Om Sairam dearest Sai Family,
The atmosphere in Puttaparthi and surrounding areas is looking serene, the climate
is cool, beautiful green pea nut crops spread everywhere, thanks to the timely
rains, there is water and just water everywhere with the back drop of sweetly
singing Cuckoo bird (a Indian bird which looks like a crow but has a very sweet
voice and sings only during rainy season), farmers busy in their respective fields
hoping for a better harvest this year, children playing in the waters in the small
pits and as a whole this drought hit area is now looking like the beautiful
Kerala... Thousands of devotees from Kerala, left their respective places to celebrate
their most important festival in the immediate presence of our beloved Lord... the
most auspicious and holy festival of beautiful Kerala, ONAM was celebrated in the
immediate presence of Swami with utmost devotion and faith. The mandir was
beautifully decorated on the holy occasion. There was a huge black colored lamp
about 6 feet height placed in front of Ganesha. the Kulwanth hall was beautifully
decorated and there were two small hut like things made of sticks, on either side of
the dais, just above the two bronze lions, giving us a feeling as if they were caged
in those tiny and beautiful huts..
This morning Swami blessed the huge gathering with His divine darshan at 9:45am
amidst Veda chant and music played by devotees of Kerala. This morning Swami blessed
famous play back singer from Kerala Sri Kolam Sri Kumar and party to sing in His
immediate presence After scintillating music session the morning darshan came to an
end at 10:45am. It was announced that in the afternoon Swami would bless the august
gathering with His divine discourse and a drama entitled Savitri by the students of
Onam Photos & videos
Being Onam, devotees from Kerala were given preference and were allowed to get into
the hall before other devotees could go in. At 4pm the Veda coaching class started
which under the divine command had started 4 days ago. All of us joined as two
students repeated a small line and we in turn repeated the same twice. At 4:10 pm,
Swami lovingly entered into the Sai Kulwanth hall in the mobile throne, His face as
fresh and bubbly like an Apple from Beautiful Himachal Pradesh, the beautiful 24X7
smile which is a treat to watch, looking lovingly at maximum number of devotees in
that limited time, with His naked eye, accepting letters, speaking to some. Every
one has some problem or other, some body's health is not so good, some body's
children are not getting married, some one is having a very bad marriage, some
parent lost their beloved child, some one is praying for a better job, for a better
career what not.. you name the problem and it is there in Kulwanth Hall. For every
one, Swami, the ONLY hope. As He passes by we tend to forget all our worldly
problems, dip in the ocean of bliss. Swami rarely speaks to any one, but every
body's face is lit as if they got an answer, an assurance for their problem and the
conversation was all H2H, eye to eye and it is the world's most wonderful WONDER...
Swami took a full round this afternoon and came on to the dais. This afternoon, a
young boy from Kerala, was blessed to speak in the immediate presence of Swami and
the boy thanked Swami for all His grace and love which He is showering on people of
Kerala and the Sai School in particular.
Onam Celebrations, 10-12 Aug 2008,
Images and Report by sssbpt.org
Now all eyes were on Swami. The time was getting closer and closer for us to hear
the nectarine Voice directly from the source. Swami signaled to bring the discourse
table and in no time every thing was set. Prof.Anil Kumar stands next to Swami, with
a book and pen, keenly observing Swami. Swami unlike the recent past, preferred to
stand and deliver His divine discourse and the devotees joined their hands in praise
of Swami.. There was pin drop silence all over, Prof. Anil Kumar getting more alert
now, what will the Divine Master say, a beautiful verse or Prema Swaroopulara..
Swami started with a beautiful telugu verse, told the importance of Onam and story
behind it.. Regarding paying a visit to Kerala, Swami gave a CONDITIONS APPLY** kind
of statement about His visit, Swami said, Every one call me to their respective
places, many times, people from Kerala also called me to come to Kerala, I never say
NO to any one, I always say, I will definitely come and today also I'm saying I will
come to Kerala**(He didn't mention in which form and when). Swami was all praise for
Keralites. He said, they are very devoted and sincere a very big statement and a BIG
responsibility for Keralites to live up to His expectations..
