Ashtavadhanam in the Divine Presence…

A unique offering of Ashtavadhanam was the highlight of Day 5 of Prasanthi Vidwan Mahasabha here in Prasanthi Nilayam today. Ashtavadhanam is an abstruse scholastic exercise when eight scholars participate in the scintillating scholastic exercise.

This evening’s programme commenced at 1640 hrs. with an  invocatory Vedic chanting by the students of Anantapur campus of SSSIHL.

Sri Sai Giridhar Sairam took over the proceedings next, presenting the programme for the evening.  Making a mention of the uniqueness of the ongoing Dasara celebrations Sri Giridhar spoke of Maya, depicting Bhagawan as Mayapathi. Further, he read out the extensive profile of Sahasravadhani Kadimella Vara Prasada Rao, the main figure for evening’s Ashtavadhana programme.

Sahasravadhani Kadimella Sri Rama Chandra Vara Prasada Rao hails from East Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh, a double postgraduate in Telugu and Sanskrit with a Ph.D. working as a Telugu teacher at Taylor High School, Narasapur, East Godavari. An accomplished poet, Sri Rama Chandra Vara Prasada Rao had conducted over 1500 Ashtavadhanam, 20 Satavadhanams and a Dual Sahasravadhana along with many other feats.

Dr Jandhyala Suman Babu took over further proceedings introducing the reputed scholars participating in the Ashtavadhanam programme.

The scholars for the evening were: Dr Jandhyala Suman Babu, Dr Vinjamunri Seshaphani Sarma,  Dr Smt Dhulipala Annapurna, Sri Ayyagari Kodandarao, Sri Kandukuri Ramakrishna, Smt Cherukuni Sarada Sundari, Sri Cherukuri Venkata Suryanarayana Sarma etc.

In Ashtavadhanam, the scholar chosen in the exercise has to answer the question posed by the rest of the participant scholars. It is essentially a poetic exercise during which the participant scholars ask the Avadhani to compose poetic exercise on the spot, observing the rules of Telugu prosody. The scholars also ask questions on different topics and the Avadhani has to answer all the questions.

Today, the Avadhani rose to the occasion by composing brilliant verses on the spot while answering the questions posed by the particular scholars. The questions were mostly from the sacred scriptures as well as about the glory of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.

The eminent Avadhani who successfully answered all the questions magnificently declared at the end: “it is by Sai’s grace that I could perform so well today.”

Bhagawan’s Divine discourse followed next in which Bhagawan recounted His school-day story with Ramesh and Paresh.

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Even as bhajans commenced all the distinguished scholars were felicitated by senior Trust officials.

Bhajans continued and ended with Bhagawan singing “Rama Rama Rama Sita…”   Mangala Arathi was offered at 1910 hrs. marking the end of evening’s proceedings.

Today is Durgashtami, the 8th day of Dasara celebrations, dedicated Goddess Shakti or Durga, Who is symbolic of eternal power and the victory of ‘good’ over the ‘evil’. This morning, marking the Durgashtami occasion, Sai Vahan’s along with the Golden Chariot were worshipped in the Sai Kulwant Hall attended by students and senior devotees.

In the afternoon, in Poornachandra Autitorium, a three-day Harikatha on “Sri Sathya Sai Avatara Vaibhavam – Sai Bhagavatham” is being held conducted by Chudamani Raghavendra Rao Bhagawathar. The Harikatha would continue tomorrow and the day after.

From the Grama Seva front, the Sri Sathya Sai Grama Seva  reached its 7th day today covering households and population residing in villages of Puttaparthi mandal.

In the Poornachandra Auditorium, the Veda Purusha Saptaha Jnana Yajna entered its fifth day today.

II Samastha Lokah Sukhino Bhavantu II