jug savan bhadav mas//

The devotion to Sri Ramji is the rainy season; and Tulsidas says that true devotees are like rice crop. The two beautiful syllables of ‘Ram’ are like the months of Sawan and Bhadav.

Note: Shravan and Bhadrapad months- the two months of Hindu calender stretches across late July/Aug/Sep

**

Aakhar madhur manohar dovu/ Baran bilochan jan jiya jovu//

Sumirat sulabh sukhad sab kahu/ Lok lahu parlok nibahu//

Both the letters/syllables of ‘Ram’ are so beautiful and sweet. They are the eyes of the varnamala; (the garland of letters); and the very life-spirit of devotees. Just remembering those causes such happiness; and they usher in prosperity in this mortal world and helps you to reach the Vishnu-dham (Abode of Vishnu).

**

Kahat sunat sumirat sudi neeke/Ram Lakhan sam priya tusli ke//

Barnat baran preeti bilgaati/ Brahma jeev sam sahaj samghati//

The name ‘Ram’ is extremely melodious and pleasant to recite or recollect. For Tulsidas, the name ‘Ram’ is as beloved as Sri Ramji and Lakshmanji themselves. As a ‘Bijamantra’ the enunciation, meaning and results seem different but in truth, the syllables of ‘Ram’ are like ‘jeev’ and ‘brahma’: one essence and one form.

**

Nar Narayan saris subhrata/ Jag palak biseshi jan trata//

Bhagati sutiya kal karan bibhushan/ Jag hit hetu bimal bidhu pushan//

The two syllables comprising ‘Ram’ are handsome brothers like Nar and Narayan. They reign over the world and specially protect the devotees. They are the lovely earrings adorning the ears of the woman called devotion (who symbolises devotion to the Lord). They are the pristine sun and moon working for the benefit of the universe.

**

Swad tosh sam sugati sudha ke/ Kamad sesh sam dhar basudha ke//

Jan mann manju kanj madhukar se/ Jeeh jasomati hali haldhar se//

‘Ram’ is akin to amrit which grants sweet salvation. ‘Ram’ is like the Sesh Nag and the Tortoise which support the universe. ‘Ram’ is like the blue beetles which buzz around the beautiful lotuses of the devotees’’ minds; and for the tongue called Yashodaji, ‘Ram’ is like Krishna and Balrama who delight her forever.

**

Doha:

Eku chatru eku mukutamani sab barnani par jovu/

Tulsi Raghubar naam ke baran birajat dovu//

Tulsidasji says- The two syllables of ‘Ram’ shine resplendent. One is like the grand umbrella and the other, the crown reigning over the rest of the alphabets.

**

Samuchat saris naam aru nami/ Preeti paraspar prabhu anugami//

Naam roop duyi ees upadhi/ Akadh anadi susamuchi saadhi//

It appears as if the name and the form are both same; but there is a master-servant relationship between both. (Lord Ram appears when His name is taken with devotion. The Lord follows his name.) Both the name and the form are ways of accessing the Lord. They are ineffable, without origin, and can be attained only by a mind which is full of true devotion and love.

**

Ko bad chot kahat aparadhu/ Suni guna bhedu samuchihahim sadhu//

Dekhiahim roop naam aadheena/ Roop gyan nahim naam biheena//

To say which is superior-the name or the form- is sinful. Hearing about their merits, the enlightened devotee can perceive by himself. The ‘roop’ or ‘form’ is always a step behind the ‘name’. Without name, the form can never be!

**

Roop bisesh naam binu jaane/ Kartal gat na parahim pahichane//

Sumiriya naam roop binu dekhem/ Aavat hridayam saneh biseshem//

Any ‘roop’ even if placed on the palm of one’s hand is unrecognizable without its ‘naam’ or name. Even without a ‘form’, when a ‘name’ is uttered, with special love the ‘form’ rushes inside one’s heart.

**

Naam roop gati akadh kahani/ Samuchat sukhad na parati bakhani//

Aguna saguna bich naam susakhi/ Ubhay prabhodhak chatur dubhashi//

The saga of the name-form/naam-roop is indescribable. It is wonderful to understand, but impossible to narrate. The ‘name’ is a beautiful witness between the play of ‘Saguna’ and ‘Nirguna’ (form with attributes and form without attributes). Only an expert in both can discern the truth behind each.

