Prashanthi Bullettin -
December 25th, 2005
December 25th, 2005
It has been a long time since we have brought you an update
from Parthi. Since Birthday, Swami has been spending most of
His Mandir Time inside the interview room. Every evening, He
is out for Darshan by 3.15 p.m. and goes straight inside the
interview room calling a few lucky devotees into the room.
However, the students eagerly await the clock to strike 4.00
when they rush into the Bhajan Hall, each one trying to
reach first and capture a vantage point near the throne,
where Swami sits for the Bhajans. Very often, Swami comes
into the Bhajan Hall a few minutes or sometimes even half an
hour before the Bhajans commence at 5.00 p.m. This time slot
is exclusively for the students and it has been a source of
great joy and thrill for everybody inside the Bhajan Hall.
Swami speaks to the boys seated in the front, at times calls
for some students or staff members and speaks to them. Of
late, He has been enquiring a lot about the Sports Meet
activities that have already begun with full force.
Incidentally, this Annual Sports and Cultural Meet in Jan
2006 will be the first major event marking the 25th Year -
the Silver Jubilee Year - of the Sri Sathya Sai Institute of
Higher Learning (1981 to 2006). A number of events are being
planned out by all the three campuses of the Institute to
celebrate this Meet. However, adhering to explicit command
from Bhagawan, this time, no adventurous items like motor
bike stunts or aero sports are being presented for the
Sports Meet. Most of the events are display of physical
prowess and cultural items.
Some interesting events occurred in the last few days. We
bring you a brief on these. One evening, very soon after the
Birthday celebrations, Swami called all the students and
staff inside the Poornachandra Auditorium, in the evening
after Bhajans. There was a video presentation of the series
made by Smt. Anjali Devi, a famous actress of the yester
years and a devotee - well known for her TV series "Shirdi
Sai Parthi Sai Divya Katha". This time she has produced a
film on the Chinna Kathas - short stories written by
Bhagawan. Three three episodes were shown, projected on a
large screen in the presence of Swami. It was well
appreciated by all. Incidentally, all the scenes have been
shot in the premises of the Chaitanya Jyoti Museum and other
spots in and around Parthi.
Again, on December 15th, a similar thing happens. Out of the
blue, one evening all students and staff are called inside
the Poornachandra Hall. This time, they all watch a very
poignant movie along with Swami. This is a recent Hindi
movie titled ‘"Iqbal"’ and is about a deaf and dumb young
man who is a great cricket fan. His cherished desire is to
join the Indian cricket team. The movie beautifully tracks
his relentless pursuit in achieving his goal. Swami sits for
half the movie and then retires. The others continue to see
the rest of it.
And then just three days back, Swami distributed T-shirts to
all the students and staff of the School and Institute. The
young school children are given different coloured T-shirts
while the Institute students get pink coloured half sleeve
T-shirts. This has become the standard uniform now for all
the Sports event practice sessions.
Another event was the visit of the devotees from the
Srikakulam district of Andhra Pradesh. On December 5th, the
last day of ther stay, Bhagawan called all of them into the
Poornachandra Auditorium. There, He witnessed a short
cultural programme by them, heard their bhajans and also
spoke to them.
Well, let us now come to the present. We wish all of you a
very happy and holy Christmas. However, the weather in
Parthi, in no way indicates the oncoming of Christmas.
Surprisingly, the chilly winter seems to be past now and
even the nights are quite warm. Many Christmas trees
decorate the shops and hotels on the streets.
Bhagawan always keeps us on our toes and we never know when
He would take us by surprise. Bhagawan comes out this
morning by seven o'clock! The Sai Kulwant Hall is decorated
beautifully with stars hanging all around. Silver stars,
bells and other decorative items make the hall look
majestic. Two Christmas trees adorn the stage on either side
of Ganesha. They are sparkling with cottony snow, colourful
boxes of gifts and stars. The pillars on the dais and in the
front half of the Kulwant Hall are wrapped with shining gold
covering. In front of the dais, across the railings, on one
side, are figures of Joseph and Mother Mary at the Manger,
watching with awe their Child and our Saviour! At the other
end are statues of the three wise men following the holy
star. The Portico in the first floor of the Mandir is
decorated with white cloud shaped sets giving a feel of snow
all over. On the balcony behind the three domes are two
angels blessing all seated below.
