Christmas Celebrations & Chiranjeevi Bhava, Gift of Life Ceremony - Sathya Sai Grama, Muddenahalli - 25 December 2021

Christmas denotes not just the birth of Christ, but the birth of an ideology, of an all-encompassing love that translates into serving the needy. This glorious ideology was celebrated at The Gift of Life Ceremony that was held at Sathya Sai Grama, Muddenahalli, Karnataka, on December 25 this year.

Close to three lakh children are born with congenital heart disease each year.  Almost 25 per cent of them die before they can celebrate their first birthday. With the cost of surgery ranging anywhere between two and seven lakh, most parents feel hopeless and helpless when it comes to providing their child with the required medical help.

It is against this backdrop that Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai's healthcare mission aims to contribute to the national childcare goals by providing paediatric cardiac surgeries completely free of cost.

Over 18,000 children have been successfully operated upon at the three Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani Child Heart Care Centres since 2012. Top class medical services are now being offered at recently inaugurated Sri Sathya Sai Sarla Memorial Hospital, Muddenahalli, as well.  Over the nine days, preceding Christmas this year, 32 such surgeries have been performed at this hospital.

Dr Ragini Pandey, Senior Paediatric Surgeon at the Sarla Memorial Hospital, gave a presentation on the hospital and the surgeries that were performed there.  Following the presentation, twenty-five children who have fully recovered after their surgeries were brought on stage as part of the Gift of Life Ceremony. Among the children was a nine-month-old baby who was operated upon as recently as December 17 this year.

The special guest on the occasion Shri Prahlad DN, non-executive chairman, Surya Software Systems, spoke of how much one single person can do as he quoted the example of the Serbian American engineer and physicist Nicolai Tesla. He exhorted the children to take inspiration and charge ahead to serve and better the lives of the poor as India has the largest population of poor people in the world.

The Guest of Honour, Dr Padma S Veerapaneni, Director, KIMS Hyderabad and Chairman, RiSE Foundation, was all praise for the Sri Sathya Sai Sarla Memorial Hospital, for its state-of-the-art facilities and experienced, dedicated professionals with a heart for selfless service. She was overwhelmed by the breadth of services that were being offered here under the leadership of Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai who, she said, is “A rare combination of divinity and humanity. “

Sri C Srinivas, Chairman of the Sri Sathya Sai Health and Education Trust, said, “The human heart carries out a huge and critical task in silence. And to give it back full of health to a child is the most gratifying service one can do. This is more so because every beating heart is the seat of God Himself.”

Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai began His Divine message by saying, “Christmas could not have been happier, merrier or holier than it is today. Not just because Jesus was born on this day 2000 years ago, but because so many children are reborn today.  We have put into practice Christ’s message of love and service to little children and their families.”

Sadguru thanked Dr Ragini and her team for their selfless and untiring service. He also thanked everyone who toiled tirelessly so that the hospital could be constructed and begin operations during covid times. “The hospital was made ready and running in barely six-seven months’ time.  There was only barren land in March 2021 where today a world-class facility stands that give service free of all costs,” Sadguru said.

Sadguru reminded everyone that the right to education, right to nutrition and right to good health are the fundamental rights of every child. And that it is the responsibility of society to ensure that every child is able to exercise these rights.  The onus rests not only on parents but on society as a whole to ensure that no child anywhere is denied these fundamental rights.

The evening came to a close with a breathtaking performance by the Sai Symphony Orchestra. A beautiful bouquet of Christmas carols and songs were presented at Sadguru’s feet even as the audience was left spellbound.

Navaratri Celebrations – Sathya Sai Grama, Muddenahalli – October 07 to 15, 2021

Sathya Sai Grama at Muddenahalli wore a festive look during the Navaratri festival, celebrated in grandeur and splendour from October 07 to October 15, 2021, in the presence of Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai. These nine days were spent in rituals, chantings, homas, pujas, etc., which filled the space and surroundings with positive vibrations and spiritual energies.

The holy offerings of the various homas and Durga puja each day and the Rudra Yajna on the last four days were combined with talks and discourses by diverse eminent seekers who explained the spiritual significance of these practices.

On October 07, Maa Durga was worshipped as Maa Shailaputri, and the Sahasra Modaka Ganapathi HomaNavagraha Homa and the Shani Shanthi Homa were performed for the welfare of all. Then Durga Arati was offered to the beautiful idols of Mother Durga, made of river clay from Kumortuli, West Bengal. Dr Ramachandra G Bhat, Founder of Veda Vijnana Gurukulam, Karnataka and Sri Raghuvarendra Theertha Swamiji, Head of Bheemanakatte Mutt - Karnataka, were the esteemed guests that day. The Divine discourse by Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai encapsulated that along with the grace of human birth and an intense desire for attaining God (Liberation), the third blessing bestowed on us is the company and satsang with persons of wisdom and knowledge, like the mahapurushas (great men) who were our guests that evening. He further explained some of the main points, like the importance of chanting prayers and shlokas with devotion. One should pray to Devi to invoke the Divine Mother within. With this sense of motherliness, one can develop feelings of compassion towards other beings. This was followed by a mellifluous musical concert by Sri Nirbhay Saxena, a Hindustani classical vocalist.

On October 08, Devi was worshipped as Goddess Brahmacharini, and Pavamana Homa and Ashlesha Bali Homa were performed to cleanse, purify and remove obstacles in the path of spirituality. The evening was graced by Sri Swamy Chidananda Puri - Advaithashramam, Kerala, Sri Nirmal Kumar - Hon. Secretary, Janaseva Vidya Kendra Boys Residential School at Bangalore, Sri Ramachandra Rao - Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) of Bengaluru Metropolitan Task Force and Sri K H Muniyappa - Former Minister of State and Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha. Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai reminded the students that they were indeed fortunate to listen to words of wisdom from these dignitaries who were leaders in various fields, including politics, public service, social service, and spiritual service. Sadguru said that rather than listen to these talks, everyone must contemplate what has been said and later put these into practice. The students of the present generation had a great responsibility to maintain Indian culture and work as partners for the welfare and progress of the world. The day ended with a splendid Hindustani Vocal Concert by Dr Prabhakar and Dr Diwakar Kashyap.

On October 09, Devi Chandraghanta was adored, and the day began with Dhanvantari Homa and Vishnu Sahasranama Homa for the good health and wellbeing of all. The guests for the evening were Sri Bandhu Gourab Brahmachari, Mahanam Mutt - West Bengal and Sri H K Jagadeesh, Special Secretary - Department of Law, Govt. of Karnataka. In His divine discourse, Sadguru spoke about the Mother, the personification of all languages, who resides in and communicates through us in various languages. Speaking of Lord Rama, Sadguru said, "Even though they conquered Lanka, a beautiful and prosperous land, Lord Rama assured Lakshmana that they would return to Ayodhya because mother and motherland are greater than heaven itself.” The programme concluded with a musical recital by students from the Music Department of the Sri Satya Sai University of Human Excellence.

