Prashanthi Diary
Print this Page


The establishment of the Sai Mirpuri College of Music has added a new dimension to the Ashram life. Verily music is the highest form of devotion, through which God is most easily obtained. The musician not only redeems his own life through his music, but also carries the listeners along with him to divine ecstasy. Indian classical music is very devout and God-centered and generates in one and all Bhakthi Bhava or divine love consciousness.

Reviewing the planned offeringSo it is no wonder that the occasions when the students of the Music College play for the Lord are most enjoyable and pleasing. The students not only play on formal occasions like Thyagaraja Aradhana or on special festival days, but also enthrall the Lord on a lazy afternoon with an impromptu concert in Sai Kulwant Hall. On Wednesday, March 10, 2004, the students of the Music College presented a veena concert that provided immense pleasure to the Lord and all the devotees present.

Playing as they did at the end of the academic year, it was also an occasion for them to fully present to the Lord, who is also the Chancellor of the Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning to which the Music College is affiliated, what they had imbibed during the academic year and earn His approval and Grace.

The Veena, a musical instrument from South India, has played a leading role in the development of Indian music.Six veenas play in unison Carnatic music (as South Indian Classical music is called) regards the veena as God’s gift to humanity. The belief is that the veena music takes us to cosmic consciousness. The veena nada or sound kindles the fire in the kundalini that lies curled up in the mooladhara chakra, the lowest of the six nerve centers that lie along the spinal column. The vibration set in motion by the body heat and the life breath gathers momentum as it travels up the spinal column, eventually releasing immense powers of concentration and meditation leading to cosmic consciousness. This is known as Nadopasana, and is considered to be the easiest path to salvation.

The students started their concert with Vatapi Ganapathim Bhajeham; a piece in Hamsadwani composed by Dikshithar, a famous poet sage of South India. In India all auspicious tasks are begun with an invocation to Lord Ganapathi, the Lord who removes all obstacles along the path and ensures success.

It is only through ceaseless practice that a Vainika or veena player acquires mastery over this musical instrument. This practice enables him to acquire a clear intellect, a steady mind, and control over the senses, a sweet voice and absolute freedom from fear of any kind. Swami also has on occasions extolled the qualities of a veena player. Thus the study of the veena is itself sadhana.

The Lord engrossed in the concertThe second song played was Endaro Mahanubhavulu. It is said that a great musician Shatkala Govinda Marar from Kerala once approached Sri Thyagaraja and sang in front of him. The composition was sung in six speeds. Thyagaraja appreciating the genius of this musician composed this musical piece, Endaro Mahanubhavulu, in his honor.

The veena itself is considered to be divine. The veena dandi or the stem represents Shiva, the seven strings represent His consort Paravathi, the dragon head- Vishnu, the bridge represents Lakshmi, the metal cone – Saraswati, and the resonator represents the creator Brahma. In recognition of these Gods being represented in one instrument, the students next played Brahmam Okate, God is one, in Bhoopalam. This was followed by a composition called Marubalkakunnavemera in Sri Ranjani.

The veena finger technique is dynamic and is capable of producing a wide range of sounds. Relatively easier to learn, it still takes two decades to become a successful veena player. But the students of the Music College, seem to make very rapid progress in a fraction of the time, even in just a year or two, entirely due to His Grace.

The virtuosity of the veena was brought forth in full by the next piece Ninnu Vina Namadendu (in Namarasa Kannada), a piece eminently suitable for instrumental music. This had everyone in Sai Kulwant Hall in raptures.A group picture with the musicians

The short concert concluded with the instrumental rendition of the Vedic hymn – the Mantra Pushpam. This Mantra Pushpam expounds the truth that from the Atma, the Self, first emerged the sky. From the sky came air; from the air emerged fire; from the fire, the water; and from the water emerged the earth. Thus the source of the all the 5 elements (i.e. the material creation) is the one single Atma.

Similarly, whatever may be the system of music, whatever may be the theories, technicalities, skill and traditions of a particular system of music, still all systems of music emanate from Him. Music thus is a divine art and brings about Divya Ananda or happiness in everyone’s heart and peace in everyone’s mind, and makes everyone feel near to God.

Swami, we are very grateful to You for establishing the College of Music. The devotion and dedication of these students elevates our devotion also and establishes You firmly in our hearts and minds and makes us feel very close to You.


Volume - 2 Issue - 8 Radiosai Journal - PSN 2004