Light the lamp within – “Raghunath” (feat. Rajhesh Vaidhya)

With blessings of Guru Tegh Bahadur, the ninth guru who gave his life for the freedom of belief, dedicated to my Guru, Late Pt. Raghunath Prasanna and featuring the the most innovative veena maestro in the world: Rajhesh Vaidhya on the Veena here is a live recording of new track "Raghunath":

Thanks much to Janapriyan Levine for his beautiful guitar rendition and Suellen Primost for playing a soulful cello on this track. Above all with much love and respects to my father, Sardar Preet Mohan Singh, for taking some video shots of the live recording.

This project will become an album that includes other couplets from Guru Tegh Bahadur - if you want to play along or sing some of couplets please reach me at Recorded at the Fantasy Studios, Berkeley, CA. Mixed and Engineered at Windermere Studios, San Ramon, CA. The beautiful words from Guru Tegh Bahadur: 

ਸੰਗ ਸਖਾ ਸਭਿ ਤਜਿ ਗਏ ਕੋਊ ਨ ਨਿਬਹਿਓ ਸਾਥਿ ॥ 
संग सखा सभि तजि गए कोऊ न निबहिओ साथि ॥ 
Sang sakẖā sabẖ ṯaj ga▫e ko▫ū na nib▫hi▫o sāth. 
My associates and companions have all deserted me; no one remains with me. 

ਕਹੁ ਨਾਨਕ ਇਹ ਬਿਪਤਿ ਮੈ ਟੇਕ ਏਕ ਰਘੁਨਾਥ ॥੫੫॥ 
कहु नानक इह बिपति मै टेक एक रघुनाथ ॥५५॥ 
Kaho Nānak ih bipaṯ mai tek ek ragẖunāth. ||55|| 
Says Nanak, in this tragedy, the Lord alone is my Support. ||55||

ਨਾਮੁ ਰਹਿਓ ਸਾਧੂ ਰਹਿਓ ਰਹਿਓ ਗੁਰੁ ਗੋਬਿੰਦੁ ॥ 
नामु रहिओ साधू रहिओ रहिओ गुरु गोबिंदु ॥ 
Nām rahi▫o sāḏẖū rahi▫o rahi▫o gur gobinḏ. 
The Naam remains; the Holy Saints remain; the Guru, the Lord of the Universe, remains. 
ਕਹੁ ਨਾਨਕ ਇਹ ਜਗਤ ਮੈ ਕਿਨ ਜਪਿਓ ਗੁਰ ਮੰਤੁ ॥੫੬॥ 
कहु नानक इह जगत मै किन जपिओ गुर मंतु ॥५६॥ 
Kaho Nānak ih jagaṯ mai kin japi▫o gur manṯ. 
||56|| Says Nanak, how rare are those who chant the Guru's Mantra in this world. ||56||

ਰਾਮ ਨਾਮੁ ਉਰ ਮੈ ਗਹਿਓ ਜਾ ਕੈ ਸਮ ਨਹੀ ਕੋਇ ॥ 
राम नामु उर मै गहिओ जा कै सम नही कोइ ॥ 
Rām nām ur mai gahi▫o jā kai sam nahī ko▫e. 
I have enshrined the Lord's Name within my heart; there is nothing equal to it. 
ਜਿਹ ਸਿਮਰਤ ਸੰਕਟ ਮਿਟੈ ਦਰਸੁ ਤੁਹਾਰੋ ਹੋਇ ॥੫੭॥੧॥ 
जिह सिमरत संकट मिटै दरसु तुहारो होइ ॥५७॥१॥ 
Jih simraṯ sankat mitai ḏaras ṯuhāro ho▫e. ||57||1|| 
Meditating in remembrance on it, my troubles are taken away; I have received the Blessed Vision of Your Darshan. ||57||1||

The importance of Naam/Name – Brihadaranyaka Upanishad

The importance of Naam or Name from The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad -

याज्ञवल्क्येति होवाच, यत्रायं पुरुषो म्रियते किमेनं न जहातीति; नामेति, अनन्तं वै नाम, अनन्ता विश्वे देवाः, अनन्तमेव स तेन लोकं जयति ॥ १२ ॥

yājñavalkyeti hovāca, yatrāyaṃ puruṣo mriyate kimenaṃ na jahātīti; nāmeti, anantaṃ vai nāma, anantā viśve devāḥ, anantameva sa tena lokaṃ jayati || 12 ||

12. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘when this man dies, what is it that does not leave him?’ ‘Name. The name indeed is infinite, and infinite are the Viśvadevas. He (who knows thus) wins thereby verily an infinite world.’

