Sai Baba Sri Sathya Sai Baba

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Reports of events from the Sai Baba Ashrams


Prashanthi Bullettin - August 24th to 27th, 2005

August 27th, 2005

This day of Krishnashtami dawned with a cool and cloudy morning. This year, Swami has permitted the procession of the cows from Gokulam to Mandir, which was an annual feature in the recent past. Early in the morning, all the cow procession boys got ready and proceeded to Gokulam. They had been practicing handling the cows for the last two days. Bhagawan is very particular that the cows must be handled very carefully without causing even the slightest pain to them. In earlier years, Swami has explained how exactly one must handle the noose that passes through the nostrils of the cow, controlling its movement. A slightly harder tug at the noose can cause immense pain to the cow and Swami is very sensitive about this - Master of all beings that He is!

The Procession from the Gokulam began at 7.30 a.m. Sai Gita, Bhagawan's pet elephant, in all her finery led the procession. She was decked with all her jewelry and the Naadaswaram group accompanied her. Behind Sai Gita were the Vedam students chanting sacred hymns and charging the atmosphere with holy vibrations. Behind them were the Bhajan boys and finally the long line of cows accompanied by two cowherd students each. As the procession passed through the streets of Parthi, all the people from the shops and houses came out to witness the joyous occasion. The procession had crossed the Bus-stand and were nearing the Mandir, when suddenly there was some commotion. People started running and there was an indication that Swami's car may come out.

However, what happened inside was something else. Swami had come out for Darshan at 7.50 a.m. After taking a full round of the Kulwant Hall in the car, Swami drove out into the Ashram premises. The car went towards the Gayatri Mandir in front of the Round Blocks. Adjacent to the Gayatri Mandir towards the Mandir Post Office, the car parked and Swami's chair rolled out.

The occasion was the Bhoomi Puja of a Lakshmi Mandir to be built next to the Gayatri Mandir. The concerned people had assembled there along with a priest. A spade full of cement was brought to Swami and Bhagawan Blessed it. The cement was then placed in the site where the temple was to come up. Having completed the Bhoomi Puja, Swami returned to the Mandir.

At 8.15 a.m. the procession entered the Kulwant Hall and stood waiting for Bhagawan's arrival. In a few minutes, Swami's car came into the Kulwant Hall. Even as the car moved into the Kulwant Hall, dear Sai Gita was overjoyed and started raising her trunk to welcome her Lord. When the car moved by, she tried to place her trunk on the car window to attract her Lord's attention. Brother Satyajit was driving the car and after taking a full round, the car moved onto the dais. Swami's chair rolled out and He sat right at the centre of the dais, giving all of us a wonderful Darshan.

The Kulwant Hall was charged with a vibrant feeling. Vedam chanting was on. We had Naadaswaram by the professionals and by the students too. The Hall was decorated very well with Chinese red lamps and other attractive buntings and garlands. Slowly the mahout brought Sai Gita closer and closer to Swami. Meanwhile, Swami instructed the students to distribute Prasadam. All of us received a tasty Adirasam (a sweet preparation) as Prasadam. Two little school children dressed as Krishna and Balarama went forward and sought Swami's Blessings. Swami interacted with them for some time. At 8.45 a.m. Aarti was offered and Swami Blessed the bananas and apples that were meant for feeding the cows and Sai Gita.

How could Sai Gita watch this and keep quiet? Would her Lord not feed her? Why was He not responding to her plea now? Acknowledging these feelings that would have probably saturated Sai Gita's heart, Swami signaled to her and she came moving majestically forward. Bhagawan took an apple in His Hand. The chair was moved forward and Sai Gita stood next to the brass railing. The brass railing was no barrier for her long trunk. She extended her trunk to Swami's Hand and received the Blessed apple! Swami fed her with some more apples even as tears trickled down her wet eyes. Who can restrain from responding to God's Love!

Taking this as a green signal, several students came forward with a peacock, two deer, a rabbit and two white doves for Blessings. Swami lovingly Blessed all the beings and released the white doves into the freedom of the Sai Kulwant Hall. As all these events took place, a big team walked into the Hall from the Gopuram gate. Who were they, we wondered. Mr. Rajan - Convenor of the Books and Publications Trust and Mr. C. Srinivas were leading a team of dignitaries and an Arab in his traditional dress. We learnt later that he was a member of the Royal Family of Dubai. He held the portfolio of the Minister of Education of the UAE and is the President of the Zayeb University. His name is Shaikh Nahyan.

He was not the only VIP this morning. Sunil Mittal, Group Managing Director and Chairman of the Bharti Group, his wife and his two sons were also seated in the inner Portico waiting to have an audience with Bhagawan. Swami called the Shaikh in for an interview that lasted for more than an hour. Finally, at 10.30 a.m. Swami retired to His abode.

In the evening, Swami came out for Darshan at 3.15 p.m. The car moved over the dais and Swami continued to sit inside the car for a long time. After some time, the Secretary of the Central Trust, Mr. Chakravarthi got out from the car and talked to the Warden of the Hostel. It looked like they were looking for some speakers for the evening. The VC and the Warden discussed for some time and then informed Swami about the speakers.

