Nilayam was teeming with thousands of devotees from Kerala,
especially the Sai Youth numbering about 1300 young men and
women from different districts of Kerala. They got the coveted
opportunity to sit in the front rows of the Hall during the
Vishu celebrations, which was held for four days. A Youth
Conference on the theme “Able and Noble Instruments
of Bhagawan” was held in the 1st floor of North Indian
Canteen on 11th, 12th and 13th April 2005. Speakers from the
Institute and Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organisation addressed the
youth. Bhagawan graciously blessed the youth with two discourses,
one on the inaugural day of the Conference and the other on
the concluding day of the Conference. During these days, members
of the Sai Youth had the opportunity to share their experiences
with the audience in the Divine Presence. There were also
music concerts by eminent singers from Kerala. On 14th April
2005, which happened to be the New Year Day for Keralites
and Tamilians, singers from Kerala and the Sundaram Bhajan
group from Chennai, Tamil Nadu enthralled the audience with
their soul-stirring musical performances.
11th April 2005
This morning, Swami came out for Darshan
at 7.40 a.m. As Swami took a full round of the Hall in the
golf cart, He observed the youth sitting at a distance in
the Hall. Swami called the State President of Kerala, Sri
Mukundan and asked him seat the youth, (both in the gents’
side and ladies’ side) in the front rows of the Hall.
Swami was so keen to give the youth a vantage position that
He asked the students to move to one side.
By 7.50 a.m. Swami was sitting on the sofa
placed at the centre of the dais. After 5 minutes, the Veda
chanting stopped. Sri Mukundan went over to the microphone
and made a few introductory remarks. He declared the theme
of the Youth Conference as “Able and Noble Instruments
of Bhagawan”. Referring to the loving act of Bhagawan
in calling the youth to sit in the front, Sri Mukundan recalled
Swami saying, “Take one step towards Me and I shall
take a 100 towards you.” But this step should be in
the right direction, he added. He further said that as youth,
not only should we remember ‘ABC – Always Be Careful’
but should also keep in mind ‘DEFG – Don’t
Ever Forget God’. He recalled how once Swami while speaking
to some devotees asked them what gift He should give them.
Then Swami Himself said that there could be no greater gift
than His coming down here to be with us!!
At 8.05 a.m. Hon. Justice Radhakrishnan from
Kerala took over the microphone and spoke a few words. He
was followed by Sri Raghavendran in Malayalam. At 8.15 a.m.
Bhagawan blessed the youth by consenting to deliver His Divine
Message. (Full text of Divine Discourse is given elsewhere.)
Bhagawan concluded the Discourse at 8.50 a.m. Bhajans began
and Prasadam was distributed to all. At 9.15 a.m. Swami stood
up and went towards the interview room while Bhajans continued
with devotional fervour. At 9.40 a.m. Swami was offered Arati
and then He retired to His abode.
the afternoon, Bhagawan blessed everyone with His Divine Darshan
at 2.30 p.m. A group of ladies singers presented a bouquet
of songs at Swami’s Lotus Feet. This went on till 3.35
p.m. after which the gents from Kerala commenced Bhajans.
They sang devotional songs as well as Bhajans. At 4.10 p.m.
Swami stood up and walked into the interview room asking the
singers to continue their songs.
What followed was a most inspiring session.
In fact, this Vishu celebration and the Youth Camp was a unique
music treat for everyone. Every session, Swami would signal
to them to begin their performance, which would continue for
hours. They had a wide variety of songs to offer to Bhagawan,
namely, Thyagaraja Kritis, Light Devotional Songs, Bhajans
sung in Carnatic style, etc. Each song was vibrant with feelings
and enraptured the heart of one and all! The singers kept
up the tempo till 4.35 p.m. when Swami went into the Bhajan
Hall. There, He asked the students to start the Bhajans! At
5.00 p.m. Arati was offered to Bhagawan and then He proceeded
towards the Poornachandra Auditorium.
