Vaishnava Jana To

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"Vaishnava jana To"
Song by Several artists like
Lata Mangeshkar
Jagjit Singh
M. S. Subbulakshmi
Published 15th century
Genre Bhajan, Devotional
Writer(s) Narsinh Mehta
Language Old Gujarati

Vaishnava Jana To is one of the most popular Hindu bhajans, written in the 15th century by the poet Narsinh Mehta in the Gujarati language. The bhajan was included in Mahatma Gandhi’s daily prayer. The bhajan speaks about the life, ideals and mentality of a Vaishnava Jana (meaning: a follower of Lord Vishnu).

Lyrics[edit]

Lyrics of the bhajan:

Narsinh Mehta, song's lyricist
Gujarati Devanagari Translation

વૈષ્ણવ જન તો તેને કહિયે જે પીડ પરાયી જાણે રે
પર દુ:ખે ઉપકાર કરે તો યે મન અભિમાન ન આણે રે. ॥ધૃ॥

वैष्णव जन तो तेने कहिये जे पीड परायी जाणे रे।
पर दुःखे उपकार करे तो ये मन अभिमान न आणे रे॥

Call those people as Vaishnavas (devotees of Lord Vishnu) who,
Feel the pain of others,
Help those who are in misery,
But never let ego or conceit enter their mind.

સકળ લોકમાં સહુને વંદે, નિંદા ન કરે કેની રે
વાચ કાછ મન નિશ્છળ રાખે ધન ધન જનની તેની રે. ॥૧॥

सकळ लोकमां सहुने वंदे, निंदा न करे केनी रे।
वाच काछ मन निश्चळ राखे, धन धन जननी तेनी रे॥

Vaishnavas, respect the entire world,
Do not censure anyone,
Keep their words, actions and thoughts pure,
The mother of such a soul is blessed.

સમદૃષ્ટિ ને તૃષ્ણા ત્યાગી પરસ્ત્રી જેને માત રે
જિહ્વા થકી અસત્ય ન બોલે પરધન નવ ઝાલે હાથ રે. ॥૨॥

समदृष्टि ने तृष्णा त्यागी, परस्त्री जेने मात रे।
जिह्वा थकी असत्य न बोले, परधन नव झाले हाथ रे॥

Vaishnavas see all equally, renounce greed and avarice,
Respect other woman as they respect their own mother,
Their tongue never utters false words,
Their hands would never touch the wealth of another.

મોહ માયા વ્યાપે નહિ જેને, દૃઢ વૈરાગ્ય જેના મનમાં રે
રામ નામ શુ તાળી રે લાગી સકળ તીરથ તેના તનમાં રે. ॥૩॥

मोह माया व्यापे नहि जेने, दृढ़ वैराग्य जेना मनमां रे।
रामनाम शुं ताळी रे लागी, सकळ तीरथ तेना तनमां रे॥

Vaishnavas do not succumb to worldly attachments,
They are detached from worldly pleasures,
They are enticed by the name of God (Shri Ram),
All holy sites of pilgrimage are embodied within them.

વણ લોભી ને કપટ રહિત છે, કામ ક્રોધ નિવાર્યાં રે
ભણે નરસૈયો તેનું દર્શન કરતાં કુળ એકોતેર તાર્યાં રે. ॥૪॥

वणलोभी ने कपटरहित छे, काम क्रोध निवार्या रे।
भणे नरसैयॊ तेनुं दरसन करतां, कुळ एकोतेर तार्या रे॥

Vaishnavas encompasses the absence of greed and deceit,
They have renounced all types of lust and anger,
The author of this poem (Narsi) would be grateful to meet such a soul,
Whose virtue liberates their entire lineage.

Influence[edit]

This bhajan has inspired many people, and was one of the favourite bhajans of Mahatma Gandhi.[1]

In 1999, this song was rendered in a single album by top artists such as classical vocalists Gangubai Hangal and Pandit Jasraj, pop star Remo Fernandes and also including Sarod maestro Amjad Ali Khan, Pandit Narayan on the sarangi, flute maestro Hariprasad Chaurasia and santoor exponent Shivkumar Sharma played an instrumental rendition.[2][3] Along with "Raghupati Raghava Raja Ram", the song is also sung regularly by Delhi's best known western classical choral groups — The Capital City Minstrels at their annual Peace Concerts coinciding with Gandhi Jayanti.[citation needed] Carnatic guitarist Baiju Dharmajan created an instrumental guitar version of the prayer in 2013.[citation needed]

In movies[edit]

Elements of the hymn were included in the Hollywood film Gandhi (1982), in Bollywood films like Water (2005) and Road to Sangam (2009), and Kollywood film Hey Ram (2000). The hymn was also used as a title song for several Indian films. In the Telugu movie Prathinidhi (2014), the first stanza of the song is used during the climatic scene. In the Malayalam movie Indian Rupee (2011), the first stanza of the song is used in the climatic scene and sung by Bombay Jayasree. The song also appears in the Gujarati biopic of the author Kunvaar Bhainu Mameru.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Gandhi's Favourite Hymns". 
  2. ^ "Album on Gandhi’s hymn". Tribune. Retrieved 12 March 2012. 
  3. ^ Nalini Natarajan; Emmanuel Sampath Nelson (1996). Handbook of Twentieth-Century Literatures of India. Greenwood Publishing Group. pp. 100–. ISBN 978-0-313-28778-7. Retrieved 10 October 2012. 

External links[edit]