Goddess Kushmanda and Goddess Skandamata were worshipped on October 10, the fourth day as joyous forms of Devis, along with Lalitha Homa, chanting of Lalitha Sahasranama, Durga Homa and Saraswathi Homa. After this, Kanika puja and Suhasini puja were dedicated to little girls and ladies, respectively. This day also marked the commencement of Sri Satya Sai Veda Gurukulam. Sadguru stated that the Veda Gurukulam is the crown jewel of the education mission and that it would lead every student because Veda is the Mother of all shastras. The evening's guest was Sri Malladi Surya Kiran Sarma, Telangana – Deputy General Manager, IDBI Bank and proficient in Literature, JyotishaPravachana etc. Sadguru then gave His Divine discourse about the Mother, who is the guru who redeems us from our ignorance, fear and can nurture, guide, protect, and care for us by simply looking us in the eyes. The heavenly Mother also helps us get across the ocean of samsara. A phenomenal dance recital followed this by Smt Tanushree Shankar and her troupe.

On October 11, Maa Katyayani was venerated, and Shiva Panchakshari Homa and Sapta Dravya Maha Mrityunjaya Homa were performed for detachment and strength to pursue awareness. At the Veda Gurukulam, Sadguru spoke of what the purpose of one’s life must be. “This long life must not be wasted away in animalistic tendencies but should be lived by adhering to dharmic principles with the only goal of attaining the ultimate Truth. This principle is lived through Jnana Kanda, Karma Kanda and Upasana Kanda. These three must then culminate in Vedanta. Teaching these core principles of Indian culture is the sole purpose of the Veda Gurukulam”. Sadguru then spoke of plans for expanding the Gurukulam in the coming days and also about starting a Veda Gurukulam for girl students so that the message of Vedanta can be carried forward to future generations. The evening programme was graced by Dr Sudha Tinaikar who taught the Srimad Bhagavad Gita to the Para Vidya Acharyas and the students from Grade 6 to 10 of the Sri Sathya Sai Loka Seva Gurukulam; Sri Govind Karjol, Hon. Minister of Major - Medium Irrigation and Water Resources, Govt. of Karnataka. The Divine discourse by Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai was a treat to all ears as He highlighted the importance of the Bhagavad Gita, a treatise on atma dharma, which dispels fears from the hearts of those who walk the path of the Gita. “A guru can only show the path, but it is up to the disciple to walk it. Therefore, one must study, listen, meditate upon, and practice the Gita to live by one's dharma truly. This alone can remove the problem of delusion and attachment, leaving the disciple in a state of surrender, saying, Karishye Vachanam Tava (Oh revered guru, your word is my command),” explained Sadguru. This was followed by a soul-stirring musical performance by Sri Dr B Vijayagopal, a renowned flautist, to conclude the evening programme.

The morning rituals on October 12 began with the Medha Dakshinamuthy Homa and the Gayathri Japa Purasara Homa worshipping Mother as Goddess Kalaratri. The Maha Rudra Yajna began from this day followed by Aruna Parayanam, Mahanyasa Parayanam and Gow Puja. The Mrithunjaya, Navagraha and Sai Gayatri Homas were also performed. The guests for the evening were Sri Swami Dibyanand Swamiji, Bharat Seva Ashram Sangh – West Bengal and Sri Abhinava Shivalinga Rudramuni Shivacharya Swamiji, Hampasagara. In His divine discourse, Sadguru highlighted the need for people of wisdom and said our greatest service would be to become Divine. "To attain this realisation, we have to grow spiritually every day. How quickly we recover our equanimity is our test of spirituality. Peace, calm, happiness and equanimity are our true nature. We must persevere to stay as close to this true nature as possible. Any deviation is a move away from our spirituality,” concluded Sadguru. This was followed by a Hindustani musical by Padmasree Pandit Sri Venkatesh Kumarji, leaving the audience spellbound and joyous. 

Devi Mahagauri was worshipped on October 13, Ashtami day, along with Lakshmi Narayana Hrudaya Homa and the Kubera Lakshmi Homa for prosperity and wealth. At the Veda Gurukulam, Sadguru spoke of the reason for establishing these institutions for empowering the generations to come with the spiritual awareness such that all girls behave like Devis and all boys behave like Devatas that they truly are. The guests for the evening included Sri Vidyesha Theertha Swamiji, Bhandarukeri Sri Matha Achutaprajna, Maha Sansthanam – Karnataka and Justice Sri L Narayana Swamy who served as Chief Justice of Himachal Pradesh High Court. Sadguru gave a discourse that the only solution to all the suffering was only self-realisation and blessed that this Navaratri may teach each one of us our realities as Vedanta Kesaris – the lions of the Atmic Principle. The programme concluded with a captivating musical performance by Dr Mysore Manjunath and his son Chi. Sumanth Manjunath, renowned violinists and ardent devotees of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.

On Mahanavami day celebrated on October 14, Devi Siddhidhatri was revered and Rama Tharaka Homa, Anjaneya Homa and the Sai Gayathri Japa Purasara Homa were performed.  Rudra Havanam, Navagraha, Chandi and Pancha Sukta Havanam were performed at Veda Gurukulam, where Sadguru addressed the students mentioning that the Veda Gurukulam will have a very important role to play in the coming years and that students will be sent all over the world to spread the wisdom of Sanatana Dharma. The evening programme included a rendering of the Rama Katha by students. Sri Sri Dr Siddheshwara Ananda Giri Maharaj, successor to the Sri Dattagiri Maharaj Ashram was the honourable guest of the evening. Sadguru’s discourse urged all to feed, clothe, care for, educate and love our fellow men without discrimination, as these basic principles are what would carry forward Sanatana Dharma. The evening concluded with a scintillating Mandolin performance by Maestro Sri U Rajesh. 

The final day of Dussehra Celebrations on Vijayadashami included the Chandika Homa followed by Bhoomi Puja of the SaiSure Manufacturing Facility by Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai in the presence of Dr Sudhakar K, Hon’ble Minister of Medical Education and Health, Govt. of Karnataka. After offering Maha Poornahuti for the Athi Rudra Yajna, Sadguru gloriously declared that on that day, Sathya Sai Grama had seen the arrival of Devi and thereby would be a very holy Sri Kshetram in the coming days, where people from all over the world would come to seek blessings. It will be known by the name 'Vidyanagari' where all will come to learn Atma Vidya. Sadguru then proceeded to the Veda Gurukulam and concluded the pujas and homas there, followed by felicitation of all the architects, engineers, contractors and labourers who played a vital role in the completion of the Veda Gurukulam. Sadguru’s discourse in the Gurukulam was most endearing, as He lovingly shared that this Gurukulam was the closest project to His heart. He declared that it would grow manifold and continue for several hundred years into the future. The evening programme was graced by Sri Bachampalli Santhosh Kumar Sastry, Telangana who is a renowned Hindu priest, writer and regular speaker on various Telugu channels. This was followed by Sadguru’s discourse which began with gratitude for the volunteers and proclaimed that no efforts on the spiritual are ever wasted as God keeps no dues. He concluded by speaking of the glory of Sanatana Dharma and that it is each one of our responsibility first to understand and experience and later promote and propagate these great truths. He reminded all to be grateful for the blessings and mindful of the responsibility bestowed upon us. The cultural program for the evening was rendered by a captivating performance by Veena virtuoso Dr Jayanthi Kumaresh and Violin maestro Sri Kumaresh. After the performance, Sadguru expressed great joy for a befitting end to the grand festivities through the most soulful musical Poornahuti offered by the artists.

Sri Sathya Sai Loka Seva Veda Gurukulam - Sathya Sai Grama, Muddenahalli

Veda is the mother of all shastras, said Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. It came from God Himself. With a vision to contribute to the revival and worldwide propagation of Sanatana Dharma, that is enshrined in the Vedas, Sri Sathya Sai Loka Seva Veda Gurukulam has been established at Sathya Sai Grama by Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai.

