Date of composition:
Sheet music (Western):
Sheet music (Bengali):
Recording of Sri Chinmoy singing Ami Jabo:
Recording of Sri Chinmoy singing Phire Chalo:
Video of Sri Chinmoy singing Ami Jabo:
Video of Sri Chinmoy singing Phire Chalo:
|circa August 1982
not yet available
15 October 1999 (Jamaica, New York)
Sri Chinmoy singing with harmonium.
Sri Chinmoy based ‘Ami Jabo’ upon the melody of the traditional Bengali song ‘Phire Chalo’.
Sri Chinmoy singing with harmonium.
About Phire Chalo
The Bengali song Phire Chalo featured in the 1932 film ‘Chandidasa’ and was made immortal by the blind singer Krishna Chandra Dey. The lyrics were written by Sourindra Mohan Mukhopadhyay and the melody composed by Raichand Baral.
|K. C. Dey singing Phire Chalo in two different scenes from the 1932 Bengali movie ‘Chandidasa’.|
Sri Chinmoy would have heard this song countless times in India and its influence stayed with him throughout his life. At his first recitals in America and later at his Peace Concerts around the world, he would sing this plaintive, devotional song accompanying himself with a simple harmonium.
In 1966, Sri Chinmoy gave a recital of spiritual and devotional songs at the Indian Cultural Centre in New York. He explained briefly to the audience the spiritual or philosophical significance of each song. Phire Chalo was the final song on the programme:
“Now we come to the last song, Phire Chalo. By singing this song, a great singer of India, K. C. Dey, became immortal overnight. God had denied him sight; he was stone blind. But God sang through him in such soul-stirring grandeur as he sang this song for the famous film ‘Chandidasa’ that his name became immortal in India.
“In this song, Home is beckoning us. According to the Vedas, Home represents Heaven on Earth, for it is by abiding in the soul here on earth that we achieve spiritual Bliss. In the Rig Veda, the seers sing: Madhumat Punarayanam which means ‘Sweet be my return (home)’.”
Bengali lyrics by S. M. Mukhopadhyay
Phire chalo phire chalo
Akasha bhara jhochana dhara
Premeri sure bhara bhuban
Marana nila sagara hate
Akashe pakhi gahiche gahi
English translation by Sri Chinmoy
Let us return Home, let us go back.
Moonlight has spread all over the sky,
The melody of Love has inundated
From the blue ocean of death
The birds in the sky are singing “No death, no death!”
Sri Chinmoy referred to Phire Chalo in answer to the question, “What is the soul's world?” in his 1976 book Flame Waves, Part 8.
Sri Chinmoy: The soul goes back to where it came from, to its original home, to take rest for some time. As earth is our body's world, so also there is a world which we call the soul's world. You have a home. You go to play in the playground and after you have played for a few hours you come back to your home. Then after taking rest, tomorrow you go again to play. Similarly, the soul comes here on earth to play for a few years and then the soul goes back to its own region. Then it returns to earth in another body. The soul's original abode is Sat-Chit-Ananda. It means Existence-Consciousness-Bliss. There is a Bengali song, Phire Chalo, it means, “Let us go home”. This home is the home of the soul. The soul, the aspiring soul, is returning home, where it is all Light and Delight. In this home there is no death, no suffering, no sorrow, no decay; it is all Joy, Light and Delight.
Bengali lyrics by Sri Chinmoy
Ami jabo ami jabo ami jabo hridaya pure
|English translation by Sri Chinmoy
I shall enter into my heart’s citadel-city.
Published in Satisfaction-Blossoms, song no. 2
Live concert performance of Ami Jabo
Live concert performance of Phire Chalo