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Love and Light

Region 1 - Gurupoornimaa Celebration

Region 1 Guru Poornimaa was hosted by Bromley Sai Centre with the immense support of the Regional Team, Brixton and Merton Sai Centres and the Regional Sai Youth. The contributions were most valuable in making the evening a wonderful spiritual experience and a success.

The programme commenced with the traditional lighting of the lamps, followed by chants by the men of Vedic prayers to Lord Ganapati, Lord Shiva and of prayers for world peace; and the singing of verses by the ladies to honour the Guru. Meanwhile, two 6-year olds from Bromley Centre bestowed our Guru with flowers at His Lotus Feet.

Bromley’s SSE children performed two items. The first was a dance depicting a conversation between Krishna’s mother Yashodaa and her friends about the various emotions playful Krishna evoked in her with His pranks/divine plays, such as embarrassment, puzzlement, surprise, laughter, happiness, pride and even frustration. The second was the rendering of two English devotional songs by the older SSE children. They sang their hearts out harmoniously paying homage to Swami.

The video presentation by the Sai Youth took everyone down memory lane to Sai Kulwant Hall and Swami, once again, reminding us of the significance of Guru Poornimaa. Points to reflect upon were: His omnipresence; the Soham (I am That) principle; harmony in thought, word and deed; and self-transformation from materialism to ideal man for progress in both the individual and the country.

The contribution by the 5 to 8 year-old SSE children from Merton Sai Centre was an enthralling play that, within an amazing 20 minutes, cleverly told of the life history and events that lead to the enlightenment of the Buddha and His establishment of the four noble truths that would free one from suffering and achieve Nirvaana (liberation). Adherence to Dharma (righteousness) and sense control were emphasised as important factors. The children who took part acted confidently and their performance was of a very high quality. The play ended with the devotional song, ‘Sai Naatha Bhagavaan,’ sung very sweetly by all the children.

The final highlight of the day was a most inspiring speech by Shree Ajit Popat, from his heart to ours. Everyone was so mesmerised that time fled without one’s realisation of its passing and we felt we could have listened to more. We are fortunate and grateful to our beloved Swami who made it possible for him to come and pass on his experience and wisdom gained over the 30 years he had spent with Swami. The main themes of his eloquent speech were:

1) the five types of loyalty we owe to Swami with regard to a) name; b) form; c) residence (spiritual centre); d) infrastructure and environment; and e) His divine teachings and commands; and
2) the 100% loyalty that Swami expects from his devotees: this was elaborated upon with anecdotes to explain ‘loyalty’ in simple and understandable terms.

Furthermore, he said that ‘good intentions’ need to be transformed into ‘actions’ and leaving a legacy of Swami’s teachings for future generations. He emphasised once again that Swami was the embodiment not only of love but also of immense compassion. He wound up his speech by giving us all a glimpse of his own humbling experience, which in no uncertain terms inspired us all to resolve to follow our beloved Swami’s main dictum of ‘Love all, serve all’ by being 100 % loyal, with nothing less being acceptable. May He grace us with His love so that we can continue to be 100% loyal to Him from this day onwards.

The programme came to an end with a medley of group devotional songs led by the Bromley Centre members declaring His glory, followed by a hearty response from the congregation. Everyone clearly experienced Swami’s presence that evening and went home taking consecrated food with a sense of renewed energy, peace and joy to reflect on Swami’s innumerable spiritual messages.

Jai Sai Ram

Dr. Sushila Balasubramaniam
Bromley Sai Centre