Volume 8 - Issue 09
June 2011
Other Articles
Posted on: June 20, 2011



Speech by Mr. V. Srinivasan
on the occasion of Aradhana Mahotsavam Day (May 4, 2011) in Sai Kulwant Hall




On the morning of May 4, 2011, a special Aradhana Mahatsovam – a ceremony of Prayer beseeching Lord Sai to incarnate again was conducted in the Sai Kulwant Hall; it was the 11th day since Bhagawan Baba had shed His mortal coil. In the evening of the same day there was a special congregation of devotees again in the Sai Kulwant Hall and four distinguished elders of the Sai family addressed the gathering.

The fourth speaker that evening was Mr. V. Srinivasan who was introduced to the audience by Mr. G. S. Srirangarajan.  Presented below is the transcript of this talk along with the introduction.

A qualified engineer, Mr. V. Srinivasan is a well-known industrialist. He is the chairman of W.S. Industries located in Chennai, India. He was formerly the national president of the Confederation of Indian Industries, the national president of the Institute of Indian Plant Engineers, a member of the Jawaharlal University Syndicate, senior member of the US-based Institute of Electronic and Electrical Engineers, and founder chairman of the Chennai chapter. 

He came to the Lotus Feet of Bhagawan more than four decades ago, and has since then been blessed by Swami to hold several key positions in His divine mission.

As the all-India president of the Sri Sathya Sai Organisations, Mr. V. Srinivasan guides and supervises the activities of the organization across the country. He is a member of the Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust, the Prashanti Council and a Trustee of the Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning Trust and the Sri Sathya Sai Medical Trust. 

I offer my most loving, humble and reverential pranams at the feet of our Eternal Master. 

Mr. V. Srinivasan addressing the congregation of devotees in Sai Kulwant Hall
on the evening of May 4, 2011.

Respected elders, dear brothers and sisters, my dear students, Sai Ram to all of you.

In all these 40 years that I have been with Bhagawan, I never thought that I would see such a day. I am sure most of you also would never have imagined that we will be participating in this kind of a meeting.

All of us can recall so many joyful occasions in the presence of our Beloved Bhagawan and our memories go back to all those beautiful and happy times. We heard our brothers recalling the difficult times experienced since the last few days of March. 

But we must also realize that today, this meeting, is His Sankalpa, His Will - nothing can happen and nothing will happen without Bhagawan willing it to happen. 

Our Great Misfortune… and Fortune

Bhagawan left His earthly body on Easter Sunday; the day of Calvary. We know how Jesus gave His blood for the redemption of humanity.

Bhagawan, if He so desired, could have left instantly. But He prepared us for the eventuality but Himself never suffered. He has told several times: I have no pain; I am not this body’. Bhagawan has also said:You are not this body’.

He showed us by example that He is not the body, which appeared to undergo that suffering. It was out of His eternal, selfless and boundless love for all of us that He underwent those tribulations. 

The grief within each one of us must be confined in our hearts; it is not to be exhibited. The fact that His physical form is not with us should not be a cause for us to grieve in public. Rather, we should rejoice that out of the millions and crores of people, over the eons of time, Bhagawan chose us to be with Him during His Avatarhood in this Kaliyuga. 

We have to experience and recall all His Leelas (Divine sport). We must contemplate His Vaibhavam (Glory) and His Divinity. Bhagawan would not want us to have any public display of grief.


“Go around, see My devotees” – Bhagawan

I have been with Bhagawan for forty years when out of His mercy and love, He took me from where I was and gave me the good fortune to be with Him and to be with all of you. He gave me the opportunity and gift of satsang (good company) with millions of people. I remember when He made me the All India President, it came as a total surprise because it was expected that some other person would be nominated. And when I asked Him: "Bhagawan, please guide me on the right thing to do,” His command was: "Go around, see My devotees. That is My instruction". 

And then, when I went from one corner of India to another, from Kashmir to Kanyakumari, from Gujarat to Bengal and Assam, I could see what this true love was - for a person many have never seen even once. The bhakti (devotion) that I saw in every corner of India was my classroom. And that is Bhagawan's gift to me and which I wish to share with everyone in the remaining years of my life.