October 10 2021, the fourth day of Navaratri marked the commencement of Sri Satya Sai Veda Gurukulam. The esteemed guests for the ceremonies were Sri T B Jayachandra and Sri Malladi Surya Kiran Sharmaji. Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai said that this Gurukulam is the crest jewel of the mission. That it will lead every student from Vedavida to Brahmavida.

The guiding purpose of the Gurukulam is to promote the practice and research of Vedic studies. After imbibing this knowledge, students will be encouraged to travel the world to spread the Vedantic teachings. The Gurukulam will focus on the Rig Veda and the Yajur Veda. Acharyas who are adept in these two Vedas, after having acquired their vidya at the Sri Venkateswara Veda Vigyana Peetam at Tirumala, have been chosen to teach at the Gurukulam.

Shishyas will be offered board and lodging, for the entire tenure of their stay, completely free. Both Para Vidya (spiritual knowledge) and Apara Vidya (secular knowledge) will be imparted. Students will be trained for 15 years, which is the primary school to university. Academic subjects with emphasis on English speaking for effective communication, along with computer education will also be taught. Secular education through the NIOS (National Institute of Open Schooling) board will also be imparted.

Spread over 2.5 acres at Sathya Sai Grama, the Veda Gurukulam will be inaugurated in phases. Disseminating this priceless wisdom enshrined in the Vedas to the world and relating it to the contemporary context will be the core task of the Sri Sathya Sai Loka Seva Veda Gurukulam.

Sarvam Kalvidam Brahma - everything is divine, said Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai. That is the beauty of our Vedic knowledge. And this incomparable knowledge should reach every nook and corner of the world. This is the only knowledge, the only idea that will redeem humanity - the idea that everything is divine. And to continue the tradition of the Vedas is why the Gurukulam has been started, concluded Sadguru.

The official inauguration of the first phase of Sri Sathya Sai Veda Gurukulam took place on October 15, 2021 in the presence of Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai. This auspicious day was graced by Sri Bachampalli Santosh Kumar Shastry, hailing from Dharmapuri, Telangana. He is a renowned Hindu priest, speaker, and writer, known for his pravachana (talks), literature on jyotiṣha (astrology) and Hindu dharma.

Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai in His Divine discourse said, “Of all the projects such as the hospitals, schools, university, nutrition programmes, and various other rural development programmes, Veda pathshala is closest to my heart and in times to come, I want to see it grow into a Vedic university, that will offer various aspects of learning and teaching to the students. This is just the beginning and should continue for hundreds of years from now. The initial batch of students are very fortunate to be the first ones to study here. It is Sri Adi Shankaracharya, who spread the idea of Vedas and Vedanta in this country. But for him, we would not be what we are today as a country.

India is one country where Vedic education is being followed for thousands of years. That continuity is what is Sanatana (for all times). This alone is permanent; all other things will change. In this temporary world, Vedic education alone is permanent. What is most important to Me is you realising your true divinity within. Your education ends when you realise that you are Divine. According to Me, that is graduation, till then I would consider you only as uneducated.

Therefore, all the students studying in the Veda pathshala have a great responsibility on their shoulders. Learn everything with utmost shraddha (dedication), bhakti (devotion) and with the feeling of atma samarpaṇa (self-dedication). In the coming future, this Gurukulam will grow into many more such Gurukulams, and it will be the responsibility of the students passing out from the portals of this Veda Gurukalam to look after them.” Thus ended another beautiful talk by Sadguru on this very holy day of Dussehra.

Collaboration Between Karnataka State Dr Gangubai Hangal Music and Performing Arts University and Sri Sathya Sai University for Human Excellence - 18 March 2021

On the auspicious Saraswati Puja Day, 25 October 2020, Sri Sathya Sai University for Human Excellence launched the ‘Bachelor of Arts in Music & Dance’. Highlighting the importance of fine arts, Sadguru Sri Madhusudhan Sai mentioned, “The theory of rasa (essential flavor of vocal music, instrumental music, and dramatic art) has been gifted to the world by our (Indian) scriptures and our (Indian) culture. But rasa is not just entertainment, our (Indian) music is about enlightenment, it’s not just entertainment, it is said in our Upanishads, raso vai saha, the divine is the rasa. The essence, the ultimate feeling of oneness, that rasa is divinity and that is possible through our (Indian) music, is what our ancients (Indian musicians) have proven to us. With the passage of time, it has deteriorated to an unrecognisable version of what it was originally. Now it is our time to work hard to renovate it, to bring it back to its original pristine glory and that responsibility is what has come upon our shoulders and I am sure that our children, staff, teachers, everybody will rise to the occasion and do their best in order to bring back that glory to Indian music, dance and fine arts in times to come.”

In continued pursuit of this ideal, another significant step was taken on 18 March 2021 by the Sri Sathya Sai University for Human Excellence, along with the Dr Gangubai Hangal Music and Performing Arts University.

The momentous evening at Premamrutham unfolded with Veda and bhajans. Whilst the bhajans were in full swing, Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai arrived along with the distinguished guest, Dr Nagesh V Bettakote, Vice-Chancellor, Karnataka State Dr. Gangubai Hangal Music and Performing Arts University, Mysore followed by Sri B N Narasimha Murthy, Chancellor, Sri Sathya Sai University for Human Excellence, Dr. T Venugopal, Director of Postgraduate Studies and Dr. Hanumanth Rao Naidu, Registrar of the Sri Sathya Sai University for Human Excellence and they occupied their seats on the dais.

Dr Sai Lakshmi introduced the distinguished members who had gathered for the Exchange of MoU for the promotion of Indian music and performing arts between Karnataka State Dr Gangubai Hangal Music and Performing Arts University and Sri Sathya Sai University for Human Excellence. A warm welcome was extended to Sadguru and the esteemed dignitaries. The staff and students of the Music and Performing Arts University were also welcomed.

The evening programme commenced with Vedic invocation by first year girl students of the university. They chanted the Nasadeeya Suktam with utmost devotion.

Dr Sai Lakshmi further mentioned that Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, while extolling the greatness of Bharat in His Telegu poem, had said, “Sangeethas sahitya vidyalannu dhee shakti choopina divya bhoomi.”

This translates to mean that music, poetry and all other art forms were a gift to the world from the sacred and divine land of India.  Music was known to be the first language of Bharat and Bharathiyas. Hence, music has been a medium to instruct, remind and reiterate divinity. Music is a facet of our rich culture which has to be preserved and passed on to future generations.

Sri Sathya Sai University for Human Excellence had, during the Navaratri festival of 2020, collaborated with Dr Gangubai Hangal University to launch the bachelor’s and diploma programmes in the performing arts.

The Karnataka State Dr. Gangubai Hangal Music and Performing Arts University was established by the Karnataka State Government in 2008 to promote classical music and performing arts like dance, theatre, folklore, and other related areas.

The collaboration between the two universities is expected to enable knowledge sharing through training and exchange programs, joint performances, celebration of music festivals and much more.

