Bhakti Song 36 – Open the Inner Eye

On 05-07-1991 at Sat-tal ashram when I was reading John 6:1-35, when I was meditating verse 26, I wrote the following song:

அகக்கண் திறப்பாய்

ஏதுதான்காரணமோஐயா

மாந்தர்உன்னைத்தேடிவர

நாடுகின்றார்நாளும்உன்னை

நன்கறிவாய்நீஅவரை–ஏதுதான்காரணமோ….

தேகத்தின்தேவைஒன்றே

மேதினியில்மேன்மைஎன

நாடிஓடித்தேடிஎன்றும்

நலிகின்றார்வாழ்வதனில்–ஏதுதான்காரணமோ….

 

வருந்தியேசுமைசுமந்து

ஐயா, வாடியபோதினிலும்

அறிந்திடார்மெய்ப்பொருளை

மந்தமேஅவர்நிலை–ஏதுதான்காரணமோ….

 

ஜீவஅப்பம்உண்டனெவே

சொல்லியபோதினிலே

ஏதுவிலை? என்னஎடை?

என்றுரைத்தேநாடுகின்றார்–ஏதுதான்காரணமோ….

 

அழிந்திடும்அப்பமோநீ

அறிந்திலர்அடைந்தபின்னும்

அகக்கண்தான்திறப்பாய்

அறிந்திடஉண்மையினை–ஏதுதான்காரணமோ….

English Translation

What could be the reason O LORD?

For the people to seek after you?

They seek you each day

And you know them well

 

The need of the body

Is much more important

By thinking and seeking it

They become tired in this life

 

Even though they are suffering

After bearing all the burden of life

They don’t understand the truth

Inert is their true nature

 

There is true food for life

When they were told

What is its price and what is its measure

They ask and seek it

 

Are you perishing food?

They don’t understand even after receiving you

Therefore open their inner eye

To know the truth

 

Notes

The gospel is inclusive. It never addresses one need at the cost of another. God is concerned with our physical and spiritual needs. Those who serve the Lord giving preference to physical needs are not wrong, provided they never use it as a means to an end. Similarly those who are interested in saving the soul are not on a higher ground. Those who have compassion for the physical needs of people should do it to show God’s compassion and concern without any hidden agenda. Similarly those who are more concerned about the soul when required, should address the physical needs of the people without any ulterior motive. Any dichotomy between physical versus spiritual is anti-gospel in its nature.

Particularly Indian bhakti tradition never shies away seeking the physical needs to God. One can read several saints demanding God for their physical need.

For example, Sundarar who is also known as ‘friend of god’ (Tambiran Thozar) always ‘demanded’ not only the need for everyday life but even to lead a luxury life both for him and his wives:

Beloved lord both for me and (my wives) Paravai and Sangili, whom else I have other than you. You have to remove the shortage of your bhakta. I need pearls, jewels, silk cloths , flowers, Kasturi and other scented items.—[T. M. Baskarat Thondaiman, Venkatam Mudal Kumari Varai [from Venkadam to Kumari], Chennai, Nallarappadippagam, 2009, 6 vols. Vol. 3. p. 141. (my translation) Not only here but Sundarar asked so many times gold, paddy and other things from the Lord in different pilgrimage centres. (For more on this see ‘Demanding God’ in my blog).