Lal Ded's Vakhs

Lal Ded
Lal Ded

Listen to Lal Vakhs


Vakhs 66-138

66. of JK and 55. of BNP

diiva vattaa divur vattaa
Peythha bvona chuy ikavaathh:
Puuz kas karakh huutt bhattaa,
Kar manas ta pavanas sangaatth.

The idol is but stone,
The temple is but stone,
From top to bottom all is stone.
Whom will you worship, O stubborn* Pandit ?
Let praana and the mind unite
(as an offering to your God).#

* huutta, adjective, is probably from
Sanskrit hatth, akin to Hindhi hatthi
and huudd. cf., LV, 17, learned.
# Reference to yogic praanaagnihotra.

67. of JK and 56. of BNP

kush posh tel diiph zal naa gatshe
Sadbhaava gwara kath yus mani heye,
Shambhuhas swari neyth panani yatshe,
Suy dapize sahaza akriyi, na zeyye.

He does not need the kusa grass,
nor sesame seed;
Flowers and water He does not need.
He who, in honest faith, accepts
his Guru's word,
On Siva meditates constantly,
He, full of joy, from action freed,
will not be born again.*

* Var., LVRB, 45: say da'py-ze sahazaakriye (His is the true worship of the Lord) is the better reading.

68. of JK and 71. of BNP

kus push ta kwasa pushaa'nii ?
Kam kusam lagizeys puuze ?
Kami sara goadd dizeys zaldani,
Kava sana mantra Shankara swaatma vuze.

Who is the florist, who the flower-girl ?
With what flowers should He be worshipped ?
In what water should He be bathed ?
With what mantra should we awaken Shankara,
Who abides in the Self ?

69. of JK and 72 of BNP

man push tay yatsh pushaa'nii
Bhaavaki kusam lagizeys puuze,
Shisharas goadd dizeys zaldaani,
Tshwapi mantra Shankara swaatam-vuze.

Mind is the florist, Devotion the flower-girl,
who bring flower-wreaths for Him.
He should be worshipped with the flowers
of faith,
And bathed in the nectar of the Mystic Moon.
Silence is the mantra that awakens Him;
(And, in the deep stillness of the mind,
He wakes up in the inmost Self).

70. of JK and 57 of BNP

gagan tsu'y bhuutal tsu'y,
Tsu'y chukh deyn pavan ta raath,
Arg tsanndun, posh poyni tsu'y
Tsu'y chuk soruy ta laagizi kyaah ?

Thou art the earth, Thou art the sky,
Thou art the air, the day and the night;
The sacrificial corn Thou,
And unction of the sandal-paste.
Thou art the water, Thou art the flowers,
Thou art all these and everything.
What may I, in worship, bring to Thee ?

71. of JK and NKK, and 54. of BNP

dwaadashaanta manddal yas diivas thaji
Naasikaa pavan Anaahatta rav;
Swayam kalpan anti tsaji.
Paanay su Diiva; ta artsun kas ?

He who knows the Dvaadashaanta Manddala*
as the abode of God,
And knows the constant Sound# that is borne upon
the praana rising from the heart to the nose,
All vain imaginings flee from his mind,
without effort, naturally;
He knows no God other than the Self,
nor need he worship any other god.

* 'mandal': orb, disc, sphere, of 'dvaadashaanta' or locality of it; 'dvaadashaantah', a measure of twelve fingers; literally, the end of twelve fingers, here the distance found by measuring. Cf. aadikotih: hrdayam, antakotih: dvaadashaantah; tayoh praanollaasavishhraantyavsare cittaniveshanena parishiilanam- PR, pp. 88-89, 135. The praana starts at the point of hrdaya (praanollaasa) and ends (vishhraanti) at dvaadashaanta, i.e., at a distance of twelve fingers from it. Also called anatahdvaadashaanta, i.e., the heart, and baahirdvaadashaanta, twelve fingers' distance from it. See also Svacchanda Tantram (KSTS, 38) p. 65, verse 111; and Vijnaana Bhairava (KSTS, 8) verse 49, 51.
# Sans. anaahata, the eternal sound, self-created, the mystic syllable OM.

72. of JK and 28. of BNP

akuy Omkaar yas naabi* dhare
Kumbhay Brahmaannddas sum gare;
Akh suy manthr tseytas kare,
Tas saas manthr kyaah kare.

He in whose navel constantly abides
none other than the One Omkaar,
Who builds a bridge between his own
and Cosmic Consciousness#,
By making mind one with this mighty spell-
What need has he for a thousand other spells ?

* naabi: navel, cf. "paraavaak mulacakrastha, pashyantii naabhiisamsthitaa..."

# Brahmaanda, lit, Brahma's egg, the universe,  used also of brahmarandhra in the crown of the head. Lit., a bridge between the manipura cakra and brahma-randhra, with Omkaar as the mantra; fig., between kumbha(ghatta, the individual) and Brahmaanda, the Cosmic Whole. Var. LV, 34: For whom the kumbhaka exercise formeth a bridge to the Brahma-randhra.

It is said that no mantra is complete without OM in it and the practice of the mantra OM on your own without a Guru is discouraged.