In his talk, Sri B N Narasimha Murthy elaborated on the importance of music in Indian culture. “Music is said to form a bridge between spiritual and worldly knowledge,” he said, quoting Aldous Huxley, Beethoven, Kuvempu and the Upanishads. He believed that worldly knowledge would give one a way of life whereas spiritual knowledge would give one a reason to lead a meaningful life. “Spiritual knowledge helps one realise that the sole purpose of life is to realise God,” said Sri Narasimha Murthy. Saint Tyagaraja had said that one need not sacrifice home and family for salvation. Amalgamation of bhakti with naada is all that is necessary to experience brahmananda. He also explained that in India, music was perceived as a synonym to bhakti. “It is as a mark to the importance of music that the Karnataka State Government established a university in the name of Dr. Gangubai Hangal, a renowned Hindustani musician,” explained Sri Narasimha Murthy. Expressing gratitude on behalf of Sri Sathya Sai University for Human Excellence for the opportunity to join hands with Karnataka State Dr. Gangubai Hangal Music and Performing Arts University, he concluded his introductory remarks.

Following this, Sri B N Narasimha Murthy and Dr Nagesh V Bettakote exchanged the Memorandum of Understanding between the two universities. The document was briefly explained to the audience as well.

Dr Nagesh V Bettakote then addressed the gathering. He began by expressing his gratitude to be a part of the celebrations that evening. He explained the genesis of the classical dance form of Bharatanatyam, classical music and theatre which could be credited to Bharatmuni. “Music is often referred to as the fifth veda,” he said. He shared his first impressions of Sadguru who he initially thought to be a social and educational leader, but later understood him to be a cultural and spiritual leader as well. He concluded by expressing his desire to showcase our culture and heritage on international platforms.

Thereafter, Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai delivered the divine discourse.

While emphasising that veda and naada were the lifelines of Indian culture, Sadguru said, “Veda was not taught to everyone and hence naada came to the rescue of those who couldn't learn veda. Bharatmuni had said in his natyashastra that wherever there was gita and vadya, negativity would be obliterated from such a place and it would become auspicious. It is said that music is the shortest route to divinity. The Fine Arts are required for spiritual development of a person.”

Sadguru went on to express His heartfelt joy and gratitude towards Dr Nagesh who had put immense efforts in making this collaboration possible. “Indians connect with each other through music. It has helped people spread messages and unite during crises like colonialism.” Sadguru also mentioned the importance of bhava, especially bhakti bhava in music. He compared it to sugar in a pudding without which a pudding cannot be called one.  He concluded the discourse with a story of Tansen, one of the nine gems in the Moghul Emperor Akbar’s court.

“One day, Emperor Akbar and Tansen were walking through a forest and happened to hear someone singing. Impressed with the mellifluous voice, Emperor Akbar and Tansen followed the sound in search of the source. They were pleased to see a man singing the glory of the Lord with utmost devotion. Emperor Akbar, being respectful, waited near the door until the man was done with his song. Upon enquiry, Tansen revealed that the man was none other than his guru, Haridas. When Akbar further questioned Tansen how his guru’s music was much better than his own even though he was taught by this great one. Tansen replied that while he performed for the King, his guru sang for the Lord alone.”

In conclusion, Sadguru said, “Music should not only be for entertainment, it should lead to enlightenment.” He then requested the students to make good use of the opportunity provided to them. Blessing everyone profusely, Sadguru ended His divine discourse.

The staff and students of both universities then presented an impressive cultural ensemble that left the audience spellbound. The group presented renditions in both Hindustani and Carnatic ragas with a percussion piece and devotional songs. The staff and students of Dr. Gangubai Hangal University presented Hindustani renditions while the staff and students of Sathya Sai University presented Carnatic renditions. The programme concluded with everyone’s favourite, the Apasthamba Sutram.

The evening came to a close with Mangala Arati being offered to beloved Sadguru.


Divine Visit to Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani Hospitals, Atal Nagar, Chhattisgarh and Palwal, Haryana - March 13 to 18, 2021

13th March

On Saturday 13th March, Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai departed Muddenahalli at around 3 p.m. for the airport. Accompanied by guests, staff, and students, He reached the Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani Hospital at Raipur in the early evening.

After a short rest, Sadguru proceeded to the magnificent Sowbhagyam building adjacent to the hospital. Sri Sathya Sai Sowbhagyam is a towering edifice standing majestically as a Centre for Human Development which serves all members of not only the hospital, but also of the wider community.

Sadguru reached the state-of-the-art auditorium housed on the ground floor of Sowbhagyam, where He was welcomed with an evening of cultural presentations. The programme began with an invocatory chant of the Medha Suktam and continued with various beautiful regional dances interspersed with moving speeches by hospital staff members. The evening's programme was a heart-touching illustration of the extensive role of the Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani Hospitals which not only give life to little hearts, but at the same time provide jobs for local people gifting them with empowerment and increased self-esteem by playing a role in this mighty medical mission.

The programme also included a beautiful musical drama depicting the journey of a paediatric heart patient along with her family and the trials and tribulations borne by the parents and children as they arrive at Sanjeevani with much trepidation and leave with hearts overflowing with joy and gratitude for a new lease of life.

'Sirf dil, no bill' (only heart, no bill) is the motto of the Sai Sanjeevani hospitals and it is with this overflowing love and compassion that each and every staff member offers the very best of themselves each day to ensure that the highest quality of care is provided to the little hearts coming their way.

With a mortality rate of only 1.1%, the team of hospital nurses then demonstrated the immense unity and capability required as they then simulated the CPR protocol for the Operating Theatre, highlighting just a small fraction of the teamwork and dedication required in saving each little heart.

The evening's proceedings then concluded with a fusion dance performance which was followed by a short video presentation on the role of Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani Hospitals.

Mangala Arati was then offered, after which Sadguru retired for the day.

14th March

The morning of Sunday 14th March saw the ground-breaking or Bhoomi Puja ceremony for a new Divine Mother and Child Care Centre dedicated to serving expectant mothers, new mothers and children. Many expectant mothers in rural India currently do not have access to medical care at this crucial time and therefore in order to address the struggles of these mothers, the construction new Centre christened as Mamatva (motherhood) was begun on this auspicious occasion.

As the Puja began and was underway, Sadguru arrived at the site at around 11:30am. Shortly after, Her Excellency the Honourable Governor of Chhattisgarh, Srimati Anasuiya Uikey also graced the occasion with her presence. Sadguru along with the Honourable Governor performed the ground-breaking ceremony with offerings to Mother Earth.

Thereafter, everyone proceeded to the auditorium at Sri Sathya Sai Sowbhagyam where the formal event began with a rendition of the National Anthem. After a welcome for all the guests and dignitaries, the event began with a summary of all the services provided by the Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani Hospitals and in particular, the work done by the Hospital in the Bastar region of Chhattisgarh, a very tribal part of the country which does not have adequate access to healthcare facilities. This was followed by a briefing on the services to be provided in the upcoming Divine Mother and Child Care Centre, Mamatva which will provide monitoring, regular healthcare and provisions of the SaiSure health supplement for expectant mothers and also children.

This was followed by an address by the Chairman of the Sri Sathya Sai Health and Education Trust, Sri C Sreenivas. Sri Sreenivas offered his heartfelt gratitude to the Honourable Governor for her gracious presence and also to all the guests present for the occasion. He spoke about the desparate need for healthcare which is being met by the Sanjeevani Hospitals and how the Mamatva Centre is a much required addition to the Hospital's services.

Padma Bhushan Sri Sunil Gavaskar then addressed the gathering and spoke about the important role of Mamatva which is set to provide the care for mothers which is available for those living in cities, but mostly inaccessible to those in rural India.

