Friday, 15 October 2010

Friday 15/10/2010

Sai Kingdom (UK) Grama Seva Group 2010

Friday 15/10/2010: Morning

On this very auspicious day of Durgaashtami, the eighth day of the Navaratri festival, throughout India people perform Vaahana Puja and Ayudha Puja (worship of vehicles and instruments/weaponry). This tradition is also observed in Prasanthi Nilayam. Upon arrival at Sai Kulwant Hall, we could see that new decorations had been put up and all nine of Swami’s vehicles had been washed in preparation for Swami to perform the pujas. In previous years, Swami would also sit in the golden chariot and bless it – an amazing sight, all devotees would agree.
Swami did not come out for Darshan in the morning and carry out the Puja. This may well be because Swami wanted to teach us to observe the Raahukaalam (inauspicious time of the day). Today, this happened to be between 10:30 am and 12 noon, so leaving for Grama Seva after the Puja would have meant that the distribution would commence during the Raahukaalam.
However, there was no stopping Grama Seva, and the students and UK group prepared themselves for Grama Seva. The students and UK group served the villages of Jagragpalli (approx. 870 houses) and Bathalapalli (approx. 550 houses), about 20 km away from Prasanthi Nilayam.
While the group were travelling to the villages, they noticed that all the vehicles on the road were beautifully decorated for Durgaashtami. With Swami’s Grace, every house in the village, no matter how remote, receives His Prasadam. The UK group was sent to cover an additional 9 houses remotely situated on the outskirts of Bathalapalli village, much to the delight of the villagers.
We pray and hope that Swami gives Darshan in the afternoon and performs the Vaahana Puja, especially for those who have not seen the spectacle before.

Sai Kingdom (UK) Grama Seva Group 2010

Friday 15/10/2010: Afternoon

The all-knowing and all-hearing God listens to our every prayer. This was evident as we entered Sai Kulwant Hall – all of Swami’s vehicles were still there, including the golden chariot. Swami Graced Sai Kulwant Hall during Vedam at 5:20 pm and immediately headed towards the vehicles. Swami blessed all the vehicles and carried out the Vaahana Puja by breaking the coconuts. This was done amidst Vedam, bhajans and traditional nadaswaram.
Swami blessed the birthday boys and a few members of the UK group as He approached the portico, where He briefly spoke to the UK group leader Puppet (Sri Ajit Popat), inquiring about the group. Swami was in a wonderful mood, smiling as He listened to the bhajans on the portico. Swami lovingly read all of the letters He received from the devotees very carefully, to further the joy of those gathered. Swami was in a jubilant mood, throwing packets of vibhuthi occasionally to some of the students. Soon, Swami blessed laddus and instructed some of the students to start distributing them as Prasadam. As the Prasadam was being distributed, Swami looked around eagerly to ensure that all devotees had received His Prasadam.
Swami signalled for Aarthi at 6:15 pm, giving everyone 50 minutes of Aanandam (Bliss). The crowds were extremely fortunate to receive Swami’s full Blessings with both of His hands twice as Samastha Lokaah was being chanted. We humbly pray and thank Swami for the opportunity He has bestowed upon the UK group and further pray to Baba to share His Divine Love with all the worlds.