Onam Photos & videos
Below is some excerpts from the divine
discourse (ONAM) all based on memory and not a official release..
here to read the full and officially released Onam-
Khanda Khandantara khyati narginchina mahaneeyulanu kanna mathru bhoomi,
(India is a land which gave birth to many noble souls, who were renowned in all the
Paschathya veerula para drolinchiyu, swatantramunu kanna samara bhoomi
(Driving away the foreign invaders from their land, this land has gained
Sangeetha Sahithya sastreeya vidyalandu, dhee shakthi choopina punya bhoomi
(this land has shown scholarly excellence in the field of Music and literature)
Itti Bharata bhoomi yandu janana mundi
(being born in such a holy land)
Bharatha mata dharma bhagyambu kapada bhadya tantayu meede bala balika lara
(to protect the spiritual riches of this holy India, it is the responsibility of you
Boys and girls)
India is not an ordinary country. Bha-Rath means love for God. In spite of this India
is facing lot of difficulties. Don't be afraid of any difficulties. One should have
self confidence and immense faith in God. Time waste is life waste. Don't crave
for worldly education. Science may fetch you some money but will not lead you to
God. Spirituality is the path you should adhere to. Control your senses and keep the
mind in check. Develop intellect, have pure mind and serve your mother land. all
your education should help the society. only then your education will have any
value. develop morality. struggle hard to know the truth. Who is your true mother?
Dharma is your mother, Sathya is your father. when you have both you will have
Shanthi. Shanthi will give love and where there is LOVE there is no scope for hatred
(non-violence). today there is no love among siblings. Love is not to be seen any
where. Even in a tiny ant there is love. When ants go in a row, when they meet
another ant they share love. Even insects have love. it is very sad that human
beings don't have love. Love for individual is useless. have love for the society.
Swami later told the story of emperor Bali: Bali doesn't just mean mere sacrifice. He
has sacrificed everything. it is good fortune of Kerala that you have an emperor
like Bali. Bali was conducting a huge Yagna. Vamana, the dwarf comes to the yagna.
He was only 3 feet tall. Bali goes to him and asks, O sage what do you want. Vamana
replies, Emperor Bali I don't want any money, I just want only 3 foot steps of land.
Emperor Bali was surprised and said ok to his request. The first step of Vamana
covered the whole earth and the second step covered the whole sky and there was no
place for the third foot. Vamana asks where is the place for the third foot. Emperor
Bali removes His crown and asks to put His feet on his head. If you see it
spiritually, He is giving up his ego. All the people who came for the Yagna were
crying. They couldn't believe that their emperor is no more. They prayed to
Vamana, Swami can't we have our Emperor back, to which Vamana replied Bali will come
to Kerala once a year and it is this day when Vamana comes to Kerala and is
celebrated as Onam.( personally I enjoyed to hear this story behind this festival
from Vamana murthy Himself and Swami told this in a very beautiful style which no
one can match)
Onam Celebrations, 10-12 Aug 2008,
Images and Report by sssbpt.org
Swami later continued, Vamana came to confer liberation to Emperor Bali. This is a
very holy festival in Kerala. Keralites celebrate this festival with utmost
devotion. They don't even celebrate their own birthdays like this festival.
KERALITES ASK SWAMI TO COME THERE. I WILL COME.. I NEVER SAY I WONT COME TO ANY
ONE.. I WILL CERTAINLY COME. It is a state of scholarly excellence. It is a state of
God .There is sincerity and devotion in Kerala. There is no one who dont sing the
glory of God in Kerala.
Swami later told the story of Savitri, the noble woman who brought back her dead
husband to life.
Savitri is wife of Sathyavantha. She stands for truth. She could bring back her dead
husband to life. She followed Yama where ever He went. After 6 days of severe fight,
she could bring back her dead husband to life. Only in India such a thing can
happen. Savitri was a role model for womanhood.
Swami later said a few words of appreciation to the students of Kerala who performed
dramas. Swami said, yesterdays€™s drama was very good. Kerala always maintains high
standards in their plays. The dialogue delivery, the music, action and even the
dress are very nice. Keep up the high standards for years to come..
As the children were ready to perform the drama Savitri, Swami said, let us enjoy the
play which will commence now and thus ended His 45 minutes divine discourse€¦..
Later the students performed the drama Savitri.. As Swami said, it was just perfect,
point to point..
Unlike some dramas which are performed in Parthi, there was no beating round the
bush, the drama was very short, straight and full of praise to the artists and
behind the curtain staff for their hard work.