**

Doha:

Ram naam manideep dharu jeeh deharim dwar/

Tulsi bheetar baherahu jaum chahasi ujiaar//

Tulsidasji says: ‘If you wish for light within and without; in the door of your mouth, at the stepping stone of your tongue, place the sparkling gem-studded lamp called ‘Ram Naam’ or ‘The name of Ram’.

**


The Maha-Mantra…

Kapipathy reech nisachar raja/ Angadadi je kees samaja//

Bandavu sab ke charan suhaye/ Adham sareer Ram jinh paye//

I prostrate myself before the beautiful feet of Sugreev-the king of monkeys, Jambavan-the king of bears, Vibheeshan-the king of rakshasas, Angad-the crown prince of monkeys and others of their families; who could attain Sri Ramji’s grace despite their being born in inferior bodies of rakshas and animals.

**

Raghupathy charan upasak jete/ Khag mrig sur nar asur samite//

Bandavu pad saroj sab kere/ Je binu kam Ram ke chere//

All the animals, birds, gods, humans, asuras and others who are devotees of Sri Ramji, I bow before the lotus feet of all who are servants of Lord Ram without any other expectations. (Nishkama sevak)

**

Suk sanakadi bhagat muni narad/ Je minibar bigyan bisarad//

Pranavavu sabahi dharani dhari seesa/ Karahu kripa jan jani muneesa//

Now I lower my head to the earth and offer respects to Suka, Sanak, Narad and all other greatly wise, learned sages. They are the supreme devotees of the Lord. Knowing that I am a humble servant of the Lord, please have compassion towards me.

**

Janaksuta jag janani Janaki/ Atisay Priya karunanidhan ki//

Take jug pad kamal manavu/ Jasu kripam nirmal mati pavavu//

Daughter of King Janaka, the mother of the universe Janaki, the beloved of Sri Ramji, I bow to Devi Sita’s beautiful lotus feet so that my mind acquires purity.

**

Puni mann bachan karma raghunayak/ Charan kamal bandavu sab layak//

Rajeevanayan dharem dhanu sayak/ Bhagat bipati bhanjan sukhdayak//

Now with my mind, words and actions let me pay respects to the most powerful lotus feet of the great Lord Ram: He with lotus like eyes, armed with bow and arrows, bestows happiness on his devotees and vanquishes all their troubles.

**

Gira aradh jal beechi sam kahiat bhinn na bhinn/

Bandavu Sita Ram pad jinhahi param priya khinn//

Like word and meaning, water and a wave, Lord Sita Ram, appears separate but is One and unique (non-dual). I bow to the lotus feet of the Lord, who is extremely compassionate towards the suffering souls.

**

Bandavu naam Ram Raghubar ko/ Hetu krisanu bhanu himkar ko//

Bidhi Hari Harmay bed praan so/ Agun Anupam guna nidhan so//

I bow to the name of ‘Ram’ which epitomises the quintessence of Agni (fire), Bhanu (sun) and Himkar (Moon) : The holy seed of the name ‘R A M’ contains within itself Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. It is the life spirit of the Vedas; beyond all attributes, incomparable and the treasure house of the finest qualities.

**

Mahamantra joyi japat mahesu/ Kaseem mukuti hetu upadesu//

Mahima jasu jaan ganaravu/ Pradham pujiat naam prabhavu//

The Maha-Mantra ‘Ram’ is what Lord Shiv constantly chants, and which he graces devotees with at Kashi, for attaining salvation. It is the holy Mantra which Ganeshji knows and thus every puja begins by taking the name ‘Ram’…

**


As Narrated by the Lord Himself

Bhaniti mori siv kripam bibhati/ Sasi samaj mili manahu surati//

Je ehi kadhahi saneh sameta/ Kahihahim sunihahim samuchi sacheta//

Hoyihahim ram charit anuragi/ Kali mal rahit sumangal bhagi//

My poem, due to the grace of Lord Shiv shall be so radiant like a glorious night where there is moonlight and starlight. Those who listen to, or recite this poetry, with love and sincerity, understanding and care, shall be devoted to Lord Ram’s lotus feet; be prosperous, and all their sins accrued in Kaliyuga shall be extinguished.