73. of JK and 12. of BNP

Shiv vaa Keshava vaa Zin vaa
Kamalajanaath naamadhaarin yuh,
Mey abali kaastan bhavaraoz,
Su vaa su vaa su vaa suh.

Shiva or Keshva or Jina,*
Or Brahma, the lotus-born Lord,
Whatever name He bear,
May He remove from me
the sickness of the world !
It may be He or He or He
(For He is One though called variously).

* The Buddha. In later Sanskrit literature "Jina" is used for the Buddha.

74. of JK and NKK, and 32. of BNP

Lal bo luutshu's tshaanddaan ta gaaraan
Hal mey kormas rasanishiti;
Vuchun hyotmas taari diientthmas baran
Meyti kal ganeyam zi zogmas tati.

I, Lalla, searched and sought for Him,
And even beyond my strength I strove.
Finding His doors bolted and barred
I longed the more;
And firmly resolved, I stood just there
with longing and love,
Fixing my gaze upon His door.

75. of JK and NKK

lolu'ki vwakhli vaa'linj pishim

In the mortar of love I ground my heart,
I parched and burnt and ate it out.
Thus, all my evil passions removed,
I sat serene and unperturbed.
Yet still I doubt if I can know
Whether I shall die or I shall live
(and find release from birth and death).

76. of JK and 36. of BNP

sahazas sham ta dam na gatshi
Yatshi no praavakh muktiidwaar:
Salilas lavan zan miilith gatshe,
Toti chuy durlabh sahaza veytsaar.

Not by ascetic practices is the Self realized;
Nor by desire* can you gain
the Portals of Release.
In contemplation you may be absorbed
as salt in water,
Yet hard it is for you to gain
the true knowledge of the Self.

77. of JK and NKK

zanu'ni zaayaay ru'ty tay ku'tiy

Plump and comely were they born,
Causing their mother's womb great pain;
Yet to the womb they come again.
Siva indeed is hard to reach;
Pray, heed the doctrine this teaches you.*

* that is, take a lesson from this and reflect upon it.

78. of JK and NKK

ywasay shiil piitthas ta pattas

Itself a part of the rocky earth,
It is the self-same stone that makes
A pavement, seat or pedestal,
Or a mill-stone for a grinding mill.
Siva indeed is hard to reach;
Then heed the doctrine this teaches you.

The obvious doctrine this teaches us is that our true self is the spirit, which is all pervading like the stone in earth which has assumed various forms, shapes and sizes.

79. of JK and NKK

rav mata thali thali taa'pytan

Will the sun not shine on all alike
But give heat only to holy lands ?
Will Varuna* not visit all homes alike
But visit only the homes of the good ?
Siva indeed is hard to reach;
Then heed the doctrine this teaches you.

*The god of water.

80. of JK and 29. of BNP

zaanahaa' naaddi-dal mana ra'ttith
Tsattith vattith kuttith kaliish;
Zaanaha ada astah rasaayan gattith,
Shivachuy kruutth ta tsen vopadiish.

If I knew how to control my naaddi-s,*
How to sever them from the pull of desire,
How to bind them to the inner Self,
How to cut the bonds of sorrow,
I should have known how to compound
the Elixir of Life.
Siva indeed is hard to reach;
Then heed the doctrine this teaches you.

* The tubes through which the vital airs circulate of which the principal ones are ten, cf. dashi naadi vaav, the vital airs of ten naaddi-s, Infra No. 91.

81. of JK and NKK

yihay maaira-ruup pay diye

As mother a woman suckles a baby,
As wife she dallies amorously in love,
As maayaa she takes one's life in the end-
And yet in all these forms a woman she.
Siva indeed is hard to reach;
Then heed the doctrine this teaches you.

82. of JK and NKK

Shiv chury zaa'vyul zaal vaahraa'vith

Like a tenuous web Siva spreads Himself,
Penetrating all frames of all things.
If while alive, you cannot see Him,
How can you see Him after death ?
Think deep and sift the true Self from the self.

83. of JK and 48. of BNP

tuu'r salil kho'tt taa'y tuu're
Heymi trey gay byon-abyon veymarsha;
Tsetani rav bhaati sab same,
Shivamay tsraatsar zag pashya.

When water freezes in the cold,
it turns to snow and ice.*
Reflect, O man, that one becomes
three different things#;
And when the sun of pure Consciousness shines,
The world of living and lifeless things,
the universe and whatever exists,
are, in the Supreme, seen as one.

*SSV, p.98, lines 4-5, jala himan ca yo veda...
#byan: maayaa (multiplicity); byanaabyan: vidyaa (unity in multiplicity): abyan: Shakti (unity). Or, respectively, idam idam, aham idam, aham.

84. of JK and 61 of BNP

ase pwande zwase zaame
Neythay snaan kari tiirthan;
Vahari vaharas no'nuy aase,
Nishi chuy ta parzaantan.

Laughing sneezing, coughing, yawning,
Bathing in sacred pools,
Going about unclothed throughout the year*, He is about you all the time-
In all these forms recognize Him.

VAR. LVRB nonuy aase: He is to be seen in all these activities all the year round. He is close to you as yourself, "pashyaatmadevam nijideha eva." Also see KSTS 8, sloka 118. "kshutaadyante bhaye shoke ... brahmasattamayii dashaa, taam tatra tatra avasare vimarshya..."

