The second day of the Navaratri celebrations started off with much enthusiasm and spiritual fervour. The Divine mother was worshipped as Brahmacharini on this day. Brahmacharini, who is the second aspect of Goddess Durga, is engrossed in penance and austerities and grants upon us enlightenment. The day saw two rituals- Pavamana Homa and Ashlesha Bali Homa being performed at Sri Sathya Sai Hridaya Mandiram.
The significance of Pavamana Homa is to purify one’s inner self thereby promoting and aiding in one’s spiritual Sadhana. As part of this Homa, six hundred and ten select verses from the Rig Veda were chanted as Pavamana mantras to cleanse oneself and make the heart and mind pure so that it is fit for God to reside.
Ashlesha Bali Homa is a ritual performed to destroy the ill effects caused by the serpent’s curse. For this particular Homa, a mandala or rangoli in the form of a serpent was drawn. Even as we are born, we carry along with us certain Karmas and bondages of previous lives and those of our ancestors as well. The Ashlesha Bali Homa helps to negate and destroy all such misdoings from our past and promote a healthy, happy and a holy life.
Bhagawan arrived at the venue and was welcomed with Nadaswaram amidst Vedic chants. As He came blessing the devotees, He also inspected the beautifully drawn mandalam. Once Bhagawan was seated, the priests explained the significance of all the rituals that were conducted. Chandi Paat had also been rendered during the day. After the Poornahuti of the Homams, Durga Arati and Dhunuchi nritya were offered. Swami then proceeded towards His residence after the offering of Mangala Arati.
Bhagawan arrived at the Sri Sathya Sai Premamrutham Hall for the evening session and was welcomed with the ceremonial Poorna Kumbham amidst soulful rendering of Bhajans. The evening session began with the Vedic invocation by the pre-university students of the Sri Sathya Sai Prashantiniketanam who chanted the Ganapathi Patha.
Three speakers were blessed by Bhagawan to address the gathering in the evening. The first speaker was sister Keerthana who hails from a small village near Devanahalli and is currently pursuing her first year B.Sc from the Sri Sathya Sai Centre for Human Excellence for girls. She shared her story of transformation brought about by the magic of God’s love. She also urged everyone to share and reciprocate the immense love that Bhagawan has been showering upon each of us with others outside and concluded by praying to Swami and seeking strength for the same.
Next up the line was the second day of the Bhagavata Saptaha by Sri K Sanjeev Shetty who is a Harikatha and Yakshagana exponent. His talk in Kannada was translated to English by Sri Venkatesh Kamath, Chairman of the Sri Sathya Sai Sathyaniketanam, Hassan campus. Sri Sanjeevanna narrated the story of the Lord’s greatest child devotee, Prahlada, whose devotion to the Lord is unparalleled. The demonic king Hiranyakashyap put his child under numerous hardships and tormented him, but the wise child knew that the self can never be harmed. It is eternal, all-pervading, stable, ancient and immovable. The tale of this staunch devotee of the Lord continues to be a huge source of inspiration to the listeners.
The last speaker for the evening was Sri B N Narasimha Murthy, Chief Mentor, Sri Sathya Sai Loka Seva Institutions. He spoke about the greatness of the Bharatiya culture which Swami is professing and propagating all around the world. ‘Purana’ is ‘Pura Eva Nava Iti’, meaning- that which is eternal and holds good at all times across the world. He explained that Bhagawatham is one such purana which leads man to self-realization through the paths of love and faith in God.
Bhagawan then blessed the devotees with His divine discourse. After the offering of Mangala Arati to Swami, the evening session came to a close.