Maitreem Bhajata: A Benediction



The Acharya (1894-1994) was revered by people all over the world for the simplicity in his life and his profound knowledge of virtually every subject of concern to humanity. Very few had known about his deep and extensive knowledge of linguistics and the importance of the subject in understanding the basis of the scriptures of the country. He had mastery over several world languages as well. His lucid presentation of linguistic aspects of Sanskrit, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, English, Greek etc., along with the connections to History, Names of villages and places, etymology, was sheer joy to those who listened to his discourses.

“Maitreem Bhajata”…..

Text of Maitreem Bhajata

This benediction was composed by His Holiness Chandrasekharendra Saraswati Swamy, the Sage of Kanchi, known to all Indians as the “Paramacharya”.  It was rendered at the United Nations on Oct. 23, 1966 on the occasion of the UN day, by Bharat Ratna Smt.  M.S.Subbulakshmi.

The concert was recorded and made available for the public through 33rpm disks. Considering the significance of its message and the superb manner in which it was rendered, this Paramachariar site has decided to provide audio clips of the benediction (from the original recording) for the benefit of the viewers.

  mp3 format (~1900Kb)    Real Audio format(~1400Kb)

 In respect of “Maitreem Bhajata”, the three “da”s, damyata, datta and dayadhvam represent qualities which humanity should nurture for ever. The greatness of this concept is seen in T.S. Eliot’s incorporation of the same in his monumental work, “The waste land”.

                          Jaya Jaya Sankara  Hara Hara Sankara

Published in: on June 27, 2009 at 10:18 am  Comments (3)  

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  1. Namste,

    I am trying to get a correct version of this song. I have been seeing different versions. When I listen to MS rendering this song also I am unable to get some clarifications. Could you please clarify as I want to teach kids the right way.

    My questions are:
    1) ‘paraanapi’ us what you have written but then the word here is ‘paraan + api’ = ‘paraannapi’ please clarify.
    2) ‘janani prithivi kaama dhughaaste’ some places I read ‘kaama dhukaarte’ please clarify if you know from the original
    Now the meaning, you have written ‘wide mother earth’.
    where is the sanskrit word that represents ‘wide’ in this sentence? Please clarify for my understanding.
    Other sites I have seen ‘kaama dhughaste’ meaning to be mother earth is like the ‘kaamadhenu’ the wish fulfilling cow.

    3)’pareswa’ ‘kramamaakramnam’ As far as I understand this should be ‘pareshu’ ‘akramam’ ‘Akramanam’ or
    ‘pareshu’ ‘akramamaakramanam’ or
    I do not understand the words the way you have divided
    the sandhi at ‘pareswa’ ‘kramamaakramanam’

    I am not very knowledgeable but I want to learn right and pass on to the kids. So please clarify my doubts with explanation.
    I really appreciate your help.
    With regards,
    Jayashree Tatavarti

    • I would like to first of all thank you for the interest you have shown in going through my website on MahaPeriyavaa. Though you have raised some quieries pertaining to the above song, I would like to putforth my clarifications to the best of my ability. I give below the full song (with meanings), which I am sure will be useful and understandable to you, in learning it in the right way, so that you could impart them to your children too. I give below the whole song(verse) with their meanings.

      Lalitha Ramachandran
      Maithreem Bhajatha

      Artist: Subbulakshmi M S
      Composer: Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswati
      Album: Kalki Golden Jubilee Golden Collection

      raagam: yamunaa kalyaaNi
      65 mEcakalyaaNi janya
      Aa: S R2 G3 P M2 P D2 S
      Av: S D2 P M2 P G3 R2 S



      22 kharaharapriya janya
      Aa: S R2 M1 P N3 S
      Av: S N2 D2 N2 P M1 G2 R2 S

      taaLam: aadi
      Composer: H.H. CandrasEkhara Saraswati
      Language: Sanskrit

      maitrIm bhajata, akhila hrit jaitrIm |
      Atmavad Eva parAnn api pashyata |
      yudhham tyajata, spardhAm tyajata |
      tyajata parEShu akrama-AkramaNam ||

      jananI prithivI kAma-dukhArtE |
      janako dEvah sakala dayALuh |
      ‘dAmyata, datta, dayadhvam’ janatA |
      shrEyO bhUyAt sakala janAnAnAm ||
      shrEyO bhUyAt sakala janAnAnAm ||
      shrEyO bhUyAt sakala janAnAnAm ||


      Here the poet has used ‘dAmyata, datta, dayadhvam’ phrase in the last stanza, very significantly. There is a story and scope for wide ranging interpretation on it.

