Makara Sankranti – January 14, 2017 – Evening Session
Sathya Sai Grama
Makara Sankranti, the festival of harvest is celebrated in myriad ways in different parts of the country. While it is celebrated as Makara Sankranti in Andhra Pradesh and some parts of North India, it is Pongal in Tamil Nadu, Lohri in Punjab and Bihu in Assam. The festival symbolises prosperity, plenty, abundance and harmony.
At Sathya Sai Grama too the festival of abundance was celebrated with a definite aplomb. After Bhagawan was ushered into the Sathya Sai Premamrutham Hall and seated on the dais, the formal proceedings of the evening began with a vedic invocation of Bhoosuktam by the girl students of the Sri Sathya Sai Prashanti Niketanam campus.
The entire hall was filled up to the brim with eager students from across all the Sathya Sai Loka Seva educational institutions and devotees. Students had all gathered for the five-day long celebration of the Annual Sports and Cultural Meet starting the next day.
Two speakers selected by Bhagawan addressed the gathering. The first speaker, Kumari Keerthana, a second year Pre-University student of the Sri Sathya Sai PrashantiNiketanam, Chikkaballapur campus, spoke beautifully about the inner significance of the festival. She then went on to narrate instances from her hostel life and how she learnt to control her anger by following Bhagawan’s teachings. She ended her speech, confessing to the audience that while her physical parents provided for all her needs, it was only Bhagawan who gave her true joy and happiness.
The second speaker for the evening was Shri Sanjeev Shetty from Alike, who serves as a Trustee of the Sri Loka Seva Trust. He began by explaining the significance of festival, and said that while on this day the doors of heaven were open, the audience were already seated in Vaikuntam. He spoke fondly abaout revered Anna’s teachings and also narrated a recent experience of his with Bhagawan. He was unwell and had come to take blessings of Bhagawan before getting treated for a heart problem in the Super Specialty Hospital. Bhagawan blessed him with a navarathna ring and put it on his hand. He then exclaimed to the audience that he had since regained his health without any surgical intervention.
He ended his speech, urging everyone to strive to achieve truth and love and live a life following Bhagawan’s teachings of brotherhood of man and fatherhood of God.
Sri B N Narasimha Murthy, Chief Mentor, Sri Sathya Sai Loka Seva Institutions spoke next. He said that on the festival of Makara Sankranti everyone should harvest the fruits of divine bliss, which can be reaped only if we plant faith of God and grow the creeper of love. The greatest miracle of Bhagawan, he said, was the sense of sacrifice that His devotees were blessed with. He said that it was only due to their sacrifice that the educational campuses such as Gulbarga or Mandya and the newer institutions coming up in June were made possible. He ended his speech, imploring everyone to follow Dharma.
The Divine Discourse followed next. To read the summary of the Divine Discourse, click here.
A Carnatic musical programme, titled “Bhakti Samrajyam”, was then presented by the alumni of the Sri Sathya Sai Mirpuri College at the divine lotus feet. The spirited, devotional renditions of the songs were widely appreciated by the audience, which kept erupting in spontaneous applause every now and then.
The evening ended with the offering of Aarthi to Bhagawan.