LADIES' DAY

19th November is  being observed as  Ladies'  Day. Ladies' Day is celebrated to make you understand the value of mother's love and her concern for you. You owe your existence to your mother. 

"The Bhagavad Gita says that a woman has seven qualities, whereas a man has only three. So, never look down upon women. They are most virtuous. They are the very embodiments of nature. 

Men should realise the high status of women and honour and respect them accordingly. They should not make women weep and shed tears. A home where the woman sheds tears will be ruined. Men should give an honourable place for women and a respectable life.  

"The Ladies' Day should not be observed only by making speeches or holding Bhajans. They should endeavour to help the poor and the destitute.


Meaning Of Ladies' Day

"Women in various places observe what is called Ladies' Day". Sai Baba, SS, 6/96, p. 160

"Today is 19th November (1999). It is celebrated as Ladies' Day to remind you of the importance of the mother." Sai Baba, SS, 12/99. p. 365

Meaning Of Stree (Lady)

"This visible universe is made up of three Gunas (Satva, Rajas, Tamas). This is the reason for describing the cosmos as 'Stree'. The term 'Stree' has three components:

'Sa', 'Ta' and 'Ra'. 'Sa' signifies the Satvic quality. This comprises qualities like forbearance, compassion, and love. 'Ta' signifies the Tamo guna, which includes qualities like modesty, bashfulness, fear and patience. 'Ra' signifies the Rajo Guna represented by such qualities as courage, sacrifice, and the adventurous spirit. Every being born in the world has feminine qualities. Merely on the basis of the physical form, a distinction is made between men and women. The three qualities in the term 'Stree' are to be found both in men and women." Sai Baba, SS, 6/96, p. 157

"It ('Stree' word) also represents the triple aspects of experiencing Divinity - Saalokyam (vision of the Divine), Saameepyam (proximity), Saayujyam (mergence).'' Sai Baba, SS. 11/12-95. p. 292

Purpose Of Ladies' Day

"Ladies' Day is celebrated to make you understand the value of mother's love and her concern for you." Sai Baba, SS, 12/99, p. 367

You should conduct yourself according to the wishes of your mother. Do not disobey her." Sai Baba. SS. 12/99, p. 365

"Never forget your mother. To set an ideal in this regard, I visit the Samadhi of My parents on My birthday. To inculcate this good feeling in the hearts of people, even Sai Baba has undertaken this sacred activity. Every individual should adore, respect, worship and love his/her mother. I have initiated this Ladies Day in order to foster respect and love for the mother. Not only 19th of November, but also the 19th of every month is being observed as Ladies Day in some states. Whatever may be circumstances, good or bad, do not forget your mother." Sai Baba, SS. 12/98. p. 324

Titles For Women

"The first title given to a woman is 'Griha-Lakshmi (the goddess of home). A woman is expected to confer all prosperity, honour and good name on the home and the family. She is characterized as ' Griha-Lakshmi' and not' Office-Lakshmi

Another title for a woman is 'Ardhaangi' (the better half). This means that she is better half of the husband and not partner in his job.

The third title is 'Illalu' (the Mistress of the Home). She is the mistress in the house and not in the office. Dharma-patni is the fourth title conferred on a married woman. This implies that the home is the dwelling for all righteousness. The home is the birthplace of all 'Dharmas' (rules of right conduct). Hence, righteousness should be fostered at home. A home is no trivial place. The home is veritable university teaching many subjects.

The home is a centre of comfort and pleasure conferring joy. The home is a shrine that can make even the creator, Brahma, sing and others dance. The home with the husband is a school for the wife. Sai Baba, SS, 12/96, p. 333

Women Symbolize Bhakti (Devotion)

"Women symbolize Bhakti (devotion) and men stand for Jnana (wisdom). The one with devotion has the right to enter even the inner chambers of the Divine palace, whereas the one with wisdom has the access only to the audience hall of God. You may be aware S that kings of yore would convene meetings in their royal audience hall where only men ; would assemble. Men had no entry into Antahpura (inner chamber of the palace). Only the women who symbolize devotion have the access to Antahpura of God. What is Antahpura? Antaratma (Indwelling Spirit) is the Antahpura. It is only the devotion, not the wisdom that leads to Antahpura. Most of men who have assembled here today are because of the inspiration of women. Women are responsible for men to tread along the path of devotion."  Sai Baba, SS, 1/2000, p. 8

