Sri Sathya Sai
Recent Darshan Updates/Photos
Back to Index
A devotee's Report:5th Sep. 2006 Onam Report - excerpts from Swami's
report from srisathyasai.org
Onam day discourse- "...Embodiments of
The people of Kerala celebrate the Onam festival today. Onam is very
sacred, holy and divine...."
click on the photos to see large size
|Vedic Procession leading Bhagawan to the hall on this
auspicious day of Thiru Onam
Bhagawan blessing one of the participants before the program
Balvikas students from Kerala during their skit, "Sai Tips to Fly
|Balvikas students from Kerala during their skit, "Sai
Tips to Fly High"
|Balvikas students from Kerala during their skit, "Sai
Tips to Fly High"
||Balvikas students from Kerala during their skit, "Sai
Tips to Fly High"
|Balvikas students from Kerala during their skit, "Sai
Tips to Fly High"
|Bhagawan accepting the Mangala Aarathi after the
|Shri Mukundan, State President of Kerala, during his
|Shri Veerendhra Kumar M.P. delivering his speech
|Justice Shri Sreedharan, Loka Ayukth, Kerala during
his speech in the Divine Presence
|Bhagawan during His Divine Discourse
Sri Sathya Sai Vidyapeeth, Srisailam Students putting up a
skit titled "Baktha Pranasyathi
|Sri Sathya Sai Vidyapeeth, Srisailam Students putting
up a skit titled "Baktha Pranasyathi"
Sri Sathya Sai Vidyapeeth, Srisailam Students putting up a skit
titled "Baktha Pranasyathi"
Om Sairam to saifamily all over the
As the state of Kerala and thousands of Keralites, living else where
celebrated the Holy festival of Kerala, few thousands were much more
luckier to celebrate the festival in the immediate presence of Swamy,
who is verily Lord Vishnu, Vamana Murthy.
The origin of Onam:
Thiru Onam is celebrated in the second half of August ( the Chingam
month of Kollam Era) when the August monsoon rains come to an end and
the summer heat gives way to the pleasant warmth of the Kerala autumn.
Anthropologists see in Onam a great fertility rate, the ceremony of
Thanksgiving for a plentiful harvest. For Keralites Onam is the
celebration of the return of Mahabali, their once beloved king.
Onam or Thiruonam originated as a joyous annual reminiscence of the
golden rule of King Mahabali, a mythical king, who ruled Kerala a very
long time ago. It recalls the sacrifice of the great king, his true
devotion to God, his human pride and his ultimate redemption. This
king once ruled over the Keralites during the Golden Age before caste
existed, "when all men were equal, when no one was poor, when there
was neither theft nor dread of thieves" (Maveli natu vanitum kalam...
Manusharellam onnu pole ... ).
The Grand Boat Race
One of the main attractions of Onam, is the 'Vallamkali' or boat races
of Karuvatta, Payippad, Aranmula and Kottayam. Hundreds of oarsmen row
traditional boats to the rhythm of drums and cymbals. These long
graceful Snake Boats called 'Chundans' are named after their
exceedingly long hulls and high sterns that resemble the raised hood
of a cobra.
Then there are 'Odis', the small and swift raiding crafts adorned with
gold tasseled silk umbrellas, the 'Churulans' with their elaborately
curled prows and sterns, and the 'Veppus', a kind of cook-boat. This
traditional village rivalry on watercrafts reminds one of ancient
Thousands throng the banks to cheer and watch the breathtaking show of
muscle power, rowing skills and rapid rhythm. These boats - all pitted
against their own kind - rip through the backwaters of Kerala in a
tussle of speed.
Onam is for All
Although this festival has its origin in Hindu mythology, Onam is for
all people of all class and creed. Hindus, Muslims and Christians, the
wealthy and the downtrodden, all celebrate Onam with equal fervor. The
secular character of Onam is peculiar to this land where unity had
always coexisted with diversity, especially during festivals, when
people come together to celebrate life's unlimited joys.