**

Doha:

Sapnehu sachehu mohi par jaum har gauri pasavu/

Tau phur hovu jo kahevu bhasha bhaniti prabhavu//

If even in dreams, Lord Shiv and Devi Parvati are actually pleased with me, whatever I have claimed to be the powers and effects of this vernacular poetry shall come to be true.

**

Bandavu avadh puri ati pavani/ Saraju sari kali kalush nasavani//

Pranavu pur nar naribahori/ Mamata jinh par prabhuhi na dhori//

I bow before the city of Awadh (Ayodhya) and the blessed river Sarayu which removes all mortal sins of Kaliyug. Next, I bow before the women and men who reside in Ayodhya with whom Lord Ram is greatly pleased.

**

Siya nindak agh ogh nasaye/ Lok bisok banayi basaye//

Bandavu Kausalya disi prachi/ Keerati jasu sakal jag machi//

The Lord has ensured the vanquishing of all sins of those gossipers who spoke ill of Devi Sita and sent them to His abode. I now bow before eastern direction symbolized by Devi Kausalyaji, whose fame is spread all over the world.

**

Pragatevu jah raghupathy sasi charu/ Biswa sukhad khal kamal tusaru//

Dasradh ravu sahit sab rani/ Sukrit sumangal moorati mani//

Karavu pranam karam manbani/ Karahu kripa sut sevak jani//

Jinhahi birachi bad bhayavu bidhata/ Mahima avadhi Ram pitu mata//

Sri Ramji the beautiful moon, born from (the eastern direction symbolised by) Devi Kausalyaji,  grants happiness to the universe and is like killing frost on the wicked (symbolised by lotuses). Accompanied by his queens, I bow before Raja Dasradh; accepting him as the epitome of prosperity and purity.  I pay respects with my words, deeds and mind. Knowing that I am their son’s servant, let them be compassionate towards me. Brahma must have delighted while giving life to Dasradhji and his queens, who by the virtue of being the mothers and father of Lord Ram have unlimited greatness.

**

Bandavu avadh bhuval satya prem jehi ram pad/

Bichurat Deendayal priya tanu trin eev pariharevu//

I prostrate myself before Raja Dasradh who had true love towards Sri Ramji. He relinquished his physical body (which is dear to a human) like a speck of dust when the Lord parted ways from him.

**

Pranavavu parijan sahit bidehu/ Jahi Ram pad goodh sanehu//

Jog bhog mah rakhevu goyi/ Ram bilokat pragatevu soyi//

With all my family, I bow before King Janaka, who had deep devotion to the Lord. It was hidden in yoga and bhoga (in his kingly duties and life); but it burst into view when he saw the beautiful Lord.

**

Pranavavu pradham bharat ke charna/ Jasu nem brat jayi nab arna//

Ram charan pankaj man jasu/ Lubud madhup eev tajayi na pasu//

Of the Lord’s brothers, I first bow to prince Bharat whose dedication and discipline (when it comes to devotion to his brother Lord Ram) knows no limits. His mind is forever buzzing around like blue beetles around the lotus feet of Sri Ramji and never leaves them for a moment.

**

Bandavu lacchiman pad jaljata/ Sital subhag bhagat sukhdata//

Raghupati keerati bimal pataka/ Dand saman bhayavu jas jaka//

I bow before the beautiful lotus feet of prince Laxman, who bestows happiness, beauty and coolness to the hearts of devotees. Prince Laxman is the flagpole on which the pure, pristine flag of Lord Ram’s greatness is hoisted high.

**

Sesh sahasraseesh jag karan/ Jo avatarevu bhumi bhay taran//

Sada so sanukul rah mo par/ Kripasindhu saumitry gunakar//

The thousand headed Sesh Nagji who carries the universe on his heads, has taken avatar as prince Laxman to remove the woes of the earth. May the son of  Mata Sumitra, the treasure house of good qualities, compassionate Laxman, be pleased with me always.

**

Ripusudan pad kamal namami/ Sur suseel bharat anugami//

Mahabeer binavavu hanumana/ Ram jasu jas aap bakhana//

I bow before prince Shatrughan’s feet; he is handsome, valorous and always follows the footsteps of his brother Bharat. I fold my hands before Hanumanji, whose glories were narrated by the divine Lord Ram himself!