Importance Of Mother

"Among the mother, the father, the teacher and the God. the mother is given the top most priority. Modem youth do not care for the mother. They think they are highly educated and that the mother does not know anything. It is a great mistake to think so. Never look down upon the mother." Sai Baba, SS. 12/99. p. 367

"Women Are More Powerful Than Men"

"The Bhagavad Gita says that a woman has seven qualities, whereas a man has only three. So, never look down upon women. They are most virtuous. They are the very embodiments of nature. Some women may think that they would have enjoyed greater freedom had they been born as men. This is a wrong notion- In fact, women are more powerful than men. With all sacred feelings in your heart, respect women and be respected. Women symbolize sacrifice. Sai Baba. SS. 6/99. p. 150

Feminine Aspect Of Divinity

"Gayatri, which enshrines the essence of the Vedas, is a goddess, venerated as Veda Maata (the mother of the Vedas). It is obvious that feminine birth is estimable, adorable and sublime. The Vedas also describe feminine principle in various ways. Vedic rituals and practices accord a high place to women. The woman is adored under different names as as Sathyavati, Anyavati, Angavati, and Nidhaanava.d. Sathyavati proclaims the truth that the Divine pervades the cosmos; God is not separate from nature (Prakriti). Nature is a form of the Divine.

Next is Anyavati. The five elements are present everywhere in the universe: earth, water, fire. air and ether. These elements vary in subtlety in a progressive order. The Veda declares that even the five elements are manifestations of the Divine. This aspect of nature is called Anyavati.

The Angavati principle points out which deity is responsible for what function and describes the deity's special characteristics. Eeshwara is described as Tri-shool-dhaari (the bearer of the trident) and Tri-netra-dhaari (the deity with three eyes). Vishnu is described as the bearer of the conch, the discus and the mace. Krishna is described as one having the peacock's feather (on his head). Rama is described as wielder of the bow. The Angavati ritual worships the different deities with their distinctive features.

The Nidhaanavati ritual lays down nine different ways in which the Divine can be worshipped, such as listening, chanting the name, etc.

All forms of worship are presided over by these four feminine deities. Though the names are different, the goal is one." Sai Baba. 11/12-9 5, pp. 291 & 292 

Reverence For Women

"From ancient times, the feminine aspect of the Divine has been worshipped in various ways. The Veda declares that where women are honoured and esteemed, there| divinity is present with all its potency. Unfortunately today, men consider it demeaning to honour women. This is utterly wrong and is a sign of ignorance.

Men should realise the high status of women and honour and respect them accordingly. They should not make women weep and shed tears. A home where the woman sheds tears will be ruined. Men should give an honourable place for women and a respectable life.  

The archetypal woman is described as 'Aadi-shakti' (the primal source of all energy) | having a whole array of powers. She is hailed as the mother of the children of immortality. ('Amritasya-pulraah')." Sai Baba. SS, 11/12-95. p. 292

Mother Is The Very Foundation For The Entire World

"All the prosperity and the good that we find in this land of Bharat (India) is due to. the strength and courage of women of virtue. Rama's divinity blossomed under Kaushalya's  loving care. Because of the tender feelings and austerity of Sita, Lava and Kusha achieved-name and fame. Fostered with the love of his mother Putilibai, Gandhi became a Mahatma. The loving care of Jijibai made Shivaji a great warrior.

Sons became illustrious examples because of the goodness and greatness of their mothers. Mother is the very foundation for the entire world. One calls one's own country1 as motherland, not fatherland. Even the language is called mother tongue, not father tongue." -Sai Baba, SS. 12/98, p. 321

Be Greatful To Your Mother

"The welfare of the son depends on the mother. It is because of the love of the mother that the son becomes great and eminent. So, the foremost duty of the son is to be I grateful to his mother, respect her and serve her. Divinity is immanent in every being. But  who is responsible for this divinity within? It is the mother alone. The mother, who bears you for nine months with many difficulties, is ready to sacrifice even her life for your welfare. You owe your existence to your mother." Sai Baba, SS, 4/97. pp. 321 & 322

Mother Should Not Coerce Her Children

"Mother should not compel her children to accede to her wishes. Through love and sincerity, she should put the children on the proper path? She should aspire that her children be good, they need not to be great. Rama was good, whereas Ravana was great. Rama put into practice whatever he had studied and thus earned a good name. But Ravna was immersed in ignorance, as he did not practise all that he had studied. As a result, he did not earn a good name. "Sai Baba SS, 12/29. p. 367

