Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Yashodhara's crying heart (Narasimha gatha)

Recently I searched the Internet for either Sinhala or English translation of Narasimha/Narasiha/Naraseeha Gatha (composed in Pali language), neither could I find. Then, I thought of translating it into simple English so the interested people (specially foreigners) can understand this beautiful chanting full of love (and passion). I am sure the Buddhists (specially Sri Lankan Buddhists) already know about the story behind this, but others might not. Therefore, I'll briefly describe it.

The mighty beautiful prince Siddhartha was married at the young age of 16 to the beautiful princess Yashodhara. They lived very happily together till the prince turned 29 years old, when he abnegated and left all the worldly comforts, things, and matters to search for the ultimate liberation or the Englightenment ("moksha" as it is known). When he left, his beloved wife had just given birth to his only son too. Then, with great efforts, pains, learning, determination, and deliberations, he attained the Enlightenment at the age of 35. It is said, during this period (roughly six years), even the princess Yashodhara abnegated all the comforts whilst staying in the palace - sleeping on floor, eating rough foods, wearing just a yellowish robe, and so on. This shows how much she had loved and devoted for her husband. Some time later, the Buddha and His disciples were invited to come to the palace by the Buddha's father, king Suddhodhana. The Buddha and hundreds of His disciples ("Bhikkus" as they are known) are now coming very gently, and the Yashodhara and her child are watching this spectacular glorious scene, standing on the balcony of the palace. She sees her husband (the Buddha). I don't know what kind of feelings she might have been having at the moment, but whatever they are, it's beyond words for me. Even thinking about it is able to arrest my breath. Just then, she appreciates her prince, husband, the child's father, showing Him to the child (with the reciting of "Narasimha gaatha").


Here, a Bangladeshi girl recites the Narasimha gatha.
 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SqS72k2cWBc&feature=share

Following is the translation thereof.



His pair of soles (feet) shines red, decorated with beautiful auspicious signs, and with long ankles. His feet beautifully look like the vivid peacock feathers. Oh Son, there comes your father.

Born in the noble royal caste of "Shaakya", the gentle prince with beautiful signs and features all over the body abandoned (the worldly comforts) for the betterment of the entire world. Son, look there comes your father.

Like the full moon shining on the dark sky, giving bliss to all humans and gods alike, look son, there comes your father in gait of a kingly elephant.

Born in a royal family, yet he receives homage from all humans and gods. He instills (in their minds) tranquility, concentration. Son, your father comes there, behold.

His eyes are bluish, with a beautiful upright nose. His eyebrows curve like rainbows. There comes your father, my son.

His personality can be likened to that of a kingly lion, but his gentleness that of a (innocent) deer. His whole body shines vibrantly. Son, that's your father coming there.

His voice is smooth and resonant. His tongue is beautifully reddish. He has twenty bright white teeth in each jaw beautifully aligned. It's your father coming there my son.

His black hair shines bluish. His forehead radiates beauty, with an auspicious and beautiful spiral-like sign on the forehead. His entire body radiates, my son.

Like the radiating full moon in the sky surrounded by twinkling stars, the Buddha (your father) radiates amidst his disciples. Oh my son, behold your father comes there.



නරසීහ/නරසිම්හ ගාථා...

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