Sri Chinmoy’s Birthday

 

 

A composite Ghosh family photograph
From left to right: Chinmoy, Mantu, Lily, Shashi Kumar (father), Hriday, Yogamaya (mother), Arpita, Chitta, Ahana

 

Sri Chinmoy comes into this world an hour before sunset on Thursday, August 27th, 1931, in the small village of East Shakpura, about 20 kilometres from Chittagong in Bengal, India. He is the youngest of seven children born to mother Yogamaya Ghosh and father Shashi Kumar Ghosh.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 2nd Birthday

 

On August 8th, 1933, a very young Chinmoy — one year, eleven months and nineteen days of age — is brought to the Sri Aurobindo Ashram for the first time by his father Shashi Kumar and mother Yogamaya. They were visiting their eldest son Hriday who had joined the Ashram the year earlier.  

On August 8th, 1988, Sri Chinmoy recounts the significance of that first visit: 

My parents and my elder sisters and brothers brought me to the Ashram and the spiritual life – the place of my heart’s awakening and my life’s oneness-realisation with the highest Absolute Supreme. Nothing can be more important, more significant, more meaningful and more fruitful in the life of a seeker than to go and sit at the feet of one’s Master.

Records show that the Ghosh family depart the Ashram on August 27th. Depending on the train schedule, the young Chinmoy would have spent part of his 2nd birthday at the Ashram and the rest in transit to Madras, from where the family would take the long and arduous 1,500-mile return train journey to Chittagong. 

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 13th Birthday

 

On July 23rd, 1944, the twelve-year-old Chinmoy, together with his brothers and sisters, joins the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in Pondicherry.

On August 15th, during Darshan Day, he is introduced to Sri Aurobindo by the Mother as “Hriday’s youngest brother, Chinmoy...” 

And, on August 27th, the young Chinmoy spends his 13th birthday in the Ashram, which will be his spiritual home for the next 20 years.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 24th Birthday

 

Flame-Waves

 

 

In 1955, a young Chinmoy publishes his first book of poetry in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram.

He asks his first Bengali teacher Prabhakar Mukherji to write the Introduction. The book is called Flame-Waves and it comes out on Sri Chinmoy’s 24th birthday.

This is what Prabhakar Mukherji writes:

Introduction

To introduce a poet to the public is sometimes almost as tempting as to be oneself a bard; especially when the author is a close relation of the introducer and when the former is more gifted than the latter.

Just eleven years ago, one day as I was busy with my students in the Bengali class in our Ashram School, a boy of thirteen was brought to me. I found myself looking for the first time into Chinmoy’s intelligent but innocent and simple face. In a couple of years he joined my Sanskrit class, after having been initiated into that language by his eldest brother Hriday Ranjan, who is a devoted student of the Rig Veda and a lover of poetry.

Within a few days, Chinmoy brought me some Bengali poems of his, not in a spirit of display but for correction. I took his manuscript and without his knowledge showed it to the Secretary of our Ashram, Nolini Kanta Gupta, who is a celebrated savant and a front-rank writer. It was returned with the comment, “The boy has merit; encourage him, he will produce even better poetry in the future.” The present book has also been seen in manuscript.

In 1946, the poet rendered Sri Aurobindo’s story ‘Kshamar Adarsha’ (Ideal of Forgiveness) into Bengali verses – no less than two hundred lines. Poet Nirod Baran took it to our Master who remarked: “It is a fine piece of poetry. He has capacity. Tell him to continue.” The poem was published in a journal in March 1948, with an appreciative Editorial note.

Somewhere in 1950, while one evening I was all alone, absorbed, in my room, Chinmoy suddenly knocked at my silence, and soon a heap of typed sheets was before my eyes. They were all ‘Prayers’ in English, composed in prose but with a fragrance of genuine poetry.

Since 1953, he has been contributing now and again to ‘Mother India’. I thank its Editor K.D. Sethna, a prominent poet of modern India in English as well as an erudite exponent of Sri Aurobindo-Literature, for his encouragement and advice to the young poet in various ways.

Romen, the author of ‘The Golden Apocalypse’, also deserves my thanks for giving Chinmoy a push on the path of English poetry.

Lastly, a word of thanks to Chinmoy himself for choosing me to write this Introduction. He is too unassuming to ask for appreciation, but when some one suggested my name, he exclaimed, “Oh! I got inspiration from him in my younger days, that continues even now. And who else will appreciate me so affectionately?”

Though perhaps out of place here, yet it is interesting to note that Chinmoy got the Blessings of our Mother and Sri Aurobindo as early as 1933, when he came here for the first time as a child of a little above twelve months! May he continue to receive their Grace!

‘Flame-Waves’ is the maiden work of the author, dedicated to our Mother Divine as a humble offering on his own birthday, on the 27th of August, 1955. The title, of course, indicates the Aspiration in the inner being of the poet, at once flowing and fiery, wide-spreading and upward-leaping.

Prabhakar Mukherji

Sri Aurobindo International University Centre,
Pondicherry,
27-8-1955

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 31st Birthday

 

A classic picture

 

 

Early in the morning I went to Nolini-da and made my most devoted pranam to him. He was very pleased. At noon I went to Amrita-da and told him that I would like to have a group picture with him and Nolini-da.

Amrita-da said: “With Nolini? Has he agreed?”

“Yes, he has agreed. Only now I need you.”

“Is Nolini ready?”

“He is,” I said.

“If Nolini is ready, I am already ready. Come along. Let us make you immortal or let you make us immortal on your birthday.”

Indeed, it was a classic picture. Nolini-da and Amrita-da were sitting in chairs. I was standing behind Nolini-da and Kalipada-da was standing behind Amrita-da.

— Sri Chinmoy


Published in A Service-Flame and a Service-Sun

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 33rd Birthday

 

Sri Chinmoy celebrates his first birthday in America. He is 33 years old.

By this time he already has a job at the Indian Consulate in New York and has moved from the home of his sponsor Sam Spanier and friend Eric Hughes in Greenwich Village to a tiny 8x7-foot room in an apartment on West 108th Street in Manhattan he shares with some of his co-workers from the Consulate.

And, by then, he has his first disciple — Clyde Weinman (Bholanath).

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 34th Birthday

 

The first issue of AUM magazine, “a monthly journal devoted to the spiritual writings of Chinmoy Kumar Ghose,” is published. It is printed by Boro Park Printers on New Utrecht Avenue in Brooklyn, New York. Mr. Ramamoorthy sends a copy of the first issue to the President of India Dr. Radhakrishnan, and he receives a very nice reply from the President praising the magazine.

 

My First Printer

by Sri Chinmoy

 

The first printer that I used in America was named Mr. Custer. He was Jewish and his shop was on New Utrecht Avenue, just opposite the apartment building where I lived. He was the one who printed the very first issue of AUM Magazine in 1965. After that he printed many, many issues.

Both of us were under the impression that the other one was deaf. How we used to shout and scream at each other at the top of our voice! We were not arguing, but we felt that if we did not scream at each other while standing face to face, then we could not hear each other. We always used to discuss politics. I used to speak in favour of America. He used to speak in favour of China. He was Jewish, but he was so fond of China. What wonderful arguments we had! But, we liked each other so much. We were such good friends. He was always very, very nice to me.