Mother As Teacher

"Mothers in ancient days used to teach the children about right conduct, morality and devotion. The first preceptor for a child is the mother. For this reason, Bharatiya culture gave the first place to the mother among the four persons to be revered as Divine: mother, father, guru and guest. The mother gets the first place because she bears the child in the womb for nine months and nourishes him with her own blood. Even in mentioning the names of deities, the first place is given to the goddess, as in Sita-Rama, Parvati-Parameshwara and Lakshmi-Narayana. The reason for the feminine name getting priority is that she is 'Prakriti-Swaroopini' the embodiment of nature. The implication of this usage is that you should realise God through the propitiation of Prakriti." Sai Baba. SS, 11/12, p. 293

"In this context, the role of women as mothers should be understood. The great hero, Shivaji, was moulded entirely by the teachings of his mother. Rama was taught by his mother Kaushalya to follow the sacred path of Dharma. The lives of me great show that to what extent they were the products of their mother. Gandhiji became a staunch adherent of truth after a lesson he learnt from his mother, who could not bear her son telling a lie even to make her break her fast." Sai Baba. SS. 11/-12-95, p. 293

Woman : A Spirit Of Sacrifice

"A mother is ready to sacrifice everything, even her life, for the sake of her child. Such a spirit is to be found only among women. If the child is grievously ill, the mother wilt try to save the child at any cost. It is for this reason that woman is described as ' Tyaagamurti' (embodiment of sacrifice). Men do not have the same spirit of sacrifice as women." Baba. SS. 11/12-95, p.293

Are Women Weak?

"Despite the evidence of recognition of the greatness of the feminine principle, women have been described as 'Abala (weak). This appellation is applied to women because of the secondary status in the performance of Yajnas (sacrifice) and other rituals, though participation together with men was permitted. Women could not perform sacrifices and rituals by themselves. Even charitable and religious acts could be performed by women only in association with their spouses. Though the term 'Abala' is applied to women in this specific context only, women are not weak at all in terms of strength or ability." Sai Baba, SS. 6/96. p. 158

"We have innumerable examples of the strength displayed by women in the world. As against three potencies attributed to men, women are said to have seven potencies (according to the Gita). Can you call Savitri 'Abala', who made the Lord of Death restore life to her husband? Can Anasuya, who transformed the Divine Trinity Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva into three babies and played with them, be called an 'Abala' (weak woman)? Sumati was a great lady who stopped the sun from rising, because her husband was predestined to die next morning. Could she be termed as 'Abala'? No. Was Draupadi, who bore with fortitude for 14 years all the ordeals her husbands went through, a weak woman? Can Sita, who shared with Rama all hardships of life in the forest and achieved ultimate victory, be called weak? Can Gargi, who could carry on me debate with Rajayogi Janaka in a dauntless spirit, be called a weak woman? There is any number of such heroic women in recorded history. Though physically women may appear weak, in reality they are full of strength. As the embodiments of three Gunas (Satva, Rajas and Tamas qualities), women are endowed with exceptional strength. Even in the spiritual field, women display their boundless capacity." Sai Baba, SS, 6/96, p. 158

Education And Jobs For Women

"It is not my view that women should not get educated. They should have education;'" You may take up jobs. But you should live up to the obligations and glory of womanhood." Sai Baba, SS. 12/96, p. 333

Obligations Of Women

"For the Bharatiya women, the first duty is to reform the home and run it along ideal lines. The home is the basic social institution everywhere in the world. When home improves, the whole world will be better." Sai' Baba, SS, 12/96. p. 334

'"Women are the embodiments of the Divine spirit! At least from now on, you must strive to sanctify the home and turn the family towards the Divine path. Women must realise the enormous power of the mind for good or evil and see that its power is used  only for doing good. The mind can make a person a demon or Divine." Sai Baba, SS. 12/96, p. 335

"Today mothers in affluent families neglect their children. They leave the children in the care of nannies and children have more love for nannies than for their mothers. In the ancient times, children who were fed on their mother's milk developed into good persons. Today the children are fed not on mother's milk but on 'tin milk'. With the result, the children develop a tin mentality.

