Saturday, March 5, 2011

My Sweet Lord by George Harrison

I've been participating in kirtan (Hindu devotional call-and-response singing/chanting) for two years now, and in honor of my leading a kirtan song for the first time last night (March 4, 2011) I am sharing this video of George Harrison (my favorite Beatle!) singing My Sweet Lord, a song dedicated to Krishan, Rama, Vishnu, and other deities in the Vedic/Hindu tradition, but also (I believe) to all deities everywhere for they all are within YOU!

My sweet lord
Hm, my lord
Hm, my lord
I really want to see you
Really want to be with you
Really want to see you lord
But it takes so long, my lord
My sweet lord
Hm, my lord
Hm, my lord
I really want to know you
Really want to go with you
Really want to show you lord
That it won't take long, my lord (hallelujah)
My sweet lord (hallelujah)
Hm, my lord (hallelujah)
My sweet lord (hallelujah)
I really want to see you
Really want to see you
Really want to see you, lord
Really want to see you, lord
But it takes so long, my lord (hallelujah)
My sweet lord (hallelujah)
Hm, my lord (hallelujah)
My, my, my lord (hallelujah)
I really want to know you (hallelujah)
Really want to go with you (hallelujah)
Really want to show you lord (aaah)
That it won't take long, my lord (hallelujah)
Hmm (hallelujah)
My sweet lord (hallelujah)
My, my, lord (hallelujah)
Hm, my lord (hare krishna)
My, my, my lord (hare krishna)
Oh hm, my sweet lord (krishna, krishna)
Oh-uuh-uh (hare hare)
Now, I really want to see you (hare rama)
Really want to be with you (hare rama)
Really want to see you lord (aaah)
But it takes so long, my lord (hallelujah)
Hm, my lord (hallelujah)
My, my, my lord (hare krishna)
My sweet lord (hare krishna)
My sweet lord (krishna krishna)
My lord (hare hare)
Hm, hm (Gurur Brahma)
Hm, hm (Gurur Vishnu)
Hm, hm (Gurur Devo)
Hm, hm (Maheshwara)
My sweet lord (Gurur Sakshaat)
My sweet lord (Parabrahma)
My, my, my lord (Tasmayi Shree)
My, my, my, my lord (Guruve Namaha)
My sweet lord (Hare Rama)


George Harrison And Friends Performed "My Sweet Lord" in "The Concert For Bangladesh" in 1971
The Concert For Bangladesh was the event title for two benefit concerts organized by George Harrison and Ravi Shankar, held at noon and at 7.00 p.m. on August 1, 1971, playing to a total of 40,000 people at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Organized for the relief of refugees from East Pakistan (now independent Bangladesh) after the 1970 Bhola cyclone and during the 1971 Bangladesh atrocities and Bangladesh Liberation War, the event was the first benefit concert of this magnitude in world history. It featured an all-star supergroup of performers that included Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, George Harrison, Billy Preston, Leon Russell, and Ringo Starr.

An album was released later in 1971 and a concert film was released in 1972, with later releases for home video. In 2005, the film was re-issued on DVD accompanied by a new documentary.

The concert raised US$243,418.51 for Bangladesh relief, which was administered by UNICEF. Sales of the album and DVD continue to benefit the George Harrison Fund for UNICEF.
Ravi Shankar -- Sitar and Ali Akbar Khan, sarod
George Harrison -- Vocals, guitars
Ringo Starr -- Vocals, Drums, tambourine
Leon Russell -- Vocals, piano, bass guitar
Billy Preston -- Vocals, organ
Eric Clapton -- Lead guitar
Bob Dylan -- Vocals, guitar, harmonica
Klaus Voorman -- Bass guitar
Jim Keltner -- Drums
Badfinger -- Rhythm guitars, backing vocals
Jesse Ed Davis -- Lead guitar
Don Preston -- Lead guitar, vocals
Carl Radle -- Bass guitar
The Hollywood Horns: Jim Horn, Allan Beutler, Chuck Findley, Jackie Kelso, Lou McCreary, Ollie Mitchell
Backing vocalists: Don Nix, Jo Green, Jeanie Greene, Marlin Greene, Dolores Hall, Claudia Linnear

Monday, January 18, 2010

Breath Wind Spirit Words

In many languages the words breath and spirit are connected. My earlier article is on the many traditions which believe that God/Creator breathed the animating spirit into human beings. See The Breath and Spirit of Life.