After practically sixteen years, he came to one of my concerts in Manhattan. After the concert, he came up to me. I looked at him, and he looked at me. Finally, I said, “Are you Mr. Custer?”

He said, “Are you Mr. Ghose? Are you Chinmoy? What shall I call you now? Shall I call you Ghose or Chinmoy?”

I said, “No, now my name is Sri Chinmoy. Have you forgotten?”

Then he started saying that he knew one day I would be great.


Published in My Consulate Years

 

I Still Remember Mr. Custer

by Sri Chinmoy

 

Four or five years ago, Sanatan was in that part of Brooklyn looking for something and he happened to go into that printing shop. A young man was working there. He was Mr. Custer’s son. When Sanatan told him my name, he said, “I remember him.”

Sanatan came back and told me that he had found my first printer. I could not believe it. After so many years! Sanatan took me there to see the place. It was exactly the same, and across the street the flower shop was still there.

I went inside the printing shop and immediately the son recognised me. His father had by that time passed away. I said to the son, “Now that I have seen you, I want to print one of my books here.”

He said, “Yes, of course. I know how much my father loved you. I will do the job at a very cheap price.”

I said, “Ask any price. I remember your father so well. He had such affection for me.”

So he printed one book.


Published in My Consulate Years

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 35th Birthday

 

To My Dear Students in Puerto Rico

O Children of the Supreme!
I bow to the Supreme within you.

Today my body completes thirty-five years of its earthly existence. You are entering into me with your hearts' joy and your souls' aspiration. I am placing your divine wealth at the Feet of the Supreme. I am also offering to the Supreme all that you have and all that you are.

A song without notes is no song. A song breathes because it has a Singer. The Singer is the Supreme.

A tree without branches is no tree. A tree lives because it has a Root. The Root is the Supreme.

O Flames of my Spirit's fire,
Fly into the Transcendental Beyond.


Note: This message was sent to the AUM Centre Inc. on the occasion of Sri Chinmoy’s birthday.

Published in AUM – Vol. 2, No. 2, 27 September 1966

 

Is the West Unspiritual?

A talk by Sri Chinmoy
on his thirty-fifth birthday
at the first quarters of the Aum Centre, 3817 Fort Hamilton Parkway, Brooklyn, New York 

 

Is the West unspiritual? The immediate answer may be in the affirmative. But this answer is absurdity on the face of it. There are, in the West, countless souls who have a unique inner urge. I also dare to say that they are far more spiritual than those who pass for men of spirituality in the East.

It may sound strange, but I cannot help mentioning that there are many Westerners who are practising spirituality in the truest sense of the term but do not realise it. Alas, this irony of fate is all due to their mind, their mental upbringing. Their mind tells them, nay, makes them feel that they are here and God is elsewhere. What is worse is that they breathe in God and Fear at the same breath. The very idea of God's omnipotence sends a shudder through them. Any grave error, on their part, they feel, can never escape God's most severe punishment. This is precisely what they have learned from their mind. But in their spiritual quest, the mind is not all in all. They have a heart that makes them feel that their earthly existence and God's Breath are one, inseparable; their aspiration and God's Grace live together and fulfil each other.

God is not something that is outside, something to be attained, as the usual Western concept goes. God is something that has to be unfolded like a lotus, petal by petal, from within.

Our present-day world, especially the Western world, is ultramodern in its complexity. Complexity tends to misery. Misery is frustration. Frustration is the death of achievement and progress. Simplicity is inner delight. This inner delight is Nectar. Nectar is immortality, immortality of the physical, the vital and the mental. Simplicity is the spontaneity of the heart. Complexity, on the other hand, has become the natural expression of the unintegrated aspects of the physical mind. This mind sees through the eye of divisiveness and ignorance. Ignorance sees through the eye of Death. The heart sees through the eye of Truth. Truth sees through the eye of God.

It is an unpardonable mistake, nevertheless, I believe, on the part of the East to pronounce that the West is unspiritual. Both East and West should be fully aware of the fact that each human being needs five major experiences in his earthly existence. The animal in man gives him the first experience; this is the experience of the sense-pleasure. After the animal in him has played its role, out of his subtler existence, discrimination comes to the fore. In the process of his discrimination, man becomes conscious of right and wrong, the true and the false. This is the second experience. The third experience is the experience of self-control. The more a man acquires self-control, the easier it becomes for him to walk along the path of peace and bliss. At this stage man comes to learn and feel the meaning of an inner tug-of-war between his higher self and his lower self, between the transitory and the eternal. The fourth experience makes him feel that he has to realise God and that God-Realisation is the sole purpose of human existence. He feels the difference between the finite and the infinite, between the self that binds him to ignorance and death and the self that frees him into infinity and eternity. The fifth and last experience is the experience of divine manifestation and divine fulfilment which comes after having the full realisation of God. Man's soul becomes God's Vision and his life, God's Reality.

Since both East and West go through these stages, the East has no right to condemn the West so arbitrarily.

The Western mind is a scientific mind. Science has helped the Western mind profoundly and at the same time, science has deceived the Western heart mercilessly. Science says in effect: "Look, heart and mind, I have bravely and successfully entered into the sky with my telescope. But the sky fails to offer me God. I have fathomed the very depth of the ocean. The ocean, too, fails to offer me God. Nor has the tiniest atom escaped my attention. I thought that at least this particle would offer me some clue to God's existence. To my sorrow, like the sky and the ocean, the atom, too, has failed to show me the Face of God. I venture to say that there is no God, none at all."

The mind immediately believes in science and is satisfied with the scientific discovery that there is no God. But the heart doubts the authenticity of the scientific discovery. It says: "I may not see God as minutely as science observes an object in its minute scrutiny. But I do feel the presence of God within me. To me, my feeling is as good as my realisation."

Evolution has come to the point where it is high time for man to realise that science and spirituality are not one and the same. This does not mean that science and spirituality are two bitter enemies, always at daggers drawn. But what we should do is to expect from science what it can and does offer — the perfect mastery over the external nature. Similarly, from spirituality, we must expect the inner illumination and the realisation of God. Let us accept both science and spirituality and not accept one and reject the other, for both of them are serving God here on earth, unveiling and manifesting His Supreme Reality.

To me, the aspiration of the West is both touching and striking. I maintain that the West is spiritual in the truest sense of the term. But what is required of the West — and it is true that the East has already discovered this — is an inner conviction that spirituality is its Divine birthright.

 


Listen to Sri Chinmoy reading this talk...
Recorded on August 27th, 1966, at the
Aum Centre, Fort Hamilton Parkway, Brooklyn

 


Published in AUM – Vol. 3, Nos. 1&2, 27 Aug.-Sep. 1967

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 36th Birthday

 

The Invocation

Sri Chinmoy formally reveals* his most sacred song, ‘The Invocation’, on the occasion of his 36th Birthday during a special meditation meeting with his disciples at his home — the Aum Centre — on the 4th floor of 504 East 84th Street in Manhattan. He says, “Each note and each line is significant. Each word is a world of inner revelation – natural, spontaneous and soul-stirring. This is our most devoted dedication to the Supreme.”

