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Prasanthi Nilayam - February 10, 2009

Music Programme by Mahila Devotees from Andhra Pradesh

February 10, 2009

The schedule at Prashanti Nilayam has undergone a slight change in the evenings, what with Swami asking that the bhajans be held outside everyday and not in the Bhajan hall as it used to be earlier.

Today the script of the past few days got changed as Swami noticed a group of ladies with scarves from Hyderabad. They prayed to Him for an opportunity to sing in His presence. The time was about 4:40pm and Swami enquired from them as to what they wished to sing. A short conversation ensued after which Swami called the Secretary and had a few moments of discussion. The students seated in the marbled blocks were asked to make some space available and the group was granted its wish! Swami went into the interview room and after a short while arrived on the stage and asked the ladies to begin. They started with Vedic chanting and as it went on, Swami asked for them to start singing. Now this needed the instrumental support and all the instrumentalists were gents. Since this was a programme that had been divinely conjured out of the blue, the instrumentalists were not in place.

It was then that Swami did something so beautiful. He moved into the interview room just like that. This gave the group precious minutes to re-organise and regroup. As if that was not enough, the Lord sweetly sent word too asking whether all were ready! Once all were set and the first song started, Swami came out and sat on the stage. Roses and other offerings had already been made and the songs continued. The songs were all in Telugu on the glory of Sai. So profound and beautiful were the meanings of the songs that Swami too seemed very interested in knowing the exact lyrics! He asked for the booklet that had been prepared for Him containing all the songs and began to leaf through it. As each song was being sung, Swami seemed to be reading the lyrics of that particular song. After about 35 minutes of group singing by the ladies ably assisted instrumentally by the gents, Swami told something to the student sitting beside Him. Taking this as a signal for aarthi, the ladies started to prepare the camphor and the wicks. Seeing this, Swami smilingly told them to wait and asked them to continue singing. And thus it was that the singing went on as Swami inspected the sarees and safari cloth pieces that He planned to distribute to the performers. After the final song concluded, Swami called a little boy sitting right in the front (presumably, the son of the keyboard player.) He accepted the letter and spoke a few loving words with the boy. He asked his name and then planted a loving pat on his cheek. Swami distributed the cloths and sarees. In the meanwhile, the main organisers and the key musicians came up to Swami seeking His blessings. Swami blessed them all profusely and patted many on their cheeks.

Sweets were brought for blessings after which they were distributed to all present as holy prasadam. Swami asked the students to sing a few bhajans and in an atmosphere that had been surcharged with devotional songs, the bhajans acted as an outlet for all to pour out thier love for Swami. Swami sat, moving rhythmically to the lovely tunes of the bhajans. Aarthi was taken at the end of two bhajans and Swami sat through the entire Aarthi. At the end, He raised both His hands in loving benediction and "oohs" and "aahs" were heard all over the hall as the devotees too raised both their hands in humble reception! It was about 6:10 pm when Swami drove back to the Residence.



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