What stands out in Prasanthi when one looks at it from a week‘s perspective? It is
undoubtedly the rare glimpse of His hallowed physical presence, popular by the term
Divine Darshan, the ‘presence’ that sends out unquantified vibrations in its most
subtle form that our worldly bleak vision often fails to perceive. Where perception
of each individual always varies with varied degree of understanding, there can be
an unqualified optimism supporting the above.
Power packed lens that reflects images of expressive devotional ecstasy stands
testimony to the fact that, when He glides through the surge of devotees every heart
pounds, every mind sings, some with a prayer story and some with the beauty of
stillness, dazing at Him, often yearning for an eye-to-eye and the beauteous smile
that emanates from Him, that is His ‘trademark’. ..And the magnanimous Lord whose
physical frame operates in His Mission with a Vision in the precincts of Prasanthi
does serve a silent reminder to one and all who are destined to come to Him,
destined to hear Him and tuned to Him…a reminder of the greater import of the
greatest boon conferred upon the humanity – His Darshan! He reminds us of His own
quote given long ago on the significance of His Darshan…
My walking amongst you is a gift yearned for by the Gods of the Highest Heaven and
here you are receiving this grace. Be grateful. But also remember that to whom much
is given - from him much will be demanded”.
He is marked and His moves are keenly followed…a keen observer who follows Him and
His actions with meticulous attention would end up deriving joy in defining His
moves that suits to his perception. On the final day of the Ranga Reddy Parthi Yatra
Programme, when “Sangeeta Vibhavari”, the musical session was on there was an
interesting anecdote that captured the interest and imagination of many who were
seated in close vicinity. Bhagawan, who is ever playful, was holding a trifoliate
leaves of the basil (tulsi) for quite long time, almost playing around with the
same; He would often raise it as if studying the same curiously to drop the same
unto His lap in the next, breaking into a uncanny smile as if acknowledging the
audience of their curiosity. And what did He do with it to end this mini drama? The
script was with Him and He did it with perfection to the merriment of the curious
onlookers…Simple, He put the same in His mouth and nibbled it! And the curious
onlookers acknowledged breaking into spontaneous smiles. These are rare gems that
should be enjoyed without doing much of decoding exercise. However one could easily
take home a message - to be as pristine like a Tulsi leaf and be remain near and
dear to The Lord!
When He comes out He grants darshan to the thousands congregates in the SaI Kulwant
Hall, a definite happening. But, in the unexpected hours when He comes out to move
around, He grants ‘out of turn’ darshans to many – so called lucky - and the script
would go lengthy if one starts explaining the feeling of the many who receives such
blessing. On the 30th morning, a morning when He did not come out granting darshan,
there was a sudden panic and furor outside…as the Lord had decided to come out for a
round. He moved out of His Abode at 11:30 to ‘take a stroll’ within the ashram
campus. Lucky many got His glimpse and in between when He reached the North Block
area, He glanced through the windowpane sliding the same down apparently blessing a
group of US Youth who were having rehearsal sessions for an ensuing programme in His
Divine Presence. …And they felt filled and fulfilled as it gave a boost to their
preparations. Could this be termed - a coincidence? He has His Divine Roadmap and He
follows His route…none would know, none wound understand His route…we are fellow
pilgrims following the Master, following Him suit, aiming at our destination.
The week began with the final programme by the Parthi Yatra contingent from Ranga
Reddy District. The usual practice, symbolic of service to the poor, distribution of
implements to the needy from various parts of the districts was organized giving
away essential items to eighty five selected ones that would earn them livelihood.
“Sangeeta Vibhavari”, a short but lively musical bouquet at His Feet that followed
the distribution had a string of devotional numbers covering varied themes sung in
vernacular with a surge of feeling wooing the public to devotional heights.
“United Sai America” as they preferred to call it, Region 4 combined with Region 7
of the International Sai Organisation invented an innovative concept introducing the
cultural diversity of the vast country, United States of America. Adopting the
illustrious character of Narada, sending him on a ‘fact finding mission” to the
United States, the Adults and Young Adults coupled with tiny tots from the region
brought out an effective display calling upon The Lord to set His Feet in the United
States and bless the nation. It was an apt exhibition of Unity in Diversity and the
Youth from the region seemed to have found an innovative way to impress upon the
Lord for the big happening, the Divine Visit to the United States of America!…and to
turn this utopian to a reality, the Young Adults seemed have a set in motion a
mission to change the United States of America into United Sai America!