**

Pranavavu pavankumar khal ban pavak gyan khan/

Jasu hriday aagar basahim Ram sar chap dhar//

I bow to Hanumanji, the son of Wind God, who is like a blazing fire burning down the forest of sinners; and the treasure-house of wisdom and knowledge. In the residence of his heart, forever reigns Lord Ram, radiant with bow and quiver of arrows.

**


Seeking Blessings of the Poets

Ehi prakar bal manahi dekhayi/ Karihavum Raghupathy kadha suhayi//

Byas aadi kabi pungava nana/ Jinh sadar Hari sujas bakhana//

In this manner, fortifying my mind, I shall write the beautiful story of Sri Ramji. Vyas and others have attained great poetic heights (turned renowned poets) by respectfully describing the great glories of the Lord Sri Hari.

**

Charan kamal bandavu tinh kere/ Puravahu sakal manoradh mere//

Kali ke kabinh karavu parnama/ Jinh barne Raghupathy guna grama//

I prostrate at the feet of those great poets and hope for their blessing in fulfilling my mission. I also bow at the feet of all the poets of Kaliyuga who have sang about the great deeds of Lord Ram.

**

Je prakrit kabi param sayane/ Bhasha jinh Hari charit bakhane//

Bhaye je ahahim je hoyihahim aagem/ Pranavavu Sabahi kapat sab tyagem//

Now I bow before all vernacular poets who have written about the greatness of Sri Hari. The past poets, the present ones and the future poets: let me pay respects to all, after abandoning all pretences and hypocrisies.

**

Hohu prasann dehu bardanu/ Sadhu samaj bhaniti sanmanu//

Jo prabandh budh nahim aadarahim/ So shram badi bal kabi karahim//

Kindly bless that my poetry is appreciated by the sages and saints. Only foolish poets shall work on a creation which shall be disrespected by the wise folk.

**

Keerati bhaniti bhuti bhali soyi/ Sursari sam sab kah hit hoyi//

Ram sukeerati bhaniti bhadesa/ Asamanjas as mohi andesa//

Fame, poem and prosperity become good only when they are munificent towards everyone like the sacred Ganga. Now, Lord Ram’s greatness is simply beautiful but my poetry is very inferior. That is the paradox and I am concerned about it. (Whether my words can do justice to the divinity of the story it aims to narrate.)

**

Tumhari kripa sulabh sovu more/ Siani suhavani taat patore//

However, dear poets! With your blessings, even this conundrum might turn beneficial for me. Afterall, beautiful silken embroidery looks stunning on coarse jute. (Even if my poetry is of coarse nature, the narrative- silk thread is the Lord’s beautiful story which shall be rendering it lovely.)

**

Doha:

Saral kabit keerati bimal soyi aadarahim sujan/

Sahaj bayar bisarayi ripu jo suni karahim bakhan//

The intelligent people respect poetry which is inherently simple and tells a pure story (of the Lord); listening to which, even an enemy lets go of the hatred and starts eulogizing it.

**

So na hoyi binu bimal mati mohi mati bal ati dhor/

Karahu kripa Hari jas kahavu puni puni karavu nihor//

Without untainted intelligence, writing of such poetry is impossible. That’s why I beseech again and again, ‘Dear poets, grace me so that I can write about the splendours of Sri Hari.’

**

Kabi kobid Raghubar charit manas manju maral/

Balbinay suni suruchi lakhi mo par hohu kripal//

Dear poets and pundits, who reign as the graceful swans in the beautiful, divine lake of Sri Ramji’s story (Ramcharit roopi manasarovar), kindly listen to this immature poet’s plea and recognising my sincerity, take pity on me.

**

Bandavu muni pad kanju Ramayan jehim niramayavu/

Sakhar sukomal manju dosh rahit dushan sahit//

Now I bow at the lotus feet of Sage Valmiki who wrote the Ramayana. In spite of being tainted, he remained pure; and despite the sins, stayed free from those.

(Note: The story refers to Valmiki when he led a very worldly, sinful existence; before transforming into a saint and writing the Ramayana.)