Now back to Puttaparthi: Past three days, we witnessed beautiful plays
by Balvikas children of Kerala representing from different zones. This
is probably unique occasion when so many plays were permitted and
interestingly from the same state, clearly showing how much love Swamy
has for the state of Kerala and its people.
This morning, Swamy came out for darshan around 7:30 as students came
in procession chanting Vedas. Swamy came on the dias and as against
the custom there was a drama by the balvikas students and just when we
all felt that there won’t be Divine discourse this Onam, Prof.Anil
Kumar announced that Swamy would deliver Onam message in the afternoon
The afternoon session started at 3pm after Swamy finished His rounds,
the president of Sathya Sai Organisation, Kerala, gave a brief account
of all the developmental activities taken up by the Sai family in
Two speakers were blessed to share their thoughts this afternoon ,
that first one being Mr.Veerendra Kumar a member of Parliament and
Managing Director of Matrubhoomi, national daily in Malayalam and
another speaker former chief justice of Gujarath.
After the talk, it was the turn of our beloved Swamy, ready to give
the much awaited Onam Day message which is always special to Keralites
and Swamy leaves no stone unturned to praise the great people of that
Excerpts from the Discourse:
Vishwa mandu vibhudu velugondu chundunu
God’s radiance is present all over the world.
Viswa Vibhuni Mytri Vidadeeya Ranidi
The relations between the creator and creationr is unseparable
Vinudu Bharateeya veera Sutudu
Listen o brave son of holy India
Today is auspicious, sacred, divine festival of Onam for Keralites.
There are so many meanings for Onam. Never see this festival in its
physical level, by wearing new clothes and preparing delicious
food.The whole family rejoices this festival. Many people go to the
temples. People prefer to go to Krishna temple in large numbers. Some
even read sacred texts like Ramayana. So Onam is to celebrated by
chanting the name of lord.
The Great Emperor Bali:
Earlier this land(Kerala) was ruled by an emperor by name Bali. The
emperor took care of his people with utmost care. People were very
happy under his rule. He even encouraged his people to perform Yagnas
and bear all the expenses. On such an occasion, there came LordVishnu,
as Vamana (a dwarf preist). As Vamana was coming to the stage,
carrying an umbrella all the people assembled they were mesmerized by
His radiance and attitude.Looking at Vamana and his charm the daughter
of Bali , thought, who is this man? I wish I had a husband like him.
As people were wondering who He was, Vamana went on the stage. Emperor
Bali, bowing at Him, asked “what is that brought you here? What is
that you want? Vamana, replied, I don’t want anything, I just want 3
foot steps. Emperor Bali was surprised, is that what you want? Yes
granted. I can afford it.
With one step Vamana could occupy the whole sky, the second step He
occupied the whole earth. Whre is the place for third feet?. Bali,
with a big smile said, put the third one on my head. As soon as Vamana
kept the feet on the head, Bali went down to the Patala Loka (into the
The king was great man. He was very disciplined and also true human,
but he had a lit bit of ego. God can Tolerate anything but he will
never tolerate anger and ego. What is this ego? Is this because of the
body, mind , position. NO.It’s an evil tendency within.
God has given you Truth, righteousness peace and non violence. Develop
this. All these 5 are present every where. Ego, anger, jealousy are
animal qualities. How can you be called as human if you have these
qualities?. Adhere to truth. Truth is God. Love is God. This body is
like an iron box. There are most precious things inside. The iron box
is not important. This body is bound to fall one day. May be in
childhood, adult stage or in old age. Don’t follow this body which is
temporary. Sathya, dhrama Prema shanthi and Ahimsa are your true
Even if you ask a millionaire.. You have everything,do you have peace?
He will say No. Today there is no PEACE any where its all PIECES…
where is this peace?.Its within you. Without truth, righteousness,
peace, love all your education, positions bear no importance. When you
kill the ego you will be a true human being.
Kerala people are Noble souls:
“Even today, Kerala is highly sacred, with abundance and plenty,
greenery all over and peace. People of kerala have no worries at all.