Swami was very happy with the performances and Swami asked the boys to distribute
clothes to the students in the drama and after few bhajans and prasadam
distribution, arathi was given to Swami around 6:30 pm thus ending yet another
beautiful day in my Prashanthi diary..
(hope by now every one have noticed and noted the change in the last part of the
arathi.. it is SAMSTHA LOKA SUKHINO BHAVANTHU instead of LOKA SAMASTHA SUKHINO
With humble pranams at the lotus feet of our beloved Lord.
'Dasavataram', a Dance Drama by Balvikas Children of Kerala
September 10, 2008
Onam is definitely the
most joyous and precious occasion for the Keralites irrespective
of caste, creed or religion. The festival marks the annual visit
of Mahabali to his erstwhile kingdom, reminding the reign of
equality and justice.
It is customary for all Keralites to be at their ancestral homes
with their parents to celebrate the festivity. The devotees of
Bhagawan Baba flock to Prashanthi Nilayam in thousands to
celebrate Onam in the Divine Presence.
Onam celebrations this year began in the evening of 10th
September as Bhagawan came to the Sai Kulwant Hall amidst Veda
chanting. Sacred notes of the Mangalavadya Nadaswaram announced
the commencement of the celebrations. There was a dance drama
entitled “Dasavataram” by the Bal vikas children of Kozhikode
and Malappuram districts. The children enacted various episodes
from the Dasavataram, particularly Narasimha, Vamana, Rama,
Krishna and Buddha. The programme concluded with bhajans and
Mangala Aarathi to Bhagawan.
'Rama - The Embodiment of Love',
a Skit by students of Sri Sai Vidya Vihar, and Balvikas Children
September 11, 2008
The celebrations for
the second day commenced in the evening of 11th September.
Bhagawan was received to Sai Kulwant hall with Veda and
Nadaswaram at 3:30 PM. As Bhagawan occupied the dais, He
instructed the students to start the Veda class; they dealt with
the second and third Anuvakams of the Namakam.
What followed was a drama by the students of Sri Sai Vidya
Vihar, Alwaye and the Bal Vikas children of Eranakulam, entitled
“Rama – the embodiment of Love”. It was a bouquet of various
incidents from the life of the Avatar, taken from Bhagawan’s
Discourses. The opening scene demonstrated the love between Rama
and His brothers. It went on to depict the surrender of
Sugreeva, Vibheeshana and Hanuman.
Bhagawan was pleased with the performance and blessed the
participants with the most coveted group photo. Vastram was
distributed to all.
Next offering was Sampradaya Bhajan by Sri Padmakumar. All
devotees joined the fast tempo songs clapping their hands
enthusiastically. The programme concluded with Mangala Aarathi.
Even as Aarathi was over, Bhagawan spent some time in the dais
and interacted with the participants of the drama. He remarked
that the children had put in their best effort; that was why
they could bring about such a wonderful performance. He
particularly congratulated children who enacted the roles of
Rama, Lakshmana and Hanuman. Bhagawan added that the dialogue,
music and costumes were also excellent. He told the children
that He would come to Kerala and their school. Bhagawan said; He
knew that children were very anxious as to how the drama would
come out and they had been working tirelessly since morning. Now
that everything turned out fine they could go back and take
rest. Bhagawan blessed the chilren with Abhayahastha.
Procession and Music Concert
September 12, 2008
12th September was the Thiruvonam day. The Sai Kulwant hall was
bedecked to the occasion with the festoons made of Kuruthola
(Tender coconut leaves). The stage was aesthetically decorated
with fresh flowers and ornamental umbrellas (Muthukkuda) adorned
the periphery of the auditorium. A traditional Pookkalam (floral
design) was arranged in front of the dais along with Nirapara,
Nilavilakku (step lamp), Onathappan (onam deity) and other
auspicious offerings like flowers and fruits. (Nirapara is a
full measure of paddy heaped for ceremonial offerings; a
traditional measuring container would be filled to the brim with
paddy and decorated with ‘Thengin Pookula’ (tender coconut
Bhagawn made His grand entry at 9:35 a.m. and was traditionally
received with Poornakumbham, accompanied by a colorful
procession consisting of band, Veda group and thalapoli (Thalappoli,
a ceremonial procession, is a significant item in most of the
festivals in Kerala In this ritual, women or young girls carry
thalam, which literally means plate, in their hands. Thalam is
filled with rice, flowers and a lighted lamp. Thalappoli is
considered a symbol of prosperity).
