Thursday, September 04, 2008

The Christian Version of Jiva Jago

I recently got a copy of an old rare book called, Hymns of the Early Church. It was published in 1913 and is a compilation translated from various Greek and Latin sources and other early material from the Christian church. The following poem reminded me of Bhaktivinode Thakur's Arunodaya kirtana. (See some excerpts from the English translations at the end of this text):

Wake, awake to duty!

See, the morning light

Falls with radiant beauty

From the arms of night.

Claim the hours before thee

For the tasks of life,

Thousand calls implore thee

From the din of strife.

Listless minds are dreaming,

Idle hands are still;

Evil hearts are scheming

Purposes of ill.

See the hands that beckon,

Hear the call of right;

Thou with God must reckon

Up, and toil and fight!

Through the hours of morning,

At the height of noon,

When the light gives warning

Night approaches soon:

Do the task with gladness

Which the hours present;

Who can tell the sadness

Of a day mis-spent?

Day by day declineth,

Time is getting hoar;

Soon yon sun that shineth

Sets for evermore.

Ah, the City glorious,

Where they need no sun,

Ah, the band victorious,
And the glad "Well done"!

Excerpts from Bhaktivinode's Arunodaya kirtana:

Shri Gauracanda is calling,

“Wake up! Wake up, sleeping souls!

How long will you sleep

in the lap of the witch maya?”

"With every rising and setting of the sun,

a day passes and is lost.

Why do you remain idle and not serve the Lord of the heart?

This temporary life is full of various miseries.

Take shelter of the holy name as your only business.

To penetrate the darkness of ignorance and bless everyone's heart,

the holy name has risen like the shining sun"

No comments: