March 22, 2010 – Sixth Day of the Bhagavatha Sapthaham

As the Bhagawatha Saptaham was on in the Mandir, there were ritual worships going on by the sidelines. In the lower floors of the East Prashanti building, there were poojas and yagnams that were on. Six purohits (priests) who accompanied the Maharaj were conducting these daily rituals, every day morning from 6:30 to 8:30. There were waters from all the rivers placed in Kalashas and this happened everyday before the narrative began and every evening after its conclusion.

On March 22 morning, at 8:30, Sri Rituraj Maharaj began his talk. He started with an interesting episode where the celestial sage Narada decides to go through the different stages of life like marriage, householder, a forest dweller and finally a renunciant. For marriage, He asks Lord Vishnu for His form! He says, "Lord just give me that form of Your's which is most dear to You and leave the rest to me!" It turns out to be a comic situation as Narada is gifted the form of Hanuman - a monkey! Ego always has its fall and so too was the case of the gopikas who at times were bloated with ego even in Krishna's presence.

At 10:20 a.m., Swam arrived for darshan. He took a complete round even as the narration went on. Arriving near the interview room, He saw the pictures that had been put there - the Krishnaleelas of lifting the Govardhana mountain, stealing butter and multiplying Himself into all the gopalas and the cows! Swami seemed to study the pictures for a few minutes before He came on stage.

The speaker continued with the Raasa leela and the other leelas of the Lord with the Gopikas. He reached the point where he said, "And then, it was time for the Lord to leave for Mathura." At exactly that point, Swami smiled and moved into the interview room! Ah! What an effect it had.

The Maharaj continued to describe how bad everyone were feeling when the Lord left and it was so matching the reality and everyone was in "real reality" instead of a virtual one!

Once again, from the perspective of Mathura, he said, "The people now celebrate as the Lord is arriving." At that point, Swami arrived on the stage, a beautiful smile playing on His lips. It was such a profound and powerful experience and everyone was so happy.

At 11:20 a.m., Swami told him, "Today it has got late, isn't it?" Immediately he stopped speaking and concluded. Swami then told him that his seat was low and because of that, nobody in the audience was able to see him. He told him that he would get a higher "Vyas Peeth" for him in the evening.

Aarthi was taken and Swami moved into the Bhajan Hall to have a look at the new seat that had been already kept ready! Satisfied, He asked for it to be taken and placed for the evening. Then He spoke to three students working at Radio Sai as to what their latest projects were. Blessing them with padanamaskar, Swami retired for the morning or rather the early afternoon.

After the summary presentations, the Maharaj ascended his new seat. The afternoon's talk was about the exploits of Lord Krishna at Mathura where He uplifts the devotees and puts down the demons. The uplift and straightening of the body of Kubja was narrated in detail.

Then the killing of the rogue elephant, wrestlers Chanura and Mushtika, and finally the beheading of the evil Kamsa were narrated with great elan. It was brought out so beautifully that its enough if we take the name of the Lord, whether in Love or hatred, the Lord redeems all!

Meanwhile, at 4:40 p.m., Swami arrived for darshan. Taking a complete round Swami arrived on the stage but not before pausing to see keenly the new set of pictures that had been placed at the corner near the interview room. The talk then moved on to Rukmini Kalyanam and the slaying of Jarasandha after Krishna had run away from him in battle 17 times. That is the origin of the name, Ranchod (one who flees from battle!) for Lord Krishna. The Maharaj pointed out that devotees exalt the Lord, whatever He does.

After the talk concluded at 5:30 p.m., Swami asked for the music programme. The first song was a qawwali, "Sai Ke Darbar Mein" which celebrated the fact that all of us were in the Divine Presence! Next, the Krishnaashtakam was sung and it described beautifully the leelas of Krishna.

The third was a Telugu song, "Dayaku Premaku" and it was followed by the Hindi song, "Kya Khush Naseeb Jo Sai Ko Paale" which said that they indeed were fortunate who had come to know of Swami. The next in line was a Telugu song composed by Swami Himself, "Chinni Krishna Muralidhara".

As that song concluded, Swami asked for aarthi and as this went on, Swami permitted all the members of the Sai Sannidhi who had performed that day to take padanamaskar. Along with them He also called the 4 member team of Rituraj Maharaj also to take namaskar. He told them that the harmonium and tabla had been played extremely well and He was happy. Blessing everyone thus, He retired for the day.

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