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  Swami in Madurai - 22nd April, 1999

This article was compiled by one of our Sai Brother and distributed in SAINET.

Madurai is major city in South India.  This city is famous for the Goddess Meenakshi Amman Temple, and also for the fragrant Jasmine flowers.  Swami had provided another land mark in this city.  On the 22nd this month, Swami inaugurated a beautiful Sai Mandir in this city.

Swami arrived in the city by air from Bangalore well before noontime. He was offered the traditional welcome.  A majestic elephant (procured locally and not Sai Geetha) was present to receive Swami with flowers on its trunk.  Nada Swaram(piped music)  was played as Swami alighted from the car when He arrived from the aair port.  The vedic priests, welcomed Swami offering Poorna Kumbham, amidst chanting Vedas.  On both sides of the roads thick crowds had assembled and Bhajan was in progress. After blessing the dedvotees thronged outside, Swami unveiled a curtain covering the plaque, with its inscriptions of the inauguration by Swami
on that day.

Mr. Venu Srinivasan, Managing Director and C.E.O. of M/s. TVS SUZUKI Ltd., was the man selected by Swami to undertake to construct this beautiful Mandir complex at Madurai.  Mr.Srinivasan, with the blessings of Swami, was able to complete the work within 6 months from that of commencement of work.  The structure is a beauty by itself, as is always, in all the projects of Swami.  Immediately after opening the plaque, Swami materialised  a beautiful golden chain with beads of various jewels with gold caps on each bead, and put it across the neck of Mr. Venu Srinivasan.

Swami pushed open the door to the Mandir and entered the main hall of the to the thundeerous applause from the devotees.  Swami walked in, closely looking at every feature of the Mandir.  He ascended the raised platform accompanied by Mr. Srinivasan.  Once more the Divine Hand moved in circular motion and materilised a beautiful Golden Bracelet and placed on the hands of Mr. Venu Srinivasan, who deserved the twin presentation within a matter of few minutes, for all the devoted and dedicated service he had rendered in the construction of a beautiful Mandir within a shortest possible time.

Mr. Subramania Chettiar's family had also brought a life size marble statue of Shirdi Baba, and Padhuka on a granite.  Swami did not  give them the permission to install them on this day.  He said the time has not come yet for installation and that He would install them very soon. But Swami climbed and stood upon the Granite Padhuka and also blessed the stature of Shirdi Baba.

Swami walked around all the other parts of the Mandir including the room specially provided for Swami to stay, interview rooms, and guest rooms etc.  There are balconies running on all three sides overlooking the Main hall.  Swami walked along the balcony and stepped on the Lotus shaped opening overlooking the front yard of the Manidr.  Swami raised both His Divine hands to the devotees seated outside the hall.
The convenor of the Madurai Samithi(centre) of Sri Sathya Sai seva Organisations, welcomed Swami to the city, and prayed to Him that Swami should visit this mandir and bless the devotees every year.

Mr. Srinivasan, son of Late Subramania Chettiar was called to speak.  He recalled how, with the Divine Grace, the colony, Sri Sathya Sai Nagar had come up in that location some 30 years ago.  He also mentioned that it was his father's desire to have this Mandir built up in this colony and that he had prayed Swami, that whoever comes and make prayers in ths Mandir should be saved by the Divine Grace.  He told that His illustrious father had never prayed or asked for anything for himself or his family.  His prayers to Swami was always for the benefit of the humanity and especially for the devotees of Bhagavan Baba.  He mentioned that his father had left the world exactly ten days earlier and had merged with Bhagavan, and  he and his family members were very happy to have Swami with them on this important day, and receive His Blessings.

Mr. Venu Srinivasan also addressed the gathering as per the command of Bhagavan.  Mr.  Srinivasan admitted that it was a very great responsibilty to undertake any of Swami's time bound projects.  But for Swami's constant guidance and Grace, it was humanly impossible to erect such a grand temple within such a short time.   He admitted that he experienced and learnt during those days, that though he worked with others on this site, it was really Bhagavan Himself who had been the motivator and supervisor of the project.

In the end, Swami gave a Divine Discourse.  Swami spoke exhorting devotees to develop shanthi and prema, and not bound the greed to earn money and wealth.  "The earth revolves around the sun; Likewise man, to day revolves around wealth and money only" said Swami.  "The heart is important to human beings and if stops the life come to an end.  We should try to install God in the hear, and He is Hrudayavasi (Indweller of Heart). On the contrary, man today develops desires and more desires and has no time to think of God, and make prayers.  There is no pleasure unless there is pain (troubles) also.  As such we should accept both pleasure and pain willingly, as gifts from God equally."

Swami announced that He had willed and had inaugurated this Mandir on this particular day, the 22nd April, 1999, because it was the desire of Late Subramania Chetiar that this should be done this day.

Swami spoke to the family members of Late Chettiar privately and consoled them, and urged them that they need not have any grief, since Mr.  Chettiar had come to him.  He had assured them that he will come to this Mandir every year to give joy to the people of Madurai.

Before leaving, Swami visited the site where a small temple for Lord Vinayaka had been constructed.  He blessed the statue of the diety, which will be installed later on with all needed rites and rituals.

Swami left Madurai by car to Kodaikanal followed by many devotees and a group of selected students and staff of Swami's colleges.

By evening Swami was in Sai Smruthi in Kodaikanal, and back on His routine, evening Darshan and blessings to devotees already gathered in thousands.   Swami's programme is uncertain.  He had given clues that Swami will be at Kodaikanal on the day of "Easwaramma Day" which falls on the 5th of May.  May be He may leave for Bangalore by  early second week.  But no one knows the Divine Programme, except that on this day Bhagavan Baba is in Kodaikanal!

Jai Sai Ram!

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