At 3.45 p.m. Swami came out of the car and sat in the centre of the stage. Vedam chanting was going on. At 4.00 p.m. Bhagawan Blessed the Birthday boys and the School boys who had got a Card to mark the festival celebration. After this Swami indicated for the Vedam to stop. The Vice Chancellor after receiving instructions from Swami asked the Music boys to commence their presentation. Two main singers came forward and submitted a list of songs to Swami. They began with the Sloka 'Vasudevasutam Devam....' Subsequently, Swami indicated to them each time which song to sing. He would see the list and pick up one song in the order of His Choice. We had Brahma Kadagina Padamu, Adharam Madhuram, Challa Gaalilo, Madhura Mohana Ghana Shyama....

At 4.35 p.m., the Music Programme drew to a close and Swami asked the VC to introduce the speakers for the evening. The first speaker was Dr. M. Sainath, lecturer in the Department of Physics and the second speaker was Sri Shashank Shah, a II Year M.Phil. student in the School of Business Management.

Dr. M. Sainath spoke about the journey from the gross to the subtle, from the world without to the world within and from the force to the Source, by recalling the analogy that Swami had once given. We start with Dasoham - I am Your servant. Remove the ?Da' and we are left with Soham - I am That (He) and finally when we remove ?So' we are left with Ham - I am I.

He elaborated on the evolutionary path of humans as expounded by Bhagawan. We begin as animals devoid of any discrimination or wisdom. We then move on to the Devil who is steeped in infatuation and sensual pleasures. Finally we evolve to the human being who adheres to Truth and Dharma.

He narrated a very beautiful story from the life of Sant Tukaram. When once his disciple asked him as to how he was so peaceful and calm all the while, Sant Tukaram called his disciple and told him that he (the disciple) had just seven days more to live in this world. The disciple was shocked for he had come to seek an answer to a doubt and his guru was now giving him such a rude shock. The first two days the disciple was very disturbed and restless. But then realizing the inevitability of the oncoming death, he gave away all his wealth, completed all his formalities and then started thinking of the Lord and remained lost in His contemplation.

On the seventh day, Sant Tukaram called the disciple and asked him how he felt. The disciple ecstatically described the peace and calm he was experiencing. When questioned about the reason for this calm and peace, the disciple said that when death was anyhow inevitable where was the need to be disturbed and restless. Immediately Sant Tukaram told him that this was the secret of his success too. Sant Tukaram was always aware of the transience of human existence and hence was always in peace and calm.

Dr. Sainath then spoke about the role of a Guru in our life. He recalled Swami's example of the cotton and the sun. When the cotton is exposed to the sun, it does not get burnt. However, if a convex lens is used to focus the rays of the sun onto the cotton, it immediately catches fire. This is the role of a Guru too, to intensify the Grace of the Lord by cashing on the faith in the disciple. In our case, the Guru and the Lord are one and the same. How fortunate are we!

He concluded with a beautiful anecdote relating to Samuel Sandweiss - the famous psychiatrist devotee from USA. When he had completed writing a book, he wanted to give it the title 'Man is God'. However, this was not acceptable to many people and appeared as a sacrilege and blasphemy to many. But he was convinced about this Advaitic teaching of Bhagawan. Finding no other way, He took the book to Swami and sought His Blessings. Bhagawan very beautifully resolved his dilemma by adding a line on the top, 'With Love - Man is God'. This solved the problem. There is no doubt that Man is God but not without manifesting the Divine Love within.

At 5.05 p.m. brother Shashank Shah took over the stage. His talk mainly revolved around the Leelas of Krishna starting from His birth and moving on to the battle in Kurukshetra. Art several points he drew parallels between Lord Krishna and our Swami by narrating similar episodes in their lives - episodes where they had revealed their Divinity to some devotees and where they had come to the rescue of their Bhaktas.

He gave the meaning of the word Govinda and Gopala as Go + Vinda and Go + Pala. Go means the Jeevi and Pala or Vinda means the caretaker or the Lord. Therefore, Govinda and Gopala means the Lord of all the Jeevis - the entire world. Another symbolism the speaker highlighted was about the birth of Lord Krishna in the prison. As soon as Krishna was born all the chains around Vasudeva and Devaki fell off. So too when the Lord takes birth in the heart of the devotee, all the shackles that binds us to this world fall off leading us to liberation.

At 5.25 p.m. we had Bhajans and Prasadam was distributed to all. Aarti was offered at 5.50 p.m. and Bhagawan retired to the Poornachandra Hall. As He was about to get into the car, Swami called Sunil Mittal and his two sons and gave them group photographs. They were very happy and sought Swami's Blessings.

Thus the festival of Krishnashtami came to a close leaving all of us ruminating over the Leelas of the Lord and the great fortune that we had to be in the Presence of the very same Krishna in this age.

August 24th to 26th, 2005

Bhagawan went into the interview room after darshan on these days, and there were no special programmes in Sai Kulwant Hall.

Source: http://radiosai.org/pages/PB.htm


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