      The story occurs in Brihad Aranyaka Upanishad (and some other places). In Br Ar Upanishad 5.2.2, it runs like this: Long back, there were three kinds of children (sons) for Prajapati, the Creator. In olden days father himself would be the teacher for most of their kids, to start with. After their studies under him all these three groups of children approached Prajapati and asked him for a sort of final sermon-like-teaching before they say good-bye!

      Sanskrit & (English) format now: devA Uchuh “bravItu no bhavAn” – iti |
      (Gods said to him: “Please teach us”)
      tEbhyo ha etad akSharam uvAcha ‘da’ iti |
      (He said to them, the single syllable ‘da.)
      vyjNAsiShTA – iti |
      ( ‘Did you understand?’ – (he asked them))
      ‘vyajNAsiShma’ iti ha Uchuh |
      (“(Yes), we have understood” – they told (him))
      “dAmyata iti na Attha”- iti |
      (“(What) you said (to us is) ‘Control yourselves (dAmyata’)”)
      “Om” – iti ha uvAcha, vyajNasiShTA iti |
      “That is OK”, he said, “you have understood (it)!”

      Then, the men approached him and asked, “Please teach us, father!” He told them also the same single syllable ‘da’, and asked them too, “Did you understand what I told you?” They, the men told, “Yep, we have. You told us to ‘be charitable’ (‘datta’), isn’t it?” “That is OK”, he said, “you have got it!”

      Next was the turn of the demons. When they too approached their father and asked him, “Please teach us”, he told them also the same single syllable ‘da’. “Have you understood it?”, he asked them. They said, “Ya, we have. You told us to ‘be merciful (‘dayadhwam’); isn’t it?” “That’s OK”, he said, “you have grasped it!”

      Then, at that instant, a heavenly voice is heard thundering” “da, da, da; dAmyata, datta, dayadhwam !” That is why one should learn this triad, triple axioms: self-control(‘damam’), charity(‘dAnam’) and mercy(‘dayA’)!

      In the above story, even though the author has used the terms as gods (‘dEvAh’), men (‘manuShyAh’) and demons (‘asurAh’), they may also be construed as the good men in respectable positions, common men and aggressive men in power with evil potentials – respectively. Every one may have more than one, even triple personalities, depending on several factors such as circumstance, interaction etc. Hence, the basic instruction is to observe all the three “da’s” meant for all the disciplines.

    • Good Day to you. I have some additional meanings and interpretations as under:

      Lalitha Ramachandran __________________________________________________________________________

      maitrIm bhajata, akhila hrit jaitrIm | Atmavad Eva parAnn api pashyata | yudhham tyajata, spardhAm tyajata | tyajata parEShu akrama-AkramaNam || jananI prithivI kAma-dukhArtE | janako dEvah sakala dayALuh | ‘dAmyata, datta, dayadhvam’ janatA | shrEyO bhUyAt sakala janAnAnAm || The meaning is (Janata) – O people , (Mytrim Bhajata) – cultivate friendship (Akthla-hrid-jethrim) – that can win over everyone’s hearts (Atmavadeva paranapi pashyata) – look upon others as your own self (yuddham tyajata) – give up war (spardham tyajata) – give up competition (tyajata pareshu akramam aakramanam) – give up aggression (on others\’ land/property) as that is unfair (janani prithivi kamadhug aste) – the mother earth yields all our desires (janako deva: sakala-dayalu god our father is all merciful (damyata dattha dayadhvam )- practise self-control, donate, show mercy shreyo bhooyat sakala jananam – may all be blessed with shreyas The phrase “damyata dattha dayadhvam” is from Brihadaranyaka Upanishad

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