Sathya Sai Grama, by the divine grace of Bhagawan Baba celebrated its sixth day of the Sharada Navaratri with great vigour, gaiety and devotion. The presence of the divine Shakti was everywhere, be it in the form of ‘Golu’ where idols of Gods and Goddesses were arranged in steps or the idols of Tridevis along with Lord Ganesh and Lord Karthikeya and the undeniable presence of the Shiva Shakti incarnation – Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.
Bhagawan often describes the nine types of Bhakti that man can choose from, to show his love towards the divine. In Hrudaya Mandiram, one directly experienced Shravana and Keertana forms of Bhakti through Bhajans, Vedic chants and stories. Flowers were offered to the Goddess Saraswati whose Homa was performed, thereby adoring the Lord through Archana Bhakti. On the sixth day of the Navaratri celebrations, Saraswati and Dakshinamurthy Homas were performed seeking blessings so that they may bestow divine wisdom on all.
Goddess Saraswati can make a wise man out of a dullard, and can change an ignoramus to a scholar, if the devotee is earnest. Lord Parameshwara is known by 25 Avatars out of which Medha or Dakshinamurthy grants ultimate wisdom to the seekers. It is said that Lord Shiva while granting Brahma Jnana does not speak or give sermons, He verily communicates with His devotees in silence. No words are spoken and no words are heard, it is through a heart to heart connect with the Lord that the greatest wisdom gets passed on to the true seekers. After the priests prayed to the Gods to grant retention power, intelligence and wisdom, Bhagawan blessed the offerings of the Purnahuti, which was performed amidst Vedic chants. This was followed by the rendition of Mahishasuramardini Stotra by the ladies, after which kids performed a short dance filling every heart with smiles. The famous Dhunuchi dance was performed in the glory of the divine Mother followed by the Mangala Arati.
Bhagawan examined the settings for the Ati Rudra Maha Yajna which was to commence the next day, and retired for the morning after blessing all His children, both young and old alike.
The evening session commenced at the majestic Premamrutam Hall with sacred chanting of Sri Rudram followed by repetitions of Samasta Lokah Sukhino Bhavantu. The august gathering of devotees from across the globe, students and staff from all the campuses, were eagerly waiting for the arrival of Mother Sai. Bhagawan Baba arrived early as expected, went around the hall, pouring His pure and unconditional love on the assemblage, assiduously answering the queries of one, collecting letters from others, a few words of guidance to another. After a brief introduction about the speakers of the day, a short introduction to the morning programme was presented by the compere. The sixth form of Ma Durga worshipped is Mother Kathyaayani – a warrior Goddess seated on the lion with four hands.
The evening programme began with a chanting of Medha Suktam – chant dedicated to Medha – Goddess of intellect by the teachers of the Sri Sathya Sai Prashantiniketanam, Nallakadirenahalli. During the previous two days, the Premamrutam Hall was reverberating with the sacred Vedic chantings from Rig and Shukla Yajur Veda. In continuation of this, scholars, chanted verses from Krishna Yajur Veda.
The guests and speakers of the evening were His Holiness Bhagawan Sachidananda Saraswati, a monk and a teacher from Dayanand Saraswati Ashram, Hrishikesh, Sri Y Raghavulu, All India Joint Secretary of Vishwa Hindu Parishath and a notable politician – Sri K H Muniappa, Member of Parliament of Lok Sabha, Sri M Shiv Shankar Reddy, Minister for Agriculture – Govt of Karnataka, Sri Manjunath H V – The President of Chikkaballapur Zilla Parishad and Sri Surendra Gowda – Senior leader of BJP Karnataka Unit and more notably a former student from the Alike Campus.
The first speaker of the day – Sri K H Muniappa had immense words of praise for Bhagawan Baba’s educational campuses providing value and character moulding education completely free of cost. He shared his miraculous escapes from many accidents. He spoke about Bhagawan’s continuing mission in Muddenahalli and emphasised the importance of faith and belief.
The next speaker, Sri M Shiv Shankar Reddy appreciated the various service projects that Bhagawan is undertaking in various spheres right from Education to Health and Nutrition. The third speaker of the evening, Sri Y Raghavulu gave an inspiring speech about the various service and welfare activities undertaken by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad. His sharings were truly spell-binding and the extent of service work undertaken to reach out to downtrodden is commendable. He recalled the great many sacrifices that freedom fighters made to secure independence and emphasised the importance of Unity amongst all the Bharatiyas.
The last guest-speaker was His Holiness Bhagawan Sachidananda Saraswati. He spoke about the age-old tradition of convocation that was always practised in Vedic tradition and the promises that a graduating student would make before leaving the portals of his Gurukul. At Bhagawan’s behest, he spoke about Atma Vidya. He said knowing one’s own self is the highest knowledge that could only set one free, and give one a permanent bliss. He drew parallel between Lord Krishna’s Gita to Bhagawan’s simple but profound maxims – Love All and Serve All. He had immense words of appreciation for Bhagawan’s educational institutions putting into practise the ideal methodologies that is paving way to know one’s real self.
Bhagawan’s divine Discourse underlined the importance of understanding the completeness in each and every element of this creation. Bhagawan quoted the Vedic verses – Purnamada Purnamidam…He said while Science turns our mind outwards and teaches worldly knowledge, Spirituality turns the mind inwards and teaches one about oneself. Bhagawan said this knowledge has to be imparted to the children Grades six to nine, and that is the appropriate age. Thus the evening session ended with many revealing speeches by eminent personalities from various spheres and finally the same philosophy of oneness put forth in simple terms by Bhagawan.
Bhagawan asked all the students to chant the Namakam. The entire Premamrutam Hall reverberated to the Sounds of Anuvaka one and then the session closed with ‘Sathyam Jnanam Anantham Brahma’ and then Mangala Arati was offered to Bhagawan.