Famous poem of Ananda Thuriya (composed just before his death sentence)

This poem or linka waswritten by a Minister named Ananda Thuriya who composed it extempore, just at the moment he was about to die
at the hands of the executioners:

1.
For one to rise and reach high,
Someone must fall and stay
Enthralled;
Such is nature’s way.
2.
With house of gold, and palace hold
with lords surround, and regal Crown,
Pompous King though he may be,
Is like a bubble on ocean’s face,
That just makes the mortal He.

3.
Be I excused, compassion used,
And free from the gallows,
Escape would not be;
For each and one, however come
Is permanently done;
For mortal is the creature He.
4.
Raising my hands in prayer, let
me have this to say,
That in Samsara perchance we meet
No vengeance do I seek;
That with strong devotion, for my
Lord beholder;
Special exception do I accord,
Amnesty be thine – my Lord,
Ah! Impermanence be my lo”t.

Source

AT 1 AT2

Myet Phyay Linka (မ်က္ေျဖလကၤာ)

(I guess the closest translation will be the “The Poem to Quell the Anger”) was said to be written by a courtier named “Ananda Thuriya” (အနႏၲသူရိယ) during King Narapatisithu (နရပတိစည္သူ)’s reign, Bagan period.

To go a bit into the history about this poem… It is said that Ananda Thuriya wrote this poem while he was about to be executed. When the king read the poem, he told his courtiers to free Ananda Thuriya but it was too late.

The background history about this poem is much debated… some say that it was written during the Ava(Inwa)(အင္းဝ) period due to some words in the poems. But, that’s not the point here.

The main idea of this poem is about Anatesa(အနိစၥ) or not lasting/changing.

Here are the verses:

  • သူတည္းတစ္ေယာက္ ၊ ေကာင္းဖို႔ေရာက္မူ ၊ သူတစ္ေယာက္မွာ ၊ ပ်က္လင့္ကာသာ ၊ ဓမၼတာတည္း ။
  • ေရႊအိမ္နန္းႏွင့္ ၊ ၾကငွန္းလည္းစံ ၊ မတ္ေပါင္းရံလ်က္ ၊ ေပ်ာ္စံရိပ္ၿငိမ္ ၊ စည္းစိမ္မကြာ ၊ မင္းခ်မ္းသာကား ၊ သမုဒၵရာ ၊ ေရမ်က္ႏွာထက္ ၊ ခဏတက္သည္ ၊ ေရပြက္ပမာ ၊ တစ္သက္လ်ာတည္း ။
  • ၾကင္နာသနား ၊ ငါ့အားမသတ္ ၊ ယခုလႊတ္လည္း ၊ မလြတ္ၾကမၼာ ၊ လူတကာတို႔ ၊ ခႏၶာခိုင္ၾကည္ ၊ အတည္မၿမဲ ၊ ေဖာက္လြဲတတ္သည္ ၊ မခၽြတ္စသာ ၊ သတၱဝါတည္း ။
  • ရွိခိုးေကာ္ေရာ္ ၊ ပူေဇာ္အကၽြန္ ၊ ပန္ခဲ့တံု၏ ၊ ခိုက္ႀကံဳဝိပါက္ ၊ သံသာစက္၌ ၊ ႀကိဳက္လတ္တြန္မူ ၊ တံု႔မယူလို ၊ ၾကည္ညိဳစိတ္သန္ ၊ သခင္မြန္ကို ၊ ခ်န္ဘိစင္စစ္ ၊ အျပစ္မဲ့ေရး ၊ ခြင့္လွ်င္ေပး၏ ၊ ေသြးသည္အနိစၥာ ၊ ငါ့ခႏၶာတည္း ။

The first verse talks about making sacrifices. It says that “In order for one to rise, another must be sacrificed and that is the rule of the world”. Always,  something must be sacrificed or let go in order to achieve another.

The idea of the second verse is about how riches, luxuries, and everything else people value so much must one day perish. Also, life is compared to a bubble in the ocean to indicate how short it is.

The third verse says that even if the king frees him then, he will die one day so dying now or later doesn’t actually matter. All living things are destined to die as no one is immortal.

The final verse goes into forgiveness. He pays respects to the king and even though the king ordered him to be executed, he forgives him. Also, if they meet again somewhere in the Samsara(သံသရာ)(the cycle of rebirth), he won’t take revenge and that he will always respect him. The verse ends with “blood is Anatesa(အနိစၥ) and so is my body(ခႏၶာ)”.

No doubt it’s a beautiful piece of poetry whether if it was written during the Bagan period or the Inwa period. Whenever I read it, it gives me this thought about how short life is and about death… how we must prepare for to face it. Ananda Thuriya wrote this poem while he was face death which was not even a normal one… it was an execution. But, he wasn’t afraid. He didn’t show any sign of fear while writing this. His aim wasn’t to tell the king to free him but to leave a message to everyone about Anatesa(အနိစၥ).

“We are born to die”. I can’t remember who said that(Google results say Shakespeare). This is true. This is the ultimate destiny of every single human… no every single living thing. There is a Burmese proverb; “Before you bend your hand or before you straighten your hand, you might die”(ေကြးေသာလက္မဆန္႕မွီ၊ဆန္႕ေသာလက္မေကြးမွီ). We never know when we will face it. Day after day, we grow closer and closer to it. When the time comes, no matter how much we don’t want to go, we must go… leaving everything behind.

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