PARTHI NEWS-MARCH 2010


UGADI 2010 DARSHAN UPDATE:

Om Sairam dearest Sai Family,

The holy festival of UGADI, the Telugu new year day was celebrated with festivity and gaiety in the Abode of our beloved Lord, Sri Sathya Sai Baba. In the Telugu calendar there are 60 years and this year which is named as VIKRUTHI is the 24th year. The word Vikruthi sounds bit scary. Vikuthi means, Ugly, disaster, to be precise it is opposite of Prakrithi (the nature).

Ugadi is celebrated as Gudipadva in the state of Maharashtra and Sindhi community call it Chetti chand which is celebrated a day after Ugadi.

The word Ugadi is derived from Sanskrit, which means beginning of a new year. (Yuga - era, aadi - beginning). Coming close on the heels of Holi, the festival of colours, this day marks the beginning of the new Hindu lunar calendar with a change in the moon's orbit. It is believed that Lord Brahma began his creation on this day. The great Indian mathematician Bhaskaracharya proclaimed the commencement of the New Year from Ugadi day. It is said that Lord Rama began his rule in Ayodhya after killing Ravana on this day.

In Andhra Pradesh, "Ugadi Pachadi" is prepared with neem leaves, jaggery, raw mango, tamarind juice, green chilli and a pinch of salt. The ingredients symbolise six tastes - bitterness, sweet, tang, sourness, heat and saltiness corresponding to six experiences of anger, happiness, disgust, sadness, fear and surprise.

In this time of rumours of mass destruction by 2012 in the world, the coming of Vikruthi year will definitely make every one think that some thing bad is going to happen. In Swami’s divine dictionary there is no word called BAD.

Our beloved brother Issac Tigrett’s good old friend senator Algore has been screaming for the past 30 years or so be kind to the nature, to mother earth (PRAKRITHI ). It was a good subject for discussion in the board rooms but in reality no one seemed to care for it. Atleast this new year Vikrithi should remind us not to mess with PRAKRITHI which if neglected will amount to natural disasters like tsunami and earthquakes.

As Swami says there is lot to be learnt in the festivals that we celebrate and every festival has an inner meaning to it. This Vikruthi new year I should say came at the right time and with a right message to be good to Prakrithi.

Back to today’s programme. Swami blessed the august gathering with His divine darshan around 9:15 am. Swami after making a full round came on to the dais. As it is Telugu new year, there were lots of locals in Sai Kulwanth hall.

Mr. Srinivasan introduced to the speaker of this session. Justice Bhagawathi, former Chief Justice of Supreme Court who is also a member of Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust, was blessed to address the gathering and he shared lot of information about Sri Sathya Sai central trust. He was of the opinion that there is no other trust in the world which is doing humanitarian service like that of Swami’s and it is a great fortune to be part of it. Justice Bhagawathi announced the new members of Central trust which included Sri.Chakravarthi, Sri.Indulal Shah, Sri.V.Srinivasan, Sri.Bhawathi and Sri.Ratnakar. He was all praise for the service and dedication put in by Swami’s former students who are working in the trust.

The next talk was by the Bheesmacharya of Sai Family, Sri. Indulal Shah. A simple human being, Sri Shah said he is was very happy to be given the chance to serve Swami at various levels.

The highlight of this morning’s programme was Swami blessing us with His divine discourse. Just as a small note, this is the first divine discourse for this year and this came after 3 months since the start of the year 2010. I don’t think there was any occasion that Swami didn’t speak for so long. Probabaly it is a message for us that He is not happy with us.. Over the years He has spoken on various topics, subjects, occasions but we just heard them instead of LISTENING to Him.

It is high time for us to get back to business. Follow His teachings, His commands which are only for our own good.

Swami started His divine discourse praising the noble and adorable women like Savitri, Damayanthi, Mother Sita. He said, because of the noble character of these women, India was considered as the spiritual mother of the whole world. Because of the dedication and sincerity of these women, Indians still has values.

