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Aum Sri Sai Ram

Press Release by Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust

November 07, 2014

Sri Sathya Sai Global Akhanda Bhajan - Prelude

Namasankirtan or Bhajans is an inherent part of the cultural fabric of India, but one can say that Bhagawan gave a new life to it by encouraging people to participate in Bhajans or in community singing as a primary means to redemption. He would explain, singing aloud the name of the Lord in the form of Bhajans is like placing a lamp on the threshold of the house; it illuminates the within and the without. The name of the Lord brings peace to the one who sings as well as to those that listen. Also Baba insisted that Bhajans should not be just heard, it must be participatory. That is why in Sai Bhajans the followers of the Bhajans sing as much as the lead singers do; for this is not an exhibition of one's talent but a sacred act of worship that brings about 'unity and purity' which eventually leads to 'Divinity'. The act of singing together brings about unity, the divine name purifies one's thoughts and feelings, and all this is done to reveal the Divinity latent within us.

Explaining the nature and history of Bhajans Baba says:

Keerthanam & Sankeerthanam

There is a big difference between Keerthanam and SankeerthanamKeerthanam is an individual affair. It is singing by an individual for the fulfilment of his prayers. Sankeerthanam aims at the well-being of the whole universe. This is also described as Saamaajika bhajans (community singing). This method of singing bhajans was first initiated by Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism.

Dhyana (meditation) in Kritha Yuga, Yajna (sacrifice) in Thretha Yuga, Archana (worship of idols) in Dwapara Yuga and Nama Sankeerthana (Reciting the name of the Lord) in Kali Yuga are the methods prescribed for realising the Divine. Sankeerthana is of four kinds: One is Guna Sankeerthana; two, Leela Sankeerthana; three, Bhava Sankeerthana; four, Nama Sankeerthana. While in each of the previous aeons the devotees adopted one or another methods of singing the glories, it is the supreme good fortune of the residents of Prashanthi Nilayam to enjoy all the four forms of Sankeerthana. The bhajans sung here are a combination of all the four forms ofSankeerthana. (Divine Discourse, 3 Mar 1992)

Bhajans & Akhanda Bhajans

Bhajans is an integral part of the daily routine of Prasanthi Nilayam Ashram, be it a normal day or a festive occasion. But Akhanda Bhajan is conducted twice a year. Once as part of the night-long vigil during the Shivaratri celebration when Bhajans start at 6 in the evening and end at 6 the next morning. The second Akhanda Bhajan is conducted on the second Saturday of November. This Akhanda Bhajan last for 24 hours and is also conducted in various Sai Centres and Mandirs across the globe, simultaneously. This tradition started way back in the year 1945 when a group of devotees in Bangalore decided to commemorate their observance of Thursday Sai Bhajans for one year, with a 24 hour non-stop Bhajan session. When Swami was informed of it, He was delighted and came Himself to participate and encourage the devotees. For many years Akhanda Bhajan used to be held in Bangalore before it became a part of the Birthday Celebrations in Prasanthi Nilayam.

'Akhanda' means unbroken or uninterrupted. Bhagawan would often remind His devotees that though it is commendable to participate in the Akhanda Bhajans, what one must strive for is to make one's very life an Akhanda Bhajan. One may attend to their duties in accordance to their roles in life, but the mind should ever be engaged in Namasmarana – Akhanda Namsasmarana. Just as one's breath is ceaseless, the chanting of the name too must be ceaseless. When we exert ourselves physically, we pant or breathe harder don't we? So too, when in excitement – anxiety or exhilaration, we must think of the Lord with more intensity, but think of Him at all other times too. This is the most important message of Baba, an emphasis of the message Krishna gave in the Gita! He told Arjuna, “Sarvesu kalesu Mam anusmara yudhya ca' – At all times, think of Me Incessantly; even as you take part in the battle. This is the message behind the observance of Akhanda Bhajan.

ENJOY PERSONALLY THE AKHANDA BHAJAN AT SAI KULWANT HALL, PRASANTHI NILAYAM:

FROM 06 00 PM ON 08 11 2014-SATURDAY TO 06 00 PM ON 09 11 2014-SUNDAY.

THOSE WHO ARE IN REST OF THE WORLD MAY ENJOY VIEWING:  

LIVE WEBCAST RELAY THROUGH www.radiosai.org AT THE FOLLOWING TIMINGS:


08 11 2014   Saturday                      05 00 PM  to 08 00 PM

09 11 2014   Sunday                         07 30 AM to 10 00 AM (Audio only)

09 11 2014   Saturday                      04 30 PM  to 06 00 PM

 

 

 

Public Relations Office
Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust
Prasanthi Nilayam 515134
Tel: +91 8555 287390  Extn 209

 

Jai Sai Ram!