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Then & Now
A day in Ashram


(18th & 19th April 2005)

In this issue of Prasanthi News, we give you a glimpse of Sri Rama Navami celebrations at Prasanthi Nilayam and Bhagawan’s departure to Kodaikanal with an entourage of students, staff and devotees.

In His Sri Rama Navami Message, Bhagavan narrated some incidents from the life of Sri Rama, the Avatar of Treta Yuga (aeon). Swami began by saying that Rama’s name is sweeter than sugar, tastier than curd, sweeter indeed than honey and constant repetition of the sweet Name of Rama will give one the taste of divine nectar itself. (Full text of the Discourse will be given separately.)

Bhagawan is visiting Kodaikanal after a hiatus of two years. The flight to Madurai took off from Sri Sathya Sai Airport precisely at 12.30 p.m. Details of Bhagawan’s departure follows in our news on 19th April 2005.

18th April 2005

We wish everyone a very happy Sri Rama Navami. Bhagawan entered Sai Kulwant in the golf cart at 7.45 a.m. Swami got down near the interview room and came walking to the dais. At 8.00 a.m. Bhagawan asked the Veda chanting to stop and called a small group of students to chant the Veda from the dais. The students chanted in unison the Narayanopanishad. This was followed by a brief talk by Sri S.V. Giri. Sri Giri gave some insights from the Ramayana. He said that Sage Viswamitra taught the Divine brothers Bala and Atibala Mantras, since foregoing food and sleep was a prerequisite to guard the Yajna against demons, who made every attempt to disrupt the Yajna. After his talk, at 8.10 a.m., Bhagawan gave His nectarous Sri Rama Navami Message.

Deep red apples, sweet puris and chocolates were distributed as Prasadam to all at the conclusion of the Discourse. At 9.45 a.m. Swami was offered Arati after which He retired for the morning. In the evening, Bhagawan came out a few minutes after 3.00 p.m. He spent the full session in talking to the boys whom He had selected to accompany Him to Kodaikanal.

19th April 2005

This morning, Swami came out for Darshan at 7.30 a.m. All the Kodaikanal bound members assembled in the Bhajan Hall, where Swami gave them some final instructions. By 8.45 a.m. the students group left for the Hostel to proceed to the Airport. Bhajans were held as usual from 9.00 a.m. to 9.25 a.m. after which Bhagawan was offered Arati and then He proceeded to the Poornachandra. Most of the devotees, students and staff continued to sit in the Hall to have the Darshan of Bhagawan as He left for the Airport. At 10.45 a.m. Bhagawan’s car glided into Sai Kulwant Hall. Coconuts were broken, Arati was offered and Jai Jai Kar filled the air!

All along the route to the airport, devotees lovingly broke coconuts and offered Arati to Bhagawan. Swami’s car passed by them very slowly so that the devotees could catch a glimpse of the Lord. It took more than 30 minutes for Swami to reach the Airport. Even outside the airport, large groups of devotees, students and staff had gathered to have the Darshan of the Lord ignoring the hot sun. The flight to Madurai took off at 12.30 p.m. From Madurai, Swami, and the entire group of students and devotees selected by Bhagawan proceeded towards Kodaikanal by road.