My song has not been sung yet……
Prayer is an unsung song — the picture hidden in the mind of the painter which has not taken form on the canvas. It is the statue hidden in the stone which has not been carved out with the chisel. Bhajan is the visible statue. The stone has been cut, the chisel has done the work. Bhajan is the song which is being sung.
A friend came to see Rabindranath when he was about to die, just two days before his death. He said, “Yours has been a very successful life. There is nothing to worry about or to regret now.” Both of them were friends since their childhood and now both of them were old. He said: “You can die peacefully. I did not attain anything in this life, I have wasted it so I will not die peacefully. You have sung so many songs!”
Rabindranath has sung six thousand songs. No other poet in this world has sung so many songs. The poet Shelley is very famous in the West but his songs number about three thousand, while Rabindranath’s are six thousand, and all these six thousand songs can be put to music.
The old friend said, “You were given the Nobel prize; honors have been showered on you, you can die peacefully. Of course I will die without peace but you can thank God while saying goodbye to the world.”
Rabindranath listened to what his friend was saying. Then he said, “Well, I have not been able to sing the song which I wanted to sing, it is still within me like a seed. These six thousand songs are the unsuccessful efforts to sing that one song. I have tried many times to sing that one song which is in me like a seed but I have failed every time. You may have liked those songs but they are the stories of my failure. My song has not been sung yet. I have not sung it yet, and God has come to take me away. Just now I was tuning my instruments; with great difficulty I was able to tune my sitar. People thought I was singing. No, I was tuning my instruments. Now I have become mature enough, the instruments are ready, my spirit is ready, the moment of singing has come just now, but now it is time to go. Yes, I am complaining to God.”
Rabindranath could not sit like Buddha under a tree. He wanted to sing the song of the divine. Rabindranath has criticized Buddha a lot — not out of any dislike but out of love and gratitude. But Buddha never appealed to Rabindranath: he had regard for him but Buddha’s sitting silently like a stone statue did not appeal to him. But the Baul fakirs appealed to him — the fakirs, the sadhus dancing with the ektara. This is the difference of individuals. Rabindranath had respect for Buddha, he had nothing against him, but they were two different types.