"Man thinks that he is the body and is therefore engulfed in body consciousness. He is deluded to think that the body is everything and that it is permanent. But body is the temple of God and the individual soul or the Jeeva is none other than God Himself. It is because of God that the temple attains a value. Similarly, body is also a temple where God resides."
With the Blessings of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, we are delighted to present our Sixty ninth issue of Ananda Vahini. The weekly newsletter includes interesting musings and short excerpts from the week's events.
In this issue, we bring you the final part of Bhagawan's visit to Singapore, Japan, Taiwan from March 20 - March 23, 2017, details of Ugadi Celebrations held on March 28 & March 29, 2017 and highlights of Mysore visit.
In this week's INNER VIEW, Brother Madhusudan Naidu shares an interesting moment between the Lord and His students.
- Sathya Sai Grama Communications Team
- By Sri Madhusudan Naidu
Bullet train or the mind?
It was during the recent visit to Japan that the hosts had organised a travel on the famed Bullet Train that literally flies at 300 miles an hour. Though it was to be for the sake of an experience, however it turned out to be an education for us when Swami enquired about it.
"So you have come by the bullet train?", enquired Swami over dinner.
"Oh Yes Swami! It's the fastest train on earth", replied we, an excited lot. We also updated Him about the fact that the train could run in both directions, and the seats would rotate too.
"What is the fastest thing on earth?", asked Swami as He glanced at His dinner plate.
Even as we were thinking about an appropriate answer He asked again, "Which is faster, the bullet train or the mind?"
And He answered Himself, "Mind is the fastest, for in one moment it can be here, and in another moment it can be elsewhere in the Universe. However, just like the bullet train, the outward going mind can be turned inwards too. Just imagine if the mind can go outward at such a high speed and travel great distance in a trice; if only it is turned inwards it can also travel equally fast and reach the truth that we ought to attain."
Man Eva Manushyaanam Karanam Bandh Mokshyoh, mind is responsible for bondage or liberation of man. The outward looking mind that causes bondage can be turned inwards and lead to liberation ", He elaborated.
Living with God is true education, for He can teach the greatest of the truth using the simplest of the examples.
DIVINE VISIT – JAPAN – MARCH 20, 2017
It was a very cold morning, about four degrees. After a delicious breakfast, Bhagawan proceeded to the Amagi Chapel for the last Satsang of the trip. Over 200 eager devotees had once again gathered. It was also going to be red lettered day for Japan, as Bhagawan was going to announce an Ashram in Niigata, 200 kilometres North of Tokyo, which is the capital and the most populous city of Niigata Prefecture. It lies on the northwest coast of Honshu, the largest island of Japan, in the Chūbu region and faces the Sea of Japan and Sado Island. Devotees of Niigata City took a place in a building for Satsang and Bhajans, and Swami lovingly named the group Sai Hridayam, during His visit to Japan in 2016. But the owner of this building said he will demolish this building after three years.
A ninety-year-old Japanese lady, who does not know Bhagawan, nor has heard about Sathya Sai Baba in the past, but is blessed to communicate with angles for many years, has been helping people by communicating the voices of divine beings in the celestial worlds, and also helping the deceased spirits through her prayers. She told the owner of a construction company that he has to build a Shrine after three years, and that people from all over the world will come and benefit by visiting this holy place. This contractor has a group of friends who are ready to work for this shrine construction, among whom are some devotees of Sai Hridayam. They wondered...
Bhagawan proceeding to Amagi Chapel for the morning Satsang
Bhagawan blessing the devotees
Sri C Sreenivas addressing the gathering
DIVINE VISIT – JAPAN AND TAIWAN
MARCH 21 -22, 2017
Divine Visit - Japan to Taiwan - March 21, 2017
The mist covered mountains indeed looked stunning, as everyone woke up early to a cold and rainy morning. After a light breakfast of fruits and cornflakes, Bhagawan and His entourage, which included Mr and Mrs Ravi Pillay, Mr and Mrs Anthony Tan from Singapore, proceeded to the Haneda International Airport in Tokyo to board the flight to Taipei. Once again they boarded the bullet train and reached the destination in less than an hour. On route to the Airport, an early lunch was organised at an Indian restaurant at Kawasaki.