In every corner of India there are sevadals reaching out to the needy and
distressed - it is Pure Love in real action.

The Road Ahead

Today I would like to speak on what we should do. What is our responsibility? What is our duty?

With prayers to Bhagawan and with deep confidence in His love, the first message I wish to convey is there will be continuity of every single activity that Bhagawan Baba started. All His institutions, Trusts, schools, and colleges will continue to function with the same excellence that Bhagawan endowed them with. Bhagawan has made more than adequate provision for all these institutions. With His vision and foresight, and His boundless love, He has created for perpetuity adequate resources for all these institutions to continue functioning on the same world-class standards. The programmes by overseas devotees will also continue.

Not only that but every single activity - whether it is Parthi Yatra pilgrimage, Bal Vikas, conferences, training programmes, the celebrations, the Grama seva  - all will continue.

The Sai Kulwant Hall in Prasanthi Nilayam was, is and will be the powerhouse where devotees from
every region, race and religion recharge their spiritual batteries.

These are not pronouncements of human beings but the will of Bhagawan. It is His confidence that gives us the strength to say this. Baba always stressed on self-confidence and said: "If you don't have the confidence in yourself, how will you have confidence in Me?" It is our duty to recall and abide by His words now.

More importantly, we must realize that Bhagawan has made each one of us an image, a reflection of His Divine form. Bhagawan has put divinity in every one of us and, therefore, we should act and behave as divine human beings and not as mere animals. If we profess to be human beings but behave like devils, we are only betraying our Divine Lord by every single such act that we do.

Bhagawan – The Eternal Chairman and Charioteer of our Hearts

In the last few days, many people have asked me irrelevant questions. For example: "Who is your Chairman?"

I dismiss this question for we have only One Chairman - Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. Who can occupy that Chair? Will anyone dare to do it?

Bhagawan is the Founder and Chairman for Eternity.

It is my confidence that Bhagawan's miracles will continue to increase.

We had the first period of 16 years (characterized by Leelas), the next were years of Mahimas (Divine Manifestations), and then the years of Sambhashan (Discourse). But in the last few years, I have always felt that rather than the devotees coming to Swami, Swami has been going out to the devotees. He is going all over the world. How then do we see people here from Russia, Iran, Slovenia, China, and from countries with names we don't even know! We have seen people who have only heard about Swami and never seen Him.  They come here because every one of them has seen the manifestations of that Divinity.

So, Bhagawan's miracles will continue to increase. Remember that and have faith that Bhagawan will be coming to each one of us.

Do not bother with what the media says. Bhagawan would call the newspapers as 'nuisance' papers. So, establish that direct relationship with Bhagawan. You don't need anybody.

Bhagawan always used to say: "Heart to heart, not art to art.” Every single devotee enjoyed a direct relationship with Bhagawan and that relationship continues in your heart, He is your Hridayavaasi, the Indweller of the heart. He is there in each one of us and will be there in unborn generations. Those who come and who are yet to be born will experience the great divinity and reality of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. We must have this confidence.

Bhagawan always used to say that all people are good. Did He ever say that somebody is bad? He used to say Nee kannulo drishti dosham undi" – meaning there is some defect in our eyes. He has even said that even Ravana was good. Otherwise how could he have been such a great devotee of Shiva? How could he have lifted Mount Kailasa?

So dear brothers and sisters, let us learn now to look only at the good in people. Do not waste your time talking about the bad. We must strive to appeal to that goodness; never talk behind people’s back.

I remember when I first came to Swami, Mr. Indulal Shah told me that this is what Swami always says: "If you want to say something to somebody, say it to his face, never behind his back." We must practice these things now.

How to Live Up to Being a Sai Devotee

We must make our lives His Message through Prema - Love. It should not be just lip-service. Baba asksCheppinattu Cheshtara?” meaning, "Do you do what you say?" Let us remember this.

