Amma's 33rd Jayanthi (Birthday) Celebrations
It was a very auspicious Saturday on January 3rd, 2009 for everyone at the Sri Narayani Peedam being the 33rd Jayanthi of our Beloved Sri Sakthi Amma. This day was celebrated with much joy, happiness and grandeur as is done every year.
The celebrations commenced very early in the morning with a procession of around the town of Malaikodi in which several devotees participated carrying offerings for Sri Sakthi Amma.
After the procession came back to the Peedam everyone proceeded to the Shanthi Mandapam to witness the special puja that Beloved Amma was performing to Goddess Narayani. At the end of the puja, floral offerings were made to the Goddess by Amma with elegance and grace.
After witnessing the puja, everyone gathered in the Yagashala, where they sang bhajans in praise of Goddess Narayani.
A short time after the Goddess Narayani puja Beloved Amma emerged from the Shanthi Mandapam and did the other pujas around the Peedam.
Amidst eclectic melodies emanating from various musical instruments, Amma walked into the dais. Priests from several temples paid their respects by adorning Amma with flower petals, garlands and gifts.
On this special day, several priests from Thirupathi Thirumala Devasthanam graced the occasion with their presence and invited Sri Sakthi Amma to visit the sacred sanctum of Sri Venkatachalapathy at Thirupathy, with all respect and reverence, known as "Isthikapal" which Amma graciously accepted. This is the first time in the annals of history; such an honour has been given to someone as young as Amma.
Before the Malar Abhishekam (Flower Abhishekam), an invited guest had the honour of performing the pada puja.
Several guests of honour delivered addresses expressing good wishes and their love and support for Beloved Amma and all the humanitarian projects initiated by Amma.
Amidst thunderous applause, Amma started to give a discourse. There was complete silence as everyone listened to the most awaited event of the day!
Here is the extract from Amma's discourse:
Om Sarva Mangala Mangalye
Shive Sarvatha Shaadhike
Sharanye Triambake Gowri
There are two forms of Bhakthi (devotion). In the first form, we always want God to favour us and shower His blessings and love upon us. This form of devotion is not true devotion. One cannot obtain peace of mind through such a practice. This is because; the human heart is a deep sea of desire. When one thing is fulfilled, it would ask for something else. There is no end to human wants and desires.
The heart will keep asking for more, and the mind will think that only if these wishes are granted that God loves us. But, if our prayers are not answered, we feel that God does not love us. This is not true. God knows what is best for us and gives us only what we need. Yet, man puts conditions and tries to draw boundaries on God's love. He fails to realize that God's love is unconditional and infinite. This is the reason why one cannot attain happiness by following this form of devotion.
So what then is true bhakthi (devotion)? How can one attain bliss? This is possible only by following the second form of devotion, which is true devotion. When we practice true devotion, we would want to behave in such a manner that would be pleasing to the Divine Mother. But, what is it that would please Her?
The Divine Mother is happy when people inculcate Her own divine qualities such as unconditional love, tolerance, patience, kindness and willingness to serve others. She will draw close to people who are epitomes and embodiments of such qualities. We should all strive to develop such qualities within ourselves, so as to please the Divine Mother and obtain Her love and grace. Only then can we experience true joy and happiness.
Rather than always asking God to prove his love for us by granting all our heart's desires, we should focus on living our lives in such a manner that would please God. When this happens, God's blessings will be showered upon us automatically and there is will be no need for us to ask for anything more!
On this auspicious day, Amma blesses everyone to follow the path of true devotion, to lead happy and contented lives.
All day long, devotees who came to get blessings from Sri Sakthi Amma also received prasadham before they left.