Shiv Dayal Singh: Song of thanksgiving

I am singing a song of aarti for my ceremony of lights

Because Radha Soami, Lord of the soul, has helped me:

How else can I thank him?


Peace is the aarti platter, the true path the lamp flame,

Equanimity and restraint the pearls decorating the platter.

I thread jewels into a garland and go up to my Lord

And place it round his neck, committing myself to his shelter.


I lay my offering at his feet – the platter of peace,

Resonant with diamonds and rubies and emeralds of Sound.

I’m dressed in the most beautiful clothes I own,

Scented with sandalwood, radiant with the jewels of his love.


I go to him, honeybee to sun-filled lotus flower.

Standing before him, aarti platter and flame in my hands,

I sing a song of thanksgiving for his grace,

Pouring forth unheard melodies from a heart

Happy in his eyes. And the Sounds from the skies ring out,

Chiming till I cannot hold back, and I fly,

Passing fire, air, water – the storehouse of the elements!


Soul crosses moon, sun and the Sukhman passage

To behold the light, the lamp, the flame,

And the one without a stain, Niranjan.

The bell rings on, soul finds it and is drawn by the conch.


Leaving both behind, soul pierces the barrier to Bunk Naal,

The “bent straw” way, and enters Trikuti,

Tasting the thundering roar from the skies.

Awesome sonorous voice calls out:

“Soul, I am a sacrifice at your feet!”


Soul wanders for a while, watching fascinated

In the region of the crimson sky,

And then goes on to the lake of Sunn

And gardens lit with the scent of humming lotus flowers.

Swans gather round, happy companions

Bringing deep delight.


Entering Mahasunn, the Great Darkness,

Soul soars to Sohang in Bhawar Gupha,

Lifted by the joy of the flute.

Then she reaches at last the Region of Truth

And finds her perfect Satguru.


Unknown sounds stream forth

From the playing of the reed

While Satpurush himself shows soul

How to look through the telescope.


Through the doors of Alakh

And into Agam in moments –

I see for myself the realm of Radha Soami!

What can one say? It’s unique.


Standing before him, aarti platter and flame in my hands,

I sing a song of thanksgiving for his grace,

Pouring forth unheard melodies from a heart

Happy in his eyes. And the sounds from the skies ring out

And Radha Soami showers me with compassion

And bestows on me his parshad with a smile,

Making me forever happy. Body, mind, wealth –

None of these is worthy of placing at his feet:

Only diamonds and rubies and emeralds

Resonant with the Sound!


I have already said all I have to say:

My aarti is complete.


Ek aarti kahoo~ banaa’i
Saar Bachan 6:14
English translation by Anthea Guinness, 1990

The imagery in this songpoem comes from aarti, the Hindu ceremony of prayer and thanksgiving that uses small candle lights, incense and various offerings; here, Shiv Dayal Singh uses the images to speak about an inner experience – and the meditator is dressed in their “best clothes” or the clothing of higher consciousness. The names of places are landmarks on the inner journey towards realization at the highest levels of consciousness – accessible inside each one of us, say the mystics, under the guidance of an expert, a satguru (true teacher).


Creative Commons License
MYSTIC SONGPOEMS by Anthea Guinness (Translator) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

3 comments on “Shiv Dayal Singh: Song of thanksgiving

  1. antheag05 says:

    Hi Emilio – Share from the heart. Write about something you are sincerely passionate about. Best wishes – AG

  2. Randy says:

    Your style is so unique in comparison to other folks I’ve read stuff from. Many thanks for posting when you’ve got the opportunity, Guess I will just book mark this page.

    • antheag05 says:

      Hi Randy – Thank you for your interest. You’re welcome to “follow” and get notifications of new postings. Look for the + sign in a circle, lower right side of your screen. Best wishes – AG

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