 

 

Sri Chinmoy sings The Invocation at the Aum Centre on his birthday. He plays the harmonium he bought from Sher Singh, the gatekeeper at the Indian Consulate in New York.

 

Sri Chinmoy requested that those who sing or listen to this song, please always fold their hands.
He also requested that this song be sung only in its pure form and never harmonised or arranged in any way.

* Sri Chinmoy composes The Invocation sometime before August 27th, 1967.

 


Listen to Sri Chinmoy reciting The Invocation
Recorded on August 23rd, 1967, most likely at the
Aum Centre, East 84th St., Manhattan

 

Note: Both, the song and the poem above, dated August 27, 1967, reflect the most recent and final changes Sri Chinmoy made to capitalisation and punctuation.

 

Invocation

Supreme, Supreme, Supreme, Supreme!
I bow to Thee, I bow.
My life Thy golden plough;
My journey's Goal Thy soulful Dream.
Supreme, Supreme, Supreme, Supreme!
I bow to Thee, I bow.

Supreme, I am Thy glowing Grace.
My world, Thy Feet of Light;
My breath, Thy Vision's kite.
Thou art one Truth, one Life, one Face.
Supreme, Supreme, Supreme, Supreme!
I bow to Thee, I bow.

(The poem, as published in My Flute)


Note: The poem, ‘Invocation’ is published in a collection of poems My Flute, 1972. At a later date, Sri Chinmoy makes minor changes to capitalisation, punctuation, and adds ‘The’ to the title.


Published in The Invocation

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 37th Birthday

 

Birthday Message

 

O Sweetest Children of the Supreme:

Today you declare my body's birth. And my Soul asks me to tell you that it observes your birthdays, heavenly and earthly, every day when it enters into you with a new hope's light, a new inspiration's delight and a new aspiration's flight to pilot you to the Supreme's Golden Shore of the Beyond.


Published in AUM – Vol. 4, No. 1, 27 August 1968

 

On August 27, 1968, the thirty-seventh birthday of Sri Chinmoy was celebrated at the four AUM Centres. The Guru himself was still at the Centre in Puerto Rico; it has been his practice to balance the major celebration-days he spends at each of the Centres from year to year. For many who attended the celebration in New York, it was the first of the Master's birthdays to take place since they had met him. This day was an unforgettably beautiful experience. — Madhuri, from her book The Life of Sri Chinmoy

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 38th Birthday

 

 

Sri Chinmoy and his disciples gather for his birthday celebrations at the new Centre on 149th Street, in Briarwood, Queens, New York.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 39th Birthday

 

Sri Chinmoy at Judson Hall – photo by Sarama Minoli

 

The celebration for Sri Chinmoy’s 39th Birthday is held at Judson Hall in Greenwich Village, Manhattan. The Sri Chinmoy Orchestra begins the programme and this is followed by poetry readings and singing. After the programme, everyone returns to Sri Chinmoy’s home for a birthday dinner served in the backyard.

 

Sri Chinmoy storytelling at Guru Stationery

 

Sri Chinmoy also inaugurates Madal Press and tells stories at Guru Stationery on Parsons Blvd., in Jamaica, New York.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 41st Birthday

 

 

The first week-long birthday celebration for Sri Chinmoy is held in New York, with visitors coming from across the US, Canada and Great Britain.

On August 27th, after a special birthday meditation for visitors at the Sri Chinmoy Centre Church in Bayside, New York, busses drive to Connecticut for afternoon and evening birthday functions.

Sri Chinmoy’s 41st birthday celebration, held in a field adjacent to the Connecticut Centre in the tranquil, rural area of Norwalk, is a natural auditorium. Disciples worked to construct a beautiful stage of pale blue, with yellow drapes. The Centre seal decorates the top of the arch.

Here, Sri Chinmoy meditates and enjoys the many musical and dramatic performances put on by his disciples.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 42nd Birthday

 

The Date of His Birth is Controversial

by Sri Chinmoy

 

The date of his birth is controversial.
The soul of the earth says:
“He was born on August 27, 1931.”

The heart of the earth says:
“He was born on August 30, 1931.”

The vital of the earth says:
“He was born on August 27, 1936.”

The mind of the earth says:
“He was born on August 27, 1938.”

The body of the earth says:
“He was born on August 27, 1950.”

God says:
“He was born twice:
Once before the beginning of Life
in the Heart of Silence,
Once after the end of Death
in the Head of Sound.”


This is the 50th poem published in The Dance of Life, part 1

 

 

Sri Chinmoy holds an 8-hour meditation during the day for his disciples to celebrate his 42nd birthday. It is held at the New York Centre Church in Bayside. In the evening, there is a function at New York University, where the première of Sushumna’s film ‘The Dance of Life’ is shown.

 

Narrations by Sushumna and Ratul, music by Mahavishnu and Devadip

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 43rd Birthday

 

 

Sri Chinmoy performs the first act of his play about Jesus Christ — The Son — playing both the roles of the Supreme and the Christ, at Thomas A. Edison High School, corner of 168th Street and 84th Avenue, in Jamaica, New York.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 44th Birthday

 

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 44th birthday begins at 7:00 a.m. with a seven-hour meditation at All Angels’ Church, followed by a 44-course banquet. This is followed by 9 hours of plays and musical performances, during which Sri Chinmoy performs on 27 different musical instruments, playing all the songs from memory. At 3:00 a.m., the birthday cake is brought in. The festivities are held in Jamaica, New York.

 

 

Sri Chinmoy performs on 27 different instruments for the first time, playing all songs from memory, in Jamaica, New York.

 

O Lovers of Poetry

by Sri Chinmoy

 

O lovers of poetry, you are not only lovers of poetry, you are also lovers of spirituality, for poetry and spirituality go hand in hand. They are inseparable. True poetry and true spirituality are always inseparable. It is said that poetry is next to spirituality. To me this is an Understatement. I feel from deep within that poetry, if it is spiritual and divine, without fail houses spirituality, and true spirituality must needs house poetry.

A poet is he who envisions the ultimate, absolute Truth. On the physical plane, vital plane, mental plane, even at times on the psychic plane, when we notice a particular poet offering to the world at large his contribution, we appreciate him, we admire him. But if we can see the seeker in the poet, the truth-lover in the poet, the real reality in the poet's vision, then we shall go one step farther. We shall discover our inseparable oneness with the poet.


Published in Poetry: My Rainbow-Heart-Dreams

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 45th Birthday

 

Photos by Sarama Minolii

 

Sri Chinmoy performs on 27 different musical instruments during his birthday celebration function, held at Public School 86 in Jamaica, New York.

 

We Believe...

 

Sri Chinmoy spontaneously sings the words of the credo of Sri Chinmoy: The Peace Meditation at the United Nations, ‘We Believe and We Hold’, at PS 86.

 

 


Listen to Sri Chinmoy spontaneously singing...
Recorded at Public School 86 in New York

 

Lyrics:

We believe and we hold that each man has the potentiality of reaching the Ultimate Truth. We also believe that man cannot and will not remain imperfect forever. Each man is an instrument of God. When the hour strikes, each individual soul listens to the inner dictates of God. When man listens to God, his imperfections are turned into perfections, his ignorance into knowledge, his searching mind into revealing light and his uncertain reality into all-fulfilling Divinity.