The entourage reached Taipei late evening and were welcomed by their host Mr Srichand Khatri, an ardent devotee of Bhagawan wan for over four decades. They were driven to the residence where Bhagawan was to stay for the next 36 hours, in Tamsui District, very close to the tourist attraction Tamsui Fisherman's Wharf. Brother Ayavoo and his wife Dr Vimala from Malaysia had arrived almost four days earlier to assist Sri Khatri with all the preparations, including setting up the kitchen and also cook all the meals. Five Sai youth girls from the Sai Ananda Ashram in Kuala Lampur had also accompanied the couple, to assist with the cooking. A long day of travel ensured everyone had an early dinner, before they went to bed. Swami was overwhelmed with their love and devotion, and blessed them profusely.
Divine Visit - Taiwan - March 22, 2017 (Morning)
After a delicious breakfast cooked by the devotees from Malaysia, Bhagawan and His entourage proceeded to the residence of Sri Khatri. Enroute the Lord visited the Guandu Temple, which is one of the oldest temples in Taipei as well.....
Morning visit to Guandu Temple, which is one of the oldest temples in Taipei
Dance recital by youth during the evening Satsang at Taipei, Taiwan
SPECIAL PHOTO FEATURE ON DIVINE VISIT TO MYSORE - MARCH 25, 2017 & MARCH 26, 2017
Bhagawan's visit to Sriranga Vidya Samstha, Mysore on day one, evening
Devotees welcoming Bhagawan with Poorna Kumbham at Sairanga Vidya Samstha
Swami blessing His children at the school
Sri Chidananda Gowda, Former Vice Chancellor of Kuvempu University, Shivamoga, Karnataka addressing the gathering
Satsang in progress at the residence of Dr Shashidhara Prasad, during the morning on day two of Divine Mysore visit
Dr Shashidhara Prasad, former Vice Chancellor of Mysore University and Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning addressing the audience
Sri K Sanjeeva Shetty, Trustee of Sri Sathya Sai Loka Seva Trust addressing the gathering
Bhagawan's visit to 'Sri Sathya Sai Nilayam', residence of Late Sri Ramachandra Setty, a long standing devotee of Bhagawan from Mysore in the afternoon on day two
Satsang at Late Sri Ramachandra Setty's residence
Bhagawan talking to the family in His room at the residence
Students visit to the Mysore Palace
Bhagawan's visit to Sri Kuvempu Vidyavardhaka Trust, Mysore on day two, evening
Satsang in progress at the Trust
Dr Shashidhara Prasad addressing the audience
MARCH 28, 2017 - DAY ONE, EVENING
Ugadi or Yugadi, as the name suggests,marks the beginning of a new era, ushering in the New Year with the renewed promise of conferring happiness, peace and prosperity. Celebrated as Ugadi in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Telengana, GudiPadwa in Maharashtra, Thapna in Rajasthan, Sajibu Nongma Panba in Manipur and Cheti Chand in Sindh, the festival signifies the commencement of spring.
The evening celebration of this joyous day commenced after Bhagawan was welcomed with the traditional Poorna kumbam and Veda chanting by His students. Devotees from far and near had assembled in Sathya Sai Grama, Muddenahalli, with the sole desire of welcoming the New Year in the presence of the Lord. The evening session started with a recap of Bhagawan’s recent visits to the homes of devotees.
Bhagawan’s Overseas Travels
On 16th March, in the morning Bhagawan, with His entourage departed for Singapore and upon reaching there, stayed at the residences of Dr Roshni Pillai and Dr Kesavan. On 17th March, in the afternoon, Bhagawan proceeded to Sai Anandam, the Singapore ashram, to bless over four hundred devotees who had gathered there for a Satsang. On 18th March, Bhagawan arrived in Tokyo and continued to Itsu. At Itsu, He visited a chapel called Amagi Sanso where a two....