85. of JK and 45. of BNP

baan go'l tay prakash aav zuune
Tsaendr go'l tay mo'tuy tseyth;
Tseyth go'l tay keynhti na kune;
Gay Bhoor Bhwaah Swaah veysarzith keyth.

The sun sets, the moon begins to shine*;
The moon sets the mind alone is left;
The mind dissolved, nothing remains;
Earth, atmosphere and sky# depart,
(And in the Supreme are absorbed).

* Praanaa the sun moving upwards, apaana the moon moving downwards. Cf., "praanaatmaa ravih uurdhva-mukhatvena caran; taalvaadi-aatmani antare sthitah; candrah apaanaatma adhomukhatvena..."- Tantraaloka (KSTS 36), Vol. IV, pp. 26-28.
# Bhuuh, Bhuvah, Svah.

86. of JK and 37. of BNP

mal vwandi zolum
jigar morum
Teli Lal naav draam
Yeli dali travimas tati.

I burnt the foulness of my soul,
I slew my heart, its passions all,
I spread my garment's hem, and sat
just there, on bended knees,
in utter surrender unto Him.
My fame as Lalla spread afar.

87. of JK

latan hund maaz laaryom vatan

The soles of my feet wore off on the roads
while I wandered in search of Him.
Then lo ! on a sudden, I saw
That He was all and everywhere,
I had nowhere to go in search of Him.
This was the Truth of a hundred truths.
Whoever learn of it, will they not wonder ?
Will they not be mad for joy ?

88. of JK and 35. of BNP

po't zuuni vo'thith mo't bolanovum
Dag Lalanaovam Dayisannzi prahe;
Lali Lali karaan lal vuzunovum,
Miilith tas shrotsyom dahe.

In the last watch of the moonlit night,
remonstrating with my wayward mind,
I soothed my pain with the love of God.
Gently, gently, accosting myself,
"O Lalla, Lalla, Lalla",
I woke my Love, my Lord and Master,
In whom absorbed, my mind was cleansed
of its defilement by the Ten.*

* The ten indriya-s, dahe, five organs of sense and five organs of action. Var., dihe: Even my body was purified.

89. of JK and 41. of BNP

tanthu'r gali tay manthu'r mwatse
Manthr go'l tay mwo'tuy tseyth,
Tseyth go'l tay kehhti na kune,
Shuunyas Shuunyaah miilith gav.

Let go the sacred tantra rites*,
Only the mantra sound remains.
And when the mantra sound departs,
Only the citta is left behind.
Then lo ! the citta itself is gone,
And there is nothing left behind;
The void merges in the Void
(the silent citta in Pure Consciousness.)#

* cf., LV 11, texts, holy books.
# LVRB 11, drashttaa shishyate citsvaruupam: For "shunya goes to shunya", see chapter 5, supra, p.82; shunya is not emptiness.

90. of JK and 43. of BNP

luub maarun sahaz vyatsaarun
Dro'g zaanun kalpan traav;
Nishi chuy tay duur mo gaarun;
Shuunyas Shuunyaah miilith gav.

Realization is rare indeed:
Seek not afar, it is near, by you.
First slay Desire, then still the mind,
giving up vain imaginings;
Then meditate on the Self within,
And lo ! the void merges in the Void.
(The citta merges in the Cit.)

91. of JK and 42. of BNP

tsitta-twarug vagi hyath ro'ttum
Tseylith milavith dashinaaddi vaav,
Tavay Sheyshikal veyglith vatsham;
Shuunyas Shuunyaah miilith gav.

I reined in the steed of the mind,
And, by constant practice, brought together
the praana-s coursing the ten naaddi-s.
Then the nectar of the Mystic Moon
flowed down, suffusing my whole being,
And the void merged in the Void,
(The stilled mind merged in Pure Consciousness).

92. of JK

sa'ts-sas na saatas pa'ts-sas na rumas

On nothing else I built my hopes,
In nothing else I put my trust-
My vaakh* brought me the wine I drank,
My vaakh gave me the strength to seize
The darkness that within me lurked.
I rolled it up and knocked it down,
And tore it to pieces (dissipating
the darkness of my soul)

* Verse-sayings of Lalla.

93. of JK and NKK, and 38. of BNP

she' van tsa'ttith shashikal vuzu'm
Prakrat hu'zum pavana saeti;
Lolaki naara vaolinj buzam,
Shankar lobum tamiy saeti.

Cutting my way through Six Forests*,
I came upon the Digit of the Moon+.
By means of the practice of praanaapaana#,
The world of matter shrank for me.
Then roasting my heart in the fire of love,
I found my God.

* LV: Cakra-s. LVRB:''kaamaadikam kaanena shattkam etat'', i.e., kaama, krodha lobha, moha, mad and ahankaara.
+ Sahasraara (top of the head)
#lit., pavan (vital airs); but see LV: ''by controlling my vital airs...''

94. of JK and 53. of BNP

Omkaar ye'li layi o'num
Vuhay ko'rum panun paan;
Shu-vt travith sath-marg ro'tum,
Teyli Lal bo'h va'tsas Prakaashasthan.

