On December 20, 2017, the day began with Swami spending some quality time with His children of Hassan campus, soon after breakfast. Swami blessed many children with gifts and His grace as a signature on their notebooks, cards, drawings, sketches and paintings. The children offered many postcard size photographs of Swami, so they could keep it with them as an insignia after His signature, and thereafter Swami blessed the kitchen team with clothes and all the staff who had gathered there with gifts of love. He blessed the devotees as well, and then finally as He proceeded towards the helicopter to the outside of the Bhajan Hall, it was a tearful farewell. The children started sobbing, asking Swami to stay back. But Swami kept assuring them that He would be back very soon, as He had other children also in Jayapura to meet. The children of Hassan are so pure and innocently adamant, that they demanded Swami to stay back with them and the Jayapura children could be called to Hassan if they had to meet Swami! Swami laughed at their innocence and at the same time consoled them by telling them that He would be back soon, and He would meet them soon in Muddenahalli for Sports Meet in January. The children were still inconsolable and Swami found a knack of distracting them from this thought by telling them “Go go, the helicopter is about to start, go quickly stand there and watch the helicopter take off!” The innocent children were kind of tricked by Swami in this way and they ran to the helicopter forgetting Swami was leaving. Swami got into His car and went to the helipad which was built on the newly constructed basketball ground, and between tearful farewell and little waving hands, Swami’s helicopter took off, a little after 10 a.m from Hassan to the Jayapura campus.
A quick 20 minutes ride in the sky and the helicopter was in the midst of the serene Chikamagulur district, where the town of Jayapura has two campuses, Sri Sathya Sai Divyaniketanam for Boys and Sri Sathya Sai Sriniketanam for Girls. Swami first descended in the newly acquired playground of Sri Sathya Sai Divyaniketanam Campus for Boys and was received by the President Sri Jayawant Bhat, and the Secretary Sri Surendra, other trustees Sri Suryanarayana and the staff and students. Through the Vedic procession, Swami reached His room, ‘Sai Sadana’ which was very tastefully decorated for His arrival and stay. After a brief talk with the devotees who had accompanied Swami, He proceeded to the site for the Bhoomi Puja of a new multi-purpose hall which is being constructed by Swami for the benefit of the students. Last year when students prayed for more place to play, Swami acquired a large piece of land for the purpose of a playground. However, due to rains for at least four months in a year in this part of Karnataka, the children are unable to use the open playground. This new facility will serve as an indoor multi-purpose Hall, which will also be developed as an indoor stadium, as well as a Bhajan Hall and auditorium. The Puja was attended by several guests which included one of the Head of Ramakrishna Matt from Shimogha district, Swami Vinayananda Saraswatiji. He was overwhelmed by Swami’s love and kindness and after the Puja, he spoke briefly to all those who were assembled about Swami’s love. He shared his experience of being able to receive Swami’s love in Puttaparthi only once, and then had seen Swami in his dream several times. On one occasion, he saw Swami calling him and taking him amidst the crowds to a place for a Puja . It was exactly the same as it had happened that very morning! He once again reiterated that Swami’s love is His biggest miracle above anything else, and urged students to benefit from it by having devotion towards Swami and following what Swami says.
Swami thereafter proceeded to the girls campus, Sri Sathya Sai Sriniketanam which is on the other side of the town of Jayapura. The construction began soon after the Sri Sathya Sai Divyaniketanam campus was taken over by the Prashanti Balamandira Trust as an offering from the existing school management, and thereafter Swami decided to segregate the boys and girls Campuses. And this is how Sri Sathya Sai Sriniketanam is situated in the other side of town. The magnificent building is under construction, while the Annapoorneshwari Temple is already being used for worship. The students are housed in one side of the building and Mother Annapoorneshwari Herself is the Warden as Swami declared. As Swami crossed through the town and reached the campus, He was greeted by the students with the chanting of Vedas and Poorna Kumbham. Swami first straight away proceeded to the Annapoorneshwari Temple and blessed the idol of Annapoorneshwari Temple with Vibhuti, and thereafter He distributed the Prasadam that was there in the bowl of Mother Annapoorna to all the devotees, much to their delight. Thereafter, Swami continued to walk towards the function, which was being conducted in the main centre lobby of the building which is under construction. Children greeted Him with flowers, bouquets, and chanting of Vedas. After Darshan and blessing everyone and satisfying everyone by accepting letters, signing a photo or a book and talking to each one of them, Swami finally ascended the dais and all the dignitaries took their seats as well. Swami was welcomed by one of the teachers, while the students welcomed all the guests. Thereafter, children offered two songs at the feet of their Mother Sai which was filled with pure devotion and love. This was followed by three short dance recitals by the students of various classes. One of the students spoke her heart out next, as she pledged to be an instrument in Swami’s hand.
