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Bhaja Govindam by Swamini Sthirananda Saraswati of Arsha Ashram
In 2005 at MillHill Sai Centre, Swamini Sthirananda Saraswati direct disciple of Swami Dayananda Saraswati, has given a series of lectures on Bhaja Govindam.. As part of Spiritual Showers we have shown these videos after Bhajans session this week.
Before Bhaja Govindam starts, Swamini ji has given introduction to Vedas, the path to Wisdom, how to cleanse the mind and how to meditate.
Makara Sankranthi festival is celebrated all over India on 14th of January, every year. From this day in the Tropic of Capricorn, Makara Sankramana as it is called, the Sun moves from South to North, and, so this summer solstice day iscelebrated as an auspicious festival. This northward journey of the Sun is also known as Uttarayana . Swami says that on this day, one must be more concerned with one's own journey that is nearing its end with every sunrise. The entry of the Sun into Capricorn has physical, ethical, social and moral significance. North signifies the direction towards Himachala. Himachala is made up of two words: Hima and Achala . Hima means that which is pure and white as snow. Achala means that which is firm and unshakable. Swami says that in a heart that is pure and steady, the sun of intellect enters. There is no need to undertake a journey in the external world. One's northward journey means to turn the intellect inward, towards the heart. This journey is called the quest for liberation.
Swami reminds us that all rites associated with festivals have an inner meaning. On the Sankranthi day, every home is swept clean and auspicious designs are drawn on the floor with flour. In the middle of the design, a lump of cow dung is placed with a big yellow flower. Swami says that cow dung symbolises the cow, the "Go" which Gopala feeds and fends. "Go" also means individual souls. The inner meaning behind drawing of the designs is that the individual beings are under the loving care of God.
On this day, people traditionally prepare a special dish, called pongal , which is made of sweet rice cooked in milk. This is considered sathwic (pure) food, which promotes pure thoughts and humility. What we take in through our senses, through our thirst for variegated experiences of the objective world, is all considered food. Swami says that every particle of this intake has to be sathwic, so that one's progress towards Self-
One yearns to escape the consequence of birth and death. One constantly desires peace and joy. Swami says that for this, one must cleanse the mind. Every bad habit has to be replaced with a good one, until all vices are eliminated. The heart must be drained of egoism. Swami asks us to make this our resolution on this Uttarayana festival day.
Makara Sankranti Musical Officering
Song 1 -
Lyrics and Meaning
Saeeshwara Sathya Saeeshwara
Sakala Bhagthaavana taapahara
Oh Sayeesha, who is all pervasive in all His devotees, I pray to You Oh Lord.
engel sankeerthanangal ketpaayo
O Swami, Please remove all the obstacles in our life. We Sing your Glory Swami, Please listen to us
Annayum Neeye Thandhayum Neeye
Guruvai neeye Varuvaye
Anbum Neeye Arulum Neeye
Anaithum Neeye Tharuvaye
You have come down to Earth as Everything to us and respond to us when we call you as our Mother, Father and Guru. You are Love, You are our Blessing, (You Bestow upon us everything whatever we ask)
Vedamum Neeye Geethamum Neeye
Sadhanai Manadhai Theruvaye
Shruthiyum Neeye Layamum Neeye
Sangeetham Neeye Arulvayae.
You are the Veda, You are the Bhagavad Gita, O Swami, Please grant us the willpower to undertake Sadhana You are the Shruti, You are the laya, You are our Song. Oh Swami Bless us all
Song 2 -
Lyrics and Meaning
Nee nenaindal agadadu undo
Nirajadala nayani mahalaksmi
Once You have determined That it be so Is there anything in the Universe
That cannot happen thence, O lotus-
Manida vazhkkaiyile inba tunbam
Mari mari varuvadum un seyal andro
In man’s life is pleasure In man’s life, pain Turns do they take to metamorphose
All by Your will and Your doing alone
Ella perumaigalum irundalum adu
Unnadi vanangnmal nilai perumo
Even if we have with us All the successes in the world How oh how will we retain them, Without worshiping Your divine feet?
Unnarul parvai illadavarkku
Ulagile vazha vazhiedu amma
And those beings on whom Your benevolent gaze does not fall How else can they live in this world, O Mother of all?
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Parents ! What did SSE learn last 14th January?
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