Commentary / explanation of Hanuman Chalisa verses 39 & 40

Jai jai jai Hanuman Gosai

Kripa karahu Gurudev ki naiee

Victory victory victory to Hanuman, the Lord of Senses. Be as compassionate to me as a Guru.

Jo sat baar paath kar koi

Chhutehi bandhi maha sukh hoi

He who reads this (Hanuman Chalisa) one hundred times, becomes free from bondage and enjoys great happiness.

Hanuman Chalisa, verses 39 & 40

Victory victory victory to Hanuman the Lord of senses (Gosai). Be as compassionate to me as a Guru.

The word ‘Gosai’ means Lord of Senses. Hanuman as the greatest of yogis has mastered all his senses. This verse is to invoke his blessings to give victory in our own lives in the ongoing daily battles between our lower nature and the higher consciousness which we sometimes glimpse and wish to become established in. 

The aim of worship in Hindu spirituality is to surrender our sense of doership and to invite the Deity to act through us and open ourselves up to His or Her transformative energy. We are blocked from knowledge of the Self and knowledge of the Divine by lack of control over our senses, and also make misjudgements which lead to various difficulties. Hanuman is invoked to help overcome or transcend the pull of our lower nature.

Hanuman is asked to bless the reciter as a Guru. Guru obviously is a Sanskrit word which has found its way into the English language. The exact meaning of Guru is not easily translated. It is not quite the same as ‘teacher’, for which there are other words such as ‘Acharya’.

One is called a Guru by a student for whom the Guru has taken responsibility for their salvation – therefore it is a position of the most immense responsibility. 

Guru translates closest to ‘dispeller of ignorance’. The Guru is one who understands the strengths and weaknesses of each of his/her shishyas (students) and steers them away from ignorance towards the Divine. To be a true Guru, one must be the Lord of senses, as well as be an abode of compassion. 

It is said that ‘guru kripa’ (compassion of the Guru) is ‘an attitude of sympathy, cooked in kindness, honeyed with love and served on golden platters of understanding’ (quotation from Swami Chinmayanana’s commentary on the Vivekachudamani of Adi Shankara).

Whosoever reads this Hanuman Chalisa a hundred times, becomes free from bondage and enjoys great happiness.

Whosever (jo) implies that it doesn’t matter who someone is – the Hanuman Chalisa can be recited by anyone for blessings and peace of mind. 

Whoever reads the Hanuman Chalisa one hundred times (in one sitting) is freed from bondage and gets great sukh (happiness/wellbeing).

The meaning is that the recital or reading of the Hanuman Chalisa will overcome our bondage and attachments, as well as grant great happiness and peace of mind.

Personally, I have always been skeptical of what sound like ‘magical prescriptions’. But it is said that the words of a person like Tulsidas who has lived their life by the Truth, will be made true by Nature itself. It is like a Siddhi that such spiritual persons have gained that they can convey and empower their chant with such a tangible blessing.

(note – the recital of Hanuman Chalisa a hundred times takes approximately 10 hours).

Visit this website’s HANUMAN SECTION (special feature) for explanations to the other verses of the Hanuman Chalisa

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