Varalakshmi Pooja, propitiating the Goddess of Plenty and Prosperity was observed
with devotional fervour on the 31st July in the immediate Divine Presence. Thousand
five hundred women participated in the function held in the Sai Kulwant Hall that
was blessed by the silent, yet filling presence of Bhagawan. A scintillating
devotional rendering by well known carnatic vocalist cum playback singer Anuradha
Sriram charged the hall thrilling the audience and enchanting the Divine. Matching
the perfect ambience set up by the hallowed presence of Bhagawan, the celebrated
singer matched her class with elan rendering a diverse collection of devotional
numbers that lasted for seventy minutes. Singing both Carnatic and Hindustani, Mrs.
Anuradha often crossed the language barrier rendering pieces from Tamil, Telugu,
Hindi and even from Marati. The singer was rewarded with a materialized chain and
sari while the accompanists were blessed with sari and safari pieces.
The convention that started last week, offering a rose to Bhagawan by senior
devotees continued during the week. This week’s beneficiaries included, Prof.
Ramamurthy, a veteran professor from the Dept. of Business and Financial Management,
Sri Sathya Sai University, Mr. Kavi Kumar Venkateswarlu, formerly Editor, Sanathana
Sarathi, Telugu, Mr. Kolkar, who had been the ‘bell toller’ in the ashram for many
years and whom Bhagawan would affectionately call ‘Topi’ for his typical
Maharashtrian headware, Mr. Panth, in-charge, Shanti Bhavan Guest House, Mr.
Sundaram, a longtime servant from the Maintenance Department, Mr. Lakshmi Narayana,
Public Relations Officer and Mr. Deendayal Naidu, formely with Sanathana Sarathi
section of the erstwhile Sri Sathya Sai Books and Publications Trust and currently
working as in-charge, Double Decker Auditorium.
Dignitaries visited during the week included well known jurist and former judge of
the Supreme Court, Hon’ble Justice (Retd.) Mr. V.R. Krishna Iyer, popular Cine
Director from Tamil Mr. Suresh Krishna, Vice President of the Indian Medical
Council, Dr P.C. Kesavankutty Nayar, Kodaikanal Municipal Chairman, Mohammad Ibrahim
etc. Mr. Mohammad Ibrahim is a staunch follower of Bhagawan who would frequent to
Sai Shruti in Kodaikanal regularly for Bhagawan’s darshan during Bhagawan’s stay
there in April.
As the week fades away there are more groups awaiting their turn to perform in the
Divine Presence. Groups from Region 1, 7 and 9, all from the Us, are in the waiting
list followed by a group from Canada, a strong contingent from the from Region 94
covering the United Arab Emirates, a U.K. Youth Sadhana Camp 2009 contingent lead by
Ajit Poppat, 320 strong Youth contingent from the Indian State of Himachal Pradesh
etc…all camping anticipating a fruitful week ahead.
The week ended with a long waiting for the Lord on Sunday evening; Bhagawan came
just seven minutes before six and sat for few bhajans before calling for Arathi.
Prasanthi has regular spiritual routines with fixed timings; the day breaks with 21
Aumkars at 5:20 a.m. followed by Veda Chanting and Nagar Sankirtans…Bhajan sessions
have been a fixed schedule for many years and joining in this list of sadhana is the
regular one hour Veda Chanting in the morning and evening, as introduced last week.
In Prasanthi Rudram vibrates, Bhajans follow suit and His darshan pulsates every
heart to devotional heights and Prasanthi moves on with her quiet happenings…!!!
Posted at 20:30 Hrs.IST on 26th July 2009 -
Prasanthi Nilayam is often referred to as the Most Happening Place on Earth. Those
who are spiritually oriented possessing an in-depth understanding of the subtle
level happening forming part of the spiritual renaissance set in motion by Bhagawan
will vouch for the same. The week that is passing by witnessed such “quiet
happenings” having greater spiritual import.
The week began with a shot in its arm when Bhagawan decided to deliver yet another
‘impromptu’ Divine Discourse speaking on the Vedantic Teaching, Tat Twam Asi,
further dwelling upon the often mentioned, God given principles of Love for God,
Fear of Sin and Morality in Society. This enlightening Divine Discourse was preceded
by two speeches, an exhilarating one by Mr. Anil Kumar followed by a profound and
authoritative speech by Mr. S.V.Giri.