Credo of Sri Chinmoy: The Peace Meditation at the United Nations


Published in Chandelier, Part 1

 

Birthday Letter from New York’s Mayor

 

 

Sri Chinmoy receives a congratulatory birthday letter from the Mayor of New York City Abraham Beame.

Note: The name ‘United Nations Meditation Group’ is later changed to ‘Sri Chinmoy: the Peace Meditation at the United Nations’.

 

Later in the year, on November 28th, 1976, Sri Chinmoy composes this immortal song:
 

Heaven’s Great Year

 

 

Lyrics:

Heaven’s great year is
Nineteen hundred and thirty-one.
     Why?
Because in that year
I challenged earth-ignorance.
Earth’s great year is
Nineteen hundred and forty-four.
     Why?
Because in that year
I discovered who I eternally am.


Published in Surrender-Rose-Blossoms

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 46th Birthday

 

Photos by Bhashwar Hart

 

Scenes from Sri Chinmoy’s 46th birthday function.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 47th Birthday

 

In the lead-up to Sri Chinmoy’s 47th birthday, there is a parade held in Manhattan on August 19th.

 

 

Sri Chinmoy walks alongside the birthday parade put on by his students in his honour on August 19th. The parade marches up Madison Avenue, New York, from 23rd Street to 72nd Street. The floats are designed on the theme of sport, among them is an enor­mous bicycle by the New York Centre. Afterwards, everyone goes to the Jharna-Kala Gallery in Grand Central Station for a special meditation. In the evening Jala Ramani is performed in Stamford.

 

Sri Chinmoy Day in New York City

 

On the morning of Sri Chinmoy's 47th birthday, Queens Councilman Morton Povman comes to the track at Jamaica High School to read the proclamation of Sri Chinmoy Day in Queens. Several of the 58 runners who are running 47 miles in honour of Sri Chinmoy’s birthday are still circling the 1¼-mile loop as the ceremony takes place.

Proclamations are made in all 5 boroughs of New York City this year, making August 27, 1978, the first city-wide Sri Chinmoy Day.

Sri Chinmoy and Councilman Povman — photo by Bhashwar Hart

Councilman Morton Povman: Ladies and gentlemen, I am here today to make a presentation in honour of your Guru. I was saying to the Guru just now that it seems almost a miracle that he has people, not highly trained in running, run 47 miles with only one person having to drop out. I know that this is because of the inspiration that Guru provided for the runners. Spiritual inspiration and aspiration is what keeps them going at a time when they should want to lie down flat.

It is an honour for me to represent Mr. Donald Manes, the Borough President of the Borough of Queens, to declare today, the 27th of August, the 47th birthday of the Guru, as Sri Chinmoy Day in Queens County. I would like to read the Proclamation.

Proclamation

Borough of Queens City of New York Donald R. Manes, President

Sri Chinmoy: Today, Councilman Povman, in you my disciples and I have felt a true member of our little spiritual family. You have been extremely kind to us for the last few years. You have granted us the opportunity to feel that we have done something real for the world at large. I wish to say that what we have done is really the result of pure Grace from above. It is the inspiration from above that has guided my students in this run, as well as my heart-felt sympathy with their struggles.

You have always been kind to me and my students. What we can offer you is our gratitude, and this gratitude blossoms in our hearts like a lotus, petal by petal, every day and every hour. Today, 300 students of mine have felt your heart, and I wish to say that you have conquered the very depths of their gratitude-hearts, for when someone shows me sympathy, love and oneness, my disciples' gratitude-hearts enter into that person.

You are not only a councilman, but also a distinguished member of society and a true loving brother and friend in the heart of all my disciples. You are our loving, kind, sympathetic oneness-friend.

On behalf of all my students, I am offering you my gratitude-heart on this auspicious day, my birthday. You have been dedicated to the Supreme in us, in all of us. The oneness of my gratitude-heart, plus all my disciples' gratitude-hearts I am offering to you this day.

Councilman Povman: You are the luckiest man in the world to have all these people who believe in you. [To the disciples] He is the richest man in this world. He has no material wealth, but he has the richness of the people who are here, and there is no greater wealth than this in the world. If the world would learn this lesson, it would be a much nicer place to live in.

 

Proclamation

Office of the President of the Borough of Manhattan City of New York

Citation of Merit

Robert Abrams President of the Borough of The Bronx

Proclamation

Anthony R Gaeta, Office of the President of the Borough of Staten Island City of New York

Proclamation

Howard Golden, Office of the President Borough of Brooklyn City of New York

Published in AUM – Vol.II-5, No. 7, 8, July-August 1978

 

Bela Chale Jai

 

Sri Chinmoy performs from memory 47 new Bengali songs, Bela Chale Jai, at his evening birthday function at the Greenwich Civic Center in Greenwich, Connecticut. The book is published the same day in Jamaica, New York.

 


Listen to Sri Chinmoy singing Bela Chale Jai...

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 48th Birthday

 

Sri Chinmoy’s First 47-Mile Race

 

 

Sri Chinmoy runs his first ultra-marathon — 47 miles in 12:41:48 — at Jamaica High School track and surrounds in Jamaica, New York.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 49th Birthday

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 47-Mile Race Personal Best

 

 

Video by Perfection Journey Films

 

Sri Chinmoy runs the 3rd annual 47 Mile Race in a personal best time of 11 hours, 27 minutes and 24 seconds (14:37/mile pace) at Jamaica High School track and surrounds in Jamaica, New York.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 50th Birthday

In honour of Sri Chinmoy’s 50th birthday, the distance of the annual 47-mile run is increased to 50 miles. Beginning at midnight, the event is held at Rockland Lake State Park, Congers New York. (Except for this year, the 47-mile run is held every year in Jamaica, New York.)

 

Sri Chinmoy's birthday book, My 50 Gratitude-Summers is published.

 

 

It contains 50 poems written in Sri Chinmoy's own handwriting, including poem no. 47 that has become immortal:

There is only
One perfect road
And
That road is ahead of
You,
Always ahead of
You.

 

Sri Chinmoy performs 50 songs from selected poems in Ten Thousand Flower-Flames which he has set to music. Including his famous song, ‘My Gratitude-Heart’.

 

My Gratitude-Heart

 

Lyrics:

My gratitude-heart
Always knows
   The way.
My oneness-perfection
Always is
   The way.


Published in Flower-Flames, part 1

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 51st Birthday

 

 

Sri Chinmoy’s hand-written book ‘I meditate So that’ is published in Jamaica, New York. The cover features one of his early Jharna-Kala artworks — the ‘little yogi’ — and the book is die-cut into a unique shape, following the outline of the drawing. Sri Chinmoy signs the book at his evening birthday function. It contains 47 poems.

 

47-mile Run Stories

by Sri Chinmoy

Can I help you?

While I was running 47 miles, one person came up to me and said, “You do such nice things for people. Sir, can I be of any help to you?”

I said, “Thank you, I do not need any help right now.”


What tennis has done

During the 47-mile run, I was limping. Mahiyan, our tennis champion, passed me and said, “This is what tennis has done to you.”


