The yoga teacher played chanting music during Savasana. It resonated with me, and I fell right into meditation. It was just so…right. I asked her what it was after class. She told me what they were saying, and what it translated to, but I had already lingered for so long that I wanted to pull away. I feared overenthusiasm, or something. I didn’t listen to her.
Two days later, I was early to pick up my daughter from school and read a few poems from Jane Hirshfield’s After in the car. I was moved by “Letter to C.” an elegy to her friend, Czeslaw Milosz. The second-to-last line of the poem is, “Gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi svaha.”
Those were the words to the chant that I was so struck by.
The poem’s final line offers a translation:
Gone now, released one, far past returning, freed one, suffer no more.