Mr. Anil Kumar chose to begin his speech with the easiest, yet most complicated
subject, “Who is Sai Baba?” explaining lucidly using Bhagawan’s own version, quoting
Tat Tvam Asi, the Grand Pronouncement from Chandogya Upanishad ending with a
highlighted reference to the great good fortune conferred upon each and everyone
dedicated to His Mission, by being a chosen instrument at the Hands of God walking
this earth. Mr. S.V. Giri urged the students to attain mind control, an absolute
necessity. Referring to the thousands upon thousands who have been yearning to come
over to Prasanthi Nilayam without success, the speaker stressed on the greater
importance and the great good luck of being in His Divine Presence.
God reigns supreme and all His utterances, injunctions become authentic words of
wisdom for humanity to preserve and follow. Not less than an year ago Prasanthi
witnessed a changeover to a new Universal Prayer, “Samastha Lokaha Sukhino
Bhavanthu” as taught by Bhagawan with a broader universal perspective. This eventful
week was fortunate to have yet another version of this universal prayer, when
Bhagawan whispered a new mantra, “Samastha Jeevah Sukhino Bhavantu”, in the lead
singer’s ear and the entire concourse of devotees repeated after him. However,
Prasanthi was back to the earlier revised Universal prayer, Samastha Lokaaha, again
as advised by Bhagawan. Why alone for four days? None could perceive the spiritual
import of these Divine Acts; in His presence nothing is accidental, but everything
is quite intentional, absolutely Divine!
Fostering the Vedas has been earmarked as a set Mission of the Avatar walking this
earth. Giving a fillip to His Vedic Mission, Prasanthi got introduced to a new
scheme during the week, regular Veda chanting at full throat for an hour each, from
8-9 in the morning and 4-5 in the evening, attended by students in full capacity,
barring the tiny tots from the Primary School.
Saturday, the 25th July evening turned out to be a test of His often mentioned
dictum, “Love My Uncertainty”. The session began at 1600 Hrs. with Vedic Chanting
and Bhagawan chose to come bit late at around 17:20 Hrs. The evening turned twilight
was made to witness a record waiting for the Lord who retired to His Private Room
just after ten minutes of His arrival and was busily engaged in granting series of
interviews to senior devotees. The long wait came to an end after more than 130
minutes of waiting that tested the patience and perseverance of the small but well
disciplined US group from Southern California, Glendale & Arcadia Sadhana Group from
Region 8 which stayed well on course with silent prayers. An opportunity to enact a
small skit on the inspirational life of Abraham Lincoln stressing on the theme of
Mother’s Blessings followed a bouquet of specialized Bhajans on Mother Divine that
lasted for almost fifty minutes were apt rewards for the disciplined and devoted
prayers of this overseas group.
“Redeeming Love” as one could term it, the greater compassion that results in His
benediction upon the chunk of fraternity serving Him in His Mission tirelessly,
selflessly and most devoutly that helps them finally to evolve into exalted
spiritual beings, is what one should aspire for in His immediate presence. How much
He cares for those souls whose greater dedication and devotion help moving His
Mission forward? The week found a fresh twist to this ‘redeeming love’ as a new
system came into affect with which all serving hands, having completed number of
years of service, would be blessed to offer a “flower of love” to the Lord in
physical before Arathi is offered in the evening. Mr. Ram Mohan Rao, the grand old
man who has been serving the Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust, heading the Finance and
Accounts Operations for many years was the first one chosen to offer ‘the flower of
love and devotion’ on the evening of 25th July. God that He is…nothing can ever skip
His attention and the dues for our love-filled offering are bound to rebound with
There are other groups from the US camping over here, some groups to stay
overlapping the next couple of weeks, making it a “United Offering” from the far
western world, The United States of America.
The weekend marks with yet another Parthi Yatra in Prasanthi Nilayam. Over 3000
devotees have come from the Ranga Reddy District of Andhra Pradesh on a three day
pilgrimage. On the Sunday evening the Youth and Balvikas children from the district
offered a musical dance drama entitled “Radha Bhakthi”. Earlier on the 25th evening
the group took out a huge rally outside the ashram, a customary procession
showcasing cultural tradition enriched with devotional fervour.
There are many a “quiet happening” in this most happening place… and Prasanthi often
shows her thumbs up marking spiritual evolution. Does anyone take note of it? The
goal is set, and the progress is steady as dictated by Divine Times… The Timeless
Theater in Prasanthi Nilayam is sure to have much more coming up! Be focused as the
Lord reigns Supreme here, very much in physical! - >>> Read more with
GOD IS HERE...
Posted at 20 Hrs. IST on 19th July 2009 -
After a week filled with exciting events, the new week had a quiet beginning as
there were no programmes in the offing for the initial half of the week. With each
passing moment, there comes a fresh moment…with each passing day, there comes a
fresh day…and often these fresh entrants tend to bring surprises.