The Song of Sri Hari

(Bal Kanda: Translation/Transliteration)

Doha:

Priya lagihi ati sabahi mam bhaniti Ram jas sang/

Daru bicharu ki karayi kovu bandia malay prasang//

With the blessing of Sri Ramji, my poetry will be pleasing to all. In the proximity of Malay parvat, when even a speck turns into sandal wood and becomes venerable, does anyone think of how insignificant the original object was?

**

Syam surabhi paya bisad ati gunad karahim sab pan/

Gira gramya siya ram jas gavahim sunahim sujan//

The black cow’s milk is full of goodness and glorious. That’s why everybody drinks it. Even if I have written the poetry in vernacular, in the language used by illiterate, simple folk, the wise people shall enjoy listening and singing to the glories of Sri Ramji and Janakiji.

**

Mani manik mukuta chabi jaisi/ Ahi giri gaj sir soh na taisi//

Nrip kireet taruni tanu payi/ Lahahim sakal sobha adhikayi//

Gem, ruby, pearl: these are lovely indeed, but they do not look resplendent on a serpent, mountain or elephant. On a king’s crown or a young, beautiful maiden, these will shine and shimmer at their best.

**

Taisehim sukabi kabit budh kahahim/ Upajahim anat anat chabi lahahim//

Bhagati hetu bidhi bhavan bihayi/ Sumirat sarad aavati dhayi//

In this manner, the wise men say, the poetry of a devotee-poet shall gather glory because the words, meaning and philosophy espoused all synchronize beautifully through faith. Goddess Saraswati shall leave Brahma’s abode and come running to the poet, when he remembers her, due to his supreme devotion to the Lord.

**

Ram charit sar binu anhwaye/ So shram jayi na koti upaye//

Kabi kobid as hriday bichari/ Gavahim Hari jas kali mal hari//

The exhaustion of goddess Saraswati (by running towards the poet) shall be alleviated only on taking a dip in the river of Sri Ramcharitmanas. The poet and scholar realize this truth and sing about Sri Hari, who vanquishes all the sins accrued in Kali Yuga.

**

Keenhe prakrit jan guna gaana/ Sir dhuni gira lagat pachitana//

Hriday sindhu mati seep samana/ Swati sarada kahahim sujana//

If one eulogizes anyone in the material world, the goddess shall groan over her fate ( why did she waste time running towards the poet?). The wise consider the heart as the ocean, intelligence as the conch shell and Saraswati as the Swati nakshatra.

**

Jaum barshayi bar baari bicharu/ Hohim kabit mukutamani charu//

If the rain of elevated thoughts rain on these, poetry which is as exquisite as a garland of pearls shall emerge.

**

Doha:

Juguti bodhi puni pohiahim ramcharit bar tag/

Pahirahim sajjan bimal ur sobha ati anurag//

The wise ones wear the pearls of poetry in their pure hearts after piercing them with their intelligence and linking them using the beautiful thread of Sri Ramji’s story.  It leads to absolute bliss and adoration of the Lord.

**

Je janme kalikal karala/ Kartab bayas besh marala//

Chalat kupadh bed mag chade/ Kapat kalevar kali mal bhade//

Those born in treacherous Kali yuga are like crows in deeds; though they are in the guise of swans. They abandon the path of the Vedas and seek the sinful ways. They are personifications of duplicity and are vessels filled with sins.

**

Banchak bhagat kahayi Ram ke/ Kinkar Kanchan koh kam ke//

Tinh mah pradham rekh jag mori/ Dheeng dharmadwaj dhandhak dhori//

Those who trick others saying they are devotees of Lord Ram, who are enslaved to avarice, anger and desire, those who pester one with their tricky business of dharma, those who are full of pride about their dharma (flying false flags of dharma), who cheat and sow treachery in the name of dharma…well, consider me as the foremost among such folks in this Kali Yuga.

Note: Tulsidas ji claims that he is as sinful as the rest of the world. It is with this utterly humble acceptance that he attempts to praise the Lord through his words.

**

Jaum apne avaguna sab kahavu/ Badayi kadha paar nahim lahavu//

Tate mai ati alap bakhane/ Dhore mahu janihahim sayane//

If I start narrating all my shortcomings, the story shall extend and I shall never be able to cross over. Hence, I have mentioned only few culpabilities of mine. The wise ones will understand on a brief description too.