Swami spoke in length about Sathya Harishchandra whose truthfulness is still talked about in India. Swami asked all of us to see God in our fellow beings, adhere to truth. Seated on His mobile throne Swami spoke for about 30 minutes after which Prof. Anil Kumar stole the show with his timely talk in Telugu about Ugadi, about Swami and His devotees.

Prior to Swami’s discourse Sri. Srinivasan also spoke about Swami’s trust. He reminded all the devotees to stand in firm faith and not give any ear to the false propaganda by jealous people.

The morning programme was beautiful. A perfect way to start a new year. A year, which is already blessed by Swami. Let us not worry about the calamities which are told would happen. As Swami said hundreds of times, past is past, future is uncertain, let us live in the present which is OMNIPRESENT. Let us live every second of the PRESENT to our heart’s content by leaving everything in His hands, surrendering everything at His lotus Feet.

The morning programme ended with arathi and prasadam distribution at 11:45 am.

EVENING PROGRAMME:

Swami blessed us with His divine darshan at 5:30 pm. Wearing a Maroon robe, Swami entered the Sai Kulwanth hall with His most beautiful smile. After coming in the middle of the hall, Swami took a short cut to the dais bypassing the gents’ side.

After reaching on to the dais, Swami signaled for the evening programme to commence. The students and staff of Sri Sathya Sai Mirpuri College of Music had a beautiful musical programme. The programme started with Mahaganapathi manasa smarami song and the rest was a beautiful and melodious journey of music. Swami was very happy with His favourite Bangaroos. After the programme every student went upto Swami and Swami very lovingly blessed their instruments.

The beautiful and lovely Ugadi 2010 came to an end, infact I should say it was just a start of a NEW BEGINNING. That beginning which has lots of hopes and aspirations, that beginning which will witness 85th year of Advent of the Avatar of this Kali Age. This year hopefully will be free from bad happenings and for this to happen it should start from one’s own self…

From tomorrow there will be programme of the sweet story of Krishna Bhagawatha saptaham which will last for 7 days. Interestingly the Bhagawatham rendering would be in Hindi.

For the benefit of devotees who are planning to come in the month of April rather, I should say, those fortunate ones who will be INVITED by our beloved lord to have His darshan just make sure you check as where Swami would be in the month of April. There are (unconfirmed ) news that Swami would be going to Delhi and Shimla in the first week of April. There are also news that Swami would go to Kodai after His north India tour (again this is an unconfirmed news). I have no intention to spread any rumors but devotees make sure you check Swami’s where about, before you come to Parthi

With Pranams at the Lotus Feet of our beloved Lord,

R.Satish Naik

Posted on 16.03.2010


2ND MARCH 2010 DARSHAN UPDATE.. A MOST MEMORABLE DARSHAN

Om Sairam

Dearest Sai Family,

It is said that God’s creation is un comprehendible, His actions are definitely a mystery to our monkey minds, His Leelas are BEST known to Him Alone.

I have no idea as how to narrate this particular darshan update of 2nd March 2010. It was a historic darshan. It was full of fun, surprise, devotion and Swami’s most famous UNCERTAINITY of this day, will be discussed and remembered for the years to come. It is like a dream. Did this really happen or was I hypnotized? If it has happened then why did this happen? For every thing SAIlence was the only answer.

To start with about 1000 plus devotees from the states of Bihar and Jharkhandare here in Parthi to celebrate the holy festival of HOLI.

Yesterday (1st March), Swami had given them permission to perform and all arrangements were made. The children were dressed up with their costumes, a big banner was put up in the middle of the hall and as we all were eagerly awaiting His arrival, a word was sent at 6pm for the bhajans to start and after half hour word was sent for Arathi thus the evening darshan was cancelled

The whole group was visibly sad and were wondering and asking apologies to Swami from within to forgive their short comings if any.

The morning of 2nd march was also a very unique. Swami for the past 11 days has come out 8 times for morning darshans which was so sweet of Swami.

This afternoon, again, the children were ready for the performance. Like yesterday, today, also children were praying for His divine darshan.

Swami blessed the august gathering at 6:30 pm. It was a big relief for those children who knew that the performance is definitely going to be there now that Swami has come.