When I became one with the Supreme Word*,
My body blazed as red-hot coal+,
Then I gave up the Path of the Six#,
and betook myself to the straight true Path^,
Which led me to the Abode of Light.

* Aum
+Such blazing is an actual experience. It does not mean burning out impurity or selfhood.
# ''SSaddadhva'' six paths according to AAnavopaaya of Trika Darshana, viz varna, mantra, pada, kalaa tatva and bhuvana.
^She has now taken to the Shaambhavopaaya, the straight easy path which requires no rigorous saadhana. PR, pp. 20 & 83 (sukhopaayameva), for Var., see LV. 82.

95. of JK and 67. of BNP

he gwaraa parameshwaraa
Baavtam tseyyi chuy antar vyo'd;
Dwashavay vo'padaan kanda-puraa
Huh kava turun ta haah kava to't ?

O Guru, you are as a god to me,
Tell me, you know the secret truth.
Both Praana-s rise from 'Kandapura',
the ''place of the Bulb'', the navel region,
Why is haah hot, why is huh cold ?

96. of JK and NKK, and 68. of BNP

naabisthaana chay prakrath zalavu'nii
Brahmasthaanas shishirun mwakh,
Brahmaandas chay nad vahavani,
Tavay turun 'huh','haah' gav to't.

At the navel region is the Place of the Sun,
Where Prakriti glows as hot as fire;
From here hot breath rises to the throat.
At the crown of the head is the Place of the Moon,
From here cool nectar down the naaddi-s flows,
Thus haah is hot, and huh is cold.

97. of JK

Lal bo draayas lolare

For love that would not let me be,
I, Lalla, set forth in search of Him.
And toiled and toiled for days and nights.
Then lo ! the most auspicious moment of life-
I saw the Pandit in my own home.

98. of JK and 33 & p. 204 2nd Vakh in BNP

dama dama ko'rmas daman aaye*
Prazalyom daph ta naneyam zaath;
Andrium Prakaash neybar tsho'ttum,
Gatti ro'tum ta karmas thaph.

Gently, gently, I trained my mind
to suspend its processes and thoughts.#
Then (in the windless calm), the flame of the Lamp,
shining steady and bright,
Revealed my true nature unto me.
In the dark recesses of my soul+
I seized upon Him and held Him fast.
Then I diffused the inner light,
(and within, without, all was Light).

* & # Var., LV. 4"slowly, slowly, did I stop my breath in the bellows-pipe (of the throat)'' damaadam ko'rmas daman-haale.
+ Gatti,"in the darkness itself.'' Better reading LVRB: svasmindehe (in my ownself).

99. of JK and NKK, and 46. of BNP

tshaanddaan luutshu's paa'ny paanas
Tsheypith Jnaanas votum na kuuntsh (kaanh);
Lay karmas ta vatsas alsthaanas,
Bari bari baana ta cheyvaan na kuunh (kaanh).

Searching the Self, I wearied myself;
For none by searching ever gained
The secret knowledge beyond the mind.
I stopped searching, and love led me
to the Tavern* door.
There I found wine jars aplenty,
But none desiring to drink from them.

* 'al-thaan', the abode of amrita (nectar), of the Supreme, which is also in the Self of man though he wearies himself searching Him everywhere else.

100. of JK and 51. of BNP

makuris zan mal tso'lum manas
Ada mey labam zanas zaan,
Suh yeli dyuuenthhum nishi paanas
Soruy suy ta bo'h no kea'h

Foulness from my mind was cleared
as ashes from a mirror,
Then recognition of Him came to me
unmistakable and clear.
And when I saw Him close by me,
He was all and I was not,
(and there was nothing else).





101. of JK and NKK, and 96. of BNP

karu'm zu' kaaran tre' ko'mbith*
Yava labakh paraluukas annkh
Vo'th khas Surya-manndal tso'mbith,
Tavay tsaliy maranun sheynkh.

Do away with karma-s two# and causes three+,
and you will be honored in the world to come.
Arise, ascend and cut through the Sun's orb^,
and you will overcome the fear of death.

* Var., LV, 75:''by practising kumbhaka yoga.''
# Good and bad.
+ The three mala-s, impurities, that bring, viz., aanavamala, of finitude; maayiyiimala, of multiplicity; kaarmamala, of resultant pleasure
and pain from karma.
^Surya-maddala, through which the soul has to pass on its way to the Supreme; the Kundalini has to cut its way from Muulaadhaara through Manipua, the seat of Agni, to Sahasraara, the seat of the Moon, the abode of Siva.

102. of JK and 97. of BNP

gyaanu'ky ambar puu'rith tane
Yim pad Lali dapi tim hreydi annkh;
Kaarana Prnavaki layi ko'r Lalle
Tseyth-jyoti kaosan maranun sheynkh

In the robe of Jnaana clad,
On the tablet of her heart engraved
the words that Lalla spoke,
And by means of the mystic syllable OM,
Lalla merged in her 'Cit-Jyoti',
The luminous light of pure Consciousness;
And thus dispelled the fear of death.

103. of JK and 100. of BNP

shuun-yuk maa'daan ko'ddum paanas,
Mey, Lalli, ruuzam na bwad na hosh;
Veyzay sapanis paanay paanas,
Ada kami hili+ phoal Lalli pamposh !