Descent of an oath

I was born on a Thursday, so I recently made an oath to run 27 miles every Thursday, starting any time after midnight.

After running thirty-four miles in the 47-mile run, my oath descended to 13 miles. Soon it may descend to 10 miles.


Published in Run and become, become and run, part 11

 

Other stories

by Sri Chinmoy

A fleeting unconditional surrender

When I go out to run early in the morning, as soon as Sona hears me coming, he comes out of his bed where he sleeps to see me and get attention. Sometimes he cannot open his eyes even; he comes to me with his eyes closed!

Then he lies down and makes unconditional surrender at my feet. The trouble is that his surrender lasts only for a second — like my disciples' surrender!

Sometimes when I am going out, Sona looks at me so soulfully and pitifully. Then, when I come back inside, he will not let me come in unless I bless him and show him affection.

See how the animal world is responding to my love and concern! The amount of affection, love and concern that I shower on human beings is unimaginable! But these innocent dogs are responding to my divine qualities most satisfactorily.


Published in Friendship with the Animal Kingdom

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 52nd Birthday

 

 

Sri Chinmoy’s birthday meditation.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 53rd Birthday

 

Sri Chinmoy offers a concert, which includes improvisations on the synthesizer, esraj and sitar — later released on cassette as Joy Ripples — at Stamford High School, Strawberry Rd, Stamford, Connecticut.

A group of German boy singers, led by Kailash, finish singing 500 of Sri Chinmoy’s Bengali songs by heart to complete their total of 700 for the year. They sing the songs in several sessions — on August 18th, 21st, 23rd and  27th. 200 songs were sung during April Celebrations. 

A half-hour show on Sri Chinmoy is broadcast by German National Television station ZDF throughout Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

 

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 54th Birthday

 

 

Sri Chinmoy spontaneously sets to music 48 English poems from The Goal Is Won at Public School 86 in Jamaica, New York.

Here, Sri Chinmoy sings one of the poems ‘Only Three Things I Love’.

 


Listen to Sri Chinmoy singing...
Recorded at PS 86 in Jamaica, New York


 Published in The Goal is Won

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 55th Birthday

 

The Abode of Knowledge
Vidya Bhavan

 

 

Sri Chinmoy stands beneath an arch made up from 700 of his published books — the 700th book, ‘My God-Hunger-Dreams comes out on his birthday.

 

 

Sri Chinmoy spontaneously sets to music 55 English poems from his 700th book, and also performs on 63 instruments at New Rochelle, New York.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 56th Birthday

 

Be Brave Within! Be Brave Without!

 

Captain, my Captain,
My dear, sweet and compassionate Captain,
Fifty-six years ago, out of Your infinite Bounty,
You sent this soul into the world
To unconditionally love You, serve You
And please You in Your own Way.
You alone know how far I have succeeded.

Captain, my heart’s Captain, my life’s Captain,
Today, on this most auspicious occasion
In my life,
I am begging You to grant me
A very special Boon.
Do grant me the capacity
To please everybody on earth.

“My stupid child,
I have created this world.
Since I do not have the capacity
To please each and every human being on earth,
How can I grant you this Boon?
To please each and every human being
Is an impossible task.
I try to please each human being as far as I can.
Then I leave it up to their fate.

“Again, there are human beings
Who are pleasing Me even far beyond
Their own imagination.
For them is My Vision-Eye,
For them is My Compassion-Heart,
For them is My Satisfaction-Divinity.
From today on I am asking you
To please only those who think and feel
That to please Me in you
Is their only duty, earthly and Heavenly.
Do not waste even one moment
Of your precious time on earth
On those whom you have to please,
Whose feet you have to touch at every moment
To catch a glimpse of satisfaction-smile
In their eyes.

“Be brave within!
Be brave without!
This pilgrimage is only for the brave,
Only for the few
Who are supremely chosen instruments of Mine.
Unfortunately, there are many
Who want from you and from Me
Nothing but attention.
But what they need from you and Me
Is the hunger for aspiration
And the thirst for perfection.

“My child, My Eternity’s child,
Your boat is sailing fast, very fast.
Many, many, many more will join your boat
On the way.
And again, on the way,
All those who become tired
Will jump out of the boat on their own.
You have no time to look into ignorance-sea
To watch who is drowning.
Your boat will never come empty.
It will come at its full capacity
And reach the Golden Shore,
My Immortality's Heart-Abode."


Published in Captain, My Captain

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 57th Birthday

 

Sri Chinmoy’s Birthday Message

 

Supreme, Supreme, I bow to Thee.

Supreme, my Supreme, my dear Supreme,
My sweet Supreme, my Lord Supreme,
My Beloved Supreme,
May Thy Victory be proclaimed
At every moment in and through
My aspiration-heart and my dedication-life.

Supreme, my Supreme, my dear Supreme,
My sweet Supreme, my Lord Supreme,
My Beloved Supreme,
Those who are not consciously with You
And those who are not soulfully for You
Can never, never be my oneness-friends
Or ever, ever be in Your Infinity's
Vision-flooded Golden Boat.

Supreme, my Supreme, my dear Supreme,
My sweet Supreme, my Lord Supreme,
My Beloved Supreme,
Do make my heart a sleepless hunger-cry
For You, only for You.


Published in Gratitude-Flower-Hearts

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 58th Birthday

 

In the morning, on the lawn outside Aspiration-Ground, Sri Chinmoy requests his disciples to sing with folded hands, “Supreme, I am Thy glowing grace. My world Thy Feet of Light” — just those two lines, over and over — first girls, then boys.

 

 

In the evening, Sri Chinmoy composes a birthday song, which he teaches to everybody. After that, he sets impromptu tunes to each of the 58 poems in his new book The God of the Mind.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 59th Birthday

 

In the morning, Sri Chinmoy walks around the tennis court in a meditative consciousness. After each lap, he stops and writes a number on the scoreboard. They are: 15, 1, 1, 3, 3. He does not explain what these numbers mean.

At 6:47 p.m. Sri Chinmoy arrives at Westhill High School in Stamford, Connecticut, for his birthday celebration. He goes onto the stage to look at the decorations. There are scenes of St. Peter’s Square in Moscow, the Taj Mahal, Monticello and others. He walks back and forth across the stage and then stands in the middle with his hands folded, meditating. 

He says:

We shall be now invoking the souls of the countries that have so graciously and compassionately claimed us to be their own, very own. We, too, with our own heart’s aspiration and life’s dedication are claiming these countries as our own, very own. We have formed a oneness-family with our heart’s boundless affection and boundless fondness. I shall invite the citizens of those countries one by one. As I invite the countrymen, you come up to the stage and the first line of my songs will be sung by these little children most soulfully. While you are on the stage, you will also very, very, very soulfully invite the soul of your own country. So, kindly invoke the soul of your country to bless you most powerfully and most lovingly. Aum . . .


He then calls up 36 countries in alphabetical order. This segment finishes at 8:17 p.m.
 

Sri Chinmoy’s 60th Birthday

 

During his birthday celebrations, Sri Chinmoy receives news of an attempted coup in Russia that puts President Gorbachev’s life in severe danger.

He immediately curtails many of the scheduled events and meditates intensely on the rapidly evolving situation. He requests that his birthday function reflect the solemnity of the occasion and the usual colourful stage settings are pared back to simple tones.

