Published on Tuesday, Aug 31, 2010 at 1140 Hrs. IST
Following the international batches from the United States and the UK, over 1200 devotees from far-flung Canada came on a Prasanthi Pilgrimage staying for ten days, from 17th Aug to 26th August.
After the Onam festival on the 23rd, the next two days were marked for the Canadians to perform in the Divine presence.
In the evening on the 24th Aug, as Bhagawan moved past during His darshan rounds, His gaze was fixed upon the Canadian contingent that included senior citizens, youth and the SSE children. As He came onstage after His usual round of darshan, children belonging to the performing group moved unto Him seeking invocatory benedictions. As an announcement about the children programme was made, detailing the region-wise participation in the ‘collective story’ having six episodes, children came forth displaying Canadian map with centre-wise allocation of the programme.
With a collaborative and unified effort linking up many regions in the country, 235 SSE children from various centres across the vast Canadian land presented a unique programme entitled "A Life of Sai Ideals".
The programme was all about living a life with potential airing the message that “Impossible Is Nothing” asking man to seek the incessant spiritual reservoir that is innate in every being.
A young school boy by name Ravi gets excited watching the ‘school olympics’ developing a nascent desire to participate in the Paralympics of Winter Olympics. Being physically challenged, he raised his own doubts about accomplishing the same, Encouraging the boy to pursue his lofty ambitions, his parents narrate six true Canadian success stories instilling fresh hopes in their ward.
Living in harmony with nature is living with God. Beginning the presentation with a dance depicting the greater lessons that could be learnt from the animal kingdom that made up the totem pole - the tortoise, the wolf, the beaver, Bigfoot, the buffalo, the bear and the eagle, the narrative had songs in native tongue with ancient musical tones help illustrating how various components of nature help living a harmonious life. A couple of months ago, the SSE children from the US had an exclusive presentation on the theme in His Divine Presence.
Other stories included history of slaves during the 18th century, Young Andre’s spiritual healing miracles in the name of St. Joseph, the story of legendary Terry Fox, who in 1980, with one leg having been amputated embarked on a cross-Canada run to raise money and awareness for cancer research. While the famous “Walk For Values” campaign that has earned the status of a successful movement in the western world spreading the message importance of Human Values was the fifth story presented the final story was in the form of a French-Canadian Opera-Ballet to the theme, Life is Love, Enjoy it…a graceful melody expressing the all conquering love of the Avatar of The Age, Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, bringing to light the Truth that, essentially all are living embodiments of Love, possessing highest innate potential.
The forty minutes' presentation came to a close at 1900 hrs. with a group song. A pause ensued upon which Bhagawan moved down the dais to pose with the participating children who exhibited remarkable discipline. Upon returning onstage, all the 235 participating children were given away safari pieces and sarees, boys and girls respectively, as a Divine gift. Bhagawan asked the group to sing Bhajans that continued for fifteen minutes before Bhagawan called for Mangala Arathi. Upon accepting Arathi Bhagawan amused the children gesturing them to "go, eat and sleep"...and the children burst into laughter enjoying every bit of His Divine attention! As He was moving off the dais, He repeated the same yet again, and these lovely children went bursting yet again, making merry of His Divine gesture!
Earlier, while making His round of darshan, Bhagawan interacted with quite a few from the group and blessed the entire group with His Divine benedictory glance. A special mention has to be made about the participating children who arrayed in disciplined order posing for a snap with The Divine!
…And on the next evening, the Youth from Canada presented a music programme, entitled Canadian Youth Music Programme 2010. The thirty-five minute programme had six songs, each song comprising of many verses. Beginning with "Om Gam Ganapathaye..." in dedication to Lord Ganesha, they continued to sing with "Open the eyes of my heart", a prayer unto Him hailing Him to be The Light, expressing desire to Serve Him, The Lord, followed by "My Soul, My Sai", a song in praise of Bhagawan's all conquering love that is unfailing. The fourth piece was "We Believe", a proclamation of the descending awareness of "Unity" with established faith in Sai, that was followed by the penultimate piece, "Lord of Peace", a piece ascribing various names unto Him as He is many in One form, to conclude with the final piece in hindi, a Qawwali, reiterating our established bond with Sai. The "Choir" was conducted by Arun Yusuf.
Hearts cried out to high musical tones that lent the air on this beautiful evening as Youth from Canada sang through a session that lasted for more than half-an-hour, spelling out their Love For Sai. Bhajans by the Canadian troupe continued for the next half-an-hour until Bhagawan nodded for Mangala Arathi at 1935 hrs. In the meantime, sarees and safari pieces were distributed to the entire contingent. Upon accepting Arathi, Bhagawan moved off the dais at 1940 hrs. retiring for the day. Prasadam was distributed to the entire assemblage