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LETTERS FROM HOME - 80

Sunday, the darshan hall appeared to be full when I arrived; there were seva dals from Tamil Nadu sitting in the large block rear block, and it was perhaps three quarters full with seva dal. By about 7.10 am, both inside and new raised seating area were full. There was one group with Sai Youth Wing badges on, they had come for darshan, and outside the Kalanya Mantap was a green truck with Sri Sathya Sai Bangalore banner across the windscreen. Silence. Long waiting. Namasmrana, repeat the name of the Lord. Swami came out at about 8.24 in the blue settee chair; he was wheeled in by Sri Nargaiya, wearing that shawl again; I wondered if it is stitched into his robe; but possibly it is not. Lady bhajan singers led off with Jaya Ganaraya Shri Ganaraya, very well lead, I reflected; perhaps 3 or 4 lead singers, all perfectly in tune. We devotees certainly reap the value of bhajan practice.

Swami stayed on the stage for 40 minutes receiving bhajans, looking here, there, occasionally wiping his face and lips with the kerchief. Devotees follow the bhajans, Slow "Giridhara Gopala, Hey Giridhara, and one Srinivasa and Sri Venkatesha bhajan getting loud support; in South India, I am not surprised!!!

Focus on Swami during bhajans; full attention on Swami. Think of Swami and his leelas, Dasera Procession in 1945, where he is riding the float and changing his robe different colours as the procession moved. Here is the Lord of the Universe, I think to myself, daivum manikam... Continue attending to Swami, he is looking around; looks so far away, yet so full of power and grace. Watch Swami's face. "Mrityumjayaya Namah Om", the bhajan continues.

Watch Swami. He is looking straight down the darshan hall. Shawl over his shoulders, his right hand keeping time with the bhajans. Takes kerchief and wipes his face; must the the shakti he is giving off, I think to myself. Swami's finger rises and keeps time with the bhajan, "Sathya Narayana Govinda Madhava", he looks across to the ladies for some time.

At about 9:15 am Swami called Sri Nagaiya and he departed through the rear entrance of the stage to Trayee Brindavan. As Swami was leaving, Students brought Prasadam for distribution.

Monday, Swami did not come for Darshan morning or afternoon. Odd thing, you know, or perhaps its not so odd. I walk away from the darshan hall, and feel this bubbling bliss and love within; it happens after every visit to the darshan hall, whether or not Swami comes out. This morning for example, three hours sitting in the darshan hall .... no darshan, yet we leave with serenity and bliss and an inner love seeping out from everywhere. I think this comes from single pointedness, atmapana, single pointed focus and desire for the Lord alone.

Tuesday morning, on the way into the lines, I had a joke with the line seva dals, I asked, 'What is your feeling, darshan today? He smiles, and I tap him on the heart and say "See Always Inside" ... laughter all round. I see sevaks in white with orange scarves, "Sri Sathya Sai Seva Samithi Puttaparthy".

Swami came for morning darshan At 8.12 ... it was quick, the lights came on, the music started, and the students led three Oms. Swami arrived in the beige chair, he enters via the rear entrace of the darshan hall. His right arm appears to be wrapped tight - perhaps in a sling - under the shawl he is wearing. Sri Nagaiya, Satyajit and Dr Padmanaban sit behind Swami. Their attention and focus is solely on Swami only; full attention.

It is now well known (and I have verified this) that Swami has sustained a hairline fracture on the upper arm where the brick fell on him last week.

Swami is daivum manikam, God in human form. Why and how these things happen to him is a mystery, unfathomable to my human mind. Once again, I think of "See Always Inside" as I focus on Swami during the bhajans. Brahma rupa, Vishnu rupa, Sai Mahadeva, and Swami hand goes up, up, palm up.

Divine love pours out from Swami, he is lifting his hand, palm up, making circles as we sing the bhajans. Bolo Bhandari Baba, Sathya Sai Priya Deva, we all join in. Swami's head is rocking in time with the bhajans, he is tapping the beat on the arm of the chair. He signals for a drink of water, and his kerchief to wipe his face. Some moments later, he signals for arathi, and departs after taking the arathi. Students are very sharp and at the ready, watching Swami only, and drop the bhajan immediately he signals, and commence Om Jai Jagadeesha Hare. Narayana, Narayana Om Sathya I watch the little boys in front of me. Singing. Loka Samasta, I am thinking of places of conflict and war, sending the loka samasta to places where it is needed.

The afternoon rains appear to have stopped, is a warm and sunny Whitefield, these days.

Sai Ram