They have very few wordly desires. Even today they are living in
perfect harmony. Kerala people are very pious,unpolluted and
sacred..(loud applause). Inspite of a busy schedule they make it to
temples and don’t forget to put vibhuti on their forehead. Even then,
interestingly,its ruled by communist government… Its not CommuNIST…
People of Kerala always pray for world’ peace. That is why they are
GREAT and NOBLE. The people of Kerala liked Emperor Bali a lot. Seeing
their love he promised that he will visit Kerala once in a year..and
that’s on this Onam day, he comes on this earth.
Be with Good Company:
For any one Character is very important. Have a good company. Tell me
your company I will tell you what you are. Always be with good
company. Then only you will be good.
You say Iam a HINDU.. what does this stand for:
Where there is Unity, there is Divinity. I am Human being, I should
behave like human being.Today, where ever you go, its only money that
matters. Its all money money… every where.What is this money? Money
comes and goes, morality comes and grows. There fore develop Morality.
This is seen more in Kerala. Money is important.. but People of Kerala
don’t crave much for money.
Students, try to get a good name.For this the food you eat is also
Today every thing is polluted, food, air, water, hand.. all are highly
polluted. We should try to make all these pure. When you attain the
state of purity you will attain human qualities. Convert the purity
into divinity.. There fore UNITY, PURITY AND DIVINITY…
Since ancient times, Indian is considred as land of sacrifice,
spirituality. But today it’s a land of pleasure (Bhoga Bhoomi).. what
is tyaga, sacrifice, its not running away from family and
responsibilities.. shed all your desires and that is true tyaga. Then
only our heart will be as white as a white cloth. God likes pure
heart. He has no other desires.
Try for individual peace first. Then only the whole world will be in
peace. If there is no peace with in you, how can the world be in
peace. Students, pray for world peace. India is a great country. But
today, due to westernization, there is no values. Always be happy and
joyful. Never have castor oil face (expressionless face).Always smile
and make others smile. Have a broadmind. Then only you will be happy.
HAPPINESS IS UNION WITH GOD. Say hello to everyone and be cheerful..
Don’t say Good bye and runaway from others.. instead be a GOOD BOY.
I don’t want to speak much and trouble you as the boys are waiting to
perform a play ..
Time is very important.. time waste is life waste.. SO NEVER WASTE
TIME….. So saying Swamy took His chair, ending a 40 mins of divine
message full of Atma Gnana (supreme wisdom)
With Lots of Sai Love to all
Jai Sai Ram
ONAM CELEBRATIONS by srisathyasai.org
The Onam celebrations this year were marked by piety and gaiety.
Devotees from the state of Kerala gathered in huge numbers to
celebrate the sacred festival in the Divine Presence. The entire
mandir complex was beautifully decorated with colourful buntings, and
the spotless white clothes with golden embroidered attire of the
Keralites lent added charm to the place.
The festivities started on the evening of 3rd with a drama titled
‘Bhakthi and Vibhakthi’ presented by the Bal Vikas children of Calicut
District. The drama portrayed God’s love for His devotees and how He
came to their rescue when their safety or dignity was at stake. And
also how Bhakthi (Devotion) is greater than Vibhakthi (Grammatical
accuracy or Scholarship). The drama revolved around the lives of great
devotees of Sri Guruvayurappa (Lord Krishna worshipped as a child in
the ancient temple at Guruvayur in Kerala) like Sri Poonthanam
Nambudiri, Sri Melpathur Narayana Bhattathiri and Manjula. The story
of young Manjula is particularly inspiring. Manjula was very devoted
to Lord Guruvayurappan and would daily offer a flower garland to adorn
His idol in the temple. But, one day, she was late in bringing the
garland and by the time she arrived at the temple, the doors had
already been closed. She was filled with sorrow at this, but
Poonthanam Nambudiri advises her that the Lord is omnipresent and is
immanent in every object in the universe. He points to a stone near a
banyan tree at the eastern gate of the temple and tells her to place
the garland around the stone. Manjula takes his advice to heart and
with great devotion did as she was told. The next day, devotees were
witness to a great miracle as that same garland was noticed by the
chief priest around the neck of the temple idol the next morning. This
incident thrilled the hearts of everyone as it showed how the Lord
responds to the pure and sacred feelings of His devotees.