The first part of the evening performance was a dance and musical programme. All the songs were HOLI (it is a festival linked with Sri Krishna,famous mostly in North India) centric. After 30 minutes of dance, the leader of the group went upto Swami to take permission for the drama to start. Swami gave the consent for the drama entitled “Sita Kalyanam” to start.

As the name suggested, the drama was about how Lord Rama married Sita. The first scene shows Viswamitra, the guru of Rama and Lakshmana asking his students, to accompany him to King Janaka (Sita’s father's) kingdom to participate in Dhanur Yagna.

King Janaka had a Shiva bow which was impossible for even mighty men to carry but Sita, while she was still a young girl successfully raised it with one hand. When King Janaka sees this, he decides who ever raises this bow, will marry my daughter Sita.

The drama now had come to the scene where Lord Rama along with Lakshmana and their Guru Viswamitra enter the court of King Janaka and raise the bow and arrow. The drama was a very simple one. There were no big attractions.

Just then our SAI RAMA who was witnessing this drama signals the boy to take Him into the interview room. The most important scene of the drama was about to commence.

Here came the biggest twist in the history of Prasanthi Nilayam. Inspite of Swami’s absence on the dais, the drama continued. As every one expected, Rama successfully raises the bow and King Janaka is the most happy man and asks Sita to garland Lord Rama and in turn Lord Rama garlands Sita.

The DRAMA now concludes with all the actors standing in line thanking Swami. All the children who were part of the drama were from MITHILA, the birthplace of Mother Sita. They all prayed to Swami saying you came to Mithila in Rama Avatar, we are expecting our Sai Rama again in Mithila..Swami who had been to the interview room just then comes out to the start the DIVINE DRAMA.

This part of the darshan was the most amazing part and it has never happened before. Swami calls up the head of the group and speaks to him for a minute. That gentleman goes up to the children and asks to keep the bow in the middle. In no time the bow is in the middle.

The young man again goes up to Swami. Swami tells him something. All the devotees are eagerly anticipating as what is going to happen. We all thought Swami is asking to make way for a group photograph which He usually does after the performance.

This time it looked bit unusual. The young man went upto the children and asked them to be in the places as they were in the scene when Lord Rama lifted the bow.

Swami now signals Rama and Sita to stand next to each other.

The young children, who were playing the role didn’t have any idea, more over it is something which they didn’t practice and with Swami right before you, you don’t know what is going on and Swami is very particular and minute in His doing and you have to be very very accurate.

Swami then calls up the group leader, asks Sita to garland Rama and Rama in turn garland Sita. The same scene (which Swami missed, when He went to the interview room) was enacted. Every one clap in joy and ecstasy. None of us in Sai Kulwanth hall had any clue. Swami then signaled brother Veda Naryana and group to chant Mantras. Not sure if brother Veda Narayana performed any wedding before but today he had to play the role of head priest, as Lord SAI RAMA directed His own wedding from the TRETA YUGA. It was a treat to the eyes and the soul. Swami was having a great time by directing HIS own STORY. Poor children, did their best considering their age and experience.

After the garlanding was done, Swami asked Sita and Rama to be seated on the chairs. In the drama, the chairs were put in such a way that it depicted a King’s court (like the courts we would have seen in many mythological movies). As Sita and Rama were seated all the other kings also sat in their respective chairs. Swami saw Sita seated bit far to Rama. He signaled them to sit next to each other. Now He asks all the kings to vacate their chairs. Every one sat on the floor and all the chairs were taken away (again the crowd burst in laughter).

Now only Rama and Sita were left in the middle seated in their respective chairs. I could see those little children (Rama and Sita) literally shivering and completely surprised. When thousands are watching you, with Swami right infront of you, if they were asked to sit that too on a chair what great tense moment that would be for any one. They were seated in such a position where in they were facing Swami’s residence. Swami then sent a word to face Him. The children now are completely tense, the shivering clearly visible. At one stage they lost the body consciousness and just did what they were asked to do. On the other hand every one of us were enjoying every bit of this DIVINE PLAY. Swami was making every one of us jump in joy.

