Volume 10 - Issue 02
February 2012
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Posted on : Feb 19, 2012


WHAT should we do this shivarathri?


PArt 4


Practising Sacrifice – Easy Tips

Prem: Alright Bishu, I agree with all this. But there is still one issue.

Bishu: What is it?

Prem: When you feel that oneness, sacrifice will be spontaneous. But that is our problem. We are far from that lofty state. I feel the feeling of sacrifice and selflessness should be in itself a path to that state. How can we in daily life leverage these lessons?

Bishu: Well, each one’s path is unique. Swami is guiding every devotee through a process that is best suited for that person. So honestly there is no one-size-fits-all solution. If you wish to know, I can share with you what I try to do.

Prem: Definitely. I am all ears.

Bishu: A simple way to start with, I feel is, be happy when your neighbour is happy. Rejoice the success of a friend, does not matter whether he is your best friend or the opposite; be delighted when the other person is happy as if it is your own success. When you see someone in pain, empathise with that person, without being too concerned about whether he is your own or is a complete stranger. If there is a chance, try and alleviate the pain to the extent you can. That is how I see it.

Prem: So it is not just putting someone’s feelings before our own, but expanding our feelings such that it envelops the joy and pain of the people around us.

Bishu: Yes, isn’t that an easy way to begin?

Understanding “Na Karmana...” in a New Light

Prem: It certainly is. Even as I see sacrifice in this new light, I recollect a commentary I read a while ago and it seems to make more sense now than ever. It is the famous manthra from the Mahanarayana Upanishad  of the Krishna Yajur Veda- “Na karmanaa na prajayaa dhanena tyaagenaike amritatvamaanashuh


Bishu: Yes, that was so commonly chanted in Swami’s physical presence in Puttaparthi. In fact He used to ask for it to be chanted many times. It means, not by action - karma, or progeny - prajaya or wealth - dhanam can one attain immortality; it can be achieved only through sacrifice - thyaga.

Prem: So profound this verse is! And I think there is an inner meaning there. It says, karma cannot give you liberation, but karma infused with sacrifice will lead you to it. That is, performing action sacrificing the desire for the fruit.

Now what is sacrificing progeny mean? You don’t get liberated by virtue of your lineage or children, but when you have detachment toward all bodily relations.

And finally, it is not by amassing wealth that one reaches the goal, but when one readily and spontaneously gives away the wealth acquired in the spirit of sharing and caring.

Bishu: Fantastic Prem! What an understanding of this sacred hymn! No wonder Swami Himself chanted this verse so many times in His discourses and if we look at His life, Swami just lived up to this message of sacrifice every second of His earthly sojourn till the very end. In fact I feel the end was just another chapter in this glorious and eternal Sai Saga of Pure Love.

Scintillating Signs of Sai Shiva in Sundaram

Prem: So true Bishu. The saga continues so mysteriously and magnificently. Just the other day I heard how a spatika lingam appeared in the Kamandalu when the priest was doing the abhishekam of the Sai Sundareshwar lingam in Swami’s abode in Sundaram, Chennai. In fact Swami Himself had installed this lingam during the Athi Rudra Maha Yagna held in Chennai in January 2007. And thousands are thronging to see the shrine in Sundaram where vibhuti is manifesting non-stop for the last so many weeks!

The mysteriously manifested Spathika linga in Sundaram, Baba's abode in Chennai

Bishu: Yes, I too heard about this. So awesome are these signs of His presence and grace! He is as always reaching out to each one of us, ever busy thinking only about us.

Prem: And now our duty is to think only of Him.

Bishu: Right, that is the reason why we have so many spiritual routines prescribed for us be it bhajans, meditation and so on. The Akhanda Bhajan (non-stop 12 hours continuous bhajan) during Shivarathri is again another opportunity for us to immerse ourselves in His thoughts, elevate our feelings and sublimate our tendencies.

Prem: Exactly so that we may become pure and exude the pure love that Swami exemplifies.

Every Shivarathri night Sai Kulwant Hall reverberated with soulful bhajans as the Lord graced this occasion with His presence

Bishu: Yes Prem, let’s make the most of this Shivarathri. Let it start a new saga of sacrifice in our lives!

Prem: Yes. Wow! What a beautiful discussion we have had! I hope we can do this more often. Thank you so much Bishu.

Bishu: Let’s thank Swami Prem. Sairam till we meet next time.

Prem: Sairam.




- Radio Sai Team

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