After His Darshan round, Swami comes out of His car and cuts
the cake kept next to the interview room. A number of
overseas devotees are standing all around, watching the Lord
Blessing their offering. Soon, all the students rush in and
take their places. The devotees are also seated, waiting
eagerly to catch a glimpse of their Lord. Swami comes out
onto the dais and sits in the centre. There is loud applause
from all as this has become a very rare sight these days.
When He comes out, everybody tries to grab a glimpse for we
never know when we would get it again.
It is 7.15 a.m. and Swami stops the Vedam chanting. The
young primary school boys march in with their violins for
making a presentation. The next five minutes is their
offering of sweet music to the Lord. After this, the
Institute Brass Band takes over. The band leader comes
forward with a colourful card holding a huge Christmas
Candle. Swami keenly watches the card and asks him
something. The band leader takes Namaskar and Swami Blesses
him. The band commences its presentation, filling the Hall
with scintillating beats and notes. They play for around 20
minutes, carrying the audience along with lovely Carol
It is 7.45 a.m. and time for the students to sing Carols
which they have been rehearsing for the past one week. The
drums and keyboards are all in place. The commentary begins.
Two students, one a very young boy from the School and
another from the College, compere the show taking us 2000
years back to the times of Jesus, His Birth and His sacred
life. Moving down memory lane, we come to the recent times
and herald the advent of the Holy Father - our beloved
Bhagawan. A number of popular carols keep all clapping and
swaying to the beat. "All night long I shall burn my
Christmas candle...", "Rudolf the red nosed reindeer..." and
8.20 a.m. and the music programme comes to a close. Bhagawan
watches all the instrumentalists sitting down and after a
while asks for the Vedam to begin again. Meanwhile Prasadam
distribution starts. Dairy milk chocolates for all students
and sugar candies for all devotees. As the distribution is
in progress, Swami decides to go inside. The chair is turned
and moved towards the interview room, but to our delight, He
speaks to somebody over there and returns to the dais and
continues sitting. A few more minutes pass by and then
suddenly there is loud applause. We see Swami standing up
from His chair, holding the railings. We are filled with joy
and thrill to see His full Form after so many days!
Even as our hearts are full of joy, they burst open further
as we see Bhagawan walking towards the staff block away from
the interview room. The two students hold Him on either side
and Swami walks quite swiftly taking a turn to go inside the
Portico. He climbs up the slope and enters the Portico and
walks right into the interview room. The Hall is full of
claps and the heart is full of joy. The Vedam team joins in
the celebration by chanting Mantra Pushpam at a very high
pitch. As Swami emerges on the interview room side, the
Primary School children also join the Vedam chanting.
Bhagawan enters the interview room. After a while He comes
out of the room, walking again. He moves forward so that all
of us can have His Darshan! Then He sits down on the chair.
It is 8.50 a.m. The car moves into position to receive the
chair. Aarti is offered and Swami retires for the morning.
An announcement is made that in the evening at 4.00 p.m.
there would be a programme by the overseas devotees entitled
"Spirit of Christmas".
In the evening, at 3.40 p.m., the car arrives near the PC
entrance. The front part of the Hall opposite to the dais is
filled with all overseas devotees ready to make their
presentation. The Hall is packed to its brim. Swami takes a
full round and then reaches the interview room. There, He
alights from the car and then asks to be assisted to stand
up. The moment Swami stands up, there is loud applause in
the Hall. To add to our delight, He starts walking slowly
towards the centre of the dais. He stands over there holding
the railings for some time, before He sits down on the
At 3.55 p.m., He Blesses the Vedam group to conclude the
chanting. Two young children offer the programme card to
Swami. This is followed by Carol singing by the young
children from overseas. The conductor comes forward and
seeks Bhagawan's Blessings. They start with a Ganesha song
and then a Telugu song succeeded by other carols. This goes
on till 4.30 p.m. Then comes the much awaited Carol singing
by the adults from overseas. The conductor for this choir
also seeks Bhagawan's Blessings. Swami speaks to her for a
For the next half an hour, the Hall is filled with soothing
music and singing, carrying us away to a world of peace and
happiness. The melodious Carols, the beautiful form of
Bhagawan seated in front of our eyes with a lovely smile on
His face, transports us into a totally different dimension!
After a few songs, the conductor prays to Swami asking
whether they should continue or not. Each time, Swami smiles
and gives His consent to continue. Finally at 5.05 p.m.