As Bhagawan made entry into the hall, auspicious notes of
Nadaswaram and Panchavadyam filled the ambience. After granting
darshan to one and all Bhagawan occupied the dais and
inaugurated the function by lighting the sacred lamp. After a
few moments Panchavadyam (orchestra of five instruments, is
basically a temple art form has evolved in Kerala) and
Nadaswaram (one of the most popular classical instruments of
South India) gave way to Thayambaka by students (Thayambaka is a
type of solo chenda performance that developed in the South
Indian state of Kerala, in which the main player at the centre
improvises rhythmically on the beats of half-a-dozen or a few
more chenda and Ilathaalam players around) – initially in a low
tempo progressively increasing to a thunderous climax!
As Veda chanting continued, Bhagawan permitted to commence the
music programme by receiving the offering of flowers from the
singers. The singers of the session were Sri Kavalam Sreekumar,
Sri Pranavam Sankaran Namboodiri and Sri Yogesh Sharma.
After invoking Ganesha and Guru with Vandana Shlokas, the music
programme began with a Malayalam composition expressing the
devotees love and longing for Bhagawan. Compositions of
Thyagaraja, Purandaradasa and Meerabhai followed. The programme
concluded with a traditional hymn – ‘Narayanam Bhaje Narayanam”
– to which all devotees joined in chorus.
Mangala Aarathi followed. To the surprise and joy of all
Bhagawan asked the Institute boys to sing a couple of Bhajans.
Before returning to the Yajur Mandiram, Bhagawan instructed the
State President of Kerala to announce that there would be Divine
Discourse and drama in the evening.
Speech, Divine Discourse and
"Savitri - The Embodiment of Shakthi", a skit by Balvikas
September 12, 2008
In the evening at 4
p.m. even before Bhagawani arrived the Veda class by the
Institute students commenced, covering the fourth and fifth
Anuvakams of Namakam. Bhagawan graciously arrived into the Sai
Kulwant Hall as the class was in progress, granting Darshan to
The first item of the evening was a brief speech by Master Abith,
a student of the Sri Sathya Sai Vidyapeeth, Sreesailam, Quilandi
near Calicut. He began by sharing the good fortune of the
devotees in the opportunity to celebrate Onam in the Divine
presence of Sai Vamana. He recounted and experience of how Sai
Gayathri saved one of his teachers, as he fell into a well
during a Seva activity. He also shared how Vibhoothi saved the
life of a cow of the Gokulam from the fatal foot and mouth
disease. He concluded by sharing his love and gratitude to
Bhagawan on behalf of all students and staff of Sri Sathya Sai
Vidyapeeth and all Sai devotees of Kerala.
After the brief narrative, Bhagawan graciously delivered the
Onam discourse, with introductory verse as the glory of Bharath.
Having been born in Bharath, one has to live up to its glory.
Today’s education and technology is promoting a mad race after
money, but Bhagawan reminded, Money comes and goes; morality
comes and grows. One has to cultivate spiritual outlook and self
confidence to realize the true meaning and purpose of life.
Truth is the father of the whole world and Dharma is the mother.
Then only can Shanthi and Prema prevail in the world. Bhagawan
escorted the devotees to imbibe the virtue of sacrifice from
Emperor Bali. Bhagawan congratulated the Bal Vikas children of
Kerala for putting up excellent cultural programmes; Bhagawan
also acknowledged the dedicated efforts of Mahilas in preparing
them. Bhagawan reminded the devotees to keep up the standard set
by them. He also urged them to watch the drama on Savitri (that
was to follow) carefully and imbibe values of courage and
The next item was a dance drama entitled “Savithri – the
embodiment of Shakthi”, by the Bal Vikas children of Alappuzha
district. The drama depicted how Savithri recovered her dead
husband from Yamadharma through her penance out of chastity and
courage. The powerful dialogues and dramatic situation left the
audience glued to the drama. The befitting conclusion was a
beautiful, vibrant dance depicting Adi Parasakthi as Durga,
Lakshmi and Saraswathi, followed by all participants paying
their salutations to Mother Sai. Bhagawan blessed all
participants and Vasthram was gifted to all children as a token
of Bhagawan’s grace.
Bhajans by the Institute students followed. The programme for
the evening concluded with Mangala Aarathi to Bhagawan.