Now Swami asks the leader, who was an elderly gentle man to throw akshintalu (rice mixed with turmeric powder) on both of them. Luckily there were some birthday boys with their plates seated before Swami. The leader borrows a cup of turmeric rice grains from the birthday boys, goes and does the ritual.

Swami then asks Rama and Sita to pour the rice on each other. It is called TALAMBRALU (in telugu).This is a ritual very commonly seen in South Indian weddings. The leader couldn’t catch Swami’s words. Meanwhile Prof.Bhaskar helps Rama and Sita to do the ritual and our thrill touched the sky.

Swami then asks the leader to tie the Brahma Mudi (it is a knot which binds the tip of bride’s saree to that of the grooms shawl). They say it is the knot of Brahma, the creator and symbolizes, unity among the newly wed and a promise that they will stay together in happiness and sorrow. that ritual is also finished.

Swami then asks Rama and Sita to go around three times. They do so. Every time a particular ritual was asked, Swami used to look at brother Veda Narayana for the significant mantras. As far as I know brother Veda has not performed any weddings, and this was first of its kind experience for him.

After the grand DIVINE WEDDING, Swami signals the bhajan boys to sing Rama bhajans and as the bhajans were sung, Swami asks the boys to bring clothes from inside. Swami then asks where are the sweets?. In no time, the students come with steel containers of prasadam. Swami made sure every one got clothes, and prasadam.

Now Swami came down the dais for the group photo. It was a very special moment for children who played Rama and Sita. Swami came down and had a special photographs with them. Brother Veda Naryana who was the priest till that time, was now playing the role of wedding photographer capturing those memorable moments of this divine wedding. Not sure if Swami gave anything to the lead actors.

After the group photograph, Swami signalled for the arathi. Being immersed in the DIVINE DRAMA, when I saw at the clock it was 8:30 pm. After arathi, Swami was very kind enough to bless us with His Abhaya Hasta. He raised both His hands and blessed once at the gents side and again at the ladies’ side.

We all thought, it is over now but NO.. Swami didn’t want to leave. Swami called the leader again. Asked the children in the play to line up in such a way that they leave a path in the middle. Girls were lined up by the ladies’ side and gents towards the gents' side. A path was left open right in front of the dais. Here Rama, Sita, Viswamitra, Janaka maharaj and Lakshman were some where in the middle of the line. Swami send a word to make them stand in the front side. Rama was in the front behind Rama was Sita, Lakshamana and so on. Swami now looked at the line and signaled some of them to move right, left. He was just making sure, they all were in order. Swami then signaled Sita to come in front and Rama to stand behind Sita. The whole crowd burst into laughter. We all thought Swami would come down the dais and pass in between them to go His physical abode. NOPE.. Swami called the photographer to take a photo graph. After about 3or 4 photos were taken, the photos were shown to Swami in the camera view finder. Swami seemed convinced with the photographs. Now brother Sathya who was doing the video tries to get a shot. Swami signals him to go ahead. After the video was taken, Swami very kindly raised both His hands to bless us with one more complimentary Abhaya hasta thus ending a beautiful and memorable darshan.

I had no idea in fact none of the devotees in Sai Kulwanth hall had any idea as why this happened and how. Every one seemed shocked and surprised. There was a big glow in every one’s face after darshan. Was it a re- enactment of the Divine Wedding of Rama and Sita. I was bit curious to know if the child who played the role of Sita was a boy or a girl and my guess was right, it was a boy.

What a great fortune it was to witness this wonderful leela of Swami. Not sure what great boon we were bestowed with. Probably we were one of those fortunate souls who witnessed the wedding of Rama and Sita or may be we were right there in the Treta Yuga but were denied to witness that historic wedding at that time that we got a more closer look at this DIVINE happening. What ever may be the cause, it was the most memorable day of my Prashanthi Dairy. A day which will be remembered and shared with the generations to come..

Swami what can I say…. Thank You.. Thank You.. Thank You..
Jai Sairam..

Satish Naik..
sent on 03.03.2010


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