Mahitha Manasa Mahathe - Christian Bhajans By Fr. Joseph J.Palackal

DCS-017 Mahitha Manasa Mahathe - Christian Bhajans By Fr. Joseph J.Palackal

Youtube Gallery

Song Tracks

Call Number : DCS-017


Mahitha Manasa Mahathe

മഹിത മാനസ മഹതേ ശരണം

Christian Bhajans


Fr. Joseph J. Palackal, CMI and Chorus

Music - Ramakrishnashram

Call Number : DCS-017

  • Lyrics - Fr. Jose Chunkan, C.M.I.
  • Language - Malayalam
  • Music - Ramakrishnashram
  • Recorded at - Deccan Records, Bangalore
  • Album - Christian Bhajans By Dr. Joseph J. Palackal CMI (Track No. 3)
  • Directory of Christian Songs (Call Number) - MA-MAL-02-DCS-017


In the 1970s, the inculturation movement was at its peak at Dharmaram College, the major seminary of the Carmelites of Mary Immaculate, in Bengaluru. Liturgical and paraliturgical celebrations had an “Indian” character in the use of prayer vocabulary and music. Fr. Jose Chunkan, CMI, a philosophy student at Dharmaram, wrote the lyrics of this bhajan for a Bible service to celebrate Diwali, in 1972. Fr. Chunkan, who is from the Trichur province of the CMIs, had heard the melody at Sharada Madham, a convent of the Ramkrishna Mission in Thrissur. He wrote the lyrics to the melody and meter of the bhajan. The vibrant melody in 7/8 rhythm in rag 'Bhageshri' suited well for the occasion of the festival of lights. Soon, the bhajan became a part of paraliturgical celebrations at Dharmaram. I used to be the lead singer of this bhajan on many occasions. Naturally, I decided to include it in the Long Play record. Fr. Michael Purattukara, CMI (1948-2016), who was into adapting the Indian style of Sanyasa, was familiar with the members of the Sharada Madham. Fr. Michael got us permission to use the melody with Christian words for the LP. Prof. Pratapkumar J. Toliya made the music arrangement and conducted the recording at the H. M. V. studio in Chennai in April 1978.

A year later, upon listening to the LP, Prof. Mathew Ulakamthara, an acclaimed literary critic in Malayalam, said to me that “Yesu dewa wandanam” would have been better than “Yesu dewane wandanam.”

The bhajan is an example of intercultural borrowing. The students and staff at Dhramaram College were comfortable in borrowing a melody from a Hindu Ashram and write Christian lyrics for a Bible service at the Chapel of the College.

Joseph J. Palackal, CMI
New York
5 May 2021
Feast of the Ascension of our Lord

Keywords - Christian Bhajans, Christian Songs, Bhajans, Indian Bhajans, Christian Music, Palackal Joseph Palackal, CarmelitesOfMaryImmaculate, CMI, rajagiri, syro malabar, SyroMalabarChurch, Dharmaram College, Joseph Palakkal, Deccan Records Bangalore, George Thangiah, Pratapkumar J. Toliya

Print   Email