A large number of devotees from the State of Gujarat had come to celebrate the Gujarati New Year in the Divine Presence. This day, 20th October 2009 being their New Year, there was expectancy in the air that a grand celebration was in store. Two interesting programmes were staged this evening by the devotees from Gujarat – Santoor and Jaltarang recitals by famous artistes and a dance drama “Sai Bhaja Govindam.” Bhagawan came to Sai Kulwant Hall at 5.25 p.m. After His usual round of Darshan, Bhagawan came to the dais when evening Bhajans were in progress. After a few Bhajans, Bhagawan permitted the State President of Gujarat to showcase their programmes.
The first programme was an enthralling recital on Santoor, a stringed instrument by Sri Shyamkumar Bhonsle. This was followed by Jaltarang recital by Hemant Bhosle. Jaltarang means “waves in water” but indicates motion of sound created or modified with the aid of water. It is played by the artiste on cups filled with water. The tinkle sound so created gives a pleasing effect to the ear.
The next programme was a dance drama entitled “Sai Bhaja Govindam” by the Bal Vikas children of Gujarat. Adi Sankara is known for his teaching of Vedanta. However, Bhaja Govindam is his most important treatise. The Bal Vikas children through their performance showed how Bhaja Govindam could find solutions to many problems of the world. Bhagawan during the course of His Discourses narrates short anecdotes which He calls Chinna Katha. They were enacted with dialogues by the Bal Vikas children.
The scene opens with the chanting of Vishnu Sahasranama in the background. A grandson asks his grandfather as to why he is reading so many books. The grandfather says that the previous day he met his old friend who told him that he had wasted all his life in transitory pleasures and desires instead of attempting to attain bliss. So, he took recourse to reading of ancient scriptures. The grandson tells his grandfather that Bhaja Govindam, written 2,500 years back will help him to turn spiritually inward. The grandson says that the Bal Vikas children are going to stage a dance drama in Prasanthi Nilayam in Bhagawan’s presence entitled “Sai Bhaja Govindam”. There is going to be a dress rehearsal. He could witness the rehearsal.
Now the song Bhaja Govindam is played in the background. Bhaja Govindam, Bhaja Govindam, Govindam Bhaja Moodha Mathe, Samprapthe Sannihithe Kale, Nahi Nahi Rakshati Dukrun Karane.
(Oh foolish man, chant the name of Govinda; the rules of grammar will not come to your rescue when the end approaches.) Then the incident of Tatya asking Shirdi Sai Baba to revive his mother is well depicted. Shirdi Baba advises Tatya that the appointed time had come for his mother to leave her mortal coil. On repeated pleas of Tatya to revive his mother, Shirdi Baba asks Tatya to bring a spoonful of mustard from a house in the village who had no death in the family. Tatya goes from house to house, but could not find a single house who had no death in their family. Tatya comes back dejected to Shirdi Baba.
Then another Sloka from Bhaja Govindam is played in the background: Punarapi Jananam Punarapi Maranam, Punarapi Janani Jathare Sayanam, Iha Samsare Bahu Dustare, Kripayapare Pahi Murare.
(Oh Lord! I am caught up in this cycle of birth and death; time and again, I am experiencing the agony of staying in the mother’s womb. It is very difficult to cross this ocean of worldly life. Please take me across this ocean and grant me liberation.) Tatya realises his ignorance and accepts Baba’s Will as final.
Oh foolish man! Give up your thoughts to amass wealth. Be contented with what you have. The ensuing skit was on the subject of contentment and detachment. A businessman asks a fisherman as to why he has stopped fishing after catching only a few fish in his net. The fisherman replies that he is satisfied with what he has. The businessman tries to tempt the fisherman by saying that if he catches more fish, he could buy a better fishing net, a big trawler with which he could go to deep sea to make a big catch. Then he could become a big business magnet like him and live in comfort. The message: “If you are contented that is enough. That is true happiness,” was well conveyed. Man is governed by vices like greed, pride, envy, dishonesty. Adi Sankara’s Bhaja Govindam has solutions to modern day problems. It will help one to cross the ocean of life fraught with dangers and difficulties. Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba has said: Satsangatwe Nissangatwam, Nissangatwe Nirmohatwam, Nirmohatwe Nischalatattwam, Nischalatattwe Jivanmukti.
(Good company leads to detachment; detachment makes one free from delusion; freedom from delusion leads to steadiness of mind; steadiness of mind confers liberation.) Reading of Bhagavadgita leads one from ignorance to bliss. It helps him to weed out the innate bad qualities. The first lesson that Bhagawan gave in Uravakonda on 20th October 1940 was Manasa Bhajare Guru Charanam Dustara Bhava Sagara Tharanam (Oh mind! Contemplate on the feet of the Guru. It will help you to cross the ocean of Samsara (worldliness).
The grandfather congratulates his grandson because he and his friends have made him realise that even he at this advanced age could realise the Lord. The song Manasa Bhajare Guru Charanam Dustara Bhava Sagara Tharanam is played in Bhagawan’s voice.
All the cast of the drama converge in the central performing area and request Bhagawan to come down amidst them. Bhagawan accepted their request and went amidst them to be photographed. All the participants were distributed clothes. Prasadam was distributed to all the devotees and students. Arati was offered to Bhagawan at 7.05 p.m. after which He retired for the day.