MADHU BINDAVAH

WHAT CAN I GIVE YOU?

A poem from the heart of a soul surrendered unto Sri Guru.

By Sripad Jagabandhu Bhakti Ranjan

On the occasion of his divine appearance day on 23 December 1991, Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj cited the following poem by Sripad Jagabandhu Bhakti Ranjan as he discoursed about the paramount importance of service to Sri Guru.

Sripad Jagabandhu Bhakti Ranjan was a highly successful entrepreneur who donated his fortune at the end of his career to his Gurudev Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur for the construction of the Bag Bazaar Gaudiya Math, which thereafter became Srila Saraswati Thakur’s flagship Temple.

The humility, sincerity, and devotion with which Sripad Jagabandhu Bhakti Ranjan made this offering is illustrated in the following poem which was engraved on the Temple after its construction and published in Gaudiya (13.18). While his Gurudev, his godbrothers, the Vaisnava community, and the general public were all celebrating the inauguration of the Temple, Sripad Jagabandhu Bhakti Ranjan expresses in this poem composed at the time of the inauguration the feelings of desolation and longing known only to surrendered souls by virtue of their humility.

ki diba, ki diba tomāya gurudeva āmi
ye dhana tomāre dinu, sei dhana tumi [1]

What can I give you? What can I give you? O Gurudev, you are the wealth that I have given you.

tumi ye āmāra dhana, āmi ye tomāra
tomāra dhana tomāya diba, ki yābe āmāra [2]

You are my wealth, and I am yours. If I give you your own wealth, then what will I lose?

tumi jāna manera duḥkha, āra kāre ka-i
tomāra dhana tomāya diye tomāra haye ra-i [3]

You know the sadness in my heart. Who else can I speak to? I have given you your own wealth while remaining your own.

jaga-bandhu dāsa kaya, śuna rasa-bhūmi
tomāra saba āchhe, āmāra kevala tumi [4]

Jagabandhu Dās says, “Please listen, O abode of rasa! You have everything, but only you are my own (I have nothing but you).”

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