Thursday morning was such a day, as the auspicious morning brought back a custom
that had been discontinued for sometime, safari cloth distribution to students and
staff of the Institute. On the Thursday morning, most unusually, the Mandir was full
as instructions had gone to both the junior and senior hostel students to attend the
morning darshan as a scheduled cloth distribution was in the agenda. Entire campus
with teaching and administrative staff members were blessed with safari pieces,
distributed by students and senior staff members in His immediate Divine Presence.
Adding to the list of Parthi Yatras joined a huge contingent of over 2100 devotees
from the telangana district of Medak. The third Parthi Yatra from the district in
succession in three years was organized expressing gratitude for the Water Project
Scheme implemented in the drought affected district. The group that had various
cultural, social and spiritual programmes conducted in the district spreading
Bhagawan’s Message of Love, has organized distribution of implements for the
downtrodden, selected from the district. A musical offering titled, “Hrudaya
Kusumanjali” and a Musical Drama entitled “Devudu Unnaru”, portraying the journey of
an atheist to transform himself into a believer in the existence of God were the
other highlights of the Medak Parthi Yatra.
More than the transformation episode, what captivated the attention of the beautiful
turned blissful evening was the all conquering love of the Lord with the tiny tots.
On a bliss permeating evening turned twilight, on the 18th July, Prasanthi Nilayam
witnessed the bondage of love between the Lord and His children… He ‘moved’ among,
interacted, posed for photo session granted paadanamaskaars, presented gifts with
His own Hands… and He made the evening the most blissful for the folks from the
Telangana District of Medak by making them feel that “GOD IS HERE”!
New themes, new ideas, everything that is fresh raking the truth, waking up the
sleeping souls, leading unto the facet of the “eternal now” blossoms at the Timeless
Theater in Prasanthi Nilayam in the immediate Divine Presence! It is rightly said,
everyday is a festivity in Prasanthi Nilayam…Yes, it is "Nithyakalyanam Pacha
Thoranam" in His Divine Presence. GOD IS very much HERE...
PRASANTHI THIS WEEK
DECODING THE MORAL CODE
July 12, 2009
The week was full! Coming from the glorious Ashadi backdrop and Guru Purnima in the
offing, the week evinced greater expectations; and it had a perfect beginning, with
a Divine Discourse Bonanza that came out of the blue.
On the 6th evening, the preceding day of the scheduled Guru Purnima, Bhagawan,
coming after a long wait surprised the audience with an off the cuff ‘Divine
Discourse. The Discourse that was more or less thematic, with “Morality in Society”
as its crux had a bit of “Hard Talk”, with Bhagawan unleashing the consequences of
transgressing the moral code. Talking straight Bhagawan said: one should take every
care to ensure that no bad looks, no bad actions, no bad thoughts should be
committed as consequences have to be faced. Morality in society is of prime
importance. Man without morality in society is no human being at all. Discoursing on
the three moral principles, namely, Love for God, Fear of Sin and Morality in
Society, Bhagawan exhorted one and allto Do Good, Be Good and See Good. You may
escape from the sight of the society, but one should not try to escape the eyes of
the God…And the Divine Discourse set the perfect ambience for a Musical Drama
presentation by the Bal Vikas and Youth of Tamil Nadu on the same evening.
Sai Yugam Swarna Yugam was a journey through time, from the twilight of Dwapara unto
the present age of the Kali Yuga Avatar Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. Highlighting
all the great good happenings, going into the future of Kali to end with the
greatest ever happening, the Advent of the Avatar of the age Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai
Baba, essentially the Timeless Divine Phenomenon the presentation brought onstage an
ensemble of past masters portraying their great good teachings to humanity.
The glorious Guru Purnima morning had its toll
of waiting for long to witness the glory of the Lord in physical. The prolonged
waiting came to an end when the Lord clad in yellow came out at dot ten blessing the
vast concourse of devotees assembled in the Sai Kulwant Hall. Guru Purnima in
Prasanthi often assumes a difference as many of the organizational and institutional
activities related to Trusts and Institutions are organized during the big occasion.
This year it was felicitation time for some of the senior officials who had been
serving the institutions most selflessly and the stage was set for the grand
occasion. Mr. Appa Rao, formerly Financial Controller, Sri Sathya Sai Institute of
Higher Medical Sciences at Prasanthigram, Mr. Sathyanarayana Murthy, Senior
Engineer, Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Medical Sciences, Prasanthigram, Prof.
