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Love and Light

Region 1 - Swami's Birthday Celebrations at Bromley Sai Centre

Approximately 90 devotees gathered at the Bromley United Reformed Church to celebrate His Birthday.

We were like busy Bees on the Birthday with lots of people decorating the Hall, cooking, practicing and preparing to welcome all of our members for this most auspicious occasion. Swami’s Chair was set in the middle of a beautiful Rose Arch which was fashioned in White and Dark Green with an elaborate covering on the floor which was also a rich Dark Green with Silver embellishment, next to this was the Jhoola decorated with matching colours and decked with flowers and Silver Butterflies.

The first phase of the programme started with March Past by all the children of the Centre. And then with Vedic Chanting recited by some of the Brothers followed by the Balvikas children reciting the Multifaith Prayers. Uplifting Bhajans were then sung after which the older Balvikas children narrated 3 verses of the Bhaja Govindam with the translation given in English.

Next our oldest girl student sang the Bhajan - Sainath Tere Hazaron Hath - which transported us to another level; all the children were supposed to sing the Chorus but everyone sang it because we just could not help ourselves.

Brother Chun was our Guest Speaker and theme of his talk was "Religion of Love". He told us that Love is eternal and unlimited. It is only we who take tiny sips from its infinite ocean. We have to learn how to develop this love, purify and expand it into Divine love. Divine love is beyond thought. It arises from the depth of your being and can only be experienced in the state of inner still awareness. If we can tap into that source to taste the elixir of Divine love, then we would realise the oneness of all beings – one God, one Religion “The Religion of Love”. Swami says, ”God is inscrutable. Who can affirm that God is of this form or with this attribute? Each religion defines God within the limits it demarcates and then claims to have grasped Him, forgetting that God is all forms, all names, all attributes and all assertions. The religion of humanity is the sum and substance of all these beliefs. But in reality there is only one religion, “The Religion of Love.”

He quoted Jesus from the Holy Bible when he told us "You must love God with all your Heart, all your mind and all your Soul, this is the first Commandment". Without first establishing the Brotherhood of man you cannot experience the Fatherhood of God. Bible declares if a man says he loves God and hates his brother, he is a liar. For he who loves not his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. His talk was full of messages and lessons for us to learn. Towards the end he chided Sister Ravina for bringing him out of his Retirement to speak to us and we were very glad that she did.

Some of the children had written a Birthday song for Swami "Happy Birthday Baba" which they sang for us. After some more Bhajans we all sang the Birthday Bhajan "Tere Janam Din Mein Sai, Tujhe Koti Pranaam Karenge" and the Birthday cake which was lovingly made by one of our members was cut and Sweets were thrown much to the delight of the children. The closing Prayers were said while Brother Chun performed the Aarti to Baba. Tasty Prasadam was served and enjoyed by old and new members alike who had come together as one.

Thank you Swami for giving us the chance to show our Love and Devotion to you on this your Special day. May Swami continue to light our path and keep us strong to face life’s challenges.

Jai Sai Ram

Sandra Fletcher (Bromley Centre)