Celebration of Lily-di's birthday1

After Ranjana’s Bhajan group sang “Kabe amar dip shikhati” as the last song, and Sri Chinmoy joined them, he offered the following comments. 2

The words of this song are by Lily. My sister Lily’s words I set to music many years ago. It is one of my most favourite songs. The meaning is, “I do not know when you will kindle the flame of aspiration in my heart.”

My sister Lily’s Ashram life was made of sacrifice, sacrifice for her brother. Sacrifice is the only word I can use for her.

Now let me tell you two juicy stories, which I always call cock-and-bull stories. Those juicy stories keep me alive here on earth!

Here is the first story. I went to our two-mile race. After the race, I went out again in the car to meditate. Vinaya was driving me. While we were approaching Union Turnpike, right at the corner by the Hilltop Diner, I saw my sister Lily’s soul and Ranjana’s soul. With such affection, my sister embraced Ranjana and blessed her. She said, “I am pouring all my blessings, affection, love, joy and gratitude into your heart, through your eyes.”

Then I saw that my sister’s soul symbolically entered into the Hilltop Diner and brought out a large piece of cheesecake. Earth and Heaven always go together! Half of the piece she put into Ranjana’s mouth. Then Ranjana clasped her hand and put the other half into Lily’s mouth. Such an affectionate experience!

Now, here is the second story. While Ranjana’s group was singing, after they had sung only four songs, I saw my sister Lily very clearly behind Ranjana, fanning her.

I said, “Here we are dying of cold! What are you doing? Why are you using the fan?”

She said, “This group, Ranjana’s group, is singing so soulfully, so beautifully, and it is increasing my inner heat. It is too hot! I am seeing that my inner heat is so powerful, so in the soul’s world I am trying to warm Ranjana and her group.”

Then I saw that with her right hand she was fanning all the members of Ranjana’s group. Such affection and love she was pouring into each one! She was injecting inner heat into them.

I said, “Everything can happen in the soul’s world, but here we are so cold.”

She said, “Yes, everything can happen in the soul’s world, but the outer world and the inner world do not have to go all the time the same way.”

This was all her affection. Afterwards she was standing here. I said, “I am sorry, I do not have another seat for you.” She said, “I do not need a seat. I can easily stand here.”

She was watching everything and admiring all the disciples. She was saying, “You are so lucky, so lucky to have such devoted disciples, such self-giving disciples.”

Her last request — and her request is my command — is that in one week’s time I must give Ranjana’s group saris, and this time she said they have to be gold. I do not know where I will get golden saris! White and blue I can easily get, but this time they have to be gold saris. The border can be of any colour, but the rest has to be gold, gold. It is my sister’s request that in the future, on her birthday, Ranjana’s group will sing in these golden saris.

I am very, very happy with Ranjana’s group’s performance! I am very happy and very proud.


  1. OOP 45. 29 October 2005, Aspiration-Ground, Jamaica, New York

  2. OOP 45,1. Ranjana was Sri Chinmoy’s personal secretary from 1971 through 2007. In 1981 Sri Chinmoy requested her to form the “Sri Chinmoy Bhajan Singers” to sing his bhajans and devotional songs, and he chose certain disciples to be in this group. Sri Chinmoy had requested Ranjana to keep up the tradition of honouring the members of his family several times a year, with the help of her Bhajan group and other disciples who are very dedicated to Guru’s personal wishes. Sri Chinmoy gave Ranjana the honour of legally having his family’s name, “Ranjana Kumari Ghose.”