The morning of 4th witnessed the offering of love to Bhagawan in the
form of music. Sri Sankaran Namboothiri, a child prodigy in his
earlier years, and now a famous exponent of Carnatic music, rendered
classical music interspersed with Sai Bhajans. The singer enthralled
everyone with melodious and soul-stirring songs for more than an hour.
In the evening, the students of Sri Sai Vidya Vihar, Alwaye presented
a drama titled ‘Mathru Devo Bhava, Pithru Devo Bhava’. These lines
taken from the Taithreya Upanishad state that one should revere one’s
parents as God. The drama depicted the story of transformation of
Pundareeka, a legendary devotee of Lord Vittal due to whose prayer the
famous Panduranga Vittal temple at Pandharpur in Maharashtra came into
existence. The drama effectively brought home the message that loving
service to one’s parents is not only the highest form of spiritual
exercise but also closest to God’s heart. The participants were
blessed with photographs by Bhagawan. Following the drama, there was a
vocal recital by Prof. Vayyankara Madhusoodanan.
On the morning of 5th September, the sacred day of Onam, Bhagawan was
welcomed in to Sai Kulwant Hall in a procession led by small children
dressed in traditional Kerala costume carrying lamps in their hands,
young men attired in the typical ‘vedam’ orange silk dhoti and white
‘angavastram’ holding Poornakumbham in their hands, and the
Naadaswaram music troupe. The ‘Panchavadyam’ and Vedic chanting by
students were going on simultaneously. Soon after Bhagawan was seated
on the dais, the youth members sang a welcome song. Following this,
there was a musical presentation by the Bal Vikas children titled ‘Sai
Tips to Fly High’. The presentation beautifully depicted the
importance of cultivating human values in the present day context
through many scenes. The opening scene showed a spiritual aspirant
approaching a Guru for clarifying his doubts. The first question put
forth by the student is – “How and why was the universe created?” for
which the Guru replies that in the beginning there was the Word; the
Word was with God and the Word was God. From God then arose the five
elements of ether, air, fire, water and earth consequently in that
order. Then evolved the plants, animals, and finally came man. The
next step in evolution is ‘superman’. This ‘superman’ is not the one
who possesses extraordinary physical strength, but the one who
overcome all mental weaknesses, practices human values and is always
absorbed in spiritual bliss. And to help us in this endeavour,
Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba has laid down guidelines on human values,
which is a treasure house of wisdom. It is now our responsibility to
internalize these values, practice them in our daily life and benefit
For the next 50 minutes or so, the presentation, interspersed with
catchy songs, briefly dwelt on various teachings of Bhagawan like
importance of time, love of God, respect for parents, sacrifice,
control over one’s tongue, prayer and peace. It concluded with the
famous quote of Bhagawan as the solution for world peace:
“If there is righteousness in the heart, there will be beauty in
If there is beauty in character, there will be harmony in the home.
When there is harmony in the home, there will be order in the nation.
When there is order in the nation, there will be peace in the world.”
After the presentation, there were Bhajans sung by the Kerala
devotees. The morning programme concluded with Arati to Bhagawan.
The evening programme commenced at 3.00 pm. Prof. Mukundan, the State
President of Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organization, Kerala spoke a few
words of introduction. After offering salutations to Bhagawan on
behalf of everyone, he briefly mentioned the various Seva projects
undertaken by the Organization in all the districts of Kerala. For
instance, the Sri Sathya Sai Annapoorneshwari project was started with
the noble intention of providing free food; another project for
providing necessary material for school children, and adoption of some
schools by the Seva Organization; the Youth have undertaken a project
to provide housing to hundreds of homeless people, while the Mahila
Vibhag (Women’s Wing) has undertaken a Mother & Child Welfare
Programme in many villages and towns. The District Collector had
formally expressed his appreciation to the Organization for the rescue
and relief work undertaken by it in the Quilon District which was
affected by the tsunami in December 2004, Prof. Mukundan reported. In
conclusion, he expressed his gratitude to Bhagawan for His guidance
and for transforming the state of Kerala in to a ‘Sai Samrajya’
(Kingdom of Sai). He then introduced the guest speakers for the day.