If the mothers take care of the homes on right lines, they will be protecting the, nation. Mothers should foster in the children love for truth and righteousness and tell them stories about the live of great men and women... Teach the children sacred things and not nonsens verses." Sai Baba, SS, 12/96. p. 335

Noble Women Of Bharat

"Since ancient times, many noble women have taken birth in this sacred land of Bharat who have set an ideal to the world with their exemplary character and devotion. You might have heard of Savitri, who brought her dead husband back to life; Chandramati, who extinguished the wild fire in a trice demonstrating the power of truth; Sita, who came out of blazing fire unscathed; and Damayanti, who burnt a wicked hunter to ashes with the power other chastity. All these noble women have brought name and fame to Bharat. Not only Bharat, the whole world will progress because of women of character and nobility. So, never underestimate the capacity of women.' Sai Baba, SS, 1/2000. p. 8

How To Celebrate Ladies' Day?

"The Ladies' Day should not be observed only by making speeches or holding Bhajans. They should endeavour to help the poor and the destitute. Helpless women who have no means of livelihood should be taught some occupations like tailoring to enable them to earn an income. Slum dwellers should be helped to keep their huts clean. The environment also should be cleaned to help the children grow in a pure atmosphere. Proper housekeeping should also be taught to those people. Disease is caused mainly by unhygienic surroundings. Moreover, air, water, mind, everything is polluted. Pollution is causing several new types of diseases" ( Baba, SS. 6/96, p. 160

Adore Y-our Parents - An Episode

"Parents are sought after only in times of difficulties. Once you are highly placed in the society and accumulate wealth, parents are forgotten. Here is a small example. V.Ramakrishna was an I.C.S officer in Madras. His wife was Durgamma- They sent their son to America for higher studies. A month later, Durgamma contacted her son over phone and enquired of his welfare in Telugu, to which he replied that he had forgotten Telugu and could converse only in English. On hearing this, the mother was overjoyed and came to Swami to share the news proudly. I (Sai Baba) told her that a person, who forgot his mother tongue, was likely to forget his mother too. There are many such students in the world today. They forget their parents once they go abroad." Sai Baba, SS, 12/98, p. 326

Sai's Message On Ladies' Day

As today (19th November, 1995) is a sacred day, dedicated to women, they should change themselves and help to change the men and the children. They should develop qualities of sympathy, compassion, love and sacrifice. Study the lives of our great women, who were models of patience, fortitude, compassion and sacrifice.  I desire that you should take the reins of leadership and bring peace and prosperity to the nation by leading ideal lives."  Sai Baba. SS. 11/12-95, p. 295

"If the nation has to prosper, improvement must start with parents. Without peace and harmony at home, there can be no peace in the nation. This message should be propagated throughout the country on every November 19th, by observing it as Ladies' Day. You should teach people how to run their homes well and how to bring up children on right lines. You must deal calmly and tactfully with the men, if they are not cooperating. Though Ravana was evil-minded, his noble wife Mandodari, tried to correct him as much as possible. She advised him strongly not to keep Sita in Lanka, but to restore her to Rama" Sai Baba, SS, 11/12. 95, p. 294

Glimpses Of Ladies' Day Celebrations At Prasanthi Nilayam (1998)

Ladies' Day was celebrated on the 19th November. Right from Suprabhatam at 5.15 a.m., all the programmes during the day were conducted by the ladies. After Suprabhatam, there was a special Nagarsankirtan at 5.30 a-m. in which ladies, in the  t similar saris, earlier distributed by Bhagavan, went round the Mandir premises singing Bhajans. Many of them carried lighted candles in their hands, which presented a beautiful sight.

The main function of Ladies' Day was held in the Sai Kulwant Hall with the arrival of Bhagavan in a procession at 6.45 a.m. led by a Veda chanting group from Sri Sathya Sai Primary School (girls' section); bands of Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning (Aaantapur Campus) and Sri Sathya Sai Primary School (girls' section). The Primary School and Secondary School students in colourful costumes danced all the way in the procession.

Bhagavan inaugurated the programme by lighting the sacred lamp. As soon as Bhagavan took His seat on the artistically decorated semi-circular platform in front of the Mandir, light classical Bhajans started in which many artistes took part. These included the famous maestro Bharat Ratna M.S. Subbalakshami, who sang a soul-stirring devotional song. Deepika, a child prodigy, then enthralled the audience with her melodious voice. The musical offering to Bhagavan continued with Begum Parveen Sultana, Smt. P. Susheela and P. Leela. One of the enchanting items of the function was Krishna Leela, a dance programme. Bhagavan then distributed chocolates to children of Primary School and others. After Bhajan and Aarati to Bhagavan, the morning session concluded at 10 a.m.

