Volume 17 - Issue 03
March 2019
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Posted on: Mar 04, 2019

"Radio Sai Bhajans" - The New Youtube Channel

Radio Sai's Maha Shivaratri Special Offering

Every day and every night is auspicious in Prasanthi Nilayam, where the pulsating presence of Bhagawan is palpable. Even so, certain days are specially marked out for the remarkable opportunity they provide to the Sadhaka.

One such auspicious and festive occasion is the Maha Shivaratri. The name itself suggests that it is the grand night of all auspiciousness. In Bhagawan’s view, for anything to be special, it must present an opportunity to take us closer to our Goal, and that is what the Maha Shivaratri offers. Every year during His Shivaratri discourse Swami would clearly delineate the significance of this festival. For instance, Swami explained thus during the Shivaratri of 1969:

Why is the Shivaratri so important? The night is dominated by the Moon. The Moon has 16 kalas (fractions of Divine Glory), and each day or rather night, during the dark fortnight, one fraction is reduced, until the entire Moon is annihilated on New Moon night. From then on, each night, a fraction is added, until the Moon is full circle on Full Moon Night. The Chandra (Moon) is the presiding deity of the mind; the mind waxes and wanes, like the Moon. Chandrama manaso jathah - Out of the mind of the Purusha (Supreme Being), the Moon was born.

It must be remembered that the chief aim of all sadhana is to eliminate the mind, to become amanaska. Then only can Maya (illusion) be cut asunder and the Reality revealed.

During the dark fortnight of the month, sadhana has to be done to eliminate each day a fraction of the mind, for, every day, a fraction of the Moon too is being taken out of cognizance. On the night of Chathurdashi, the 14th day, the night of Shiva, only a fraction remains.

If some special effort is made that night, through more intensive and vigilant sadhana, like puja or japam or dhyana (ritual worship, one-pointed repetition of holy names, and meditation), success is ensured. Shiva alone has to be meditated upon that night without the mind straying towards thoughts of sleep or food.

This has to be done every month; once a year, on Maha Shivaratri, a special spurt of spiritual activity is recommended, so that what is shavam (corpse) can become Shivam (God), by the perpetual awareness of its Divine Indweller.

As beautifully explained by Swami, the night has to be suffused with spiritual activity to make best use of it. And that is the reason this particular festival is observed more solemnly even when compared to the other festivals of the Indian tradition. People mark the Shivaratri with a night long vigil filled with worship to Lord Shiva.

An Epochal Shivaratri from the Past

Most interestingly, a night long vigil on a Maha Shivaratri way back in 1940 marked an important event in the Avataric life of Bhagawan. That year, the auspicious night was on March 7. Swami, little Sathya then, was living in Uravakonda with His brother Seshama Raju and sister-in-law Susheelamma.

Swami’s sister, Venkamma was visiting, so she was there too. In fact we owe our gratitude to her, for she has recorded the happenings and that is how we have come to know much of the details. Swami chose to celebrate Shivaratri the way it was meant to be celebrated, the way He taught us to celebrate it – revelling in the glory of the Divine Name. The Pandhari Bhajan group formed by Swami as a young lad was already quite famous. The group gathered on the auspicious occasion and singing in their mellifluous voices, filled the village with divine vibrations till late into the night.

Swami told His sister that He will not be coming home that night and so asked her to leave the door of the home ajar so He could slip in when He returned in the early hours, the next day. After concluding the nagarsankirtan Swami walked to a temple of Lord Shiva in a village three kilometres away called Budagavi.

He spent the whole night in ‘worship’ at the temple there. By the time Swami returned to His home in Uravakonda it was the early hours of the morning. The sister had the habit of starting her day by having darshan of the Tulasi (basil) plant in front of the house. That morning when she opened the door, she found Swami standing there. He was all cold as He had stayed out all night. She quickly took Him in and asked Him to wash His feet and come while she gets something for Him to eat.

Shortly after Swami went into the washroom, sister Venkamma heard a loud yelp from Swami. She rushed to the spot to find Him clenching His right toe and grimacing in pain. She thought the infamous scorpions of the Uravakonda region must be the culprit. She rushed to wake up the elder brother, but by then Swami had become unconscious and stiff.

