March 2 to 26, 1966
Swami reached Hyderabad on the night of the 2nd of March, 1966. The anniversary meeting of Prashanti Vidwan Maha Sabha (Hyderabad) was held in the Exhibition Grounds on 5th, 6th and 7th of March, 1966. The Law Minister and the Minister for Panchayat Raj, Government of Andhra Pradesh were present. The Chairman of the Law Commission presided over the meeting. Dr. B. Ramakrishna Rao, the President of the Maha Sabha, welcomed all the guests. Swami visited the Heavy Electricals Factory at Ramachandrapuram on 12th March and blessed the workers.
|Sri Sathya Sai Darshan at the Vallabhbhai Patel Stadium - March 1966|
He then left for Bombay via Sholapur and Pune and reached Bombay on the 13th. He stayed at the residence of Sri P. K. Sawant. Sri Y. B. Chavan, the Defence Minister of India, had discussions with Swami. Swami blessed thousands of devotees during Bhajan sessions at the Gwalior Palace grounds on the 14th, 15th and 18th March. Swami addressed mammoth gatherings at the public meetings held at Vallabhbhai Patel Stadium on the 16th, 17th, and 20th. On the 16th and 17th, Sri Bharde, Speaker of the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly and Sri Page, Chairman of the Legislative Council of Bombay, presided over the function. Swami began staying at the Gwalior Palace from the 19th. Swami gave Darshan at the Vallabhai Patel Stadium and addressed the gathering on 23rd March, the auspicious Gudi Padwa Day (Maharashtrian New Year). He said:
“The lives of Divine personages, sages and seers that men read, if not taken as tonics to improve mental health as signposts for life's tortuous journey, are mere tales that fickle the fancy. The wise man finds in them beacons in the darkness. Bheeshma, for example, has to be revered and accepted as an inspiration, even more potent than Rama so far as homage to the father is concerned. In order to cater to the carnal cravings of his senile father, craving which he could have ordinarily condemned, he denied himself gladly, spontaneously, without demur and for the entire period of his life, both wedded life and royal status. The Vedic injunction ‘Pitru Devo Bhava’ (revere father as God), was honoured by him in the fullest manner.
|Rama leaves Ayodhya for the forest|
Another irreverence that is harming progress is the cynical sneer with which the younger generation has been taught to welcome all reference to God and religion, Who is this God? Where is He to be found? What does He do there? they ask in derision. When a wandering monk was accosted thus by a gang of villagers, he asked them casually to bring him a basin of milk. He looked long at it, stirred it with his finger, shook it around and was silent all the time. The villagers asked him why and he replied, I am trying to locate the butter which they say is in milk. I do not see any in this basinful of milk. The gang laughed at his colossal ignorance. They told him the butter was there, in every drop of the milk, though he could not see it with his eyes or take it out with his finger; it had to be curdled, churned and collected, that was all. The monk declared, So too, God is immanent in the Universe; He is in the most distant star as well as in the blade of grass under your feet. You can see Him provided you curdle this Universe with Viveka (discrimination), churn it with Vairagya (detachment) and collect it with Shraddha (earnestness). In the grain of sand as well as in the grandest galaxy, God can be found by diligent Sadhana. He is the core of every being, as butter is in every drop of the milk...
The most valuable message the scriptures convey is this: Carry on your legitimate duties; discharge your obligations; live up to your rights; but do not allow attachment to grow. Be like a trustee so far as family, riches, reputation, knowledge and skills are concerned. Leave them gladly aside, when the call of death comes. Death is pictured by some as a terror-striking God who rides a monster-buffalo, and pounces on you with a noose. No, the noose is of your own making. He does not pounce; he gives advance notice of his arrival to take you notice in the form of intimations like grey hair, falling teeth, failing vision, deafness of hearing, folding of the skin, etc. He does not ride any beast; he is only another name for Time. It is Time that creeps steadily towards you and shears the cord of life.
So, utilise the capacity for Karma (action) with which you are endowed, to liberate yourself from the clutches of Time. The Law of Karma holds out hope for you; as the Karma, so the consequence. Do not bind yourself further by seeking the fruit of Karma; offer the Karma at the Feet of God; let it glorify Him, let it further His splendour. Be unconcerned with the success or failure of the endeavour. Then, death can have no noose to bind you with. Death will come as a liberator, not a jailor. These great teachings of the ancient texts are the heritage of the human community; they must be handed down to the growing generation, in homes and schools. The people, as well as the leaders and rulers whom they have chosen, have to take up this task. I would ask the Minister, the Speaker and the Chairman of the Legislative Council who are here to remind themselves of this duty. The seed of devotion, detachment and duty has to be implanted early, so that the harvest of peace, contentment; co-operation and love may be gleaned. That is the task for which I have come. If they share in that task, they are certain to succeed.”
|Sri Sathya Sai with dignitaries on the dias; To the extreme right is Dr. Burgula Ramakrishna Rao, Former Governor of Uttar Pradesh and Kerala|
Swami presided over the ‘Bhoomi Puja’ at the site selected for ‘Dharmakshetra’ (the future residence of Swami in Bombay) on 24th March. He addressed the volunteers on 25th March.
Swami left Bombay and reached Pune on 26th.