In the afternoon, Bhagavan came to Sai Kulwant Hall at 3.30 p.m. Soon after this, Justice Padma Khastgir offered floral bouquet to Bhagavan on behalf of women devotees of India and Mrs. Sinclair on behalf of overseas devotees. This was followed by group songs by women of 100 countries. The students of Anantapur Campus sang a song in Sanskrit and Telegu song composed by Bhagavan in His early days.

Mrs. S.Nandini from Sri Lanks and Dr. Geeta Reddy from Andhra Pradesh spoke about the significance of Ladies' Day, so mercifully and thoughtfully initiated by Bhagavan during His 70th Birthday celebrations. Dr. Jaylakshmi Gopinath - Warden of Anantapur Campus, spoke about the infinite power of Bhagavan and His grace towards the establishment of Anantapur Campus. Mrs. Sarla Shah, Editor, "Bal Vikas" spoke about the Divine Principle of Mother Sai. Bhagavan then gave His discourse.

In the evening, there was a very interesting cultural programme in Poomachandra Auditorium in which two ballets 'Sita Swayamvar"and "Bhakti Nritya" were presented. Both the items were widely appreciated by the mammoth gathering. Bhagavan materialized a gold chain for the artiste who played the role of Rama and blessed all the artistes. Editor. SS. 12/98. p. 329

Glimpses Of Ladies' Day Celebrations At Prasanthi Nilayam (1996)

"November 19, 1996, was observed as Ladies' Day. It began with Suprabhatam and Nagar-sankirtan early in the morning with thousands of ladies participating in the procession and singing Bhajans as they went round the Mandir (temple).

At 7.00 a.m. Bhagavan was greeted by a band troupe of girl students from the Anantapur Campus and a Nada-swaram group consisting of lady artistes from All-India Radio. Bhagavan came in procession to Sai Kulwant Mandap, preceded by girls chanting Vedic hymns. A number of Bal Vikas children performed folk dances in front of Bhagavan.

The morning programme began with the singing of devotional songs by Shrimati M.S. Sub'balakshmi, P. Suseela, Raji Bala-subramaniam and Sobha Raju. Later, Prasadam was distributed to all the devotees.

In the afternoon, overseas devotees had the privilege of greeting Bhagavan with songs in six different languages, ail in praise of the glory of Sai. One of the compositions was a choir song entitled. 'Daughters of Sai'. The songs were sequentially sung in seven languages: English, German and Telugu. The final number was a Spanish song composed by Spanish-speaking ladies, with the refrain (translated into English): 'Come to me, my Sai Brahma. Make me a garden where Dhrama, Shanti and Prema flourish.' At Bhagavan's prompting, a Greek lady sang the Hindi song, 'Humko tum-se', which was lustily applauded by the whole gathering.

After the invocation by girls from the Anantapur Campus, Shrimati Saria Shah welcomed the gathering and presented a review of the activities of the Manila Wing of the Sai Seva Organization. Shrimati M.S. Subba-Lakshmi, who was invited to speak on the occasion, confessed her deficiencies as a speaker and paid a heartfelt tribute in Tamil to Bhagavan Baba as mother, father, preceptor and all else for her and for all devotees. She said that Bhagavan blessed everyone according to his prayers. It was the merit that had brought them to Bhagavan. Swami should continue to bless them always.

Bhagavan then delivered His discourse, in the course of which. He extolled the role of mother as the moulder of the family and the first teacher for children.

In the evening, there was a cultural programme entitled 'Naari Shakti' (The power of women), which highlighted the glory of Indian womanhood as revealed in the story of Savitri, who brought back her husband from the Lord of death. The play was enacted by Bal Vikas children from Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. The second item was a dance drama, Meera', by Shri Ram, Bharatiyaa Kala Kendra, of New Delhi. The ballet presented the travails of Meera, whose ecstatic love for Krishna found expression! in immortal songs. Bhagavan materialized a gold chain for the girl who played the role of Meera." Editor. SS. 12/96. pp. 328 & 329

Graphic Images:

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From the book - An Exposition by Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba - Compiled and Edited by Suresh C Bhatnagar


 

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