|| শ্রী শ্রী দুর্গা সহায় ||

 

Way back in the final years of my school life (or may be in the early days of my college), there used to be a rather captivating advertisement of a real estate company, in the local news channels of West Bengal. It had a very cute video of a tailor-bird making its nest with utmost finesse – provoking the viewers to fantasise about the safety and security of a house of their own. But what set this commercial apart was the choice of the song played in the background – a catchy and yet very earthy and sweet Bengali number that would have you hooked, instantaneously. Even more interesting was the lyrics of this song which mainly consisted of a few repetitions of the phrase – roughly translated as – “ Oh mind ! You don’t know how many people live in your house !” The video was short – an out an out commercial endeavour, intended for making people dream about a state-of-the art home. A longer version did exist with a few more lines added to the song, which I now believe were composed solely for the commercial, unlike the first line. The song created so much joy in me that whenever the ad came up in the television, I would go running to the drawing room – just to enjoy the music.

As we entered the age of the internet, my longing for the full version of the song increased, now that I had online platforms like Youtube at my disposal. So I searched and I got what I was looking for at the very first attempt. It was easy. The full version was as beautiful and melodious as the opening lines played in the ad. But there was a difference – the remaining lines had no distant connection with real estate business whatsoever. In fact, those lines did not make any sense to me at all !! Although it was clear that those were the original lines from which the song for the ad had been adapted, it seemed that nobody had really cared to explain the lyrics. This was frustrating !

A rough English Translation of the original song would read something like this:

 

Oh Mind! You don’t know who live in your house !

Oh Mind! You don’t know how many people live in your house !

How many people live in your house ?

 

Someone draws a picture with single-minded attention, Oh Mind !

Another one keeps painting them in different hues, Oh Mind !

Then again, which person spoils that picture ? Which person ?

How many people live in your house ?

 

Someone strums up a tune in the Ektara, Oh Mind !

Another one matches the rhythm in the Mandira! Oh Mind !

Then again, see which person plays out of tune ? Which person ?

How many people live in your house ?

 

Inebriated with the nectar !

Behold! the horse’s rein slips out of your hands !

Then which person holds that rein ? Which person ?

How many people live in your house ?

 

Stumped by the sheer absurdity of the lyrics, I searched here and there for the meaning, but in vein. Almost all resources in the internet opine that this song talks about the different shades of a person’s character – their alter egos and hidden traits. But that was hardly satisfactory! More so, since such a gross oversimplification completely overlooked the lyrics. It was impossible to decipher any meaning of the lines with this piece of information.

My father would often remark that the song deals with the esoteric concept of “Deha Tatwa” practised among the Bauls of Bengal. But since I do not belong to any Baul order, this bit of information was of little help. In any case, the song grew hugely popular in the coming years. Many music bands made modernised covers of this simple country song while people enjoyed its charm and danced to its tunes in live performances. But no one wrote or spoke anything about its meaning to the best of my knowledge, although I did stumble upon the phrase “Deha Tatwa” here and there. That is all. It seemed that people who did indeed understand the lyrics, would not speak about it, while other’s would put forth their own ideas which had little to do with the song. Very soon I gave up my search and learnt to live with that fact that a song can be enjoyed just for its music, even if its meaning is unknown.

Several years down the line, I was listening to a musical concert organised by the students of our institute. By that time, by immense grace of the Divine Mother, I have been introduced to Om Swamiji’s lectures in Youtube. I had also read a few of Swamiji’s books, including the book on Kundalini. A light-hearted junior student was singing a popular number by Lalon Fakir. He sang carelessly and there I caught the word “Muladhara”. “Does he even understand what he is singing ?” – I thought with a sense of superiority. Armoured with the little knowledge that I had gained by reading Swamiji’s books, I tried to understand the song. As nature would have it, I failed miserably !– arrogance and pride does not help anyone. “But…but I must be on the right track I thought….. since whatever I had read came from Swamiji”. And then suddenly my mind responded.. “ Hang on !… At least now I know the meaning of another song (the one we started with) ”… “How many people live in your house ? – why – it is talking about the three knots that Swamiji had mentioned in his lectures and also in the book on Kundalini !!! ” It was as if somebody had lit a bulb in my head. I walked out of the auditorium absentmindedly,  thinking…. “The one who draws the picture is the Creator while the one who spoils it has to be the Destroyer. Then the one who colours the picture has to be the Sustainer”. Same goes for the next stanza. “The one who plays the music represents the knot of Brahma, while the one who maintains the rhythm has to be the knot of Vishnu. In an orchestra, if one person plays out of tune, the whole music is destroyed. So that has to be the knot of Rudra !”

Overjoyed, my thoughts leaped forward… “And what about the last stanza ?? What does it mean ??? They are talking about the “nectar”….Ah! Swamiji has answered this too. This stanza talks about the state one attains after reaching the Sahasrara. I recollected what Swamiji had said about getting used to that state after Attainment. How He had to do a few more sadhanas to achieve this. ”  It all fitted exactly. I had never imagined that I would get this far with that song. Either the song never left me or I had never left my quest for its meaning. In any case, nothing would have been possible if Swamiji had not touched our lives with His writings and lectures.

I do not know what exactly the composer of this song had in mind while writing this piece. I do not even know whether my conjectures about its meaning are tenable. But I believe that it cannot mean anything much different from what I have discovered with Swamiji’s grace. Thank you Swamiji for everything. My humble obeisances at Your lotus feet. Bless me to go beyond the realms of bookish knowledge. Bless me so that I can discover my own truth, someday.

All glories to the Divine Mother.

Notes:

  1. I have narrated the sequence of events as I remember them.
  2. Youtube link for the song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vPRmKwq-_V8
  3. The English translation of the song presented here is inspired by Javed_mamun’s comment in https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l_QR6fVCTOU
  4. Feature image courtesty: unsplash.com ; Photographer: Harsh Chauhan

 

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