Over 1500 devotees including Bal Vikas children from the northern states of Bihar and Jharkhand had assembled in Prasanthi Nilayam for the last two days to celebrate in the Divine presence the festival of Holi (festival of colours). After missing out the first day’s scheduled programme, that was cancelled, the children from the state were eager to have their final presentation on the “final” evening, 2nd March 2010.
Bhagawan ushered into the Sai Kulwant Hall at 6.30 p.m. to the chant of Vedas, taking a detour, directly ascending the dais. Proceedings began as the organizers and Bal Vikas children made a beeline seeking blessings from Bhagawan.
The first programme for the evening was a garland of songs that was originally scheduled for the previous evening. Reflecting the cultural traditions of the North during the auspicious Holi festivity the Bal Vikas children from these states danced vibrantly to the delight of one and all. To mention the theme of a few of the dances: “No action fructifies without divine love”, a dance on the concept of Sufi mystics – “I have no separate identity”. A dance done sprightly: “Let Your infinite love awaken our hearts”. This was followed the Holi song “Rang Ley…” to finally end with “Ras Bhari Holi dance”, which was a depiction of how Mother Yashoda is lost in child Krishna’s divine pranks.
SITA KALYANAM – A PLAY BY BAL VIKAS CHILDREN OF MITHILA
The next programme was a drama, “Sita Kalyanam” by the Bal Vikas children from Mithila.
The scene begins when Sage Viswamitra expressing happiness over the successful conduct of Yajna. He lauds Rama and Lakshmana profusely for warding off the demons from the Yajnashala (site where the Vedic sacrifice is conducted). When Rama and Lakshmana express their desire to go back to Ayodhya, Viswamitra says that they have to go to the court of King Janaka in Mithila. Rama reverentially says to the sage that they had been commanded by their father only to protect his Yajna. At this point of time, Viswamitra reminds them that it was also the command of their father to obey his command. Rama humbly submits to the Sage and agrees to accompany him to Mithila. During their journey, Sage Viswamitra tells Rama about the Siva Dhanush (Siva’s bow) and its efficacy. Rama becomes curious of the bow.
Upon reaching Mithila, King Janaka gets enraptured and spellbound at the brilliance of Rama and Lakshmana and makes fervent enquiries about them to the Sage. It is then that King Janaka tells about the Dhanur Yajna and his desire to give Sita in marriage to the prince who lifts and strings the bow. On King Janaka’s orders the Siva Dhanush in brought to the Yajna hall. The king says how Sita as a child moved the Dhanush with her tender fingers while playing a game of ball with her playmates. Thus, his desire to give Sita in marriage to the one who lifts and strings the bow. Rama nonchalantly opens the box and lifts the bow with His left hand and while he is about to string the bow, it breaks with a thud sound. King Janaka now rises in prostration to fulfil his declaration. Viswamitra observes that the dutiful son Rama is, the king shall communicate the news to emperor Dasaratha first. The emperor consults his preceptors who bless him. There are joyous acclamations and the entire party from Ayodhya proceeds to Mithila. The happy marriage of the divine couple takes place to the joy of the entire gathering. At this happy note, the drama concluded.
During the last scene of the marriage of Sita and Rama, Bhagawan had gone to the interview room. When He returned to the dais, to the surprise of everyone, Bhagawan asked the organisers for a re-enactment of the scene of divine communion of Sita and Rama. The scene was enacted to the chant of Vedas. Yes, it was a scene for everyone to cherish. It had all the grandeur of the divine marriage. Regal thrones were placed for the divine couple. Bhagawan even asked the State President of Bihar and Jharkhand to shower Akshatas (sanctified rice) on the cast who played the roles of Sita and Rama. Bhajans on Lord Rama were sung by the students. Bhagawan went amidst the participants for an extended photograph session. He even blessed the support staff with a photograph session. Clothes were distributed to all the participants. Prasadam was distributed to everyone present in the hall. Arati was offered to Bhagawan at 8.30 p.m.
It may be reminded to the readers that in the previous year the contingent from Bihar had the “test and taste” of Divinity when the troupe had to retreat after going blank without getting Divine nod of approval, during their scheduled stay in Prasanthi. All merciful Lord whose penchant for “testing” is well known, called them back, who were onboard and had already crossed Dharmavaram moving towards Anantapur. Rest was history as the children were blessed to have a wonderful programme in the Divine Presence.