Buddha Purnima in Prasanthi Nilayam
Buddha Purnima Darshan! Bhagawan alighting the car!
Bhagawan Buddha adorning the dais in Prasanthi Nilayam
Stage set for the show "Ahimsa Paramo Dharma"
Official lighting by the Divine Hands!
Dr. Raveendran delivers the introductory speech
Lighter moments with the Divine...Dr. Jumsai with Bhagawan
Allan Yeoh seeks Divine Blessings
From the traditional Indonesian dance
a scene from the Indonesian dance
Spreading Buddha's glory
The Malaysian Choir
Singing His Glory...the Malaysian Choir
Tickling the throats to sing His Glory
A Divine Counselling - Conductor with Bhagawan!
...and a coveted Paada Namaskaar
Divine Reward for the 'BEST CONDUCT'
Yet another Divine Pat!
...and a pose with the Divine!
Maharashtra Chief Minister Ashok Chavan with Bhagawan
Lord Buddha has been the epitome of Right Conduct and his name has been synonymous with Non-violence. Commemorating the advent of this master spiritual preceptor lived over 2500 years ago, still wielding charismatic influence in the human minds and hearts, hundreds and thousands of devotees from various Buddhist countries assembled in Prasanthi Nilayam, the Abode of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba celebrating the auspicious occasion in a manner that is most invincible considering the spiritual import that it brings forth. Aptly, the theme chosen for this years Vaishaaka Buddha Purnima was “Ahimsa Paramo Dharma”, Non-violence is the Supreme Dharma.
Buddha Purnima or Buddha Jayanti is marked as the most sacred day in the Buddhist calendar. Buddha Purnima falls on the full moon day of the lunar month Vaishaaka (that corresponds to the month of April-May) - a special time in Buddhism as it was on this day Buddhists all over the world commemorate the birth, enlightenment and Nirvana of Lord Buddha.
Bhagawan who came into the aesthetically decorated Sai Kulwant Hall, befitting the occasion with the typical 'Buddhist Touch', was receiving by Vedam Chanting and befitting the occasion and a special music called Gamelan played by devotees of Indonesia.
Dr. Raveendran, the Regional in-charge spearheading the operations, offering salutations and grateful thanks for the magnanimity that permitted them to celebrate the occasion in His Divine Presence, made a mention about the greater significance of celebrating the event in the immediate of Divine Presence of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. He later introduced the two guest speakers for the evening session, to speak on the theme, “Ahimsa Paramo Dharma”, Non-violence is the Supreme Dharma.
The first speaker was Dr. Art Ong Jumsai from Thailand, a scientist and educationist of par excellence whose contribution to Sathya Sai Education has been commendable. Commenting on the auspiciousness of the great, grand occasion Dr. Jumsai made a mention about the central teaching of the Buddha, the four noble truths namely, suffering in the world, the cause of suffering, way to get rid off these suffering, and the way to get this done. Referring to the common man’s slogan “I want Peace” Dr. Jumsai, highlighted on the importance of cutting the ‘I’ and the desire to earn the Peace. Man has to have control over his senses to achieve the much sought after Peace, said Jumsai narrating the often repeated story of Bhagawan involving a king and his five wives with bundle of desires. Talking about the famous Sathya Sai School in Thailand, which in its 17th year of running, Dr. Jumsai highlighted how the school evolved into a role model educational institution, of course by His Divine Grace and Guidance winning award galore transforming young hearts and minds through the most effective tool, Sathya Sai Education in Human Values.
Heart is the seat of non-violence; a person with love will not entertain any thought of non-violence, said Allen Yeoh, a practicing advocate from Hong Kong, quoting Bhagawan bringing facets of Lord Buddha’s early childhood and adolescent days depicting the compassionate heart that cried out for non-violence, the value that stood highly against Bhuddha’s name. Quoting Bhagawan’s teachings the speaker said, Non-violence is to be practiced in thought, word and deed and not merely refraining from inflicting injuries in the physical sense. Non-violence has to be practised with purity of thought, word and deed. There should be no ill feelings which is a form of violence. No one should be harmed even by speech. The speech should be sweet, pleasing and wholesome. All actions should be helpful to others.
Urging all to pose a question unto each one of them, he asked how best we put into practice Bhagawan’s teachings. Once we put into practice His teachings in our lives, we are verily living and leading a life Lord Buddha desired his disciples to follow. We have the greatest opportunity to learn directly from the Greatest Avatar of all time. By His infinite patience, time and attention He grants in teaching the mankind the eternal values, we can reciprocate by living our lives practising the values He taught us.
This was followed by a colouful display of Indonesian traditional dance by Sathya Sai Balvikas, Denpasar, Bali and Sathya Sai School Denspasar depicting the life and spiritual attainment of Gautama who turned out to become Lord Buddha by attaining Nirvana. This was followed by a repertoire of songs by the Malaysian Choir in Chinese and Sanskrit conducted by Stanley Cheong, accompanied by Aung Chan Chooi on the piano, a veritable treat depicting the greater devotion to Lord Buddha and Bhagawan. The conductor with his invincible display won the accolade from Bhagawan and the devotees. Pleased by the display, Bhagawan materialized a Navaratna ring for the conductor, Stanley Cheong. This was followed by an array of bhajans by International Troupe and later by students before Arathi was offered concluding the twilight session.