**

Samuchi bibidhi bidhi binati mori/ Kovu na kadha suni deyihi khori//

Etahu par karihahim je asanka/ Mohit e adhik te jad mati ranka//

Understanding my supplications, albeit in different forms, nobody shall find fault with my narration of the Lord’s story. Those who are skeptical even at this stage, they are more foolish and dim-witted than me.

**

Kabi na hovu nahim chatur kahavahu/ Mati anuroop Ram guna gaavavu//

Kah Raghupathy ke charit apara/ Kah mati mori nirat samsara//

I am neither a poet nor of very sharp acumen. I am just singing praises of Sri Ramji’s glories as per my ability. Compare the vastness of the Lord’s infinite greatness and my limited intelligence which is attached to the world and its desires!

**

Jehim marut giri meru udahim/ Kahahu tul kehi leche mahim//

Samuchat amit Ram prabhutayi/ Karat kadha mann ati kadarayi//

The wind in which Sumeru (the majestic, golden mountain) itself gets uprooted, tell me, what’s a wisp of cotton in front of it? Realizing the illimitable radiance of Sri Ramji, my mind is extremely nervous attempting the narration of the Lord’s story.

**

Doha:

Sarad ses mahes bidhi aagam nigam puraan/

Neti Neti kahi jasu guna karahim nirantar gaan//

The One who is praised as ( Neti, Neti) ‘Not this, Not this’ by Saraswati, Sesh Nag, Shiva, Brahma, Sastra, Veda and Purana always (The Lord is beyond description)

**

Sab janat prabhu prabhuta soyi/ Tadapi kahem binu rah ana koyi//

Taham bed as karan rakha/ Bhajan prabhavu bhanti bahu bhasha//

Even though one knows that it is impossible to sing the story of the great Lord, still one cannot help attempting the task! The Vedas say that the effects of reciting the Lord’s name and story are tremendous and occur in multifarious ways.

Note: Though nobody can describe the Lord to perfection, everybody should attempt to sing his story to the best of his/her capability. The effects of singing about the Lord’s qualities are unique; and the scriptures have described those. Even the smallest attempt at bhajan (singing with devotion) can help a human being cross the ocean of worldly suffering.

**

Ek aneeh aroop anama/ Aj sacchidanand par dhama//

Byapak biswaroop bhagwana/ Tehim dhari deh charit krit nana//

The one and only supreme power, who has no desire, who has no form or name, who is without origin, who is sat-chit-anand, (true- consciousness-bliss), ultimate divinity, who is omnipresent and manifests everywhere; the same Lord has taken a divine avatar and is indulging in playful lila.

**

So keval bhagtan hit lagi/ Param kripal pranat anuragi//

Jehi jan par mamta ati chohu/ Jehim karuna kari keenh na kohu//

The lila is all for the sake of the devotees. The Lord loves those who seek his protection and is extremely compassionate. The One who has such kindness and affection for his devotees, once he grants anyone grace, He is never angry again.

**

Gayi bahor garib nevaju/ Saral sabal sahib Raghuraju//

Budh barnahim Hari has as jani/ Karahim punit suphal nij bani//

Lord Ram is Deenbandhu (friend of the poor), of the most charming behaviour, supremely strong, and the Master of All. Realizing that truth, the wise use their tongues to sing glories of Sri Ramji, rendering themselves to great fruits of moksha and love of the Lord.

**

Tehim bal mai Raghupathy guna gadha/ Kahihavum nayi Ram pad madha//

Muninh pradham Hari keerati gaayi/ Tehim mag chalat sugam mohi bhayi//

Trusting on the compassion of the Lord, knowing it to be a form of worship, (and not of my ability to sing it to perfection), I am bowing my head at the Lord’s beautiful lotus feet and narrating His great story. The great saints (Valmiki, Vyasa) have all sang about the glory of Sri Hari, and following that path is the most suitable for me.

**

Doha:

Ati apar je sarit bar jaum nrip setu karahim/

Chadi pipilikavu param laghu binu shram parahi jahim//

When great kings decide to build bridges across formidable rivers, even small insects can cross the waters easily.  (Using the saints’ descriptions of the Lord, I too shall be able to narrate Sri Ramji’s story without hardship.)

**