Volume 10 - Issue 02
February 2012
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Posted on : Feb 03, 2012



How Bhagawan mysteriously motivated the Sai Youth of Ambodola to reach out to the most neglected little ones of rural Odisha (in East India) and create an oasis of divine compassion


The Genesis of 'Sai Karunalayam'


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The Call from Within to Wake Up to a Promise

“Is it only acting or a reality? Make it a reality!” Trinath could not sleep that night. This message kept strongly ringing in his mind over and over again as if someone was beseeching him to pay attention and take action. The mysterious voice just implored him: “Make it a reality!”

Trinath woke up with a start. He had no difficulty in identifying the voice; he had known and loved Baba for five years by then.

Still, he found it hard to assimilate what he heard. Yes, he was acting in a drama that the Sai youth of Ambodola (a small village in southern Odisha) were rehearsing for Bhagawan Baba’s 81st birthday on November 23, 2006. “Even then, I was confused. I was not used to such strange ways of Baba,” recalled Trinath and continued, “Nevertheless, I shared this dream with my other Sai brothers. Most of them told me since I was so immersed in the main character ‘Avinash’, it was actually my thoughts that were surfacing in my dreams. Some others said, ‘Just forget about this for now. Let us do the play first and discuss this after the birthday celebrations.’ But there was no way I could take this off my mind. To me it did not feel like a dream at all; it was so real.”

After the Sai Youth enacted a drama in Nov 2006 which had the story of building an orphanage, the Lord came in the dream of Trinath and said, "Is it only acting? Make it a reality!" and that is the genesis of 'Sai Karunalaya' in Ambodola. They performed the drama once again in April 2007 and this time the
State President of Sri Sathya Sai Organisation, Odisha was present; the above photo was taken at the end of that presentation.

Even as Trinath was contemplating trying to make sense of this baffling direction from the divine, what happened the next day befuddled him more.

Grace that also Served as a Reminder

 Vibhuti started appearing on Swami’s pictures in our house. I could not believe that we could be recipients of such grace! I was so excited; on that night itself I called Mohan bhai (the senior youth leader of that area) and shared it with him. He advised me to be tight-lipped about it for the time being and maintain absolute purity at home.

“The next day perplexed me even more. The blessings had multiplied! Kumkum (vermillion) started falling from the pictures and then for a whole week vibhuti, kumkum, honey and milk poured from all the photos of Swami in our house. This phenomenon could no longer be hidden and slowly people started streaming in to watch this miracle.”

It was at this time that Mohan bhai revealed to Trinath how the Sai youth there had planned to build an orphanage as their offering to Swami and had even bought land in that rural hamlet for fifteen thousand rupees in 1999. However, the construction had not begun because of many resource constraints.

trinath_miracle_ambadola_radiosai trinath_miracle_ambadola_radiosai trinath_miracle_ambadola_radiosai trinath_miracle_ambadola_radiosai trinath_miracle_ambadola_radiosai trinath_miracle_ambadola_radiosai trinath_miracle_ambadola_radiosai trinath_miracle_ambadola_radiosai
Trinath (right) sharing his story in the Radio Sai studio; on the left is the photo in Trinath's house from which blessings
from the Lord manifested in the form of vibhuti, vermillion, honey, milk, etc.

“When I heard this, I was convinced that Baba really wanted us to create this special home for the needy children,” said Trinath.

Service Calls – from the Stage

In fact, this is exactly what happens at the convocation drama of 2004 which was staged by the students of Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning in front of Bhagawan on November 22. The protagonist Kaushik, who is a student of literature, is on the lookout for a real life story for a contest - a tale that highlights the hidden goodness in man.

Scenes from the convocation drama 'Chal Re Man Apne Dham' enacted by the students of Baba's university on November 22, 2004.

Kaushik comes across a talented and devoted idealist – Avinash who had saved the life of the son of a poor father by giving the money entrusted to him by his company to arrange a business function, for the son’s immediate surgery. Being fired by his employer for ‘dereliction of duty’, Avinash decides to devote his life to social service and starts ‘Karunalayam’ - a residential school for orphans. Kaushik calls such idealism impractical; but finds out in that touching final scene that the son that Avinash saved earlier was none other than himself! After a new lease of life, thanks to Providence again, Avinash received admission in Baba’s college, and that is how he had come to stand on his own feet.

Though the story was simple, the drama moved at a brisk pace, punctuated by vigorous dances and melodious songs. The audience was thrilled, but most importantly, Swami was all smiles and showered blessings galore on all the participants after the programme.

And among the thousands who watched this performance that night was Mohan bhai. “I was in Prasanthi Nilayam during the birthday celebrations in 2004,” he recollected and added, “and the students of Baba’s university presented this drama on the evening of their convocation day. It touched my heart and I thought to myself, ‘How beautiful it would be if we could re-enact this at our place?’ So, before returning home, I bought a CD of this programme.”

From Stage to Reality – the Many Steps

That is how Chal Re Man Apne Dham was re-staged in Ambodola on November 23, 2006; this was of course an Odiya-version (the language of the state of Odisha). Not surprisingly, it was a huge success. The youth were immensely happy; however they wanted to get back as soon as possible to serious work.

rally_ambadola_radiosai rally_ambadola_radiosai rally_ambadola_radiosai rally_ambadola_radiosai rally_ambadola_radiosai rally_ambadola_radiosai rally_ambadola_radiosai rally_ambadola_radiosai
The Sai Youth of Ambodola busy with cultural programmes as well as service and devotional activities to take His love and message to the rural folk

Soon they assembled to discuss the implementation of Swami’s instruction conveyed through Trinath. When they thought deeply about it, most of them, especially Trinath and Mohan bhai, were in tears. It was an overwhelming and humbling feeling for them that Swami Himself was now personally guiding them in their activities. It had indeed been a long and tireless journey to Sai but at the same time most fulfilling.

part 2, ambodola, radiosai part 3, ambodola, radiosai part 4, ambodola, radiosai part 5, ambodola, radiosai


- Bishu Prusty
Radio Sai Team

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