Yakshagana Performance titled 'Bhakta Prahlada' by the devotees from Puttur, Karnataka
Performers pose with Bhagawan on the dias
MARCH 29, 2017 - DAY TWO, MORNING
One could almost smell the excitement and fervour in the air as the staff, students, sevadals and devotees eagerly awaited the arrival of the Lord on the auspicious Ugadi morning.
The Ugadi celebrations began, upon Bhagawan’s arrival, with the ground breaking ceremony of ‘Seva Sadan’, a precious gift from Bhagawan to all the Sevaks; a building, nay a monument, which will, in the years to come, serve as the head-quarters for all the Seva initiatives. While addressing the gathering at the site of the new building, Bhagawan urged the sevaks to not consider any act as work; rather, to convert work into worship and thereby sanctify all actions. Thereafter, Swami proceeded to inauguratea newly constructed amphitheater and a beautiful garden, fondly christened as “Sai Nandanam”. Swami then made his way to Premamrutham, where a large gathering of students and devotees waited for a glimpse of the Lord.
The morning session in the hall began with the Vedic Invocation by the students of Sri Sathya Sai Pre University campus, who chanted Dhruva Suktam and Mrittika Suktam.The invocation was followed by the announcement of the inauguration of an RO water plant, which would benefit over two hundred families; a gift from Bhagawan to the villagers of Yerranagenahalli.
Sri Narasimha Murthy, who was commanded by Bhagawan to address the gathering, emphasized on the importance of being born as a human being. He stressed....
Vedic invocation by the Students from Pre University College, Muddenahalli
Sri B N Narasimha Murthy addressing the audience
MARCH 29, 2017 - DAY TWO, EVENING
The evening session of the Ugadi celebrations began with Bhagawan being welcomed into the Premamrutam Auditorium with Poorna Kumbham amidst soulful bhajans. Once Bhagawan was seated, the programme began with Vedic invocation by the students of Sri Sathya Sai Vidya Kendra and Sri Sathya Sai Loka Seva High School, Muddenahalli, who chanted the Bhagya Sooktam.
The Vedic invocation was followed by a cultural programme, a musical offering by the alumni of Sri Sathya Sai Mirpuri College of Music, along with students from Muddenahalli. The two alumni, Sri Arjun Sainath and Sri Srinivas Vishwanadha, who are currently teaching music in Muddenahalli were joined by Sri Harikrishna, first year B.A. in Centre of Human Excellence and Sri Pranav Kashyap, second year Pre University. The students offered songs composed by great composers like Thyagaraja, Annamacharya and Malladi brothers. The programme began with the rendition...
BHOOMI PUJA OF SEVA SADAN AND INAUGURATION OF AMPHI THEATRE - MARCH 29 2017 - MORNING
Bhoomi Puja of Seva Sadan
On the auspicious morning of Hevalambi nama new year, Bhagawan proceeded to the venue to perform Bhoomi Pooja of Seva Sadan, the new building to preside over the proceedings.
The four-storied building would be the nerve centre of all the seva activities undertaken in the subtle phase of the Avatar. The office space would look like a temple from outside but will have a corporate office look inside with all the best facilities. The ceremony started with Sri Jayaram giving a brief overview of the purpose of the new building and the various trusts offices which would be located here.
Later Sri. BN Narasimhamurthy elaborated on the physical transformation of the sleepy village of Muddenahalli which was a centre of education for about four decades visited by only the students and parents to a pilgrimage centre in the past five years visited by multitudes of devotees from all over the world and also non-devotees who are visiting the place. He spoke of the noticeable transformation seen among the students and their rapport with Swami. The purity of their prayers and the desire to serve Swami is praiseworthy. A recent testimony of this is 30 students of the 88 current pass outs from PU College volunteering to join the next batch of Centre for Human excellence.