Today's column is related in that it presents a list of words from many cultures and languages that have the double meaning of breath and spirit or life force.

Aramaic – ruach/ruakh – wind, air, gas; spirit, breath

Aztec – tona – vital energy; heat

Babylonian – vahu – wind god; breath of life

Chinese – qi – breath; vital energy

Cree Native American – oenikika – breath of life

Greek – pneuma – breath, air, wind; spirit, soul

Hawaiian Ancient – ha – breath of life, life force energy

Hebrew – nephesh – breath, soul, life

Hindu – prana – life force; the breath of god

Lakota Native American – woniya waken – holy air

Maori – nge – breath of life

Mayan – ik – breath of life, spirit, life force; name of the wind god; wind, vital energy

Zoroastrian – raman – breath of life

Monday, April 6, 2009

Listening to God

In the last post I talked about all the ways people over the centuries and around the world have found to speak to God.

Today, I list many of the ways people hear God.

This can be a rather controvercial topic. Hearing what God has to say is called Divination, and that's a very dirty word with some people. I don't know though. If you are going to go through all the trouble of speaking to God, isn't it right and respectful that you should listen, or don't you think God will respond?

God does respond, and a couple of the terms for that response are "oracle" and "divination." The following definitions are from the pages of the Online Etymology Dictionary.

oracle c.1384, "a message from a god, expressed by divine inspiration," from O.Fr. oracle (12c.), from L. oraculum "divine announcement, oracle," from orare "pray, plead." In antiquity, "the agency or medium of a god," also "the place where such divine utterances were given." This sense is attested in Eng. from c.1400.

divine (v.) originally "to make out by supernatural insight," early 14c., from L. divinus which also meant "soothsayer." Hence, divination (c.1374), from O.Fr., from L. divinationem (nom. divinatio) "the power of foreseeing, prediction," from divinatus, pp. of divinare, lit. "to be inspired by a god."

-mancy combining form meaning "divination by means of," from O.Fr. -mancie, from L.L. -mantia, from Gk. manteia "oracle, divination," from mantis "seer, prophet, soothsayer," related to mania "madness, frenzy."

Maybe that's why divination is frowned upon, it implies madness or frenzy! As you will see, that can be a component, but certainly isn't necessary.

A friend and I had the discussion years ago on the topic: "How do people hear God's message?" The answer we came up with was: "Whatever way you are most likely to be listening for it!"

That means that there is no wrong way, no evil way, no way that can be frowned upon or discarded as worthless. It all depends on how you listen! You know we are all unique, and you know that people speak to God in different ways, prayer, chanting, singing. Why shouldn't we hear God in different ways, too?

I personally have used Tarot, Runes, Yijing (I Ching), Scrying, and Stichomancy.

So, here are a few of the ways people hear God's reply. Some are ancient, some come from the middle of time, and some - like computer divination - are relatively new. All are valid for the people who use them!

How do you hear God's message?

Aeromancy – the prediction of future events from observation of weather conditions.

Alectryomancy – using a rooster to select grains of food placed on letters of the alphabet, the letters being put together in the order in which the grains were eaten.

Aleuromancy – the use of flour as a means of divination.

Alomancy / Halomancy – divination by means of salt.

Alphitomancy – the use of barley meal as a means of divination.

Anthracomancy – divination by inspecting a burning coal.

Anthropomancy – divination by the entrails of a human being.

Arithmancy – divination by the use of numbers, especially by the numbers of letters in names.

Astragalomancy – divination by means of small bones or dice.

Astromancy (slightly different than astrology) – divination by means of the stars.

Austromancy – divination from observation of the winds.

Axinomancy – divination by means of an ax or hatchet.

Belomancy – divination using arrows drawn at random from a quiver or other holder.

Bibliomancy – divination by interpretation of a passage chosen at random from a Bible.

Botanomancy – divination by means of plants, especially sage and fig leaves.

Capnomancy – divination by means of the ascent or motion of smoke.

Cartomancy / Chartomancy – divination using cards.

"The World" from the Carey-Yale Visconti Tarot Deck, c. 1440

Catoptromancy – divination of health by means of regarding one's face in a mirror submerged in water. If the image was distorted or ghastly, it was an ill omen; if fresh and healthy, it was favorable.

