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Sacred Past: Divine Birthday celebration from the past
Sourced from Chapter 41 of ANYATHA SARANAM NASTHI
(OTHER THAN YOU REFUGE THERE IS NONE)WRITTEN BY SMT VIJAYAKUMARI.
This chapter is about swami's birthday celebrations in 1953 to which author
was the witness.
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The newly risen
sun's rays falling on the earth seemed to please sai bhaskar by singing,"
waking up songs"(Suprabhatam) for him. The sunrise on the eastern hills
looked lovely, as if a ruby was studded on a beautiful stone slab paved with
blue diamonds. Its splendour was proclaiming the glory of gods great
miraculous powers. The lord of the lotus flowers had, with his thousand
rays, awakened sai.the "Lakshimi" of Parthi. the charming young boy whose
face was tender and sweet like honey. The chirping of birds like parrots and
koels was like the playing of auspicious musical instrument. The full
throated songs of koels that have feasted on tender mangoes was creating a
new zest in the hearts of listeners. The wind god spread the fragrance of
flowers by gently swaying them with gusts of wind. The venerable lady
nature, in these early morning hour, seemed to be happily making an offering
of these at the feet of the lotus eyed sai, and deriving great joy from it.
Summoned by nature, the earth seemed to wake up with a start. While
devotees, spruced up in myriad ornaments, gathered outside with folded hands
to have a darshan of their Sai Siva (the father of cupid, their charming
prince, verily like a personification of external prosperity), swami gave
them darshan from from his balcony, giving contentment to all those who were
famished, not letting their eyes feast on his kind face. It was a very
beautiful feast for the eyes. It was a delicately lovely, ecstatic union for
the mind. Wild applause broke out. Meanwhile, the citizens of Bukkapatnam
arrived to take swami with him. Swami got into the decorated car and started
out, shining like a second cupid. Shuts proclaiming his glory rose up to the
skies. Our sweet Father returned at ten o'clock. School children were
walking behind the car like a big army, loudly hailing him. Does samrat sai
require any other army? He got down from the car and went in.
This was the first time the ceremony of head bath of swami was introduced
Our Sai, swami was sweet and handsome Lord, approached, wearing a shawl
inlaid with "jari", and with a royal mien/With a big garlands decorating his
neck, with a slow gait, with a band playing auspicious music,with devotees
surrounding Him chanting the Vedas, with His Lotus Face filled with
bewitching smiles, with loud hails of the devotees following him Him every
inch of the way, He proceeded on foot. He reminded us of Tyagaraja's famous
song, "Vedalenu Kodanda Pani" (Sri Rama, holding the bow 'Kodandam' in His
hand, has set out) Seeing Him, our hearts surged like the River Ganga racing
forward. He went and occupied the decorated throne in the auditorium. As i
stod by swami's throne, holding in my hand a vessel of oil, first five
couples came and anointed swami's head with oil. Then the young and old came
in queue and, dipping a flower in oil, touched swami's head with that
flower. By the time this ceremony was over, it was one o'clock in the
afternoon. After that, Swami had a head bath, put on fresh clothes, and came
out and stood before us. His lips looked very red as a result of chewing
paan. He was lovely, like a colourful butterfly. The bhajans were in
progress. Ramu and Amba were singing together. In connection with swamis
birthday celebrations, people were giving gifts according to their capacity
on the previous day itself. We went with turmeric powder, kumkum and other
suitable symbols of respect, and invited swami's parents and other family
members and some prominent devotees to attend the birthday celebrations and
to lunch with us. While we were returning, swami kept watching us from the
With Ganga water stored in a golden vessel, we washed his lotus feet,
performed Abhishekham and felt sanctified. Swami personally supervised the
serving of food to devotees, who were seated in rows. As they ate, Swami
skipped like a deer from row to row and ordered more food to be served,
asking the devotees to eat well. Bliss reigned everywhere. We all served
food. That evening was the swing festival. The Mandir was jam packed with
people. Swami shone forth like Lord Narayanan lying down on Adiseshu afloat
on the ocean of milk.
Assimilate the sugar-sweet words uttered by puttaparthi satya sai on his
birthday. Enjoy longevity, health and happiness, and prosper with family,
friends and grand children. conquer nature and achieve oneness wit God.
What health did Anasuya have?
She who transformed the whole triad into little babies.
What wealth did Damayanti have?
She whose glance reduced to ashes the lustful untouchable
What wealth did Janaki have?
She who was serene and smiling even after jumping into fire.
What wealth did Chandramathi have?
who, for her husband's sake, worked as a servant in other
What wealth did savitri have?
Who rescued her husband from clutches of death?
What is the greatest wealth on earth, which can give you all
you wish for?
Young lady! May that wealth be yours.
What greater ornament is there than that?
SRI SATHYA SAI