12th April 2005
This morning Swami came out for Darshan at
7.40 a.m. Four youth participants addressed the audience,
two each from the gents’ and ladies’ side. They
shared their ineffable joy to be part of this
unique Youth Camp. They were followed by an elderly Bal Vikas
Guru who delivered an insightful talk giving wonderful tips
to the Youth Camp participants. From 8.40 a.m. to 9.20 a.m.,
mellifluous Carnatic music recital filled the air with spiritual
In the afternoon, Bhagawan came out for
Darshan at 2.50 p.m. At 3.00 p.m., the Kerala Youth presented
a professionally choreographed drama – “Uthisthata
Jagratha” (Arise Awake). The play portrayed several
scenes from the life of Swami Vivekananda – depicted
as flashbacks in the course of a grandfather advising his
grandson who had come from USA to India – his homeland
for the first time. The play ended at 3.35 p.m. The participants
were blessed with photographs with Swami. Bhagawan was very
happy with their performance and spoke to each one of them.
very touching incident occurred at this point. A youth prayed
to Swami asking for something. He kept pointing at Swami’s
sofa. Swami asked him again what he wanted. He again pointed
at the sofa. Swami looked at Sri Mukundan and Sri Nitin. On
prodding him further, the youth hesitantly prayed to Swami
asking for His handkerchief which was kept on the sofa! Instantly,
with a loving smile, Bhagawan took the handkerchief and gave
it to him. As the youth were settling down in their places,
Bhagawan signalled for the Music programme to be started.
The programme which started at 3.40 p.m. went on till 5.25
p.m. In the course of the songs, Bhagawan called the lead
singer in front and materialised a gold chain and placed it
in his hands! The delighted singer went back and started singing
Bhajans in Carnatic style and Marathi Abhangs. Swami got up
at 5.00 p.m. and went inside the interview room, but asked
the singer to continue singing. At 5.25 p.m. Swami was offered
13th April 2005
Swami came out for Darshan at 7.25 a.m. Swami
took a full round of the Hall in the golf cart and then walked
towards the sofa. This morning too there were two gent speakers
and two lady speakers. As
the Gent speakers came forward to offer their rose to Swami,
Sri Mukundan signalled to them to wait until Swami sat down
on the sofa. Watching this, Swami immediately told Sri Mukundan
to allow them to come forward. Swami exclaimed in Tamil –
“Neengal Chuma Irango …” (you keep quiet).
They have come from far off places – why do you stop
The second speaker got a chain from Swami
and then Bhagawan called for the first speaker who was seated
on the dais, and created a ring for him. Their joy knew no
bounds. After the lady speakers, Swami delivered His Divine
Discourse. (Full text of Divine Discourse is already given.)
was 8.40 a.m. and Swami asked for the music programme to begin.
As the participants were getting ready, the main singers in
front looked for some water to wet their throats. Observing
this, before water could reach them from behind, Swami told
Sri Nitin to give them His glass of water. By then, a bottle
of water had arrived, but Swami offered His glass of water!
The singers would not miss this great opportunity
at any cost. One of them came forward with a tumbler and Sri
Nitin poured out the sacred water from the tumbler into their
tumbler! What a blessing! Each one took a sip of the Prasadam.
But that was not the end of it. There was some water left
in the tumbler. Bhagawan asked for it and He drank the remaining
water! That is the pure Love of the Lord!
The singers were again at their best. A
couple of devotional songs and Bhajans kept everyone spellbound.
At 9.25 a.m. Swami got up and went inside the interview room.
Bhajans continued as usual! At 9.50 a.m. Arati was offered
In the evening, Bhagawan’s golf cart
glided its way to the Kulwant Hall at 3.15 p.m. Swami asked
the cart to be turned towards the interview room. His Excellency
Sri Narayan Datt Tiwari – the Chief Minister of Uttaranchal
had come for Bhagawan’s Darshan. Swami spoke to him
for some time in the portico and then came out and sat down
on the sofa. It was 3.25 p.m. The Veda chanting stopped and
a new set of virtuoso singers from Kerala held the stage today
with their Carnatic classical music! Bhagawan sat there till
4.15 p.m. Sri N.D. Tiwari was seated behind on a chair along
with the Vice Chancellor. The singers rendered Bhajans, songs,
Tukaram Abhangs, a steady flow of sweet spontaneous music,
making everyone forget themselves. At 4.15 p.m. Swami went
in and blessed the Chief Minister with an interview. Even
after Swami went in, the music continued as per His command.
At 5.15 p.m. the Bhajan group from Kerala took over. By now
Swami had come out and was seated again. They sang for 5 minutes
and at 5.20 p.m. Arati was offered to Bhagavan. As Bhagawan’s
golf cart was moving towards Poornachandra, Nadaswaram and
Panchavadyam music alternately made their entry as it was
the eve of the Tamil New Year and Vishu.
14th April 2005
of all, we wish everyone a happy Vishu and Tamil New Year!