The first speaker was Sri Virendra Kumar, Member of Parliament from
the constituency of Calicut and Director of Press Trust of India
(PTI). He said that it is a custom that during Onam, all the members
of the family gather at their ancestral house, wear new clothes,
partake of tasty dishes and spend their time full of happiness, love
and with a sense of unity and belongingness. And that’s why all the
devotees from Kerala have congregated at Prasanthi Nilayam, at the
Lotus Feet of Bhagawan, their Divine Father and Mother. At this, the
whole hall reverberated with thunderous applause affirming the
sentiment expressed by the speaker.
The second speaker for the day was Justice Sreedharan. Justice
Sreedharan served as the Chief Justice in the High Courts at Punjab &
Haryana and later in Gujarat. Post retirement, he is serving as Loka
Ayuktha, an important office that checks corrupt practices in
Government bodies. During his speech, Sri Sreedharan mentioned how
Bhagawan unfailingly came to his rescue during many crises and solved
them all in answer to his prayers. He said that before performing any
act, one should pose two questions – “Will it cause harm to anyone?”
and “Will Swami approve of it?” Only if the answer for both the
questions is ‘yes’ must one proceed to act. He concluded his speech by
imploring everyone to live by the ideals espoused by Bhagawan and make
the country a better place to live in.
After the two speakers, Bhagawan graciously delivered His discourse.
He said that the body can be compared to an iron safe and the human
values within are the precious jewels meant to be safeguarded. If not
for the human values, the body is worthless. Bhagawan then went on to
explain the legend behind the celebration of Onam. Emperor Bali ruled
over the land now called Kerala. He ruled over his subjects very
lovingly and righteously, and there was happiness, plenty and
prosperity all over the kingdom. But there was one blemish in Bali’s
character, he was slightly egoistic. God can tolerate anything but the
two evil qualities of ego and anger, Bhagawan said. So, the Lord had
to incarnate as Vamana and vanquish Bali’s ego, and send him to the
netherworld. Though Bali was knowledgeable and virtuous, his ego led
to his downfall. So, Bhagawan said, one must give up the evil
qualities of ego, anger, jealousy, etc. and cultivate the human values
of Sathya, Dharma, Shanthi, Prema and Ahimsa befitting one’s human
Following the discourse, the students of Sri Sathya Sai Vidyapeeth,
Srisailam presented a drama entitled “Na Me Bhaktha Pranashyati”. The
drama portrayed the life of Saint Sakkubai, who was born in the land
of Maharashtra. She was an ardent devotee of Lord Panduranga Vittal,
but her husband did not approve of her worship. However, despite the
stiff resistance from her husband she never wavered from her path of
devotion. Lord Vittal is so pleased by her devotion that on one
occasion He even revives her from the dead. Once, when Sakkubai gave
her husband the slip to have darshan of Lord Vittal at Pandharpur on
the sacred day of Ekadashi along with the disciples of Saint Kabir,
Lord Vittal takes her place at home so that her husband would not
notice her absence, and thus saves her from earning her husband’s
wrath. In the end, her devotion bears fruit, for her husband too is
granted the darshan of Lord Vittal and thereby is transformed from an
agnostic into a believer.
After the drama, Sri Vishnu Bhat rendered a soulful song in Kannada.
Bhagawan then accepted arati and retired to His residence thus
concluding the grand three day Onam celebrations. The thousands who
traveled the far distance from their homes in Kerala just to be with
their Lord on this sacred occasion returned with their hearts full of
the love and joy that only the Divine can confer. His message to the
people of Kerala to always uphold the five human values will enthuse
them to serve the Lord with greater dedication and thus put that
message into practice.
Jai Sai Ram!