Bhagawan asks them to sing Bhajans.
As the Bhajans are going on, Swami asks the students to
distribute Prasadam to all the overseas devotees. They are
showered with a number of chocolates and wafers. The little
children start munching away to glory! As all this goes on,
Swami calls one of the adults, a young man, and speaks to
him for quite some time. After a very lively conversation
between them, Swami materializes a pendant for him. The man
is overjoyed! Bhajans go on. Again after a while, Swami
calls another gentleman, speaks to him for a while. The man
is ecstatic! He too gets a chain at the end of the dialogue.
Swami calls him inside the railings, next to His chair and
ties the chain around his neck. The Hall is filled with
A few more Bhajans by the overseas adults and then once
again a third gentleman is summoned. All clap and start
singing loudly. This devotee too gets immense Blessings and
a ring to top it all. When God gives, He gives in bountiful
measure! Finally it is 5.45 p.m. when Swami again stands
amidst loud clapping. He starts walking towards the portico
on the side opposite to the interview room. Taking few steps
at a time, He converses with a number of devotees adjacent
to Him. Meanwhile, Aarti is offered by the Pujari and a
number of overseas coordinators. Bhagawan sits down on the
chair and receives the full Aarti.
Subsequently, He moves once again onto the dais and towards
the interview room. On the other side, He stops near a
devotee and speaks to him for a long time. The conversation
concludes with the creation of a ring for him! As He moves
across the dais, He looks at the overseas devotees assembled
in front of Him and says, "I am Happy". He says this twice.
Then Swami asks them, "Are you happy?" Some of them who are
able to hear say, "Yes!" Swami again asks,– "Are you all
happy?" By then everybody understands what Swami is asking
and there is a loud roar - "Yes Swami!!" All of them start
clapping and the drummer starts playing the drums to
indicate their joy and thrill!
It is twilight. The chandeliers shine brightly in the Hall
reflecting their light in the stars and the other
decorations all around. All hearts are full and the Porte
car glides along the path to the Lord's abode. Christmas
2005 draws the curtain down on yet another unforgettable
November 25th, 2005
Even after the completion of the Birthday there were still
so many countries that had cultural programmes prepared that
Swami on November 25th permitted two programmes to be held
in Sai Kulwant Hall - a Russian Language Choir and a
Balvikas drama by children from Singapore.
About 280 devotees (out of a total group strength of 1300)
from the Russian speaking countries of Azerbaijan, Armenia,
Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia,
Tadzhikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Ukraine gave a
concert in the Russian language entitled "Sathya Sai Baba,
Our Hearts are singing for you."
The group of men and women, who were all dressed alike for
their opportunity of a lifetime to sing in His Divine
presence, sang the following songs in Russian: "Glory to
God", "Our souls are full of luminous light", "God is your
best friend, God is love", "There is nothing better than
Swami coming to us", "Our dearest Sai", "In the luminous
light", "Sounds of flute", "Evening Bells", "Sathya Sai
Baba, our hearts are singing for you" and finally "Kalinka".
Their palpable devotion and singing from the heart had
everybody clapping their hands and keeping tune. Though the
songs were in an unknown tongue, still it found resonance
with everyone through the language of the heart. Swami was
happy with their performance and also acceded to their
prayer for a group photograph with Him.
Following the Russian language choir, the Bal Vikas students
from Singapore presented an offering to Bhagavan entitled
"Atma Nivedanam" based on the story of Bhaktha Pothana, a
great poet and devotee of Lord Rama whose life is exemplary
of total surrender to God.
The programme began with a musical performance known as
Dikir Barat, a time-honoured Malay art form in which a group
of performers sit and sing with synchronized body and hand
The play itself was performed in many parts. The first scene
highlights Pothana's attitude of selfless love and service
when he gives his own food away to a hungry man. In the next
scene Lord Rama entrusts Pothana with the sacred task of
composing the Bhagavatham in Telugu. This scene also shows
the Gajendra moksham episode.
The third scene shows the stark contrast between the divine
Pothana and his worldly brother-in-law Srinatha. It also
depicts Prahlada's great devotion and surrender to the Lord.
In the next scene, Mother Sita showers grace on Pothana and
Srinatha's pride is humbled.
After this scene, Arati was offered and thus officially the
Birthday celebration had come to an end.