Bhagawan has told His students how they must talk to their boss in a polite manner. While offering a suggestion, they should say: "Sir, this is my opinion; please don't misunderstand me." He has taught us how we should talk, behave and relate to each other as brothers and sisters. There is only one bond between us - the bond of love.

We sing the song 'Humko tumse pyaar kitna' (so much love we have for You! O Lord!) Bhagawan didn't want that song to be sung to Him; He wanted it to be sung to each one of us. We need to practice this principle of selfless love because that is what distinguishes Sai devotees from others. It is not by wearing white clothes that we become Sai devotees; it is by our actions, speech and behaviour. We must live up to these Sai dictums so that others are prompted to say: "These people must be Sai devotees; these individuals must be Sai students.” 

It is the time to be alert so that we do not lose all that we have gained. The Vivekachudamani clearly says that after ages and ages of making spiritual progress, just one slip is enough to make us fall down completely. Bhagawan has taken great pains to uplift each one of us. Let us not lose that and remember Him and go forward. Always march forward. Bhagawan has told several people: "Never look back. Look always ahead; always look high. Never have your eyes down. In fact, it is your duty to set your sights high." 

The Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust – God’s Instrument to Continue His Work

I wish to assure you on behalf of all the Trustees of the Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust that we will function with love and humility, and in total transparency. We will set a model for all other public charitable Trusts. My colleagues and I have decided that in future when the Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust brings out an annual report, we will make it a public document. It will include all the activities in India and abroad.

With prayers to Bhagawan and with complete humility, I must also caution all of you to stay away from the so-called false gurus. There are those that say: ‘Baba has given all His powers to me.’ This is utter falsehood. Baba never gave His powers to anybody. There is only One, not two.

Our God is only Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.

My brothers, it is not enough just to proclaim "Sri Sathya Sai Babaji Ki Jai”. It is more important to lead by example, walk the talk and express through action that Bhagawan Baba is our only God.

Do not believe in all these people who perform chamatkaars (miracles). While giving the lockets, chains and other blessings, Bhagawan has time and again told us: "I give these things because this is what you want. But, I want you to want what I have really come to give - Ananda. Not all these rings that you are wearing."

So, keep in mind that there can be nobody who can give you peace of mind and Divine love but Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. 

It’s also important to be careful of people using Swami's name in vain. Several Trusts have already been started and will be started saying they are attached to the Sathya Sai Mission. To prevent any misrepresentation, we are thinking of making public the details of the Trusts that have been set up by Bhagawan with His approval. This is to update everybody about the Trusts that are genuinely a part of the Sathya Sai Mission.

Being His Messengers of Peace and Love

If we are to progress on the right path that Bhagawan has ordained for us, it is imperative that we exercise discrimination or vivekam. This is indeed the need of the hour.

For those of you who reside in the ashram, you have a special responsibility. Live in love, confidence and with devotion to Bhagawan. Do not indulge in small talk unnecessarily. This is not a place for gossip. There is so much more you can do. Engage in some sadhana (spiritual practice). Bhagawan always said: "There is no individual who is incapable of seva. And seva is not done just by the hands or by writing a big cheque.  Seva is done even when you speak two or three words of selfless love.”

So, whether we are in the Prashanti Nilayam ashram or whether we are in Brindavan, Sai Shruti, Dharmakshetra, Shivam or Ananda Vilas in Shimla, all of us have a special responsibility. We have to make our own lives reflect all that Bhagawan has taught us. Please keep this in mind and contemplate on this. Meditate on Bhagawan but remind yourselves that we have a duty. Bhagawan has given us so much.

Is there any other place like Prashanti Nilayam with all the conveniences - continuous running water, electricity, a hospital and a school nearby? Bhagawan has taken care of every single want of ours and it is our priority that we do not abuse that privilege.

We should live as Bhagawan lived and wants us to live. Remember Bhagawan is here; He is in us and around us; He is always with us. Have that faith and the confidence.

And, brothers and sisters, rest assured, together we will move forward, not alone. Together we will move in the right, royal path towards the Lotus Feet of our beloved Bhagawan - hand in hand and with Him to guide us. 

Thank you. Sai Ram.

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