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Then & Now
A day in Ashram


Sathyam Vada Dharmam Chara

Sanskrit is the ancient Vedic language and is considered as the mother of all languages. In Prasanthi Nilayam, the Divine Abode of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba it is not surprising that this Divine language gets due importance. It was the turn of the X standard boys of Sri Sathya Sai Higher Secondary School, Prasanthi Nilayam to stage a drama in Sanskrit in the immediate Divine Presence of Bhagawan on the 28th September 2005.

The drama was based on two chinna kathas (short stories) often narrated by Bhagawan during His divine discourses. The first part of the drama was Satyam Vada, emphasising on the importance of Speaking Truth.

The story line was as follows:
A thief once approached a sage for guidance to get peace of mind. He was advised to give up any one of his bad habits. The thief promised to give up lying and practice Truth. Subsequently, during one night when the thief went out for stealing, the king, in the disguise of a thief followed and met him. After got introduced by the thief the king introduced himself as a thief; both of them entered the Royal Treasury and robbed two precious diamonds leaving the third one intact as it was impossible for them to share same equally.

The next day the thief was caught by the king’s men and brought to the court session to be briefed in his presence. The thief confessed having stolen one diamond and acknowledged that the second one was taken away by another thief. Subsequently the treasurer of the royal palace was summoned and asked to report on the theft the previous night after verifying with the royal chest. The treasurer, upon finding that two of the diamonds out of three were missing, pocketed the third one, hiding the same under his headgear, reported to the king that all three diamonds were missing. The thief was resolute in his stand about the third diamond denying repeatedly any knowledge about the third one. The king in an afterthought ordered the commander-in-chief to search the treasurer and the treasurer was caught red-handed.

The greedy treasurer was put behind the bars for his unpardonable crime and the thief who stood by his word was made the treasurer for his truthfulness and contentment.

The second part of the drama was Dharmam Chara, highlighting the greater importance of Righteous Conduct and how this could win highest knowledge for the ordinary folk, which was not possible for others leading egocentric life.

Sage Mahatapa was meditating on Lord Shiva chanting the Panchakshari Mantra – Om Namah Shivaya. Once, during his penance he got enraged and cursed a bird to burn to ashes for dropping on his head resulting in disturbing his concentration. The Sage having acquired great powers due to his severe penance went to a nearby village to exhibit his powers. He stood in front of a chaste woman who was busy serving her husband. Sage Mahatapa begged alms and the woman requested him to wait for a while. The Sage, who was impatient and highly short-tempered, insisted the woman to hurry up responding to his request. The chaste woman retorted that she was not the bird to be burnt to ashes. The sage was amazed to know that this ordinary looking woman serving her husband with single pointed devotion could know about what had happened to the bird. Upon posing the question by the Sage the chaste woman replied that it was not necessary the one should take up severe penance in order to attain knowledge, but was enough if one could perform his duties with dedication to God. To acquire more knowledge the Sage was advised to meet Dharmavyada, a butcher by profession in Mithilapuri.

The sage met Dharmavyada, who was busy cutting and selling meat. The butcher greeted the sage saluting him, “Welcome Sage sent by Pativrata. The Sage was again surprised beyond words as how could such an ordinary butcher attain this knowledge who was engaged in his worldly life, selling meat. The Sage was further amazed when the butcher told him that he knew how the sage could burn a bird into ashes with his anger.

Dharmavyada further explained that he was devoted to his parents and serving them in all possible ways as an offering to God which has won him knowledge - wisdom.

It was a fine portrayal of Bhagawan’s core message of Sathyam Vada Dharmam Chara, by the students of Higher Secondary School sending the great message to one and all gathered in the Sai Kulwant Hall in the immediate Divine Presence.