Sadguru then granted His Divine message and spoke about the importance of women, saying that nari seva is verily narayani seva. Sadguru explained how even in the earlier days, Easwaramma had requested Bhagawan to build a hospital to serve mothers and even today, it is of utmost importance to ensure that mothers receive quality medical care. Explaining that a mother cannot exist without a child and a child cannot exist without a mother, Sadguru said that while the Paediatric Cardiac Hospital would save the lives of children, in tandem, Mamatva would be dedicated to serving mothers.

The Honourable Governor, Srimati Anasuiya Uikey then addressed everyone saying that it was only by the grace and blessings of Bhagawan Baba that such work in service of mankind, could take place. She also spoke about the need for such healthcare for the people of Bastar, where tribalism and poverty is prevalent and congratulated the Hospital for serving such a needy section of the population.

Sadguru then felicitated the Honourable Governor after which, the morning programme concluded with the National Anthem.

In the afternoon, Sadguru spent some time speaking to the students, staff and guests who had accompanied Him, along with the staff of the hospital. He spoke about the journey of the medical mission from its inception and the trials, tribulations and challenges that had come along the way. Sadguru also spent some time expanding on His plans for nodal centres in each taluk of the country so that medical care could reach the rural people of India right at their doorstep.

After a beautiful session filled with many insights into the immense medical mission of Sadguru, everyone gathered once again at the auditorium for the Gift of Life Ceremony. The evening began with a welcome for the dignitaries which included Dr Raman Singh, Vice-President of the BJP and Sri D Purandareswari, General Secretary of the BJP.

This was followed by an invocatory chanting of the Durga Suktam, after which Senior Paediatric Cardiac Surgeon, Dr Ragini Pandey gave a brief presentation on the journey so far. She spoke about the medical mission begun by Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba and how it has led to the establishment of Sri Sathya Sai Sanejeevani Hospitals today. Dr Pandey also spoke about how the hospital dealt with the Covid pandemic in 2020 and commended all the hospital staff for their sincere dedication which allowed the hospital to continue its operations smoothly.

Soon after, followed the Gift of Life Ceremony, which saw a beautiful celebration of life as a number of children who had undergone operations in the last seven years returned to tell their stories, standing as testimonies to the love and selfless service rendered by Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani. Each child along with their parents was felicitated, after which five tiny hearts which had been operated in the last couple of weeks were presented with their gift of life certificates. There was not a dry eye left in the room as each parent narrated the journey of hardship, they had faced in trying to save the life of their child, before coming to Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani.

Following this, Dr Praveen Neema, Mentor for Paediatric Cardiac Anaesthesia, addressed the gathering and spoke about how after coming from AIIMS Raipur, Sanjeevani provides a most unique sense of fulfilment in the opportunity to serve those who are most in need.

Dr Snehal Kulkarni, Mentor for Paediatric Cardiac surgery then elaborated on the task cut out for Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani in reaching each and every child in the country who is in need of cardiac care.

Addressing everyone next, Sri C Sreenivas recalled the early days of the hospital and how Dr Raman Singh, the then Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh had fully extended his support in establishing the hospital at Raipur and how immediately after connecting with the Chief Minister, the hospital had begun to take shape in a most miraculous way thus paving the way for the hospital to become what it is today.

Sri Sunil Gavaskar then narrated his own experience of the dedication and love at Sai Sanjeevani in saving the lives of little children and commended all the staff for the wonderful work being done.

Sri Sachin Tendulkar, who had joined the ceremony virtually then expressed his joy at the establishment of a new Divine Mother and Child Care Centre and applauded Sai Sanjeevani for all the work that has been done since its inception.

Thereafter, Sri D Purandareswari addressed the gathering and spoke about the heart-touching experience of the Gift of Life Ceremony, saying that it is something that everyone must experience. Recognising the urgent need for Paediatric Cardiac care, Sri Purandareswari congratulated all the hospital staff for touching the lives of so many.

Dr Raman Singh then offered a few words recollecting his lasting association with Sai Sanjeevani, Raipur and thanked the hospital for working hard to uplift the state of Chhattisgarh and offered his best wishes for the upcoming target of completing 25000 surgeries by November 2022.

Sadguru then granted His Divine message and narrated the events which led to the establishment of the hospital. Sadguru praised the hospital staff and showered His blessings on all of them.

Sadguru revealed that on the prayers of Dr Raman Singh, a new hospital would soon be constructed in Varanasi on the banks of River Ganga. Sadguru also announced the appointment of Sri Sunil Gavaskar as Trustee of the Sri Sathya Sai Health and Education Trust and blessed him for this new undertaking.

Sadguru then assured that until each and every child in need is treated, the work of Sanjeevani would not stop. Profusely showering His love and blessings on everyone, Sadguru brought the session to a close and after a rendition of the National Anthem, the Gift of Life Ceremony came to a conclusion.

March 15th – 16th

In the morning, Sadguru spoke to parents of some students studying in PG college, post which he proceeded to the Hospital, where the entire Team Sanjeevani was eagerly waiting.

Sadguru interacted with the anxious parents who were eagerly waiting for echocardiogram to be performed on their child. He enquired about where they came from, how they travelled to the hospital in Raipur and then with great joy informed them about the upcoming Sai Sanjeevani Centre in Varanasi.

The first stop in the hospital tour was the Intensive Care Unit. Before getting into the ICU required personal protective equipment was donned by all. Sadguru then interacted with the little children who are recovering post surgery. He gave them much love and appreciated the nursing staff for the tremendous work they do in handling the babies so adeptly.

Post the ICU visit, Sadguru was lovingly welcomed by the nursing College students, who sang Swagatham (Welcome) song. He spent much time in the college library enquiring about the books and Journals which were prescribed.

From there on he went to the Blood Bank which he inaugurated just about a year ago. He enquired about where the blood donors came from and how they were cared for post-donation. He was also appraised about the various components that were prepared once the blood is extracted.

The newly inaugurated Research Facility was next in line. Sadguru enquired about the various areas of Research and talked about the importance of Research in prevention of CHD.

Before moving to the Department of Public Health, Sadguru enquired about the Charkas which were operated by team Sanjeevani. He spent much time enquiring about the various Public Health initiatives, including the recent started initiative in Bastar District.  He also went about enquiring the impact of the work done by Sanjeevani; talked to the counsellors about various aspects they cover in their interaction with the beneficiary families.

The newly inaugurated/remodelled Reception Area became the backdrop for a photo opportunity for the entire team.

From there he proceeded to the Dietary room and witnessed Echocardiograms being performed on tiny tots.   He spent much time in the Intensive Care Units where children are kept post Cath Interventions.  He interacted with some of the parent there, knowing about the hardships they face and reassuring them that their child will be taken care of in Sanjeevani and that they would have a healthy life ahead.

He also went into the Cath Lab, where the team briefed him about the kind of procedures done and the devices used.

The Laboratory which takes care of most of the investigations required, was blessed with his visit. From there he moved on to the Pharmacy, Stores, HR and Finance department areas. He told the HR team that their responsibility was to spread love amongst the team.

Not worrying about the mid-day heat of Raipur, he went to the Goshala where more than 50 indigenous cows are hosted, who fulfil the milk requirement of the campus, especially the children who are admitted for Surgery.  On the way he enquired about the ongoing Solar Power Plant installation and the savings it would bring, both monetary and environmental.

Two and a half hours later, there was no stopping his energy and enthusiasm in meeting people who make Sanjeevani what it is.   The entire medical teams, including doctors were waiting for him in Sowbhagyam.   He interacted with them for more than an hour; hearing from them the stories of Love and Compassion at work and teaching them a much-valued lesson about – Working for God, Working With God and progressing to a stage of Working As God.

Sadguru did not retire after returning to His abode, close to 3 p.m. He interacted with families of some doctors before departing to Delhi that evening. The next day, 16th March, Sadguru met several devotees.


March 17th to 18th


Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai left for Palwal, Haryana on 17th March and arrived at the Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani Hospital, Palwal that afternoon, at around 1 p.m. Sadguru first interacted with the senior doctors of the hospital after which He retired for the afternoon. In the evening, there were several senior doctors and dignitaries who had arrived at the Hospital to see the miracles of healing for themselves. Everybody gathered for a session wherein there were presentations by the staff of the hospital including Dr Krishna Manohar, Chief Cardiac Surgeon. Sadguru too addressed the team, after which a tour of the hospital was given. Children receiving treatment were blessed by Sadguru, and those who were operated were given their gift of life certificates at the Gift of Life ceremony. On 18th morning, there was a farewell gathering with all the hospital staff. Blessing everyone once again, Sadguru departed from Palwal and reached Sathya Sai Grama, Muddenahalli that evening at around 06:10 p.m.



Maha Shivaratri Celebrations - 12 March 2021 (Morning & Evening)

Maha Shivaratri Celebrations (Morning)

On the sunny morning of March 12, 2021, at 10 a.m., devotees gathered at Premamrutham Hall, Satya Sai Ashram, Muddenahalli, after the night-long akhanda (non-stop) bhajan that was held on the occasion of Maha Shivaratri. The morning proceedings began with veda chanting followed by melodious bhajans being rendered by the staff and students.

Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai walked into the Hall accompanied by Sri B N Narasimha Murthy and the esteemed guests. Before taking His seat on the stage, Sadguru moved among the devotees blessing them all.

After showering everyone with love Sadguru, along with Sri B N Narasimha Murthy and the other dignitaries, occupied their seats on the stage.  A beautiful Shiva lingam prepared with fresh flowers formed the backdrop for Sadguru’s throne.  Sister Bhuvana Santanam delivered a warm welcome address and expressed gratitude to the dignitaries present on the dais.  Sister Bhuvana introduced Sri Suresh Joshi, popularly known as Bhayyaji, general secretary of the RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh).

The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh was founded in 1925 in an effort to end the British rule in India, as a reaction against the riots post-independence, to uphold Hindu culture and tradition and spread the ideology of Hindutva.

The welcome address was followed by a musical offering of devotional songs by the students and staff.

Soon after, there was a talk by Sri B N Narasimha Murthy. “The land of Bharat,” he said, “has been a mother to many divine incarnations, saints, sages, and great men. Though Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba (Swami) was referred to as Bharata Bhagya Vidhata as He unveiled the great fortune and glory of India, Swami considered himself as the son of India. Swami’s fundamental mission was the revival of Sanathana Dharma.

“Bhagawan had declared, as a teenager, the mission with which He had incarnated in India. His life was divided into six phases of sixteen years each, Sri Narasimha Murthy explained. “The first sixteen years was for performing leelas (divine drama), the second sixteen- year phase was  spent in mahimas (glory), the third phase witnessed  upadeshas (spiritual guidance), the fourth phase involved vidya (education), the fifth phase was about vaidya (hospitals) and the sixth phase involved  the revival of Sanathana Dharma. Bhagawan had completed five of the six phases in the 85 years of his physical life.  The final 16 years, the sixth phase, was yet to be completed when Swami left His physical body at the age of eighty-five.   His devotees from around the world were left wondering as to how the last phase of His divine mission would be completed.”

Sri Narasimha Murthy continued, “Swami, however, is known as a ‘Man of miracles.’ The greatest miracle of Swami is that even after He shed the physical form, He is still present here and continues with His mission of establishing Sanathana Dharma which is now taking roots in India and in many countries abroad.  Through Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai, Swami has established at least two ashrams in every continent.

“The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh has played a vital role in protecting and preserving Indian culture. This was possible because of sangha shakti (power of unity) along with the daivya shakti (power of the divine). If Swami is daivya shakti, RSS is the sangha shakti. Both are required for preserving and protecting culture and spreading the rich Indian cultural heritage to all parts of the world,” concluded Sri narasimha Murthy.

This was followed by a talk by Sri Suresh Bhayyaji Joshi.    “Indians are very fortunate to be born in this divine land of Bharat. This was made possible,” he added, “because of the good deeds of Indians in their earlier births. All those involved in the divine mission are chosen instruments to carry out the work and prepare India for glorious times ahead. From amongst the crores of Indians, only a fortunate few are part of the Satya Sai organisation that has such immense spiritual magnitude and prowess,” Bhayyaji said. He praised Swami and Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai for being influential and instrumental in leading India to a magnificent tomorrow. “Swami Vivekananda had addressed those born in Bharat as amritasya putra (children of immortality). India with its rich cultural heritage and traditions is contributing greatly towards the success of the world. Educational institutions and spiritual organisations like these are the beacons of light for other centres to emulate,” Bhayyaji said. “With inspiration from and blessings of Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai, may everyone be blessed to continue this Godly work.”

This was followed by Sadguru’s discourse. Sadguru expressed gratitude to the dignitaries who had travelled from afar to be present on the occasion and for speaking words of encouragement to the students present at Premamrutham Hall. “India is the source of spirituality and it is the responsibility of Indians to spread Indian culture and spiritualty to all corners of the world,” He said. “The University is built for this very purpose. Many revolutionary movements have come and gone but the spiritual revolution is here to stay. This change is manifesting in these young men and women who are developing love and devotion towards the Lord and their country. Hence, they are developing an attitude of service towards mankind. These students will go from village to village fulfiling their responsibility towards the nation and thereby bring about a spiritual revolution,” Sadguru assured.

In times to come, His wish is to build such a University in every nook and corner of the country. He mentioned that many organisations are providing free education with many facilities but Universities which lay emphasis on human values and value-based free education are few, the Sri Satya Sai University for Human Excellence being one of them. Sadguru said that his desire is that this good work continues and with the guidance, support and help of leaders this goal can be met.  “This work will spread and be prevalent in other countries as well. Being the auspicious day of Maha Shivaratri,” Sadguru said, “Shiva means shubh or auspicious and ratri means night. Shubharatri should mean that every night is auspicious. Every day should be filled in thoughts of Lord Shiva and so also the night. Let every day in every way be auspicious,” Sadguru concluded.

With these divine words, the morning’s programme drew to a close.

Mangala arati was offered to Sadguru and He then left the Hall with the guests.


Maha Shivaratri Celebrations (Evening)

The evening programme at Premamrutham Hall began with veda chanting followed by soulful bhajans. Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai arrived at the Hall accompanied   by Sri B N Narasimha Murthy and the dignitaries. Sadguru moved around the hall showering love on all the devotees gathered. He then went up the stage to occupy his seat along with Sri B N Narasimha Murthy and the esteemed guests.

