Reminiscing the Shivaratris at Prasanthi Nilayam from the Days of Yore...

Swami performing Abhishekam to the Shirdi Sai Baba Idol on the morning of Shivaratri in the Poornachandra Auditorium

Friday, February 26, 1960

Swami commenced the Mahashivaratri Festival (26th February, 1960) by hoisting the Prashanti Flag. He went to explain the significance of the flag. Swami performed the Maha Abhishekam at noon and also materialised a twin Linga during the Abhisheka. The Abhishekam was performed by an unending cascade of Vibhuti from a silver vessel which was produced at the mere touch of Swami’s hand.
Sri Sathya Sai performing the miraculous Vibhuti Abhishekam to the Shirdi Sai Baba Idol on the morning of Shivaratri in the Poornachandra Auditorium. 
Prof. Kasturi is holding the urn.
In the evening, Swami graced the annual function of Sanathana Sarathi. Sri T. A. Ramanatha Reddy, Sri S. V. Rama Sarma, Sri B. V. Raman and Sri N. Kasturi recited a few poems in Swami’s presence. Prior to Swami’s Discourse in the evening, Brahmasri Bairagi Sastry and Sri Lakshmi Narayana Sastry spoke. Exactly at 9.32 pm, 9 Lingams emanated from Swami and fell on to His palms. Bhagavan then led the Bhajans. On 26th morning, Mangala Arati was offered to Swami at 7.00 am. That evening, Swami gave Darshan on the Jhoola. Sri Dhupati Tirumalachar and Sri Bairagi Sastry spoke on this occasion. Thereafter, Swami blessed the devotees with a second Discourse.
Sri Sathya Sai delivering the Shivaratri Discourse from the Vedika near Prasanthi Nilayam Mandir

Sunday, March 04, 1962 to Saturday, March 10, 1962

Swami hoisted the Prashanti Flag on the morning of the 4th of March, 1962 and gave a Discourse to the devotees. Dr. B. Ramakrishna Rao, Governor of Uttar Pradesh, inaugurated the new Sathya Sai Sabha Mandapam at 9.00 am after Swami’s Discourse. He said that he was commanded by Swami to initially lay the foundation stone for this building, and to later inaugurate the building. On Swami’s command he had come from Lucknow on that day to discharge his duty. Thereafter, Swami gave yet another Discourse. 

Swami performing the miraculous
Vibhuti Abhishekam.
Swami Karunyananda
is holding the urn
At noon, Swami performed Vibhuti Abhishekam to Shirdi Sai image at the Sabha Mandiram. Swami created a Lingam and placed it on the head of the image before the Abhishekam. The fifth Anniversary of Sanathana Sarathi was celebrated at 4.00 pm that evening. The second edition of ‘Sathyam Shivam Sundaram’ in English, Kannada, and Telugu were offered to Swami. Swami honoured the authors Sri N. Kasturi and Sri D. Tirumalacharlu and then delivered His Shivaratri message. At night during the Bhajans, two gold Lingams emanated from Swami marking the Lingodbhava. Shivaratri celebrations were drawn to a close with Mangala Arati at 7.00 am the subsequent morning.

Swami Abhedananda, Koochi Veerabhadram Narasimha Raju, Bairagy Sastry, Tirumalacharlu, Sri S. V. L. Narasimham, Sri P. Venkata Narasimhacharya and Sri G. Suryanarayana Murthy were blessed to address the gathering from the 5th to the 10th of March. Swami Himself would elaborate on each day, the principles elaborated by the speakers. Swami gave Darshan in the Jhoola on the 5th, and Brahmasri Dikshithadas Bhagavathar gave a Harikatha Kalakshepam on Swami’s life.
Lingodbhavakara Lingeshwara

Tuesday, February 11, 1964

On 11th February, 1964, Mahashivaratri was celebrated at Prashanti Nilayam, wherein about 20,000 people from different parts of India had gathered. After the customary flag hoist, Swami inaugurated the telegraphic services at the Prashanti Nilayam Post Office. Swami inaugurated the new printing machine at Sri Sathya Sai Printing Press. That afternoon, Swami Himself distributed the Abhisheka Tirtham to all the devotees. Evening Bhajans commenced at 6.00 pm. At around 9.00 pm, an oval-shaped Linga, light pink in colour emerged from Swami. Swami stated, “This is a Brahmandalinga. This is a very rare Linga. Having seen this, none of you will have any more births.”

The 7th Anniversary of Sanathana Sarathi was celebrated in the Divine Presence on this auspicious day.

The Jhoola Darshan in the evening

Thursday, March 09, 1967 to Wednesday, March 15, 1967

Mahashivaratri 1967 was celebrated from the 9th of March to the 15th of March. In His Shivaratri Discourse Swami stated, “Though every day is holy in this Prashanti Nilayam, the Shivaratri is especially so, on account of the emergence of the Linga from the living Shiva”. During the Lingodbhava two Lingams, one pink oval Lingam called Vishwa Linga with the orbits of planets and luminous on the inside; the second a smaller one, the Jyotir Lingam emerged from Swami. On all the days Swami was engaged in healing and attending to the sick, the infirm and the old amongst the pilgrims.


  1. it is nice to see such a old photos. thanks ..sairam!


  2. thanks for bringing back to memeories of the past events.


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