I traversed the vastness of the Void alone,
leaving behind me reason and sense,
Then came upon* the secret of the Self;
And, all on a sudden, unexpectedly,
In mud+ the lotus bloomed for me.

* lit.. I became a confidante of my Self.
+ Kashmiri hyal, dirty ground, covered with litter, mud, dirt used as manure. Or, variant, hil, an aquatic weed abundantly growing in Dal Lake. Figurative: What was valueless (my body or myself) became precious and a thing of beauty and joy.

104. of JK and NKK

samsaaras aayas tapasii

A tapasvin into the world came I,
And Bodha illumined my path to the Self.*
Alike for me is life and death:
Happy to ]ive and happy to die,
I mourn for none, none mourns for me.+

* Var., LV, 35. Also LVRB, 34. "praaptaa vishuddham sahajam prabodham", where sahaja as an adjective qualifies prabodham.
+ lit., I die for none, none dies for me. Cf., Utpala's Siva Strotavali, xiii. 3: ... tishttatah satatam arcitah prabhum jiivitam mrataam athaanyath astu me".

105. of JK and NKK

Lal bo draayas kapsi poshici sa'tsu'y (LV, 102 & 103)

Hoping to bloom like a cotton flower,
I, Lalla, set forth in the colourful world.
But soon the cleaner and the carder came
and gave me hard knocks and blows.
Spun into a gossamar yarn
by a woman spinner on her spinning wheel,
I was helplessly hung upon a loom,
and given more knocks from the weaver's broom.

Now turned into cloth, I was dashed and dashed
by the washerman on the washing-stone.
Then into a large mortar made of stone,
he threw me, and with his grimy feet,
rubbed me with fuller's earth and soap.
The tailor now worked his scissors on me,
and cut me with care, piece by piece.
Thus was it that I, Lalla, at last
entered the High Estate of God.

106. of JK and NKK

raaza-hams aa'sith sapudukh ko'luy

Thou wert a royal swan once,
now turned mute*.
Someone, it seems, has run off with
something of thine.
When the mill-stone stopped, the grain channel
was choked with grain,
And away ran the miller with the grain.

Note a royal swan is also a syomble of a parmahamsa: God in human form having all human qualities and God
awareness.
* at seeing something that has struck Lalla dumb. Lalla has seen, but she cannot describe what she has seen. Has she had a glimpse of vishvaruupaa, the Cosmic Form, its indescribable splendour and awe, so that she, who was vocal till now, cannot speak? That something has taken away her powers of speech (SLK, p. 65). cf., LV, 8

107. of JK and 62. of BNP

prathu'y tiirthan gatshaan sa'ny-yaa'sy,
Gwaaraan Swadarshan myul;
Tseyta parith mo nishpath aas,
Denshakh duure dramun nyuul.

The pilgrim sannyasin goes from shrine to shrine,
Seeking to meet Him who abides within himself.
Knowing the truth, O soul, be not misled;
It is distance that makes the turf look green,

108. of JK and 76. of BNP

kandyav geh te'zy kandyav vanvaas,
Veyphoal, man na rattith ta vaas;
Deyn-raath gaenzarith panun shwaas,
Yuthuy chukh ta tyuthuy aas

Some leave their home, some the hermitage,
But the restless mind knows no rest.
Then watch your breath, day and night,
And stay where you are.

109. of JK and 77. of BNP

kalan Kaalazaa'ly yo'dvay tse go'l,
Veyndiv geyh vaa veyndiv vanvaas;
Zanith sarvagath Prabhu amol;
Yuthuy zaanakh tyuthuy aas.

Should you destroy vain imaginings, desires,
which form the very web of time;
Should you realize the Lord, all-pervading
and yet untouched and pure,
You may live the life of a householder,
Or a hermit's life in a hermitage,
living the truth that you have known.

110. of JK and 75. of BNP

Shiv Shiv karaan hamsa-gath so'rith
Ruuzith veywahari deyn kyoha raath
Laagi-rost yus man karith
Tasi netyh prasan Suura-Guruunaath.

Constantly invoking the name of Siva,
Meditating on the Way of the Swan*,
From attachment and duality set free -
Such a one, even if busily engaged
in the affairs of the world, both day and night,
Wins the favour of the God of gods.

* Mystic name for "Soham" (I am He) which reversed, becomes "Hamsa" (Swan), sometimes used to denote Paramasiva.

111. of JK and 87. of BNP

kenh chiy ne'ndriha'tiy vudiy,
Keantsan vudeyn neysar peyyiy,
Kenh chiy snasn karith aputi,
Kenh geyh bazith ti akryiy,

Some though asleep are yet awake;
Some though awake are yet asleep;
Despite ablutions some are unclean;
Despite householders' active life,
Some, by their actions, are untouched.

112. of JK and 88-A. of BNP

zal thamuno hutva turnavano
Uurda gamano par-varzeyt carit
kaattha deni dwad shramanaavano
Anti sakalo kapatth careyth.

To stop a running stream, to cool a raging fire,
To roam the skies on sandalled feet,
To milk a wooden cow -
All this is fraud and jugglery.