Sri B N Narasimha Murthy offered his salutations at the divine Lotus Feet of the Lord and then welcomed the guests for the evening.  He began his talk with a quote in praise of India by the French philosopher, Romain Rolland. Sri Narasimha Murthy then went on to highlight passages from the Isavasya Upanishad that describe the attributes of a man established in equanimity. He explained that one should feel empathy with every living being and quoted examples from the life of Mahatma Gandhi that emphasise the vedic dictum that one should sacrifice first and enjoy later. He concluded with reference to what Sri Sathya Sai Baba stood for and with which He had started as His mission, which is being continued by none other than Baba Himself in the form of Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai.

The next speaker, Sri Krishna Gopalji of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) mentioned that India is a unique nation because of its depth of spirituality and the philosophy of universality and oneness of all creation.  He explained that the offerings made in yagnas were symbolic expressions of humble gratitude for everything that each individual has received from the Gods, nature, the elements, parents, teachers and others. He spoke about the importance of sacrifice and touched on the life of Acharya Vinoba Bhave who, guided by his mother’s teaching that ’one who gives is a God and the one who keeps is a demon’, embarked on a life of service, persuading rich land owners around the nation to distribute in charity over three crore acres of land to the poor and landless.  Sri Gopalji said that he found joy and hope in the fact that such ancient traditions, long suppressed and forgotten under the yoke of foreign rule, were again being enlivened at Sathya Sai Grama, Muddenahalli.

Following this inspiring talk, Prof. Rakesh Upadhyay from the Benaras Hindu University addressed the gathering. Prof. Upadhyayji stated that Muddenahalli is a land of devotion and spiritual transformation, and that he always had the experience here of “bathing in a Ganga of wisdom,” comparable to taking a dip in the Ganges on the  holy festival of Shivarthri and soaking in spiritual blessings at the feet of a Guru. He said that he would implement the teachings received here at various places in India and around the world, putting into practice his firm belief that ‘the whole world is one family’. It was his wish to make his next trip to Muddenahalli with larger groups which represent all branches of Indian tradition so that these could be discussed under the guidance of Sadguru.

Thereafter, Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai delivered His divine discourse.

Sadguru commended Sri Krishna Gopal Sharmaji on his talk and repeated his words, ‘One who gives is God and one who keeps/hoards is a demon’. Sadguru mentioned that this is a good way to test whether our behaviour is Godly or demonic in nature.

“India is a land of sacrifice and spirituality,” said Sadguru. As an example, Sadguru narrated the story of King Rantideva from the Mahabharata, Bheeshma Parva.  “The King led a life of penance and sacrifice and thereby received a boon from Lord Narayana. King Rantideva asked for the boon of strength and power to remove the sufferings, difficulties and tears of his people. This is the culture of India – kings, sages and people who believed in giving, not in keeping.”

Sadguru said that the examples of such people in the scriptures and other ideal people in society who have devoted their lives for the affluence, prosperity and culture of the country and its people, should be understood and followed by everyone. He asserted that it is the duty and responsibility of every person in society to ensure that no child is bereft of the three basic rights - the right to nutrition, the right to education and the right to health. He stated that only the one who gives with love and without any expectations or desires is truly an embodiment of the Supreme Self.

Sadguru referred to Prof. Rakesh Upadhyayji as a “family member.”. He expressed the wish that through the association of  Benares Hindu University with  Sri Sathya Sai University of Human Excellence and the India Study Centre, the glory of Indian wisdom, tradition, culture and Sanatana Dharma should reach people in all parts of the world—irrespective of caste, status or country - so that they may adopt and practice these principles in their lives.

Sadguru also made a special mention of Sri Goyalji, from RSS, who was also present, and remarked that the Sangh should strive to bring everyone together and work for the welfare of all in need, thereby spreading the message of love.

“It is due to the good deeds of past births, boons from Gods, blessings of parents and the grace of Gurus that one has taken birth in this land of Bharat. However, to become true Bharatiyas, it is necessary to have faith and pride in Indian culture and spirituality and devote one’s life completely to service,” said Sadguru. “This path of service, to remove the difficulties and unhappiness of those in need is a debt that every true Bharatiya needs to pay in return for the good fortune of having taken birth in this holy and sanctified country.”

Sadguru asserted that Bharat is devabhoomi (land of gods) and all who live here should aspire to become devas who sacrifice for others. “This is the solemn duty of the young generation, guided by the examples set by teachers and respected people of society.”

The evening programme ended with mangala arati being offered to Sadguru.


MahaŚivarātrī 2021 - 11 March and 12 March 2021

Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai entered Premamrutham Hall at Satya Sai Grama, Muddenahalli, and blessed all the devotees present with His divine grace. The morning celebrations began with Linga Abhishekam. Chantings of Sri Rudram and Chamakam echoed through the hall. Swami blessed everyone once again by sprinkling holy water on them even as bhajans glorifying Lord Shiva rent the air. After the abhishekam, the Lingam was decorated with garlands.

Ashtavadana seva was offered to Lord Shiva along with Vedas, Upaniśad, Sangeeta, Vādya and many more Sevas. The morning program was supposed to end after Aarathi to our beloved Bhagwan, but Swami was so pleased with the chanting of the Mundaka UpanĪśad that he went on to describe the true meaning of the verse that was chanted.

Two birds of the same kind lived on a tree. One bird ate the berries from the tree. It would rejoice whenever it ate a sweet fruit and complain when it ate a bitter one. But the other bird would simply sit and witness the happenings. The first bird would often see the second one being happy all the time and think why it too could not be like that bird.

Swami explained that the first bird was Jīva and the second was Īśa, Jīva, the poor bird, didn't consider itself to be Īśa. It considered itself to be the slave of the Lord and failed to recognise God within himself. The moment Jīva attempts to become Īśa, it would realise its Supremacy and become one with divinity. Both Jīva and Īśa reside in every being. When Jīva realises Īśa, all ignorance and darkness is dispelled and Jīva becomes Īśa. Swami explained that Maha Shivaratri was about Jīva becoming Shiva. Swami then told his devotees to contemplate on the thought that both Jīva and Shiva are within oneself. He also assured all that no effort made in the path of spirituality would go waste.

Swami concluded His divine discourse by blessing everyone and advising them to put sincere efforts to realise the divinity that exists within each one of us.

The evening's Akhaṇḍa Bhajan began as soon as Swami inaugurated the session by lighting the well decorated lamp. The session began with bhajans glorifying Lord Ganesha and the Guru followed by bhajans in praise of Lord Shiva.

After singing the glory of Lord Shiva all night, the morning programme began at 5 am the following day. The first speaker was Sri BN Narasimha Murthy. He stressed on the fact that sincere and consistent effort needs to be made in order to experience divinity. He also insisted that this effort has to be backed by complete faith in the words of our scriptures and our Guru. Self-realisation cannot be attained without shraddha. Sri Narasimha Murthy went on to explain that everyone must believe in and contemplate on the supreme Truth, Ahaṃ brahmā, sarvaṃ brahmā.

A distracted mind will not allow one to do any of these things because it remains stuck in worldly distractions, desires and attachments. One must pray to the Lord and ask for His help so as to shed one’s ego, desires and attachments. He also said that any person who is always established in Oneness is considered to be God and an opportunity to see such a person was rare. Those blessed with such an opportunity must follow in the footsteps of such a person so that they too can attain the state of sahaja samādhi. He concluded by expressing gratitude towards Swami for his divine message on the auspicious occasion of MahaŚivarātrī.

