Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Should country level top leaders and/or Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis share stage with Madhusudan Rao Naidu who now claims that Sathya Sai spirit has assumed his body? Will that be following Raj Dharma?

Last updated on 1st Dec. 2018

First I would like to state that I have a PUBLICLY POLITICALLY NEUTRAL role in these social media posts that I put up related to Indian political leaders which may include leaders in government currently and those not in government. I am an Indian citizen and resident of India. I do vote in Indian elections but I keep who I vote for as a private matter. I should also say that I am a beneficiary, a lover and an open supporter of democracy in India.

I was born, educated and worked for a living in Mumbai for most of the first four decades of my life. My residence during this period was spread over some areas of Mumbai city and Dombivli city which is on the outskirts of Mumbai, from where I commuted to Mumbai by train. I consider myself to be a grateful son of Mumbai city and its surrounding areas, Maharashtra, my former home state, and of India. I now live in Puttaparthi, Andhra Pradesh state and have lived there for the past 16 years.

I am particularly concerned about top leaders of Maharashtra state govt. and Union govt. of India at Delhi (federal govt. of India) coming under the Asathya-Adharma spell of the imposter and identity thief of Sathya Sai, namely Madhusudan Rao Naidu of Muddenahalli group based in Muddenahalli, Karnataka. I consider it my duty to work as a social media writer to prevent such a tragedy from happening.

Fortunately, so far at least, no top leader of my current state of Andhra Pradesh seems to have come under this bad spell of imposter Madhusudan Rao Naidu. So I do not have any concerns in that regard, as of now.

On 23rd Nov. 2018, imposter Madhusudan Rao Naidu claimed through a Mr. Sumeet Tappoo whom he asked to announce on stage at Muddenahalli, that:

* "Swami has assumed the body of brother Madhusudan. There is no difference."

* "When you see brother Madhu, it will be Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba."

In other words, Madhusudan Naidu claimed that Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba has assumed his body - the body of Madhusudan Naidu, and that he (Madhusudan) is Sathya Sai!

What sacrilege! Sathya Sai had said on multiple occasions in public that he will never enter into other people's bodies. Yet, Madhusudan goes against explicit words of Sathya Sai and makes this outrageously false claim. Madhusudan has now fully earned the title of Guru Drohi of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, by making this outrageous claim.

Given this background, will it be Raj Dharma for Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis or country level top leaders, to share the stage with Madhusudan Rao Naidu? By sharing the stage, I mean being seen in a public event as dignitaries on the same stage.

Now the Chief Minister of a state and country level top leaders set examples to follow for other citizens of the state and country. If CM Fadnavis and/or country level top leaders share the stage with Madhusudan Naidu, it will send a strong signal to citizens that they do not find anything objectionable in Madhusudan Naidu's outrageous claim. Muddenahalli group will heavily use photographs and video clips of the event to portray to the world that CM Fadnavis and country level top leaders accept Madhusudan Naidu as Sathya Sai, irrespective of whether CM Fadnavis or country level top leaders view Madhusudan that way. That is the advertising and marketing power of a photograph or video clip with a chief minister or country level top leaders.

Coming now to the main question: Will it be Raj Dharma if CM Fadnavis and/or country level top leaders share the stage with Madhusudan Naidu? My considered view is that it will NOT be Raj Dharma. CM Fadnavis and country level top leaders have to make an assessment of the outrageous claim of Madhusudan Naidu ***before*** they accept any invitation from Muddenahalli group to an event where Madhusudan Naidu will be on stage or present in a prominent position in the audience like the first row.

The Raj Dharma ***duty*** of CM Fadnavis and country level top leaders is that they must ask questions like:

1) Are the claims of Madhusudan Naidu including the claim that Sathya Sai spirit assumes/takes over his body, going against teachings and instructions of Sathya Sai? They will find that the answer is Yes. Madhusudan's claims are going against Sathya Sai teachings and instructions in this regard.

