April is National Poetry Month in the United States. This month poetry is everywhere, as writers, teachers, and literary organizations strive to raise awareness of the richness poetry can bring to our lives. In most wisdom traditions, poetry has a central role in expressing the inexpressible truths of spirituality. Sant Rajinder Singh Ji Maharaj writes:
Poetry is the gentle voice of the soul subtly beckoning us to hear its messages from the Beyond. The inspiring words that issue forth from a poet’s lips come from spheres far beyond this physical realm to uplift humanity. In their verses, poets touch upon many themes, ranging from love, to spiritual yearnings, to hopes and aspirations, and to human unity.
In honor of this event, we offer two powerful stanzas from the great poet and Spiritual Master, Sant Darshan Singh Ji Maharaj. His verses are followed by the poetic prose commentary of his son and spiritual successor, Sant Rajinder Singh Ji Maharaj.
Let this world become a temple of love and peace,
Let love and Truth illumine the world,
And the adversaries of peace awaken to its Light.
This one line epitomizes what our world was meant to be. When God brought this world into being, it was all one holy temple made by His hands. When the world was created there was no religious formation. As Sant Kirpal Singh Ji Maharaj aptly put it: “The whole world is a temple of God— the sky overhead and the earth below.” He also stressed that God does not reside in temples made of stone by human hands; He resides in the temple He Himself has made— the human form.
In this poem, Sant Darshan Singh Ji is reminding us that this world should be a temple of love and peace.
Every person on our planet can sit together and worship God irrespective of their outer form of religion. There is one God, there is one earth, and there is the same soul in each person and every living thing. If we all joined together under the canopy of the sky and the sacred earth and shared in God’s bounties, we would find the peace and love for which we all pray. What a haven this world would be if we treated each other with kindness and sweetness. If we could only begin with our own individual lives, we would set the wheel of peace in motion.
This sacred land of God has been trampled with the burden of oppression.
Life is not a dagger stained with the blood of hatred;
It is a branch filled with the flowers of love and compassion.
What a noble vision Sant Darshan Singh Ji has of this life! He calls this earth “this sacred land of God.” If each person could think of this world as the abode of God, how could any of us do any wrong? Would we ever dream of residing in God’s heaven and hurting any other being there? This earth is also part of God’s heaven; it may not be made of the fine spiritual substance as the higher realms, yet it is still part of His handiwork. If we could only lead our lives as if this were God’s realm, there would definitely be an end to fighting and to war. If we could only think that we are in God’s territory, we would realize that all people are part of one big family. As brothers and sisters in the Lord, we would try to help each other and relieve each other’s pains.
All beings from the very young to the aged thrive on love. It gives joy, ecstasy, and sweetness to life. We should nourish all those we meet with life-giving love and compassion. How easy it is to utter a kind and encouraging word to those we meet. How happy we can make each other’s days. How simple it is to smile at others, to look at others with love in our eyes, and talk to each other with loving phrases. We offer flowers as a symbol of love to those who are near and dear to us. Let us offer flowers to all we meet.
It is my prayer that the poems of human integration that will be presented today serve to inspire and uplift us. Let us not only listen to them on this occasion alone. We should try to practice their advice in our day-to-day lives. Let us take home these bouquets of poems being offered by our honored guests and brothers and sisters from around the world. It is my hope that we carry these flowers with us in our hearts and in our actions so they emit the fragrance of love wherever we go.