July 4, 2010 – Songs and Dance Medley by East Godavari Devotees

After a day when they explored the different ways to God, the devotees from the East Godavari district had posed a question which formed the last dialogue in the drama the previous day.

“These are the nine forms of worship which is good; but what about darshan of the Lord?” Pat came the reply, “The darshan of the Lord is not a path of worship. It is the culmination and the fruit for having followed at least one of the paths diligently!” It was in joy of that realization that they had planned for a programme of dances in the Divine presence on July 4.

Swami too has such tremendous love for these simple folk that He had readily agreed to the programme. Everything was in place by 4:00 p.m. Much to the amazement of everyone, Swami arrived for darshan at 4:30 p.m. itself!

As He passed through the centre, He looked at the backdrop that had been made so beautifully as a collage of many of His photos during the younger days. Completing the gents’ side, Swami blessed a few alumni. The Veda chanting was on and when He came in the front, He saw that some of the members were not chanting.

He asked, “Don’t you know the Vedas? Why don’t you chant?” That immediately raised the volume a bit but not too much as many could not understand what He was saying. It was past 5 p.m. when Swami arrived on the stage and asked for the programme to begin.

As always, the initial offering of roses was made. Then, a summary of all the activities being carried out in the Godavari district as part of the SSSVIP (Sri Sathya Sai Village Integrated Programme) was presented to Him. Swami’s face blossomed into a smile as He saw that summary sheet. The work being done there is amazing. In a span of 3-4 years, more than 25 villages have been made self-sustaining and ideal.

Plans are afoot for the adoption of 25 more villages! It is true Grama Seva and no wonder that Sai Rama had such joy. Swami went through the report and blessed the person who had given it to Him. Now a request was made to Swami, “Could the elders from the district, those who have been associated with the Sai Organisation from the very beginning, be presented before Him?”

Swami agreed and a row of men slowly wended their way to the stage. Swami spontaneously materialized vibhuti for the first elder who walked to Him. Giving some into his palm, Swami placed a spot on his forehead at his behest! It was such a sweet interaction.

He also gave the vibhuti to the other elders in line. The launch of the SSSVIP-East Godavari website was the next item in the agenda and the youth from the district came up to Swami with a laptop. Swami had a look and then He blessed the website.

The next was a dance programme but before we go into it, a huge ongoing effort must be mentioned - an offering of the Likhita Japa effort of the girijan people where they had penned the Divine name more than a crore times. Such was the intensity to write His name that one old lady practiced writing it on stone so that she too could wield a pen and pour her devotions onto paper. All these were offered at His lotus feet and Swami blessed the entire effort.

The dances then began. Sri Sathya Sai Navaratnamala was the first item that was sung by the tribal children raining gratitude to their Lord Beloved. Colourful dance sessions bringing forth the essence of the tribal cultural followed and that included chakka bhajan and the peacock-snake dance. The latter showed how there is harmony between the sworn enemies when in the Divine Presence.

The programme concluded with an innovative dance, “Railu Vache Railu Vache…” meaning that the train has come.  Swami becomes the engine with His name being the switch to move the train where the rails signify human values to promote peace, love and non-violence. The children were all at their sweetest best and it was such a pleasure to watch them. At the end, Swami called one of the little boys who had danced and gifted him with a packet of vibhuti.

The next half-an-hour witnessed the tribal girls singing Sri Sathya Sai Geetamulu Bhajans, while Swami moved off the dais into the interview room. All the songs were sung melodiously and they reminded one of the beautiful bygone years of Swami’s life. As bhajans continued Swami emerged again, at 6:35 p.m. and came on stage via the Ganesha portico. He had gone in to select sarees and safari pieces for the children!

Swami was so happy with the performance that He enquired into the numbers of boys and girls and then had the clothes distributed to all. Then, came the moment of crowning glory when Swami decided to move down the stage. He posed for group pictures with the children and then moved amidst them. He asked for vibhuti packets also to be distributed to all after He Himself gave them to a blessed few.

Then He moved in a manner such that all the participants got close darshan, lovely sparshan and a few even managed sambhashan. Prasadam was now blessed for distribution to all. Swami slowly moved up the stage and then received aarthi. It was almost 7:10 p.m. when He retired for the night.

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