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Passion is to be Felt

Introduction by: Christine Pethel
Poetry Written by: Sri Chimnoy, author, spiritualist, and world activist

This article has been an unusually interesting one for me to write. (That's basically another way of saying, "It's been a bit challenging.") I usually pen this category close to our publishing deadline. I prefer to do it this way, because I'm able to see a more complete picture of all the thoughts and perspectives that have been written by our team. I'm able to then make this an all-encompassing article, an introduction, if you will — yet a digression from them all. In other words, it's a variation of what has already been said, but it embraces all Polite Society's voices.
© Bill Lindsay Photography

This month, however, I've struggled to find a variant of our theme on Passion. The articles that have been written have been so complete and comprehensive, not only in style but in content as well, I have not been able to find a subject I could deviate upon.

So I have chosen this month to simply feature the poetry of a very wise man on the subject of, of course, passion. His words, although simple, are precise. They explain everything I wanted to say in an article, and everything that everyone else has already said, yet he's done it in a much more beautiful way. It couldn't be any more perfect.

These poems are written by an Indian spiritualist and poet by the name of Sri Chinmoy. Chinmoy was born in East Bengal and lived from 1931-2007. He engaged deeply in meditation and spiritual activities early in his life, thereby attaining a state of self-realization, or in other words, an awareness of one's true divine nature. It was during his studies at the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in South India that he experienced his self-realization, as well as excelled in sports and writing. And with only a little encouragement, he began writing poetry in his native tongue of Bengali. He wrote his first poem in English in 1956 called "The Golden Flute."

Over the course of his life, he traveled to America to teach India's spiritual tradition to the Western world, promoting inner and outer peace. He opened "Sri Chinmoy Centres" in over 60 different countries. He promoted world peace and harmony in the world by offering weekly prayers and meditations at the United Nations in New York for 37 years and met with many world leaders, including Russian leader Michael Gorbachev, John Paul II, and Mother Teresa. He was also a prolific artist, musician, and writer and remained very active in sports. He was the founder of the International Sri Chinmoy Marathon Team and World Harmony Run, a global running relay, which seeks to strengthen international friendship and understanding.

One of Sri Chinmoy's greatest talents was his ability to compose poetry. It was a love and a passion of his. Sri Chinmoy said of poetry:

…The poet beckons tomorrow's dream-dawn and then transforms tomorrow's dream-dawn into today's reality-day. It is a deplorable mistake we make when we try to understand poetry. Poetry is not to be understood. Poetry is to be felt. Poetry is to be loved. To try to understand a poem is like touching a rose with innumerable thorns. To try to feel a poem is to lovingly hold a rose without a single thorn. And to love a poem is to grow immediately into the beauty and fragrance of the rose itself…
© Jessica Ceason Photography

The following poems, written by Sri Chimnoy, are to be felt — and to be loved. They will hopefully serve as great beginning for your journey through this month's issue, Passion.


You have a passion for Truth.
Truth is within you.
You have a passion for Light.
Light enlightens you.
You have a passion for Love.
Love immortalises you.

*Excerpt from The Golden Boat, Part 4 by Sri Chinmoy.



From passion to liberation
is man's role.
From Vision to Compassion
is God's Role.

*Excerpt from My Lord's Secrets Revealed by Sri Chinmoy.



Hopeless passion,
Shameless emotion,
Useless desire,
All-blazing fire.

* Excerpt from From The Source To The Source by Sri Chinmoy.



Passion is possession.
Live in the vital,
You will know it.
Passion is frustration.
Live in the mind,
You will feel it.
Passion is perdition.
Live in the heart,
You will discover it.

Passion is not rejection
By God's Compassion.
Passion is illumination
When it shakes hands with aspiration.

*Excerpt from The Dance Of Life, Part 10 by Sri Chinmoy.

*Biography facts courtesy of www.srichimnoypoetry.com
© Bill Lindsay Photography