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Hymn to Durga

Translated by Nolini Kanta Gupta from Sri Aurobindo’s original written in Bengali in 1909 when he was in Kolkata. The translation was revised by Sri Aurobindo around 1945. 

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 MOTHER DURGA! Rider on the lion, giver of all strength,

Mother, beloved of Siva! We born from thy parts of Power,

we the youth of India, are seated here in thy temple.

Listen, O Mother, descend upon earth, make thyself manifest

in this land of India.


MOTHER DURGA! From age to age, in life after life, we

come down into the human body, do thy work and return

to the Home of Delight. Now too we are born, dedicated

to thy work. Listen, O Mother, descend upon earth, come

to our help.


MOTHER DURGA! Rider on the lion, trident in hand, thy

body of beauty armour-clad, Mother, giver of victory, India

awaits thee, eager to see the gracious form of thine.

Listen, O Mother, descend upon earth, make thyself manifest

in this land of India.


MOTHER DURGA! Giver of force and love and knowledge,

terrible art thou in thy own self of might, Mother

beautiful and fierce. In the battle of life, in India's battle,

we are warriors commissioned by thee; Mother, give to our

heart and mind a titan's strength, a titan's energy, to our

soul and intelligence a god's character and knowledge.


MOTHER DURGA! India, world's noblest race, lay

whelmed in darkness. Mother, thou risest on the eastern

horizon, the dawn comes with the glow of thy divine limbs

scattering the darkness. Spread thy light, Mother, destroy

the darkness.


MOTHER DURGA! We are thy children, through thy grace,

by thy influence may we become fit for the great work, for

the great Ideal. Mother, destroy our smallness, our selfishness,

our fear.


MOTHER DURGA! Thou art Kali, naked, garlanded with

human heads, sword in hand, thou slayest the Asura. Goddess,

do thou slay with thy pitiless cry the enemies who

dwell within us, may none remain alive there, not one. May

we become pure and spotless, this is our prayer, O Mother,

make thyself manifest.


MOTHER DURGA! India lies low in selfishness and fearfulness

and littleness. Make us great, make our efforts great,

our hearts vast, make us true to our resolve. May we no

longer desire the small, void of energy, given to laziness,

stricken with fear.


MOTHER DURGA! Extend wide the power of Yoga. We

are thy Aryan children, develop in us again the lost teaching,

character, strength of intelligence, faith and devotion,

force of austerity, power of chastity and true knowledge,

bestow all that upon the world. To help mankind, appear,

O Mother of the world, dispel all ills.


MOTHER DURGA! Slay the enemy within, then root out

all obstacles outside. May the noble heroic mighty Indian

race, supreme in love and unity, truth and strength, arts and

letters, force and knowledge ever dwell in its holy woodlands,

its fertile fields, under its sky-scraping hills, along the

banks of its pure-streaming rivers. This is our prayer at the

feet of the Mother. Make thyself manifest.


MOTHER DURGA! Enter our bodies in thy Yogic strength.

We shall become thy instruments, thy sword slaying all evil,

thy lamp dispelling all ignorance. Fulfil this yearning of thy

young children, O Mother. Be the master and drive thy

instrument, wield thy sword and slay the evil, hold up

the lamp and spread the light of knowledge. Make thyself



MOTHER DURGA! When we possess thee, we shall no

longer cast thee away; we shall bind thee to us with the tie

of love and devotion. Come, Mother, manifest thyself in

our mind and life and body.


Come, Revealer of the hero-path. We shall no longer

cast thee away. May our entire life become a ceaseless

worship of the Mother, all our acts a continuous service

to the Mother, full of love, full of energy. This is our prayer,

O Mother, descend upon earth, make thyself manifest in

this land of India.

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