113. of JK and 59. of BNP

yath saras* sarpho'l na ve'tsiy,
Tath sari sakalay poani ceyn;
Mrag, sragaal, gannddi, zalhasti,
Zeyn naa zeyn ta toutuy peyn.

To the lake* too small even for a mustard seed,
All living beings come to quench their thirst;
And into it, as soon as born,
keep falling, falling,
Deer, jackal, rhinoceros, sea-elephants
and all.

* Of earthly existence, as against the Eternal.

114. of JK and 58. of BNP

tre'yi ne'ngi saraah sa'ry-saras,
Aki neyngi saras arshas ja'ay;
Harmukha kaunsara* akh sum saras,
Sati neyngi saras Shunyaahkaar.

Three times the lake overflowed its shore;
Once its waters and the sky did meet
From Haramukh to Kaunsar* in one vast sheet.
Seven times I saw the lake vanishing in the void.
I remember having seen, in former lives,
through aeons of time,
These dissolutions of the worlds and their rebirth.

* From Haramukh mountain in the north to Kausarnag in the south.

115. of JK and NKK

mad pyuvum syanda-zalan yaitu

However many parts I played upon the stage,
However often I quaffed that wine,
the water of the Syand*,
However many lumps of human flesh I ate,
Yet I am the same Lalla still.
What profiteth it all to me ?

* A tributary of the Jhelum in Kashmir.
Note that eating the human flesh is a part of sixty-four main Tantric Sadhana. The idea is to get rid of vritti's (habbits of the mind) such as attachments to ones body, etc. I have no practical experience with such eating but see Sri Ramakrishna the great master by Swami Saradananda, translated by Swami Jagadananda. Sri Ramakrishna Math, Mayapore, Madras.

116. of JK and NKK

a'sii aa'sy ta a'sii aasav

In time past, we were;
In time future, we shall be;
Throughout the ages, we have been.
For ever the sun rises and sets;
For ever Siva creates, dissolves,
and creates again.

117. of JK and 49. of BNP

dyan tshe'zi ta razan aase,
Bhuutal gaganas kun vikaase,
Tsaendar Rahu-grras maavase;
Shiva puuzun gav cita-aatmase.

When the light of the day is quenched
in the darkness of the night,
The earth extends to meet and dissolve
in the ethereal sky,
And (on amaavasya*) all is blank and dark eclipse.
But (strange!) Raahu, the Demon of eclipse,
is swallowed by the New-born Moon.
The illumination of Cit-Atman
is the true worship of Siva, the Supreme.

* On the amaavasya of solar eclipse, Raahu is supposed, by popular tradition, to swallow the sun. But, says Lalla, that the seeker who treads the path has the experience of the manifested universe, the sun and the sky and all the worlds, vanishing and becoming one with the unmanifested all-pervading Akshara. There, for the moment, it seems to be "dark, irretrievably dark" in the great Void; but soon it is lit up by the New-born Moon, the Paraa-Samvit, which is the illumination of the Higher Consciousness revealing the abode of the Supreme Siva.

118. of JK and 52. of BNP

tsidaanandas gyaanaprakaashas,
Yimav tsyuun tim zivantay-mukt;
Veyshmas samsaaranis paashas,
Abodhy gaenddaah sheyth-sheyth dith.

They who have known the Supreme Self,
Cidaananda Jnaanaprakaasha,
(compact of the Bliss of Pure Consciousness
and Light of Knowledge Absolute) -
They are the Jivan-mukta-s (who,
while alive, have found release
from ever-recurring birth and death).
The ignorant add knot to knot, in hundreds,
to the tangled web of samsaara,
its recurrent birth,
its recurrent death.

119. of JK and 69. of BNP

kus dingi ta kus zaagi ?
Kus sar vatri teliy ?
Kus Haras puuzi laagi ?
Kus Paramapad meliy ?

Who dozes off ? Who is alert ?
What lake constantly oozeth away ?
What should be offered in worship to God ?
What supreme station should one gain ?

120. of JK and 70. of BNP

man dingi ta akul* zaagi,
Daddiy Sar pancayaendi vatri teliy,
Svaveytsara poani Haras puuzi laagi,
Paramapad tsiitnaa Shiva meliy.

It is the mind that dozeth off:
It is the Akula* Transcendent that is ever alert.
The mighty senses are the lake
constantly oozing out,
constantly filled again.
The constant awareness of the Self
is worship befitting the Lord,
And Sivahood the supreme station
man should gain.

* Paramasiva beyond the Kula, the thirty-six Tattva-s, the universe.

121. of JK and 65. of BNP

Shiva gur tay Keshav palanas
Brahma paayreyn vavlaseys
Yuugi yuuga kali parzaaneys
Kus Diiva ashwavaar peytth ceyddeys ?

Siva is the horse,
Vishnu holds the saddle,
And Brahma the stirrups.
It is the yogi who,
in the light of his yoga, knows
Which god can mount the horse ?

122. of JK and 66. of BNP

anaahata kha-swaruup shuunyaalay
Yas naav na varan na guthr na ruup
Aham vimarsha Naada-Binduy yas voan,
Suy Diiva ashwavaar peytth ceyddeys (khotus).