Writing about this incident in Sathyam Shivam Sundaram, Prof Kasturi records that Swami falling unconscious in a trance was not a matter of surprise to devotees in the later years. It was quite a common occurrence when driven by His love for some devout soul Swami would ‘rush out of the body’ leaving His physical frame in the care of those around. So this was probably the first open manifestation of His divine nature and His matchless grace. One would not be wrong in remarking that this immensely important event that occurred after the Shivaratri vigil, heralded a shift in the persona the Divine had adorned to carry out His earthly task.

Launching "Radio Sai Bhajans"

Ever since, Shivaratri has been a very important observance in Swami’s presence. The Lingodbhavam is a legend in itself. But Swami chose this festival to flag off some important events too. The Sanathana Sarathi, the print form of His nectarous wisdom and counsel to mankind, was launched on the Shivaratri of 1958. The Telugu version of the Sathyam Shivam Sundaram was released on a Shivaratri day (1971) too. Swami also chose the occasion to felicitate the author Prof N Kasturi and the Telugu translator Brahmasri Doopati Thirumalacharyulu on that day.

Shivaratri is an important occasion for us at Radio Sai too. For it was on a Shivaratri that Swami blessed us to do our first ever live video broadcast from Prasanthi Nilayam! And now in 2019, it gives us immense pleasure to share the news about another offering we wish to humbly place at the lotus feet.

Bhagawan made it clear that the best way to use the auspicious night of Maha Shivaratri is to sanctify every moment of it in the contemplation of the Lord. And in His immense mercy, the universal tool that can be used at any time, by anyone and anywhere that Swami has blessed all of us with is that of Namasankirtan or bhajans. That is the reason, the Maha Shivarati festival in Prasanthi Nilayam and in many Sai Centres around the world is observed with a night-long, unbroken offering of Bhajan singing.

So on this holy Maha Shivaratri, we wish to offer at Swami’s feet a bouquet that we hope will please Him. When Swami inaugurated the Radio Sai Studio in 2002 He reminded us that there is nothing that we can offer that He ‘needs’. But He added, serving the devotees alone will please Him and will sanctify our lives too. Holding on to those profound words as our beacon of light, we wish to present before all devotees this latest offering – a Radio Sai YouTube Channel dedicated to Prasanthi Sai Bhajans.

What Will This Channel Offer?

  • - "ABhajanADay": Popular Sai Bhajans specially recorded in our studio will be uploaded as individual bhajans

    - Each bhajan will be accompanied with visuals of the Divine Darshan of Bhagawan

    - We will also offer in the description to each bhajan, the lyrics and the meaning

    - The bhajans are rendered by members of the Prasanthi Mandir Bhajan Group members in a
    manner Swami had trained them to sing over the years

    - To begin with, from March 4 (Shivaratri) to April 24 (Aradhana Mahotsavam), every single
    day, a new bhajan will be uploaded. Many other bhajan offerings will be added from time to time.

What Can You Do?

Do subscribe to this new YouTube channel to enjoy the bliss of ABhajanADay, and click on the bell icon to receive notification every time a bhajan is uploaded.

Radio Sai Bhajans Youtube Channel Subscribe  

Please note, you will have to subscribe to this channel separately even if you have already subscribed to the main Radio Sai YouTube channel. If you haven’t subscribed to the main channel as yet, we request you to subscribe there and click the bell icon there too. Thereby you will receive notifications for the other videos we upload and when there are live broadcasts from Prasanthi Nilayam.

For more details about the initiative, you can listen to the special discussion with the members of the Radio Sai Team, Mr Sundar Swaminathan (Director), Ms Karuna Munshi, Mr Bishu Prusty and Mr Anirudh Srinivasan that was aired as part of the Morning Glory segment of Thursday Live on Feb 28, 2918.

Special Conversation on the Launch of Radio Sai Bhajan Channel - 28 Feb 2019
Special Conversation on the Launch of
Radio Sai Bhajan Channel - 28 Feb 2019

We hope you will join us in spreading the positive vibrations of Sai Bhajans to every corner of the world. May every being in this world bask in the grace of our beloved Bhagawan.

- Radio Sai Team

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