It was then time for Swami’s discourse.  Swami began by explaining the true nature of Ānandā. He said that it was a pure state of existence, which is self-dependent and self-sustained. It is born in the hearts of desireless people. Shiva is called Kamadahana, the one who destroys all the desires, including the very desire to exist. “Only such a person is entitled to that Ānandā which is beyond all the Gunas”, Swami said.

Swami also described the efforts one has to make in order to realise the divinity that exists within oneself. He explained the meaning of Shiva opening his third eye. Shiva cut off his interactions with the physical world and opened his third eye that signified knowledge and thus opened up to his inner self. This could be experienced by anyone who is sincere in their efforts. This can be achieved even faster with the help of a Guru. Swami explained that his job was to make everyone revel in divinity. Constant remembrance of the truth helps one to become God. He also reminded everyone of the opportunity that had come to them after births of yearning to be around the knower of Brahman. Shiva created jagat and he is the only one who knows how to destroy the demonic aspects of jagat. Therefore, everyone worships Shiva. Swami also narrated instances which proved that tyaga of Shiva was what made him immortal. Sacrifice needs to be made in order to replace the marbles that fill a hand with elixir.

He said that Shiva was one of the purest manifestations of Brahman and pointed out that everyone was the same as him. It is unfortunate that we are not aware of this fact. This could be understood only when the mind is dissolved. Dissolution of mind is the end of sadhana. This is similar to a wall that separates two sides. When the wall comes down, Jīva and Shiva become one. Swami also emphasised on the energy that penetrates everything around hills because of penance of many people to attain salvation.

Swami then answered a question about the significance of the Lingam. He said that we are bound by physical parameters and a shape or symbol was necessary to see divinity. Even though it is known that divinity is formless, it is difficult to worship something that is not defined by form. Therefore, Hiranyagarbha or the golden womb was the first manifestation of the unmanifested divinity. And the closest thing to Hiranyagarbha that can be worshipped is an ellipsoid, which is said to be an ideal shape where the forces are at perfect balance with each other. It was so effulgent that it appeared golden. Hence it was given its name.

Swami concluded His discourse by blessing everyone to realise their inherent divinity and to constantly contemplate on the thought that they are indeed divine.

Swami then distributed prasadam with His divine hands. The celebrations came to an end after Mangala Arati to the Lord.



Divine Visit to Pre-University Boys Hostel, Muddenahalli - 09 March 2021

On the morning of March 9, 2021, the students of the Pre-University Boys Hostel were graced by Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai’s divine visit at 10 a.m.

The students and staff gathered at Atmadeep – the Prayer Hall. The students dedicated bhajans and devotional songs to Sadguru. He then lovingly interacted with a few students, enquiring where they came from, what language they spoke at home and so on.

Sadguru then highlighted that most of the colonised nations have lost their indigenous cultures and have succumbed to the control of the colonisers, India or Bharat being the only exception.  Despite multiple invasions over the ages, India has stood the test of time and, more importantly, has managed to retain its own culture. Although India accommodated and assimilated the good aspects of other cultures, it did not lose its own. And the reason for this, Sadguru explained, is that the core belief of all Bharatiyas is that, ‘All is divine’. This understanding of divinity pervading all is ingrained in our very genes and has been passed on from our ancestors, from the great seers of this land, as genetic memory, even though we may not be consciously aware of it.

Sadguru spoke of the three kinds of pleasures – physical, mental and spiritual -- and how one must overcome lower pleasures and strive to experience spiritual happiness which is ever lasting. He also urged the students to be like Nachiketa from the Kathopanishad, to learn by observing, questioning and then understanding the truth rather than blindly accepting what someone might say.

Swami then partook lunch with everyone, showered blessings on all and returned   to Premdeep.


Divine Visit to Post Graduate Department, SSSUHE, Muddenahalli - March 07, 2021

With the most auspicious festival of Maha Shivaratri being a few days away, the university staff and undergraduate boy students arrived from Gulbarga to participate in this holy festival. Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai visited the Post Graduate Department, Sri Satya Sai University of Human Excellence (SSSUHE), Muddenahalli, to spend time with the students and staff and bless them with His divine guidance.

The staff, undergraduates and post graduate students had gathered at Vidya Deep for the divine satsang. Sadguru was lovingly welcomed by the students of Vedic Studies.

Melodious bhajans were dedicated to Sadguru by the staff and students. Following this, Sadguru delivered His divine discourse. After lovingly enquiring about the students’ well-being, Sadguru spoke at length about developing the culture of the Institution and how it must always be maintained. Sadguru explained that culture consists of belief in the value system of the Institution and putting those values into practice by behaving in accordance with them. Only when one is convinced about the values will they reflect in one’s behaviour. Therefore, there must be unity in thought, word, and deed – ‘manas ekam, vachas vkam, karmanyekam’.

Sadguru also stressed on the need for continuous learning and guided the undergraduate students to join the internship programme as that would be a platform for practical application of all that they were learning. He also advised all the post graduate students to complete their Ph.D. as well. Sadguru added that in the years to come, this institution and university would be a role model for various other individuals and organisations who will watch, learn and emulate this kind of value system.

Thereafter, Sadguru partook lunch with everyone and after blessing them all, He retired to Premdeep.


Divine Visit to Sri Sathya Sai Prashanthiniketanam, Nallakadirenahalli - February 27, 2021

When Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai had visited the girls' campus at Nallakadirenahalli in January 2021, promising to return after a month, He had instructed for a volleyball court to be arranged so that the girls could practice and play matches for His next visit. Therefore, after many eager and enthusiastic practice sessions under the training of Smt. Gayatri Ganjawalla, the students were ready to receive their Lord and on 27th February 2021, Sadguru visited the Nallakadirenahalli campus.


Departing from Muddenahalli in the early afternoon at around 3 p.m. along with His guests, Sadguru reached the campus at around 3:45 p.m. and proceeded to inaugurate the new music room. After spending some precious time with the music group students and staff, Sadguru then took a short break for snacks and rest. As the afternoon heat reduced and the sun began to set, Sadguru made His way to the volleyball court which had been beautifully set up next to the upcoming hostel building. The evening was spent with much joy and laughter as three energetic matches between the students of High School, Pre-University College and University were accompanied by witty commentary by the University students. Combining spirituality with everyday life, the students displayed both courage and compassion on the court which made Sadguru very happy. At the conclusion of the matches, Sadguru blessed all the players and participants and took group photographs with all of them.


Thereafter, everyone proceeded to the Prayer Hall where after a few Bhajans, Sadguru was welcomed by Sister Sridevi, an intern at the campus. The music group then offered a few soulful songs at Sadguru's feet, concluding with a group offering by all the students. Sadguru then spoke to everyone emphasising the importance of physical education as a part of an all-rounded, wholesome education. He instructed all the students to take up at least one team sport and one area of fine arts, saying that team sports would teach many lessons in practical spirituality whilst fine arts would help to open up the heart. Sadguru lovingly told the students that His only request from them during their stay was that they be happy and told them to pursue their interests whilst also enjoying their studies and other aspects of hostel life too. Showering the girls with much love and many blessings, Sadguru then promised to return after two months during which basketball, handball and throwball courts would be arranged so that He could witness more matches on His next visit.

After receiving Mangala Arati, Sadguru departed the campus at around 06:00 p.m. and returned to Muddenahalli.