There is mounting pressure on President Gorbachev to resign, which he finally does a few months later. Thankfully his life is spared.

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

Message of Gratitude

by Sri Chinmoy

 

After setting a new world record for the 100 metres in the 1991 Tokyo World Championships, Sudhahota gave Sri Chinmoy the running shoes he had worn in that race. This is the message of gratitude that Sri Chinmoy, on 27 August 1991 — his 60th birthday — offers to Sudhahota from Aspiration-Ground.

My dearest Sudhahota, with my utmost divine pride in you, with my heart's infinite, infinite love, with my soul's infinite, infinite blessings and with my life's infinite, infinite gratitude, I am holding your world-record, champion-hero supreme running shoes. At this moment I am most devotedly invoking the soul, the spirit, of your father, whose joy and pride in your achievement know no bounds. His divine vision he is executing in you and through you. I am so proud of you for having offered your supreme achievement to your dearest father in Heaven. His blessingful concern, blessingful love and blessingful pride I am sure your heart and your entire being cherish at every moment.

Again, at this moment I am soulfully thinking of Ambalika, your sweetest mother. Her blessingful presence in Tokyo has helped you immensely, plus immeasurably. Therefore, I am very proud of your mother, Ambalika. Also, the encouragement that your sister Carol has offered in so many ways to your athletic career can only be felt and never described.

Something more: I saw the loving friendship between your mother and Leroy Burrell's mother. This kind of soulful friendship is rare, very rare in this world. I am extremely proud of these two noble and magnanimous hearts.

Finally, I would like to say something about the statement made by Leroy, your dear friend and great rival. The intimate connection and feeling of oneness between you two gives me enormous joy. May you two grow and glow in divine friendship.

Mr. Joe Douglas has kindly said a few very nice things about me and my Japanese disciples. I am very grateful to him.

So again and again, Sudhahota, I am offering you my heart's infinite love, infinite joy, infinite gratitude and infinite divine pride. The world misunderstands you, for misunderstanding is the order of the day. He who is really great, unfortunately, is bound to be misunderstood. This is what we learn from this world. But again, he who is really a great, dauntless, supreme hero will walk, march, run and sprint faster than the fastest like you — towards the destined goal. May your fastest speed inspire us all — your spiritual brothers and sisters as well as all human beings on earth — to run faster than the fastest in our spiritual quest to reach our goal of the ever-transcending Beyond.

Note: Sudhahota’s inscription on the shoes “Dearest Guru, much love, Sudhahota — 9.86”


Published in Carl Lewis: the Champion Inner Runner, part 2

 

 

The Source of my
achievements is my meditation.

My meditation is the unconditional
Compassion-Blessing-Light
of my Lord Beloved Supreme.

Supreme I bow to Thee,
I bow.

August 27th, 1991

Sri Chinmoy

 

World Leaders Greet Guru on 60th Birthday

 

A gala evening to celebrate Sri Chinmoy’s 60th birthday is held in the Grand Ballroom of the Manhattan Center in New York.

 

Heads of state from around the world sent letters and telegrams congratulating Sri Chinmoy on his 60th birthday on Aug. 27.

Letters came in from the Presidents of Austria and Sri Lanka and the Prime Ministers of Canada, Japan, Italy, New Zealand and Iceland.

Congratulations also were sent by South African leader Nelson Mandela and America’s Elliott Richardson. Another well-wisher, U.S. Sen. Christopher J. Dodd, wrote: “The number of individuals who have been affected by your commitment to promoting world peace is truly awe-inspiring.”

The tributes were read out at the Master’s Sept. 11 commemorative birthday dinner.

The spiritual teacher opened the dinner with a silent meditation and an extemporaneous piano performance.

Speakers included U.N. General Assembly President Guido de Marco, who described the spiritual leader as a man who “has become a symbol of the oneness of humanity.”

Six-time Olympic gold medalist Carl Lewis said Sri Chinmoy stands for “all the things that we believe in.”

Other speakers included the Soviet Union’s Deputy U.N. Ambassador, Aleksandr Razvin, as well as several other U.N. Ambassadors, and prominent members of the Indian community — including Pravin Panday, President of the Federation of Indian Associations, and Shankar Shetti, President of the Indian Congress of America.


Published in Anahata Nada, Volume 20, August–Early December 1991 

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 61st Birthday

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

 

Sri Chinmoy’s book My Father Shashi Kumar Ghosh: Affection-life, Compassion-Heart, Illumination-Mind is launched. It contains 27 stories about his father’s life.

 

Birthday Greetings from Yehudi Menuhin

World-acclaimed Violinist

 

19 August 1992

May I join the many who have given their respect, their trust and their admiration so wholeheartedly to a good man, Sri Chinmoy, on the occasion of his 61st birthday. 

Most sincerely
Yehudi Menuhin

 

Sri Chinmoy’s evening birthday function is held at Julia Richman High School in Manhattan, New York. Fred Lebow, President of the New York Road Runners Club stops by to wish Sri Chinmoy a happy birthday.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 62nd Birthday

 

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

Sri Chinmoy celebrates his 62nd birthday at Aspiration-Ground in New York. And, a tennis milestone is achieved — in the one year since his last birthday, Sri Chinmoy has played a total of 3,100 games of tennis.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 63rd Birthday

 

My Children, You Can Depend On Me

A talk by Sri Chinmoy
at PS 86, Jamaica, New Y
ork

 

My children, you can depend on me. I am dependable. My children, you can rely on me. I am reliable.

In this incarnation I shall be able to prove to each and every one of you that I am both dependable and reliable.

And I am also indispensable — but only in the self-giving hearts of those who prayerfully need my sleepless and breathless blessing-guidance. I am indispensable only for those who allow me to breathe in their hearts happily and proudly. Here I am not talking of the human in me but of the divine in me, which is birthless and deathless. If you are in tune with my divinity, then definitely, definitely, definitely I am indispensable, for the Supreme and I are one, eternally one.

Otherwise, every day, every hour, every minute, every second you will have a different Guru: either your physical consciousness, or your vital, or your mind, or your heart, or your soul, or the Supreme. But if you keep your promise to the divine in me, then definitely I am and I shall eternally remain your Guru.

I do not want to make anybody's life unhappy. I came into the world to bring down happiness and this happiness you will get if you can dare to please the Real in you. But if you are consciously or unconsciously trying to please the unreal in you, then you can never, never be happy. Your love of God is the only reality that you have and you are.

In physical terms, sixty-three summers I have seen. In spiritual terms, birthless and deathless is my existence. If you are one with me, in me and for me, if you allow me to claim you as my own, very own and if you claim me as your own, very own, then you will forever and forever and forever remain my choicest instruments — not only here on earth but also there in Heaven.

I shall never, never fail those heart-children of mine who love me unconditionally and need me unconditionally. With your heart's gratitude-tears the deeper you can go, the sooner you will realise my Universal Love and my Transcendental Compassion, my Universal Cry and my Transcendental Smile.


Published in I Wanted to be a Seeker of the Infinite

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

Sri Chinmoy sings some of his famous Avatar songs at his birthday celebration function at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, New York.