He who is the eternal 'Anaahata',
The ever-unobstructed sound of OM;
Whose is the all-permeating form
of the etherial sky;
Whose dwelling* is the vast transcendent Void;
Who has no name, caste, gotra, nor form;
Who is Pure, Undifferentiated Self-awareness;
Who is "Nada-Bindu", the Logos and the Light+ -
He is the God Who mounts the horse.

* Or, perhaps better, who is the abode (ground, home) of ...
+ The Sound and the Dot, mystically represented by the semicircle and the bindu (dot) of the anunasika of the Syllable OM as it is written. By an extension of meaning, nada-bindu or, in the Agama-s, more precisely, Nada-Vindu (Nada representing Shakti and Vindu, Siva) represents the ultimate Supreme, Paramasiva.

123. of JK and NKK

kunyar-ay bozakh kuni no rozakh
Would you understand what Oneness* is ?
It has turned me into nothingness.
Though He is One, Alone, and All,
Yet I am caught in the War of Two+.
Though He has neither colour nor form,
Yet I am caught in His wondrous forms#.

* Unity of Existence.
+ Duality.
# Multiplicity.

124. of JK and NKK

rangas manz chuy byo'n byo'n labun

He is in myriad colours and forms*,
Seek Him out.
Patiently suffer whatever your lot,
And happy be.
Anger and hate and enmity,
You must destroy.
All this done, though hard it be,
Behold thy God+.

lit., rangas manz, on the stage of the world where the play is going on.
6. lit., Siva

125. of JK and 98. of BNP

dishi aayas dash dish tiilith,
Tsalith tsottum shuunya ada vaav,
Shivay dyuu'tthum shaayi-shaayi miilith
Sheyh-ta-treyh traopimas ta Shivay draav.

I roamed the ten directions and
pierced the wind and the void.
I closed the nine gates of the body and
shut out the Thirty-six *.
Wherever I looked, I found the Lord,
Within, without, and in the Void+.

* The 36 tattva-s (literally, thatnesses) the categories or principles from Paramasiva to the earth, according to the Trika Saiva cosmology.
+ Within the mind, in the world outside, and in the Impersonal Transcendent.

126. of JK and NKK

tana mana gayas bo tas kunuy

I turned to Him heart and soul,
And heard the ringing of the Bell of Truth.
There, in dhaarana, fixed in thought,
I soared the Sky and the Region of Light*.

* lit.. had the experience of Aakashaand Prakaasha. Lalla heard the ever-unobstructed (anahata) sound of OM (The Bell of Truth); and, in her deep concentration. became absorbed in the Impersonal Transcendent (the Sky, the Void). But she went beyond, ascending to the abode of Paramasiva who, according to Trika Darshana, is both Prakaasha and Vimarsha, Light and Self-Awareness.

127. of JK and 64. of BNP

a'ndariy aayas tsa'ndru'y gaaraan,
Gaaraan aayas hiheyn hih;
Tsay hay Naaraan, tsay hay Naaraan,
Tsay hay Naaraan, yim kam vih ?

I searched within for the Mystic Moon,
For like seeks out the like.
Thou art all this and this and this;
There is none else but Thee.
What then is the meaning of Thy sport,
Of Thy creation's wondrous forms ?

128. of JK and 21. of BNP

yimay she' tse' timay she' me',
Shyaamagala tse' byoan taotthis,
Yuohay beynabhid tse' ta me'
Tsa sheyn* svaami boah sheyyi+ mashis.

O Lord of the Dark Blue Throat,
I have the very same Six Thou hast.
And yet, estranged from Thee,
I suffer misery.
There surely is this difference:
Thou art the master of the Six*,
By the Six+ I have been robbed.

* Sovereign power, omnipotence, omniscience, All-inclusiveness, eternality, All-pervasiveness (that is, in Trika: maayaa shakti, sarvakar-tritva, sarvajnatva, puurnatva, nityatva, and vyaapakatva respectively).
+ The six kancuka-s, coverings of limitation, viz., maya, kala, vidya, raga, kal, niyati.

129. of JK and 20. of BNP

Naatha ! na pan na par zonum,
Sadai buudum yi kwa dih;
Or (Sadai budum yiko dih);
Tsa boah, boah tsa myul naa zonum,
Tsa kus boah kwasa chum saendiih.

Lord, I did not know who I was,
nor Thou, the Supreme Lord of all.
I knew only this body of mine always*.
The relation between Thou and me,
That Thou art I and I am Thou
and both are one, I did not know.
(But now I know),
To ask: 'who art Thou, who am I ?'
is doubt of doubts.

* sadaa'y bodum yiikuy deha (LVRB, 7) but cf.,... yi kwadeha, LV, 7: "Continually have I mortified this vile body."

130. of JK and 44. of BNP

Lal bo tsaayas swaman baagabaras,
Vuchum Shivas Shakht miilith ta vaah !
Tati lay karmas amritsaras,
Zinday maras ta me' kari kyaah.

I, Lalla, entered by the garden-gate
of mine own mind,
And there (O joy!) saw Siva with Shakti
sealed in one;
And there itself I merged in the Lake
of Immortal Bliss.
Now while alive I am unchained
from the wheel of birth and death,
What can the world do unto me?