Nadaswaram and Panchavadyam music were reverberating in the
Hall, and at sharp 7.30 a.m. Bhagawan made His grand entry
in the Hall. The Mandir was decorated with banners of Swami’s
Colouful umbrellas stood erect along the
outer wall of the Darshan Hall, giving a typical Kerala ambience!
At 7.45 a.m. Swami was on the dais, blessing the Kerala and
the Tamil Nadu State Sai Samithi presidents. Then the Veda
chanting stopped. Singers from Kerala began their scintillating
music. After a while, the Sundaram Bhajan group took over
with their Bhajans. Swami was standing all the while giving
wonderful Darshan to all the devotees!
Bhajans went on till 8.15 a.m. Mr. G.K.
Raman from Chennai, was the first speaker. He prayed to Bhagawan
for a peaceful new year, and then specifically addressed the
Kerala Youth stressing on the importance of character. Practice
of Truth, Integrity and Honesty, he said was the only way
to become a good human being. Finally, he offered gratitude
to Bhagawan on behalf of all the people from Chennai for the
gift of life-saving water bestowed by Him on the city!
speaker recalled his unique privilege of being a student of
the first set of Bal Vikas students in Madras in 1969. He
also happened to belong to the first batch of Seva Dal and
the first batch of the Bal Vikas Gurus in Chennai. Swami had
performed his Upanayanam (sacred thread ceremony) when he
was just 10 years old. Bhagawan had then asked him the meaning
of Upanayanam. Swami said that Upa means ‘near’
and Nayanam means ‘eye’. Therefore Upanayanam
means one is taken near the eye of wisdom!
Bhagawan had cautioned him that even if he
was not be able to perform Sandhyavandanam everyday, he must
never give up chanting of the Gayatri. Gayatri Mantra can
be chanted at anytime, Swami had said. It can be chanted while
bathing – this would become an Abhisheka to the Goddess.
It can be chanted while eating too.
In 1985, Swami had given his family an interview
where Bhagawan asked him what job he was in. When he told
Swami that he was a lawyer, Bhagawan smilingly told him, “Be
a lawyer and not a liar”! He recalled some more teachings
of Swami that have helped him extensively in his life.
It was 8.30 a.m. and Sri Mukundan came forward
to address the audience. Sri Mukundan shared the
joyous feelings of the Kerala Youth with Bhagawan and said
that they had resolved to do Grama Seva in each and every
village of Kerala. He prayed to Bhagawan to give them the
strength to undertake this massive Labour of Love!
He recalled an instance where some devotees
travelling with Swami, looking at the evening sky exclaimed
– what a beautiful sky it is! To this Bhagawan told
them that they were so lost in the painting and they were
forgetting the Painter Himself! Never forget the Creator!
Creator is more important than Creation!
Once as Swami was approaching the students,
they immediately cleared the way for Swami. Looking at this,
Swami said, “What is the use of making this way. Make
a way in your heart for Me!” In yet another episode,
Swami was supervising the drama troupe just before their performance.
He asked all the students who was their director. All said
‘no’ and finally the teacher in charge said that
he was only the assistant director because Swami Himself was
the actual Director. To this, Bhagawan replied that the Avatar
needs no assistant directors. He needs only instruments!
to Swami to bless all the 1300 youth from Kerala to become
able and noble instruments in His Divine Mission, Mr. Mukundan
concluded his inspiring talk. It was 8.40 a.m. The Sundaram
Bhajan group started singing Bhajans. At 9.00 a.m. Bhagawan
received Arati and retired for the morning.
In the evening, Swami came out at 2.50 p.m.
He cut across the Hall and came onto the dais. He spoke to
Sri Ramani, the State President of Tamil Nadu, enquiring about
the evening programme. Three members from the Sundaram Group
forward with a card. They started their programme at 3.00
p.m. and it went on continuously till 4.45 p.m. In the course
of the programme, Swami called one of the singers and materialised
a ring for him. The programme for the latter half of evening
was a set of songs by ladies from a Chennai Samithi. Throughout,
Swami was very much involved and kept beat with His fingers.
At the end, the Sundaram Group members got the opportunity
of being photographed with Bhagawan. Swami also spoke to many
of them. Arati was performed to Bhagawan. As the golf cart
moved towards Poornachandra, once again Nadaswaram and Panchavadyam
music filled the Hall.
The past four days were truly filled with
great devotion and noble feelings. Time ticked away so fast
and Bhagawan gave Himself totally to saturate the devotees
and the Youth with His Love and Grace! Sri Rama Navami is
fast approaching. We will get back to you soon with Rama Navami
JAI SAI RAM