Celebration in honour of Chitta's birthday1Ranjana's Bhajan group has sung all the songs in honour of my brother Chitta most beautifully, most soulfully and most perfectly and for that they have received very special blessings from my brother Chitta, who is dearer than the dearest in my life of poetry, in my life of literature and in my life of self-giving. We believe in the source. My poetry-world has only one source and that source is the heart of my brother Chitta. He taught me how to write poems. He taught me Bengali metre. He took tremendous pains in teaching me poetry. When I truly became a poet, his delight was infinitely, infinitely greater than I can ever imagine.
Today I will be singing our longest song. It has a very special message to offer to the world at large. Sri Aurobindo wrote an immortal story entitled Kshamar Adarsha ("The Ideal of Forgiveness"). He wrote this story long before I was born. The story is about how the Lord Absolute Supreme forgave a sage, Vishwamitra and this sage became immortal, absolutely immortal.
I started writing poems at the age of twelve and a half, perhaps. When I completed thirteen years and a few months, I put this story into Bengali poetry form, with rhyme. I was extremely fortunate that my poetry rendition of Sri Aurobindo's story was submitted to Sri Aurobindo by his literary secretary. He is 96 years old now. He hails from Chittagong and his name is Nirodbaran. Sri Aurobindo requested Nirodbaran to read out the poem and he read it out to Sri Aurobindo. Another secretary of Sri Aurobindo's happened to meet me on the way to the volleyball ground. He was so excited to tell me that Sri Aurobindo — they called him "Chief' — was listening to the poem and there was a smile on his face.
The same evening, Nirodbaran said to my brother Chitta, while I was still at the playground, that Sri Aurobindo was very pleased with my achievement. Sri Aurobindo also said that I had talents and I must continue. Subsequently, my work was printed in a magazine named Sarathi, which means "Charioteer". The editor wrote that a young boy of thirteen had put Sri Aurobindo's story into verse and he said, "We pray to God for his tremendous success in life."
Many years later I translated this poem into English as "The Ideal of Forgiveness."
[Sri Chinmoy then performed his recently composed "longest song," accompanying himself on the synthesizer.]
According to some, this is my longest song. Some will say that this is the longest, while others will say that the one I wrote for Sri Aurobindo's birthday, Dyulok Chariye is the longest. They are perfect rivals!
There is always something called God's choice Hour. At the age of thirteen, I put Sri Aurobindo's story into poetry form. Then, at the age of 26 or 27, I translated the story into English. Now, at the age of 71, I have set it to music. When God's Hour will arrive, we have simply no idea.
WSI 30. 16 August 2002, Aspiration-Ground, Jamaica, New York↩