Change of Guard at the Sri Sathya Sai Institute: The Chancellor blesses a new Vice Chancellor

Sri Sathya Sai, Revered Founder Chancellor, felicitating Dr. G. Venkataraman, outgoing Vice Chancellor, in the Prasanthi Nilayam Campus Auditorium

Monday, August 10, 1998

In a function held in the Institute auditorium, Prashanti Nilayam campus on 10th August 1998, Sri Sethuraman V. Giri assumed charge as the new Vice Chancellor of Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning. Sri Giri is a distinguished career bureaucrat, having held senior positions with the Central Government including that of Secretary, Department of Education and Department of Agriculture; and the Central Vigilance Commissioner, Government of India. 

Bhagavan, the Revered Chancellor, accompanied by Sri Giri and Dr. Ganesan Venkataraman, the outgoing Vice Chancellor of the Institute, arrived in the auditorium in a procession led by the Institute students chanting Vedic hymns at 3 pm. Bhagavan was welcomed with Poorna Kumbham. Dr. Sandeepan Chatterjee, Faculty Member, Dept. of English, welcomed the gathering. Sri Deepak Anand, MBA student at the Institute, gave a short speech. Dr. G. Venkataraman expressed his feelings of gratitude to Bhagavan for giving him an opportunity to work in His institutions. Then Sri Giri also spoke a few words. Bhagavan blessed Dr. Venkataraman with gold bracelet and Sri Giri with a shawl. 
Sri Sathya Sai welcoming the incoming Vice Chancellor, Sri S.V. Giri, with a shawl

Bhagavan then delivered a Discourse. He said:

"Education must inculcate respect for human values like
truth, righteousness, love, and peace. Education is for life. Life is for man. Man is there for society. Society is meant for spirituality. The spirituality is there for the nation. The nation is part of the world, and the world is for peace.

Today everyone wants peace. In fact you can attain and acquire peace only out of human values. For peace and happiness, human values are most important. Bereft of human values, man can never be in peace. Without understanding this principle, man tries to acquire education. Man today considers that receiving information is education. It is not information that confers human values.

Modern education makes a man machine, a computer. Greatness lies in becoming not a computer but a composer. You have to acquire education to make your life ideal. Modern education tends to make men selfish. There should be a limit even for selfishness. Every student must necessarily cultivate human values. The Government, by establishing educational institutions in every village and street, thinks that the education in the country has progressed.

What are the qualities of education? Virtues, good intellect, adherence to truth, devotion, discipline, and duty are essential qualities. Education must teach these values. Students have to learn these things. What is the progress in modern education? In fact, students try to ruin those who are responsible for their food. They harm those who help them. They make fun of those who teach them. This is the progress in ‘modern’ education. Students have to foster obedience, humility, and human values and attain Divinity. This is true education. 

Modern students do not understand what true education is. As a result, society is polluted. Truth and other human qualities have been distorted and perverted altogether. Sanctity and sacred quality of human nature is fast disappearing. The practise of righteousness, compassion are viewed as bad practices. Do you call this ‘progress’ in education? No. you should express human values by practicing righteousness and cultivating compassion."

The function concluded with singing of the National Anthem. 

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