Swami inaugurates the Nandana Vanam at Sri Sathya Sai Hostel

Thursday, September 17, 1992

Bhagavan visited the Institute hostel at Prashanti Nilayam on this day. He was received with Poorna Kumbham amidst Vedic chants and band music. He proceeded to the Rock Garden prepared by the students inside the Hostel compound. Bhagavan inaugurated the garden to the excitement of the students. 
Sri Sathya Sai at the Hostel Garden
He then resumed His seat on the dais. Sri Sanjay Sahni, Warden of the Hostel, welcomed Bhagavan on behalf of the staff and students of the hostel. Two students, Avinash Alimchandani and Sainath Seshappa, spoke on this occasion. Bhagavan then delivered an inspiring Discourse. Excerpts are given below:

"Dear Students! 

In order to foster one's individual personality, everyone has to acquire knowledge of ethics and morality. Personality is not an ordinary term. It expresses the essential quality of a human being. For the Sanskrit word Vyaktitvam the equivalent term in English is personality. Personality is acquired only on the basis of adherence to moral principles. The term Neeti in Sanskrit is associated with manners and good conduct. When a man exercises discrimination in daily activity, then he is said to observe morality. A life without morality is utterly useless. The prestige of any community depends upon its morals. If morality is absent, the community comes to grief. Whether it is a nation, a society, or an individual, when they conduct themselves contrary to morality, the civilisation which they might have fostered for a long time will come to ruin. One may have plenty of wealth, position, authority and much else, but all these are meretricious; morality alone enhances the worth of a human being.

Kings and emperors in Bharat from quite ancient times based their lives on morality and acquired honour and glory. It is on account of them that Bharat was called a Divine land, a land of Karma (right Action), a land of Yoga, and a land of Tyaaga (sacrifice). The name and fame of Emperor Ashoka have survived for millennia because he practised in his day-to-day life the great virtues. Akbar, among Mogul emperors, has been esteemed as a great ruler because of his conduct as an emperor.

Only a moral life can be called sacred. Man is a sacred being. But when he indulges in selfishness, his sacred, divine life is undermined. The sacred Atma is fundamental for every human being. This is also called Antaratma. God as the Indweller guides and directs human life as Antaratma, the inner-conscience of every human being. In human life today selfishness and self-interest have assumed prodigious proportions. Whatever he does, whatever he sees, whatever he studies, man makes it sub-serve selfish interests. Human life has become a plaything in the hands of selfishness. Only when selfishness is totally destroyed in the human heart, will man develop a broad-mindedness that will promote unity and sacredness among mankind. When this selfishness grows continually, it takes the form of Kaama (lust), Krodha (hatred) and Lobha (greed). These three vices are demonic in nature. When these three demonic vices grow in them, human beings lose faith in God. Besides losing faith in God, they also develop enmity towards God. Worldly desires increase. The Divine quality declines...

Dear students! 

Pursue your studies. But, together with education, earn the blessings of your parents. In addition, earn the grace of God. Despite all his knowledge, authority, power and prowess, what happened to a warrior like Karna? He lacked God's grace. Earn God's grace. That is true spiritual education. Along with spiritual education, you may pursue worldly education. A basic requirement for all this is good character. Morality alone helps one in a number of ways. If your conduct is not good, society will not respect you. As long as one is in power, society may respect one. Once power goes, the man will be an object of derision. You may not have any power, but morality will confer honour and respect."

Thereafter, the students presented a music programme. He visited the various service wings of the Hostel and also the prayer room of the Secondary School on the second floor of the building. This was followed by a dinner in the dining hall with Bhagavan surrounded by the students. Bhagavan then visited the Card exhibition organised by the students. It was an exhibition of the cards that were made by them for several festive occasions.

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