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Diamond Sparks

when you first called me radha

April 2, 2010 by Lightwaves

Swami Radha expressed her wisdom and devotion in the art of poetry, compiled in when you first called me Radha, published in 2005 by Timeless. Her poems are like “sparks of wisdom” that when we listen closely they touch a knowing within. Editor Clea McDougall, daughter of Swami Radhananda, (Swami Radha’s successor) shares her mother’s experience of listening to Swami Radha record her poems.
We will be posting a series of Radha’s poems each week as Polishing the Diamond approaches. This is a precious workshop to have the presence of the teacher, Swami Radhananda who, like Swami Radha, transmits the teachings in a way that are like diamond sparks… the student’s work is to listen.

*                                            *                                                  *

I REMEMBER SEEING MY MOTHER just after she sat in on one of the recording sessions. This may sound strange, but she wasn’t solid anymore. Her eyes were big and full of Light. She came over to me to give me a hug and a kiss on the cheek, and her flesh had this certain quality to it, softer and lighter than anything I had ever touched, as if my body could pass through her body.

My mother whispered in my ear, “I just listened to Swami Radha read her poems.” And I didn’t really know what to say. I just thought, something magical has happened, something must have been transmitted here, something like God or love or the true nature of Radha. I felt in awe and also kind of sad, but a good sad, because I knew that whatever had happened had changed my mother completely, and it was so pretty, the change.

Talking to my mother about it recently, she called the poems “diamond sparks.”

“Swami Radha concentrated her whole life, all her spiritual experiences, into these pointed, diamond sparked poems. Teachings can be transmitted on different levels; it’s not all performance and flash. It’s the quiet times, too, and you don’t even know what it is at the time, until you need it. That’s how Swami Radha taught.”

Click to listen to this poem



When you first called me
my heart leaped literally
my breath stopped
my mind went blank
then a flood of indescribable
joy surged over me.
Being with Krishna can’t be
an intellectual event
the fire is mixing in the play of
clever words and mental
Being with Krishna can only be a passionate
love affair, all consuming
filling every cell of the body
with Krishna’s essence.

Radha and Krishna’s love, the Cosmic Play
has of course all the ingredients
of a love affair, spiritual
and erotic, aesthetic.
How else can an ordinary human
understand the Cosmic Play?
To be close will always be related
to best closeness experienced by humans.
Lovers think of each other all the time,
in meditation every cell of being is on
the alert, like a lover expecting
the arrival of the beloved.

The separation, the long waiting period.
This power of love is not to be
compared to wifely duties.


Yasodhara Ashram will be hosting Polishing the Diamond, April 26-May 1/ 2010. For more information you may call 1 800 661 8711, view our online course catalogue, or email To join the event on Facebook, click here. For printable posters, click here

1 Comment »

  1. All the warmth of spring is filling the air today and as it does this beautiful poem of Swami Radha’s fills my heart and mind. Her poems are compelling, riveting, honest, dear and full of sparks of light and sparks of wisdom. They have inspired me greatly. Sometimes i read them over and over again and sometimes I listen to her reading them. I hope many people come to Polishing the Diamond and find their own sparks.
    Swami Radhakrishnananda

    Comment by Swami Radhakrishnananda — April 4, 2010 @ 2:47 pm

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