A.V. Lakshminarasimham, formerly Registrar, Sri Sathya Sai University, Prasanthi
Nilayam, Prof. Nanjundaiah, Controller of Examinations, Sri Sathya Sai University,
Prasanthi Nilayam were the four distinguished members felicitated on the auspicious
morning. After an introductory speech by Prof. Anil Kumar, all the distinguished
officials were garlanded that was followed by two speeches by Dr. A.N. Safaya,
Director, Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Medical Sciences and Vice Chancellor of
the University, Prof. Vishwanath Pandit respectively lauding the yeomen selfless
service rendered by these officials. These outgoing officials were presented with
silverware – silver plate and tumbler as a token of appreciation by Bhagawan. …And
the evening session was an add-on to the morning programme when Bhagawan chose to
speak on the wonderful service rendered by the outgoing officials. Discoursing on
the greater importance of emulating the ideal lives set by the elders, Bhagawan
exhorted the students to follow the path shown by them to come up in life.
Cultural presentations have become the order of the day in Prasanthi Nilayam wherein
groups from India and overseas make headway into the Divine Heart by thematic value
oriented depiction that verily serves as a tool of transformation. The Brazilians
came in large number, over three hundred, and had rigorous practice sessions before
producing a Western Bhajan Sandhya on the 8th evening in the Divine Presence. …And
what followed was short instrumental music presentation by a small group of twenty
seven from Sai Study Group, Bandung, Indonesia. Capitalizing the popularity of
Angklung, a famous Indonesian traditional musical instrument, they had set some of
the famous Sai Bhajans to tune along with another vernacular piece to recreate the
joy of music in the Divine Presence as a token of their love for the Lord.
Music continued in the next evening when an
ensemble of 45 africans made merry of the immediate Divine Presence by singing their
heart out with devotional excellence. The one year old group, Sai African Adults
Choir, had the best of the evening turned twilight when Bhagawan made His joy
explicit with His greater participation. Sir Jude Nnam, the conductor for the show,
the first young man to be ever knighted from the Roman Catholic was the hero of the
session; with his unsullied devotion and musical brilliance coupled with able
conducting, Bhagawan was drawn towards the conductor to watch him intently, while he
was leading the Choir from the front with all-round display. It was indeed an
African Twilight in Prasanthi Nilayam, wherein the Africans came and conquered!!!
Cricketing Legend, Sunil Gavaskar is not a new face to Prasanthi Nilayam. He has
been a long standing devotee and a regular to Prasanthi Nilayam over past few
decades. Gavaskar’s recent visit to Prasanthi Nilayam during the week evinced
greater interest as the legendary cricketer who had a long list of ‘conquered
milestones’ during his cricketing sojourn reached yet another milestone on the 10th
July 2009, as he turned 60 on that day. Gavaskar alongwith close family members,
which included his brother-in-law, another celebrated face of Indian Cricket,
Gundappa Vishwanath and his cricketer son Rohan Gavaskar was in Prasanthi Nilayam
seeking Bhagawan’s blessings on the auspicious day of his Shashtipoorthi, as is
known in the Hindu tradition. Bhagawan while interacting with him blessed his latest
book, “Straight Drive” and the entire family was blessed with an interview on the
The week was still on and had much more to
come…and the exciting news was that of Bhagawan’s visit to Sri Sathya Sai Institute
of Higher Medical Sciences, Prasanthigram on the 10th evening at 16 Hrs. Bhagawan
spent valuable time in the hospital inaugurating and blessing an International
Orthopaedic Conference that was attended by eminent medicos, over 120 from all over
the globe. Bhagawan also spent time going through an Orthopaedic Exhibition that had
rare orthopaedic case studies for display.
From the University end, the Bioscience Department in collaboration with Madras
Diabetes Research Foundation conducted a two-day International conference on the
theme, “Current trends in ultidisciplinary approaches to Diabetes Research” on 9th
and 10th of this month. The Guest of Honour was Dr.V.Mohan, from the Madras Diabetes
Research Foundation; experts from the MDRF debated on various aspects related to the
subject evincing greater interest and participation from the students of the
University; it was educative and interesting for the students of the department for
they could understand the intricacies of this lethal but common disease.
With the big festival Guru Purnima falling in the week, Prasanthi Nilayam
experienced a surge of rush and it continued till the week end though with less
intensity. A big group of 400 devotees from Pondicherry and another small group of
55 villagers from Amaravathi Camp, Shimoga district, as a part of the SSSVIP camped
in Prasanthi Nilayam during the weekend enjoying the bliss of Darshan.
Yes, the week lived up to its expectations and Prasanthi had sumptuous presence of
the Lord during the week.