131. of JK and NKK

tsu'y diva gartas ta dharthii srazakh

Thou dost pervade all shapes and forms,
Though breathest life into all frames,
The whole creation hums with Thy silent sound*.
Who can measure the Immeasurable, O Lord!

* The Anaahata naad, the AUM.

132. of JK and 74. of BNP

par ta paan ye'my so'muy mon,
Ye'my hyuuh mon deyn kyoha raath,
Ye'mysay adway man saopun,
Tamiy dyuu'thuy Sura-Gurunaath.

He who regards himself and others alike,
He who regards alike both day and night,
He whose mind is free from duality -
He alone hath seen the God of gods.

133. of JK and Vakh 1. p. 204 BNP

abhyaa'sy savikaa'sy layi vo'thuu,
Gaganas svagun myuul samitsratta,
Shunya gol Anaamay motuu,
Yuhoy vopadiish chuy bhatta.

By oft-repeated practice, the wide expanse
of manifested universe is lifted to absorption;
And the saguna world, of forms and qualities,
merges in the vastness of the Void
with a splash of water on water falling;
Then the ethereal Void dissolves,
and the Ineffable Supreme alone remains.
This, O Bhatta*, is the Truth to gain.

* The Kashmiri Pandit (Brahmin) is often so called.

134. of JK and 40. of BNP

Vaakh, maanas, kwal, akwal naa ate,
Tshwapi, Mudri ati na praviish;
Rozaan Shiv-Shakt na ate,
Mvatiyay kuanh ta suy vopadish.

Here there is neither word nor thought,
Transcendent nor non-Transcendent here.
Vows of silence and mystic mudra-s
cannot gain you admittance here.
Even Siva and Shakti (Tattva-s) remain not here.
The Somewhat that remains is the Truth
to know and realise.

135. of JK and p. 200 Vakh b. of BNP

tsu' naa bo naa dhey naa dhyaan,
Gay paanay Sarvakrya mashith:
Anyav dyuu'thukh keyenhti na anvay:
Gayi sath layi Par pashith.

Here there is neither thou and I,
No "postured thought", nothing to contemplate,
Even the All-Creator is forgot.
The ignorant blind* cannot see
the Ineffable Supreme hard to know.
But the pure, the wise, having seen+
merge in the Supreme.

* Var., LVRB, 59: "anya dyuthukh ..." (They) saw Other than all these, the Absolute, the Relationless (Ananvaya) "kentsh na anvay".
+ sat: the whole objective universe. Var., LVRB: The good become absorbed in Him.See LV, where sath is said to mean `the Seven Worlds'.

136. of JK and 50. of BNP

paanas laa'gith ruudukh me' tsu',
Me' tse' tshaaendaan luustum doah;
Paanas maenz ye'ly dyuu'thukh me' tsu'
Me' tsu' ta paanas dyutum tshoah.

Thou wert absorbed in Thine Own Self,
hidden from me;
I passed whole days in seeking Thee out.
But when I saw Thee in mine own Self,
O joy! then Thou and I
disported ourselves in ecstasy*.

* cf., LV, 44: "The second meaning" given there is what the words cannot bear, however much their meaning may be strained.

137. of JK and 101. of BNP

tsyath no'vuy tsa'ndrama no'vuy,
Zalmay dyuu'thum navam no'vuy
Yana peyttha Lalli me' tan-man no'vuy,
Tana Lal boah navam navay cheys!

The citta, the mind, is ever new,
The ever-changing moon is new,
And ever new the shoreless expanse
of waters* that I have seen.
Since I, Lalla, have scoured my body and mind,
(emptied it of dead yesterdays
and tomorrows unborn),
I live in the ever-present Now,
(and all things always are to me)
for ever new and new.

* zalamay, Sans. jalamaya, Grierson (LV. 93) explains it as a "waste of waters" at the time of pralaya, destruction of the Universe.
Therefore, "the universe itself". It may rather be the shoreless ocean of existence or of Reality. Whatever the exact meaning, Lal Ded speaks of her complete transformation and `renewal'.

Interestingly, the same New Mind here when it is in its deluded form is also referred to as water of a lake which constantly oozes out, see JK Vakh 120. By constant tapasya the same mind is transformed so as to be able to see this new shoreless expanse of waters,
Parmahamsa Ramakrishna says one sees the Reflection of Him in a Pure Mind.

138. of JK and NKK

yi yi karu'm ko'rum suy artsun
yi rasini vichoarum thi mantar
yihay lagamo dhahas partsun
suy Parasivun tanthar

Whatever work I did became worship of the Lord;
Whatever word I uttered became a mantra*;
Whatever this body of mine experienced became+
the saadhana-s of Saiva Tantra
illumining my path to Paramasiva

* cf. SSV, III, 25-36: sharirvrttirvratam (26), kathaa japah (27). (For such a one the normal daily routine of his becomes a vrata, that is, religious vows, etc (26), and whatever he says becomes the recitation of a mantra).
+ LVRB, 58. "yih yath lagyam dehas paritsay". For Var., LV, 58. See KT, IX. 23, "...yatra yatra mano yaati tatra tatra samaadhayah (wherever the mind goes there is a samaadhi for it).

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