The penny dropped for Punya with a song!
A few days ago we celebrated Miten’s 65th birthday in real sannyas style. The hall was decorated to the brim with orange and red streamers and all participants of the ‘Light of Love’ workshop were wearing golden, orange or red clothes. The night before, right after the concert, we had prepared the hall until late and this morning we had come in an hour earlier for the surprise. The scheme was (and the main schemer was his partner, Deva Premal) that Miten would come to the hall as usual, i.e. an hour earlier for the sound check, but when they got off the motor cycle she blindfolded him.
There were the sounds from Maneesh’s keyboard and Manose’s flute and he must have thought “We are really late for the sound check.” But then he also heard our humming – “Something is going on!” Deva Premal steered him through the backdoor to a mattress on the floor in our midst. It was the moment for us to sing the mantra Om Triambakam Yajamahe which we had practiced (also behind his back during the night he was not scheduled for the evening session) and when he was seated in a comfortable settee, decorated with red and golden fabric, his blindfold was taken off.
I can just imagine what he must have seen: the morning sun shining into the hall through streamers hanging from ceiling to floor, the light on the orange people singing the birthday song. The hall was afire.
Once Miten was back on his spot in the middle of the hall – I was glad to see he could still walk and wasn’t too overwhelmed – he shared his experience of it all. And then came his first song – and this is what I really wanted to talk about, just wanted to put my story into context, into the loving atmosphere of where it happened. Some people had just received a sannyas name, it was our last morning of the workshop, we were sucking in the last juice out of the gathering and embracing the warm friendships which had formed over the week.
The song, as many of you might remember, starts like this:
I hung my hat on a wishing tree
I asked for one wish – I could’ve had three
but I only asked for what I needed
could’ve asked for money, riches and wealth
but all I really wanted was to find myself
unaccustomed as I was to seeking
and my heart whispered inside
and the moon rose and the angels
sighed, and they said:
here comes your second chance
you’d better believe it
open up and receive it
here comes your second chance
take a deep breath, this is your second chance.
I had heard this song many times before but had never paid much attention to the lyrics. And I had also heard Miten tell the story that he had written the song in Pune when he felt that Osho had given him a second chance and that he had understood that each moment in our lives we can feel that we are given a second chance.
But this time the lyrics fell on fertile ground: the previous day I had been invited to play with the band, and in the evening even for the full-house, sold-out concert. I had not played well and I was in an emotional turmoil because of it. Not that I had played out of rhythm, but still somehow out of synch with the rest of the band. Usually I just sit in front of my little display of instruments (it always looks as if I am selling stuff on the flea market) and then the hands know what to pick up – but that day it did not happen. If I had been honest, I would have told Miten that I was feeling out of synch and that I would have preferred not to play. But then, how do you know if the ‘synch’ is not suddenly coming back – and why renounce such a precious occasion?
After the concert I could hardly sleep. I tried to settle my self-condemning thoughts with drawing tarot cards and swinging pendulums, as if I could find a solution to the bad taste in my mouth. In the morning, of course, the same foul taste – until I heard the song and understood its meaning. Tears ran down my cheeks and I could feel my heart relax. “I do not always have to be perfect!” “Mistakes can be forgiven.”
When I opened my eyes again, Miten looked straight into them and invited me to come over and grab the shaker. All felt so normal. I was in the right place, with the right people, in the right song, in the right hall, in the right groove.
I got the ‘second chance’!
… and I will give myself many more ‘second chances’ from now on…
Thank you Osho! Thank you Miten!