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Sai Prashanti Diary
 
 

September 9, 2008 – Commencement of Rudram Teaching in Mandir

Life with the Lord is always full of novelty and a new freshness. No moment is the same. And the fact that the ever-steady Lord is also the ever new Lord each day is indeed a great mystery. When Swami came out for the darshan rounds at 4:40 p.m. on September 9, very few even dreamt of the wonderful gift that Swami had planned for one and all. As far as Swami was concerned, He came out in His usual sweet smiling self. Moving down the slope on the ladies side, He collected letters. One letter seemed to engross Him a lot and He began reading it then and there. By the time He completed reading it, He was already on the marble block in the centre.

Passing by the students, He collected more letters and moved onto the gents’ side. Finally, finishing the complete round, Swami went into the interview room. Within a few minutes, He came out and was seated in the centre stage.

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A new idea forming in the Lord's mind?
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The Sai Chandana magazine is blessed
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There was a gleam in His eyes and everyone seemed to understand that something special was brewing! He called boys who led the Veda chanting in the Mandir everyday and also asked for the podium and mike to be brought forward. Next, He gave them a few instructions and soon the special news was conveyed to one and all over the public address system.

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Vedapoashana (sustaining of the Vedas) is one of the tasks the Avatar has undertaken
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Swami desired that all the students learn to memory the chanting and meaning of the first part of the Vedic hymn Sri Rudra Prasnah, or the Namakam, as it is popularly called. There is a significant point to note here. The Vedas are believed to be birthless and the term originates from the word "vid" meaning knowledge. Initially, the Vedas were not written down and the composers were actually seers, that is to say, the chants were revealed as intuitive flashes to all of them. And as Swami says, people falsely mistake that it pertains to Hinduism. It belongs to the Sanathana Dharma (the eternal way of life). For ages, these chants, which are basically very powerful and positive vibrations, were simply taught to the disciples along with the pronunciation only orally.

Sri Rudra Prasnah is a very spiritual and wholesome prayer to Rudra, another name of Lord Shiva.

The famous Indian novelist R. K. Narayan wrote a humorous story about the efforts of a tiger to become spiritual, by seeking enlightenment from a Guru. One day, the Guru asks the tiger to describe God, and the tiger replies:

God must be an enormous tiger, spanning the earth and sky, with a tail capable of encircling the globe, claws that could hook the clouds, and teeth that could grind mountains, and possessing of course, immeasurable strength to match.

And so, it is sheer imagination and visualization that gives a form to the Lord with various attributes. As Swami always says, "You are all God as much as I am God! Realize that!" Therefore, while the name Siva and the specific form attributed to Him are useful in their own way, we must really look beyond the form to the formless aspect of God to reach the ultimate realization.

First, one of the students thanked Swami for presenting everyone with this great opportunity to learn in His divine presence. Following that, everyone chanted the Gananaam twa mantra. And then the training began. Swami's desire was that all learn it before His birthday. He also promised in a very inviting manner, "Those who learn very well, I will call personally and reward all the efforts." So, in His presence, the class began. Each line of the first paragraph was chanted and everyone followed twice. Swami sat with a scrutinizing eye looking at every student and checking how well he/she was picking up! This was Vedic teaching in its past pristine glory, in the "Guru-Shishya parampara" as its known. The special difference here was that the Lord sat in the Guru's position! As 25 minutes of 'coaching' elapsed, Swami turned and said, "That is enough for today." And that too was so sweet about Him. He knows how much syllabus covered can be grasped!

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The Vedas being taught in the
original style - by recitation
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"Bas" - That is the syllabus
for today!
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Swami had said on 31st August, "When I speak, it is with everyone, not to a particular individual." Everyone knows that though Krishna taught the Bhagavad Gita to Arjuna, but it was meant for all of humanity for all times to come. And so, though Swami said that He wanted His students to learn this, it is up to us whether we want to be His students or not. As Swami Himself put it some years ago to all the boys, "You are all University students, but I want you to be Sai students." Only a few get the privileged chance to be the students of the University, but Sai studentship is open for all who desire and strive.

Swami blessed the 'coaches' with padanamaskar and once again said that those who pick up the best would be amply rewarded! It was also conveyed that from the next day onwards, there would be regular half an hour classes in the Mandir! Also, to aid this great chance, the Sri Sathya Sai Book Trust would present every student with a copy of the Namakam with translation. Swami moved into the Bhajan Hall after this and then bhajans began. Swami moved to Yajur Mandir at about 6:20 p.m.

 

- Heart2Heart Team


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Vol 6 Issue 10 - OCTOBER 2008
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