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“Appearances change. Stories change. Roles change. But you remain the same. Who is that you?”

POEMS
Rahmen1

Why ask only the hardworking doer in myself
When so many more interesting people
Live in the many rooms of my beautiful house?

Why not meet the visionary under the roof
Who can show me exciting new horizons?

Or make an appointment with the adventurer
Who will insist that real life
Starts only when I dare to
be more of who I am.

Or the philosopher who will ask,
“Have you considered another perspective?”
Or the singer who will laugh and say,
“Sing kirtan and let your soul rise.”

Why limit myself to that list-ticking housekeeper
with his tunnel vision — spinning on a hamster wheel.
Are there not so many more inspiring people in my house
Who know the way upwards into the world of ecstatic love?

Sound the bell of eagerness – and
He will open the door
Bow low – and
He will raise you higher than heaven
Surrender all – and
He will give you Himself
and everything He has.

When will I feel Your name
pulsating with life
like a young bird
in my open palms?

When will Your name
taste like yogurt and ice cream
on my thirsty tongue, which is
exhausted by the tastes of this world?

When will I stop offering You
broken repetitions of Your names
because my love is still divided
between You and the world?

What is the use of words
which do not enliven the heart
and give wings to the soul?
Without poesy it is almost impossible to express the subtleties of the spiritual reality.
(Sacinandana Swami)

Sweet is my Lords form
sweeter is His face.
Most sweet though is His nectarian smile
(Bilvamangala Thakura)
 
Dear L.,
it’s evening and
the air is warm, blended with exotic odors
and temple bells.
In the trees monkeys and peacocks
rustle, preparing for night.
You ask where I’m writing from.
I’m on the most amazing journey you can imagine –
the greatest human adventure, demanding my best and more.
 
My maps are five thousand years old books
and my hope
as old as the soul itself.
 
I seek the one with the thousands of names.
People I meet tell me my aspirations are unreasonable,
naïve, even arrogant. I must admit
sometimes I think they’re right
and I cry in desperation as I fall asleep.
Will I ever reach my destination?
 
Frankly, I have no proof – certainly
no guarantees – but strangely,
enthusiasm and faith stay on like friends
even though I’ve never heard His voice –
at least not in a way I could make a recording of.
Still, whenever I call His name He seems right there.
When I make an offering to Him He reciprocates
by infusing me with a feeling of deep satisfaction.
And whenever I remember Him, I am instantly free
from anxiety.
 
Although I’ve never really seen Him
He feels just a prayer away. And
in rare moments I have to hide my face
since feelings I have never felt before
flood my eyes with tears.
Have I gone mad?
(I wish I would!)
 
Why am I writing all this to you?
Because I want you to wish me well.
Forgive me if I’ve ever hurt you.
Absolve me of my debts if you can.
And think of me now as living on the other side
of life because I have reached a point
of no return. The voyage has taken hold of me.
 
There is a space in the heart
Where everything meets.
Come here if you want to find Me
Mind, soul, God and eternity – all are there.
Are you there?
 
Enter the space of vastness that is in the heart
Listen to the song that is always resonating there.
Give yourself to it with total abandon
Quiet ecstasy is there –
And a steady, regal sense
Of resting in a perfect spot.
 
You who are the embodiment of the highest blessings
Once you know the way
You will always be called to return.
 
Again and again answer that call
And be satisfied with knowing,
„I belong here, I am at home.“
(The Vedas)
 
Fall on the ground
and He will lift you higher than the heavens
 
Surrender all
and He will give you more than you could imagine
 
Call His Name meekly
and He will open the door wider than the oceans
(June, 2013)
 
Have patience
with everything unresolved in your heart
and to try to love the questions themselves
as if they were locked rooms
or books written in a very foreign language.
Don´t search for the answers,
which could not be given to you now,
because you would not be able to live them.
And the point is, to live everything.
Live the questions now.
Perhaps then,
someday far in the future,
you will gradually,
without even noticing it,
live your way
into the answer.
(Rainer Maria Rilke, from a letter dated 23 April 1903)
 
Today – you are the first day of the rest of my life
I greet you with gratitude and full attention
Yesterday has already gone
Tomorrow has not yet come
It is you and you alone who stays by my side
Let me take care of you now
Again and again, for the rest of my life
 
When your love is finally free from attachments and needs,
without any demands, just ready to give abundantly in charity
then a shabby beggar dressed in rags will have become an emperor.
Like a bird set free from its caged confines,
it will be able to fly upwards
and sing unceasingly for the pleasure of the Lord.
 
Capture me,
Take me into the prison house of Your love,
Bind my heart with the sweetness of Your name,
For otherwise I shall never be free.
 

"Real love only flows
when we move out of the center
and put Krishna there."