Dr K P Sai Leela, the current Chairperson for all the campuses of girls addressed everyone. She spoke briefly about how God teaches only to give and is showing it by practise. Everyone receives so much from Swami, and all must practise this valuable lesson. She drove this point home with a beautiful story that she had read in her childhood.
Swami then commanded Sri B N Narasimha Murthy to speak, and he recollected the days of initiation of these campuses and the acceptance of these campuses by Swami during His last Drashan in Puttaparthi when Sri Jaywant Bhat, the erstwhile trustee had offered the photo of this campus with the prayer that Swami takes it under His fold. It did not happen then, but soon after Swami’s Mahasamadhi, his prayers were answered when Swami in the subtle came and took over the responsibility of running these campuses and unburdened His shoulders. After Sri Narasimha Murthy’s talk, Swami delivered His Discourse, which mainly focused on the fact that each one must strive to first be a servant of the society, and thereafter be whatever one wants to be – doctors, lawyers, engineers, teachers, professors, scientists, etc. “First we need to be servants, that clarity we must have before everything else, because once we have clarity, everything else will follow,” reiterated Swami. Prasadam was distributed and Mangala Arati was offered to Swami.
After promising all the children that He will come again and stay overnight in their campus once it is fully ready, He proceeded to the house of Sri Jayawant Bhat, the erstwhile trustee and currently the President of the Boys Campuses to have lunch as He had promised him and his wife in Rishikesh, when they had accompanied Swami on the divine trip. The Lord was received with great love by all the joint family members of Sri Jaywant Bhat and Swami blessed his wife profusely and said that it was only because of her devotion that Swami had come to their home. Lunch was arranged for everyone in the upper floor of the residence, and Swami was served lunch along with the guests. The compassionate Lord went around distributing ice-creams and Prasadam packets to everyone, and spoke to the family briefly. After Arati, Swami departed back to the boys campus.
Swami rested briefly and in the evening around 6 p.m., the programme commenced with a Vedic recital. Swami ascended the dais in the midst of Bhajans, and a student welcomed everyone and introduced the speakers for the day. Two students from Grade 7 and Grade 10 spoke in English and Kannada respectively, expressing their gratitude and sharing their experiences with Swami in the subtle, which created faith in their tender hearts. Thereafter, Swami commanded Swami Vinayananda Saraswatiji to speak a few words, who spoke about the message of Sri Vivekananada and Ramakrishna Paramahamsa. He conveyed to students that they must be happy the way Swami keeps them, having been blessed with a human birth, a desire to learn higher truth, and also the company of God Himself. They must utilise this opportunity well.
Thereafter, Sri B N Narasimha Murthy addressed the gathering. He quoted a story of Abraham Lincoln, when his heart was moved by the prejudices that were being encountered by the blacks in America. He wanted to do something about it and questioned one of the people. He vouched that if he becomes the President of the country, he will make a change. Thus began his journey from a log house to the White House, and finally Lincoln did make a difference to the lives of the blacks in America, for which the world remembers him reverentially. He said children must strive to make a difference to the society and work towards it. “Before trying to be anybody else, one must strive to be an agent of change and transformation in the society, and this is the role students have to play in the world today”, he said.
Swami spoke next briefly on the importance of keeping good company and thereby developing good thoughts. This will increase concentration and save children’s time in learning whatever they need to learn. Swami gave several practical tips on how to control the mind, develop concentration, and closed His very practical and interesting discourse with a few anecdotes and tips on how to deal with people who are not a good company, but to avoid them at the same time and not hurt them.
After the talk, Swami descended from the dais and took His chair below while the Yakshagana preparations were being done on the stage. Students performed Yakshagana on the theme of ‘Kamsavada’, a story from the Bhagawatam and it was performed well to the joy of all. Swami distributed gifts to everyone, first to the Secretary Sri Surendra, and blessed him profusely for his dedication and devotion towards the mission, and taking care of His children. Thereafter, Swami proceeded to the dining hall where a special dinner was arranged for guests as well as Swami. After the quick dinner, Swami walked around distributing ice-creams to everyone including kitchen staff, and blessed them profusely before He walked back to His room and retired for the day.