Cephalomancy – divination by means of a head or skull.

Ceraunomancy / Keraunomancy – divination by use of thunderbolts

Ceromancy – divination by dropping melted wax into water.

Chaomancy – divination by means of appearances in the air.

Cheiromancy / Chiromancy – palmistry.

Chronomancy – divination of the best time to do something.

Cleidomancy / Clidomancy – divination by use of a key, keys.

Cleromancy – casting of lots as a means of divination.

Coscinomancy – divination by means of a suspended sieve.

Crithomancy – divination by scattering grain, meal, or flour over sacrificed animals.

Crystallomancy – divination by means of a crystal.

Cubomancy – divination by throwing dice.

Cybermancy – divination by computer.

Dactyliomancy – divination by means of finger rings.

Daphnomancy – divination by means of the laurel.

Demonomancy – divination by demon.

Empyromancy / pyromancy – divination by fire or smoke.

Enoptomancy – divination by use of a mirror. (Remember "Mirror, Mirror on the wall, who's the fairest of them all?")

Gastromancy – (a) A kind of divination, by means of words seemingly uttered from the stomach. (b) A species of divination, by means of glasses or other round, transparent vessels [i.e. crystal ball], in the center of which figures are supposed to appear by magic art (i.e. scrying).

A quartz crystal ball

Geomancy – divination by geographic features or lines. [Traditional Chinese feng shui is a style of geomancy that measures favorable or unfavorable settings for home/business (yang style) or grave (yin style).]

Graptomancy – divination by handwriting.

Gyromancy – divination performed by drawing a ring or circle and walking in or around it. Also, 1557, "a method of divination by walking in a circle till the person falls down from dizziness, the inference being drawn from the place in the circle at which he fell," from M.L. gyromantia, from Gk. gyyros "circle" + manteia "divination, oracle."]

Hieromancy – divination by observing the objects offered in sacrifice.

Hydromancy – divination by means of the motions or appearance of water.

Ichnomancy – divination by footprints.

Lecanomancy – divination practiced with water in a basin, by throwing three stones into it, and invoking the demon whose aid was sought.

Lithomancy – divination by means of stones or stone talismans.

Logomancy – divination by words.

Meteoromancy – a style of divination by meteors, chiefly by thunder and lightning, which was held in high estimation by the Romans.

Metopomancy – divination by physiognomy.

Molybdomancy – divination by the motion of molten lead.

Myomancy – divination by the movements of mice.

Narcomancy – divination using sleep, especially eliciting information from a sleeping person.

Necromancy – divination through communication with the dead.

Nomancy / Onomomancy – divining the destiny of persons by the letters of their names.

Oinomancy / Oenomancy – divination by wine.

Omphalomancy – divination by means of a child's navel, to learn how many children the mother may have.

Oneiromancy – divination through dreams.

Onychomancy – divination by the finger nails.

Ophidiomancy – divination using snakes, by their manner of eating or by their coils.

Ornithomancy – divination by means of birds, their flight, etc.

Pedomancy – divination by examining the soles of the feet.

Pegomancy – divination by fountains.

Pessomancy – divination by pebbles, stones, rocks.

Psychomancy – divination by means of communication with souls or spirits.

Pyromancy – divination by fire or by forms appearing in a fire.

Rabdomancy / Rhabdomancy – divination by means of a rod or wand, especially in discovering ores, springs of water, etc. (i.e. dowsing).

Rhapsodomancy – divination by means of verses.

Scapulimancy – divination by observation of the cracking of a mammal's scapula that has been heated by fire or hot instrument. [This is similar to the first method of I Ching (Yijing) divination which applied fire to tortoise plastrons and observed the cracks.)

An oracle bone

Scatomancy – divination by excrement.

Sciomancy – divination by means of shadows; by communication with shades of the dead.

Sideromancy – divination by burning straws on red-hot iron, and noting the manner of their burning.

Spodomancy – divination by means of ashes.

Stichomancy – divination by lines, or passages of books, read at random.

Stigonomancy – divination by writing on the bark of a tree.

Tephramancy – divination by the ashes of the altar on which a victim had been consumed in sacrifice.

Theomancy – a kind of divination drawn from the responses of oracles among heathen nations.

Uromancy – divination based on urine.

Xylomancy – divination by wood.