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Posted at 19:50 hrs. on 17th Sept 2009

When Bhagawan asked for an encore of “His Story” as Lord Rama in Burrakatha form, the evening on Wednesday, 16th September turned out to become an epical evening with the sweet nectarous story of Lord Rama got on stage in the immediate Divine Presence of Bhagawan.

The ever dedicated bunch of students of the University, whose commitment to Bhagawan knows no bounds, was ever ready and they rejoiced singing the glory of the Lord of Treta, bringing nostalgic memories of the illustrious twins of Lord Rama, Lava and Kusha who took to the streets singing the sweet nectarous story of Lord Rama.

In an “epic battle” to re-establish righteousness on a firm footing, the epic of the yore, the story of the glory of Lord Sri Rama enjoys a great run in the immediate Divine Presence of the Avatar of the Age Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba in Prasanthi Nilayam.

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The Lord who has painstakingly written the story of His previous incarnation in a much lucid style that has revelations hitherto not made and nuances hitherto not discussed has always been stressing greater importance to the epic. He says, “The Ramayana has been described as the story of Rama, the ideal man. In fact every human, in a way, is Rama Himself, when he embodies the ideals of Rama. Hence, it is imperative on the part of every individual to cultivate the ideals of Rama. The Ramayana enshrines in itself the very essence of the dharma (righteousness) of the individual, family, and society.” He further adds, “Though thousands of years have passed since the story of Rama was first written, the inner story of the Ramayana is being enacted every moment of our life.” …and in Prasanthi Nilayam, His story often takes rounds, acting as a catalyst to bring awareness in the commoners on the ideal life lead by Lord Sri Rama.

Ramayana is one of the rarest of and most enchanting of the epics of India, most popular not only in India but also the world over. Lord Sri Rama is attributed to be the Maryadapurushothama, the most ideal being and by following His life story, mankind could benefit immensely to develop in all aspects of life. The Adarsha Purusha, Sri Rama, was a virtuous ideal son, an ideal disciple, an ideal brother, an ideal husband and an ideal ruler. No wonder, the Lord Himself has painstakingly written the most illustrious story of the “Lord of Dharma” ruled eons ago, as Rama Katha Rasa Vahini. 

The trio, students from Sri Sathya Sai University, Sai Prabhakar, Aravind Sai  along with Sai Raghuram, currently pursuing his medical degree after completing post graduation at Sri Sathya Sai University, has been parading their skills in the distinctive art form with blessings, guidance and encouragements from Bhagawan and Prasanthi Nilayam has witnessed number of such Burra Katha sessions over the past couple of years, enacting lives of illustrious souls, disseminating greater messages to humanity, the latest being on the 24th August on the same dais, and the story was the sweet story of Ramayana. The trio also had the rare blessing of staging continuous shows for three to four days in the Divine Presence during this year’s Kodai Sojourn in April.

It was the sublime story of the glory of the Avatar of Treta that was brought back into life with expressive narration often intertwined with hasyam (by a clown character delivering comic relief) and music and songs in between. The programme commenced with the traditional “Ganesha Vandana”, “Bhaja Mansa Vigneshwaram…..” after receiving blessings from Bhagawan.   This was followed by garlanding of the performers by three designated students, a tradition followed, before the trio went elucidating the glory of Ramayana.

What followed was the epic in a nut-shell, in typical Burrakatha style….an introduction on the episode, a thematic song covering the episode followed by lucid narration. Starting from the Lord’s birth the story evolves towards the various events narrated by Bhagawan Himself in Rama Katha Rasa Vahini. Rama’s implicit obedience towards His father’s words and will, His life in exile, winning Dharma by annihilating the demons and protecting the holy, devotion and dedication of Lakshmana, Hanuman, Sabari, Guha and Jatayu etc. The story ends with a greater message to mankind that when man becomes close to God, he does not require or desire anything materialistic. If he departs from Lord’s heart, he would be facing lots of obstacles, the apt example being that of Mother Sita’s agony, when she was deluded by Mareecha turned golden deer….and final narrative was that of the King’s return to Ayodhya as the mighty righteous ruler par excellence, as The Dharma Swaroopa.

Though an encore, beautiful story of The Lord in presence of The Lord is ever a revamping experience for the listeners, and diving deep into the ocean Ramayana is not alone a refurbishing experience, but is an experience of our own existence, as Ramayana was not a myth popularized for academic benefit but is the actual story of the Lord meant for every soul of the universe to imbibe and inculcate in his or her lives to become an ideal one.

An engrossing one hour, the hall was quite attentive, while Bhagawan was onstage, in rapt attention, witnessing His Own Story, now narrated by His Own Students. Ramayana depicts almost similar scenes wherein the Little Beautiful Children of Mother Sita, the illustrious twins of the Treta Age, Lava and Kusha went into the streets singing the story of the glory of Lord Rama, their beloved father…  The programme that lasted about an hour concluded with thunderous appreciative applause by one and all.