This was followed by Bhagawan’s Divine discourse where Bhagawan mentioned that the mansion which is going to come up should look like a temple to remind everyone working here to perform his Seva and duty as worship and thereby help them to move closer to God.
Seva Sadan would have the best of the facilities and all things required for the people working here which should become Seva Saadana, a service which takes one nearer to God.
Swami initiated (performed) the Bhoomi Pooja followed by elders and trustees. And the proceedings ended with Mangala Arati.
Inauguration of Amphi Theatre "Sai Nandanam"
After the Bhoomi Pooja of Seva Sadan, Swami proceeded to inaugurate the amphitheatre and a beautiful garden “Sai Nandanam” which is adjacent to Prem Deep. This space was open to all devotees for them to go and relax and contemplate on Bhagawan. While walking around the place Bhagawan remarked that more trees needs to be planted (grown) here to provide shade to the devotees who would come and sit here.
Bhoomi Puja of Seva Sadan
Gathering of devotees and staff for Bhoomi Puja
Bhagawan performing the ground breaking ceremony of the new office building
Sri B Narayana Rao performing the ground breaking ceremony
'Sai Nandanam', an open amphitheatre and garden
Bhagawan inagurating 'Sai Nandanam'
Sri Rajasekhar retired Forest Officer along with his wife posing with Bhagawan
Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba has been travelling all over the world in the Subtle to keep His promise of visiting the countries. Below is the link to the Google Drive library of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba’s divine visits overseas.
If you would like to subscribe to receive the new Booklets of Bhagawan’s overseas travels in 2016, as soon as they are available, kindly email firstname.lastname@example.org.
And as Swami continues travelling in 2016 and beyond, and new Booklets are created, they will be added to the Google Drive Library.
DIVINE DISCOURSE SUMMARY – UGADI MARCH 29, 2017
Seva is the ultimate spiritual practice
The ultimate goal of human life is to get rid of the illusion that ‘I am the body’ and to realise the truth that ‘I am God’. If you want to have a look at your reflection in a mirror, there are three things that we need to set right. First,we have make sure that the mirror itself isn’t perverting your shape and form in its reflection. Second, there should be enough light. In a dark place, even if the mirror is there, you can’t look at your reflection. Finally, ensure that the mirror is clean. It should not be covered with dust or any kind of cloth. Only when you set right all these three things, you will be able to derive joy looking at your reflection in the mirror. Upanishads speak about it in the form of three impurities: Mala, Vikshepa and Avarana.If you want to know the truth, you should remove all these three impediments.
Malais the impurity of the feeling of ‘I’ and ‘mine’. We should first remove our selfishness and fill ourselves with selflessness. To get rid of Vikshepa, you should get rid of the body consciousness and develop divine consciousness. If you want to light the lamp of wisdom, you need to first put the wick into the oil. This oil is good company. What is this Avarana? It is the feeling that ‘I am the body’. You do have a form but you are not just the form. Forms keep changing. Truth does not change. It is necessary....
DIVINE DISCOURSE SUMMARY – BHOOMI POOJA OF SEVA SADAN – MARCH 29, 2017
Perform all actions as an offering to God
God has created this world as a land of action. It is therefore very important for each one of us to think about the kind of activity we take up, through which we can ultimately taste the fruits of bliss and redeem our lives.
Work is done to purify the mind. So, we should choose such activities which will lead to purification of our mind. Therefore, the process is to transform all the work we do into worship. Then duty itself becomes God. When you perform your actions with God-centric attitude, it becomes worship. But when it is selfish and ego-centric, it becomes bondage.
Even in a temple, the acts of worship can turn into work because of the attitude with which it is done. The priest does worship from dawn to dusk in a temple. But if he thinks it is a kind of work, it is a kind of duty, it remains just that. He won’t get any bliss out of it. But here, starting with a watchman right up to the administrator and the trustee, everybody should consider what they do as worship. And with that attitude, they should perform their work. Therefore, this mansion, which...
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