 

Sri Chinmoy receives an Honorary Degree of ‘Doctor of Philosophy in International Relations’ from the St. Petersburg State University of Education, in St. Petersburg, Russia.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 64th Birthday

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

On the morning of his 64th birthday, Sri Chinmoy meditates at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, New York.

Sri Chinmoy makes a choral arrangement of his 13,000th song, Phukai Amara Jibana Samare and it is recorded live by his students on his birthday, outdoors at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, New York. He composed the Bengali song on July 26th, 1995, and set to music the English translation three days later on July 29th. At times during the arrangement, the translation and the original Bengali are sung together.

 


Listen to Sri Chinmoy’s arrangement of his 13,000th
sung by a choral group of his students

 

Photo by Pulak Viscardi

 

Sri Chinmoy, on stage (seated far right) among the Avatars at his evening birthday celebration function in New York.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 65th Birthday

 

Photo by Adarini Inkei

 

Sri Chinmoy travels by ferry to Liberty Island in New York Harbor for the inauguration of the Statue of Liberty as a Sri Chinmoy Peace-Blossom.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 66th Birthday

 

The Hope-Noon of My Mother India

My Mother India,
Your pride, your hope-noon,
Your all-transforming crest
Was Aurobindo.
Wet with your tears, his human heart.
The thunder-blaze of his volcano-pen
Awoke the sleeping souls
To free their Motherland.
Aurobindo,
The zenith Leader of the dire revolt,
With rising sparks of Ind was all aglow.
In him we found our altar of sacrifice.
From his works and deeds
Drank we deep delight ambrosial.


Published in Sri Aurobindo: The Infinite

 

Final Telephone Conversation

 

Just a few days before Mother Teresa’s earthly departure, Sri Chinmoy calls her for her birthday on 27 August 1997. In fact, they share the same birthday. It is her 87th birthday and Sri Chinmoy's 66th birthday.

Brief selection from their final telephone conversation:

Sri Chinmoy: Happy, happier, happiest birthday, Mother!

Mother Teresa: Ah! You know it is my birthday!

Sri Chinmoy: Mother, who does not know that it is your birthday! When the sun shines, the whole world knows that the sun is shining! I am praying to the Saviour Christ to grant you His very, very special Blessings on your birthday. You came into the world to do something really great, and you have been doing that through your sleepless service to humanity.

Mother Teresa: All that you are doing is for the Glory of God and the good for people! Pray for me, as I pray for you for all of your many projects for world peace. Your works of love are works of prayer, and your works of prayer are works of God.


Published in Humanity’s Flower-Heart, Divinity’s Fragrance-Soul, part 2

 

Fifty Jharna-Kala Paintings

Filmed and edited by Kedar Misani

 

The full-day function for Sri Chinmoy’s Birthday is celebrated with long meditations and singing at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, New York. There, he paints 50 Jharna-Kala works of art in honour of the 50th Anniversary of India’s Independence. 

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 67th Birthday

 

 

Sri Chinmoy holds a morning birthday meditation at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, New York.

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

Please Do Not Forget

 

On the morning of his 67th birthday, Sri Chinmoy writes a series of nine short poems entitled, ‘Please Do Not Forget’.

 

 

1.

Please
Do not forget
That your soul
Is your Master's breath.

 

2.

Please
Do not forget
That your life
Is your Master's feast.

 

3.

Please
Do not forget
That your heart
Is your Master's life-boat.

 

4.

Please
Do not forget
That you have
Many, many friends
In the world.

 

5.

Please
Do not forget
That your Master
Has only one friend:
Your heart's satisfaction-smile.

 

6.

Please
Do not forget
That you forget your Master
In season and out of season.

 

7.

Please
Do not forget
That your Master
Never wants to study
In the forgetfulness-school.

 

8.

Please
Do not forget
That your Master
Is a constant beggar.
He begs you to give him
What you have:
Ignorance-night.

 

9.

Please
Do not forget
That your Master
Is a sleepless and breathless beggar.
He begs God to give him
What He has and what He is
For you, only for you.

 

Narada Michael Walden spontaneously sets the poems to music and teaches them to his good friend Sudhahota Carl Lewis, and together they sing them as a birthday gift for Sri Chinmoy the same evening, accompanied by Premik.


Published in Sri Chinmoy with Two Brother-Stars: Narada Michael Walden and Sudhahota Carl Lewis

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 68th Birthday

 

Sri Chinmoy’s Birthday Meditation

 

Photo by Adarini Inkei

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

 

Filmed and edited by Mridanga Spencer

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 69th Birthday

 

 

Sri Chinmoy at his morning birthday celebration at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, New York.

 

Photos by Prashphutita Greco

 

Sri Chinmoy at his evening birthday celebration in New York.

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

Banglar Nada Nadi Mala

Lyrics:

Banglar nada nadi mala
Karechhe hriday mama ala
Padma Brahmaputra Meghna Karnaphuli
Bhuri Ganga Feni Surma Kushiara
— Bengal’s river garlands have illumined my heart.


Published in Peace-Blossom Songs

 

Sarnath, a place near Varanasi in India, where Lord Buddha preached his first sermon, is declared a Sri Chinmoy Peace-Blossom.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 70th Birthday

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 70 New Bengali Songs

 

Video from Vasudeva Server

 

Sri Chinmoy composes and performs 70 new Bengali songs on his 70th Birthday at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, New York. The songs are later published as The Tears and Smiles of a God-Fragrance-Heart.

 

Sri Chinmoy Plays 70 Pianos

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

In the lead-up to his 70th birthday, Sri Chinmoy plays 70 pianos at Aspiration-Ground on August 16th and offers a Peace Concert at Aspiration-Ground on August 26th.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 71st Birthday

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

The birthday function is held at Aspiration-Ground where various musical performances are given including Sri Chinmoy’s piano recital.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 72nd Birthday

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

Inner Blessings are of Paramount Importance

A talk by Sri Chinmoy
at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, New York

 

Dear ones, I observe your birthdays every day, every day, in the very depths of my loving and grateful heart.

Inwardly I have blessed everybody. Unfortunately, this year I could not observe outwardly the birthdays of many, many disciples, and some of them are very close to me. Their hearts have to forgive me, because their souls know how much I love them, how much I care for them. So many disciples had birthdays recently. I could not observe them outwardly because I am dealing with so many problems.

There are many, many disciples and many dear ones whose birthdays I could not observe outwardly. Do not feel sad, do not be upset if I have not been able to observe your birthdays outwardly.

Inner blessings are of paramount importance. Inner blessings, inner love, inner affection and concern — these are the most important things. They are infinitely more important than the outer blessings you get when you are standing in front of me and we are singing the birthday song for you.


Published in Our Sweetest Oneness

 

Sri Chinmoy offers a Peace Concert to an audience of 1,400 at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, New York.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 73rd Birthday

 

Video and editing by Kedar Misani

 

Walking meditations; performances on the piano, sitar and esraj; a visit by special guest Addwitiya Roberta Flack; and the presentation of the world’s largest flower bouquet of 101,000 roses, mark the celebration of Sri Chinmoy’s 73rd birthday at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, Queens, New York.

