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Janaka is one of Scotland's most well known writers, having written novels, short stories, plays and poetry for more than 40 years. Janaka and his wife Janani are also leaders of the Edinburgh Sri Chinmoy Centre.
Sri Chinmoy's one-person performance of his play 'The Son'
In 1973 Sri Chinmoy gave a one-person performance of the first act of The Son, a play he had written about the life of the Saviour Christ. Janaka Alan Spence, a poet and novelist who later became Scottish writer of the Year, was there in the audience that night. This is his experience.
I remember sitting many years ago in an auditorium in New York city. It was very late, on a hot summer night. I was very tired. Yet I found myself deeply moved by what was happening on stage, where Sri Chinmoy was performing, solo, the first act of his play "The Son", a dramatisation of the life of Christ. But to call what I was watching a 'performance' would be to limit it. Rather, what was unfolding on that stage was a sustained meditation, a revelation of the most profound spiritual truths.
That opening scene takes the form of a dialogue between God the Father and God the Son, in which the Son is being prepared for his mission on earth. By playing both parts, Sri Chinmoy gave at the same time a stunningly simple literal interpretation, and a poetic dramatisation, of Christ's statement "I and my Father are one."