Is it only the organs of a liberated man that are merged, or is it also all[9] that moves them to action? If it is only the former, but not the latter, then with the presence of these stimulating causes the organs would again be likely to function. If, on the other hand, everything such as desire and action is merged, then only liberation is possible. It is to bring this out that the next question is put: ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘when this man dies, what is it that does not leave him?’ The other said: Name. That is, everything is merged; only the name[10] is left because of its relation to the type, for the name is eternal. The name indeed is infinite —the infinity of the name is its eternity— and infinite are the Viśvadevas, because they possess the infinity of the name. He (who knows thus) wins thereby verīly an infinite world. Having identified himself with the Viśvadevas who possess the infinity of the name, he wins through this realisation only an infinite world.

Do not try to become anything

A quote by Ajahn Chah (1918 - 1992), a famous Buddhist teacher from Thailand, is related:

Do not try to become anything.
Do not make yourself into anything.
Do not be a meditator.
Do not become enlightened.
When you sit, let it be.
What you walk, let it be.
Grasp at nothing.
Resist nothing.


Dhoondo Ge Agar Mulkon Mulkon – Abida Parveen Ghazal and Translation


Dhoondo Ge Agar Mulkon Mulkon is a ghazal written by Shaad Azeemabadi (1846 - 1927).

Translation and further explanation can be found here:

Roman Script
Dhoondo Ge Agar Mulkon Mulkon
Milne Ke Nahin Nayaab Hain Hum
Tabeer Hai Jiski Hasrat-O-Gham
Aye Humnafaso Woh Khwaab Hain Hum

Even if you search from nation to nation,
You won’t find me, for I’m a rare jewel.
With a willingness to handle grief and sorrow,
O friends! I am an embodiment of that dream.

Tabeer - Interpretation of a dream

Roman Script
Aye Dard Bata Kuch Tu Hi Pata
Ab Tak Yeh Mu’ammya Hal Na Hua
Hum Mein Hain Dil-E-Betaab Nihan
Yah Aap Dil-E-Betaab Hain Hum

O grief! Please help me understand
For the situation hasn't resolved itself yet,
Whether a restless heart is embedded inside me
Or am I the restless heart itself?

Roman Script
Main Hairat-O-Hasrat Ka Maara
Khamosh Khada Hoon Sahil Par
Dariya-E-Mohabbat Kehta Hai
“Aa Kuch Bhi Nahin Payaab Hain Hum”

I, driven by wonder and desire
Stand quietly at the bank of a river.
The river of love beckons,
"Don't be afraid, I am shallow and fordable”

Roman Script
Lakhon Hi Musafir Chalte Hain
Manzil pohunchte Hain Do Ik
Aye Ahl-E-Zamana Qadr Karo
Nayaab Na Hon Kamyaab Hain Hum

Millions of travelers walk,
Only a handful reach their destinations,
O my contemporaries! Appreciate me for I am,
rare, if not elusive.

Roman Script
Murghan-E-Qafas Ko Phoolon Ne
Aye Shaad Ye Kahla Bheja Hai
Aa Jao Jo Tum Ko Aana Ho
Aise Mein Abhi Shadaab Hain Hum

O Shaad! The flowers have dispatched
This message to birds in captivity
"Come if you wish to,
I am resplendent in the present moment."

Wich Rohi de Randiyan – Khwaja Ghulam Fareed Kafi – Translation


विच्च रोही दे रहन्दियां

विच्च रोही दे रहन्दियां ।नाज़क नाज़ो जट्टियां ।
रातीं करन शिकार दिलें दे ।डेहां वलोड़न मट्टियां ।
गुझ्झड़े तीर चलावन कारी ।सै सै दिल्लड़ियां फट्टियां ।
कर कर दरदमन्दां कूं ज़खमी ।है है बधन न पट्टियां ।
छेड़न भेडां बक्करिया गाईं ।ले ले गाबे कट्टियां ।
कई मसकीन मुसाफर ।चौड़ कीतो ने तरट्टियां ।
धूई दार फ़कीर थ्यु से ।फ़खर वड्डाईआं स्ट्टियां ।
हउं दिलबर दै कुतड़े दर दै ।बिरहों पईआं गल गट्टियां ।
मूझे फ़रीद मज़ीद हमेशा ।अज्ज कल्ह खुशियां घट्टियां ।

There in the Rohi desert 
Live soft and cute country girls (Juttiyan),
They (Juttiyan) attack their prey (Hearts of strangers) during night hours,
While in the daytime they wander around in wasteland.
They (Juttiyan) throw their sharp spears,
Hundreds of innocent hearts they lacerate,
They injure the pitiable natives,
Alas, they don’t bandage the wounded people after that.
They (Juttiyan) engage in recreation with sheep and goats and cows,
And lambs and oxen and Buffalos,
They have ambushed many meek visitors,
Who failed to break out the trap,
I became a celebrated saint,
But my pride made me low
I am a dog on my beloved’s door
Separation is like a strap around my neck,
O Farid! My sorrows are ever increasing
Bliss has diminished these days.

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