 

Birthday Greetings from the Prime Minister of India

Manmohan Singh
New Dehli

19 August 2004

I am glad to know that the birthday of Shri Chinmoy is being celebrated on August 27, 2004. A well-known personality Shri Chinmoy is engaged in promoting peace and harmony in the world through his manifold activities. By harnessing the humanistic aspects of different faiths and focusing on spirituality, people professing diverse creeds can be brought closer together for constructive action. The followers of Chinmoy spread over many countries of the world have to take up the responsibility of spreading this message for happiness and welfare of mankind.

I extend my greetings to Shri Chinmoy and wish him health, happiness and a long life to deepen his contributions.

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 74th Birthday

 

Photo by Prashphutita Greco

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

Sri Chinmoy offers a Peace Concert, at which he sings 206 Bengali songs by heart (in two sessions) to an audience of 1,500 at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, Queens, New York. That evening, the disciples present him with a 46-foot-long birthday cake containing over 27,000 candles — a Guinness World Record.

 

 

The Luminous Life of Sri Chinmoy is the first biography printed by an outside publisher, in Delhi, India.

 

Excerpt from a letter to Sri Chinmoy

from Nelson Mandela
First President of South Africa

 

23 August 2005

My Brother, I applaud your lifetime of service to humanity in the great cause of world peace. I will always remember our meetings with much joy.

 

Two Talks by Sri Chinmoy

at Aspiration-Ground, Jamaica, New York

Eight out of Four

I wish to read out a few short articles in Bengali. This one I wrote when I was seventeen years old, in 1948. It is called Sathi. Sathi means "eternal companion." Lord Krishna and I were having a conversation. [Sri Chinmoy reads out his article.]

This one is about fear: Bhoi bibhikshikha…

[Sri Chinmoy reads.]

Now I shall read out two very, very deep philosophical articles. These I wrote in 1952, so I was a little more mature. I believed in philosophy! I studied philosophy — not only Indian philosophers, but all the Western philosophers whom I admired deeply. The title of the first article is Abhipsa, which means "aspiration."

[Sri Chinmoy reads.]

Now I will read out two more articles. First I shall read out "The Strength of Bengal" — Bangalir baler katha balte giye…

[Sri Chinmoy reads.]

I am ending with one more. This article is about Shivaji, the great king who fought against the Moguls. Shivaji was a Maharashtrian king. He was a very, very great soul, and he did not want to rule the country. He wanted to offer his crown to his Guru, Ramdas. Ramdas said, "No, you have to rule. Under my guidance you will rule the country." Now I shall tell you the story about this article. In our school at the Sri Aurobindo Ashram we used to get marks out of four, not out of one hundred. A perfect mark was four out of four. I happened to be an excellent student in Bengali, so quite often I used to get four out of four. When I submitted this article, my Bengali teacher fortunately or unfortunately gave me eight out of four! That created a very serious problem! The headmaster of the school was very upset. He said, "What kind of joke is this?" Alas, the headmaster was my enemy, because his friend, who was, I think, thirty years older than me, did not like me.

At recess time we had to study. The boys and girls would study together. The headmaster came while we were studying and insulted the teacher for giving me eight out of four. Then he said, "The poems were not written by him! They were written by his elder brother Chitta."

The school teacher was so fond of me. When I had been in his class for only six months, he wrote an article of twenty-six pages about me, because by that time he had seen my poems. Many times in front of him I wrote Bengali essays and articles.

The teacher invited the students to meet together. We accepted, on condition that he would give us a large quantity of milk and bananas. He said many, many nice things about me. He was the greatest Ashram writer.

Next to Sri Aurobindo and the Mother was Nolini Kanta Gupta, the Ashram Secretary, who asked me to translate his Bengali articles into English. There were many, many MAs in the Ashram, even triple-MAs, but Nolini chose me to translate his writings from Bengali into English. I translated many, many, many books. Tagore said, "Nolini Kanta Gupta's contribution to Bengali literature is unique." Again, this very short article of mine about Shivaji created a problem! In front of the students, the headmaster gave me two poems to write: one about a river, and one about a mountain. Then he left. He said that he was going to come back. So in five minutes, in front of so many students I wrote one poem about a river and one about a mountain. My teacher was overjoyed! He was so pleased. But the headmaster did not return. The teacher sent for him, but he did not come back.

Tagore had great admiration for Shivaji the king, and he wrote an immortal poem in which he urged the Bengalis to follow the Marathis. We Bengalis do not follow anybody; we always lead. But in this case Tagore begged all the Bengalis to follow the Maharashtrian leader Shivaji. A few extremely, extremely significant lines I quoted from Tagore. When I read, your heart has to feel what I am saying. Our Bengalis will be able to appreciate fully this immortal utterance of Tagore: "Oi itibrittakatha…[Sri Chinmoy quotes from Tagore's poem "Shivaji-Utsav".]

My article on King Shivaji was very short, but it created serious problems!


Our Hearts Can Never be Divided

When East Germany and West Germany became one, under the kind guidance of my beloved President Gorbachev, it gave so much joy. One Germany, one Germany!

Division is always in the mind. The heart is always for oneness, oneness, oneness. We aspire to go to the Source, and our real Source is God. Does He believe in division? Never, never, never, never!

When I say "Yugoslavia" now, I get such joy when my children from all the countries that belonged to Yugoslavia are together, together, together. The Soviet Union was cut into pieces, but I have given it the name Oneness-Dream-Boat-Shore. When I say "Oneness-Dream-Boat-Shore," I get such joy. When I say "Yugoslavia," I get such joy. Other countries also give me joy when they are together.

We need oneness, oneness, oneness. Our hearts can never be divided. When I see you all as one soul, as one heart, as one life, it gives me boundless, boundless, boundless joy and pride.


Published in My Golden Children

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 75th Birthday

 

Sri Chinmoy’s Diamond Jubilee

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

Photo by Prashphutita Greco

 

Sri Chinmoy celebrates his 75th birthday — his Diamond Jubilee —  with his disciples at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, New York.

 

Photo by Prashphutita Greco

 

His disciples honour him with the largest birthday cake — a 23½-foot-high creation made entirely of popcorn.

 

Earlier in the year, on April 5th, 2006, Sri Chinmoy composes this immortal song:

 

Nineteen Thirty-One

 

Lyrics:

Nineteen thirty-one, nineteen thirty-one!
My Heaven-days were done.
Nineteen thirty-one, nineteen thirty-one!
My earth-life I came to embrace.
Nineteen thirty-one, nineteen thirty-one!
My breath became God’s Fountain-Grace.
Nineteen thirty-one, nineteen thirty-one!
God's Victory-Garland I won, I won, indeed, I won, I won!
Nineteen thirty-one, nineteen thirty-one!


Published in Enthusiasm, Part 11

 

Sri Chinmoy’s 76th Birthday

 

Video by kedarvideo

 

Sri Chinmoy offers a Peace Concert to an audience of 1,500 at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, New York.

 

Photo by Prashphutita Greco

 

Sri Chinmoy’s students present him with a 76-foot-long pencil at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, Queens, New York. The 10½-ton pencil, with a rubber eraser and a lead tip, sets a Guinness record for being the world’s largest pencil. Sri Chinmoy then uses it to draw a picture, moving a pad of drawing paper along its tip.