Songs of the Saints Posted in: Vaishnava songs
Prayers are of course a personal affair. Praying is a time for the soul to connect with God, offer him heartfelt praises and seek his mercy. Whilst this is certainly beneficial, in Vaishnavism it is also recommended that one offer the prayers composed by great saints. Such prayers always express appropriate sentiments, whereas in our conditioned state it is possible that material desires and sentiments will creep into our offerings. The Lord is pleased by pure devotion and therefore by offering the pure words of self-realised souls we can please him and gain the greatest benefit.
Most of the Vaishnava prayers were composed in foreign languages, usually Sanskrit or Bengali, and are generally sung in temples in the same way as Christian hymns. Obviously it is difficult for English speakers to appreciate these songs (which are known as bhajans). With this in mind I have rendered many of them into English which you can find here on my website. In most cases I have adhered to the same metrical format as used in the original songs, which means they can be sung to their usual, familiar tunes. I personally sing a number of these every day with my family and find them most helpful in evoking devotional sentiments. I hope they similarly help you.