2) Have any famous current spiritual leaders in India like Mata Amritanandamayi stated publicly that Madhusudan Naidu's weird claim is true? Note that this claim has no parallel in the extensive Hindu scriptural accounts of Avatars and saints over millennia. When they make inquiries they will find that no famous current Indian spiritual leader has publicly stated that Madhusudan's claim is true.

3) How will they feel if somebody (personX) like Madhusudan Naidu starts interfering in their own political parties by claiming that some departed (dead) famous political leader of that party has now assumed personX's body and that now people should view that personX's words and actions as that of the departed famous political leader of their party?

Once they ask themselves the above questions and think calmly and reasonably, they will know for themselves that they should NOT share the stage with Madhusudan Naidu or accept invitation of any event where Madhusudan Naidu is seated prominently. They will realize that sharing the stage with Madhusudan Naidu will be going against Raj Dharma.

Indian country level top leaders and Maharashtra CM Fadnavis can provide government support for Muddenahalli group service to society activities like medical service. I think it is their duty to do so as these service activities of Muddenahalli group benefits citizens. But country level top leaders and CM Fadnavis need not tie that support to acknowledging imposter, identity thief and Guru Drohi Madhusudan Rao Naidu. They should separate these two matters.

Perhaps one can provide one concession if these top political leaders have no choice but to share stage with Madhusudan Naidu, say due to pressure from iconic figures like Sachin Tendulkar and Sunil Gavaskar (cricket stars) and the service to society activity involved. In that case, they ***MUST*** make a public statement that their sharing the stage should not be seen in any way as endorsing the outrageous claim of Madhusudan Naidu that he is now Sathya Sai (or that he is Sathya Sai communicator) and that they do not know whether his claim is true or false.

If country level top leaders and CM Fadnavis share the stage with Madhusudan Naidu and do not make any such public disclaimer statements then it is my considered view that they will have failed to do their Raj Dharma in this important matter for the Sathya Sai devotee fraternity in India and across the world.

Whew! It has been very difficult and tense for me to write this post. How I wish there were some respected elders and/or senior office bearers in Sathya Sai organization/fraternity who would have done this. But I think nobody in such positions wants to write such matters and earn enmity. My inner urge/voice said that I should step up and write this. Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, my beloved and revered Gurudev, has taught us that the inner voice, the voice of conscience, is the voice of God. So I have followed my inner urge/voice. Such is life for me nowadays!  My prayers to Bhagavan to protect me from any harsh reactions to this post. Jai Sai Ram!
===================================================

My Facebook post, https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2352804468269450, associated with this blog post has some comment exchanges which readers may want to have a look at.

Subhashitha - Yatha dhenu sahasreshu - chanted in Sanskrit and then explained in Malayalam by Dr K. Unnikrishnan, Govt. Sanskrit College, Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum), Kerala

Firstly, what is a Subhashitha? http://mcjoshi21.blogspot.com/2018/10/todays-subhashita_8.html tells us that it is a Sanskrit epigram capturing "choicest thoughts on various subjects" in verse.

Here is a video of Dr. K. Unnikrishnan and which person, I believe, is the same Dr. K. Unnikrishnan, Principal of Govt. Sanskrit College, Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum), Kerala, where he chants the Sanskrit Subhashitha - Yatha dhenu Sahasreshu, and explains it in Malayalam: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-KHVF_bCWBM, 5 min. 39 secs. Dr. Unnikrishnan seems to have been the (former) Head of Department of Sahitya (literature) department of the Govt. Sanskrit college.

As per http://mcjoshi21.blogspot.com/2018/10/todays-subhashita_8.html, the Sanskrit text of the couplet is (note that there are slight differences between what is chanted by Dr. Unnikrishnan and what is given below, but the meaning/English translation of the Subhashitha seems to be similar, if not same):

यथा  धेनु  सहस्रेषु  वत्सो गच्छति  मातरम्  |
तथा  यच्च  कृतं  कर्म  कर्तारमनुगच्छति     ||

and its English translation is (slightly edited by me to introduce some punctuation):

For instance, in a herd of thousands of cows, their calves recognise their respective mothers and then follow them. In the same manner, the deeds done by a person also follow him thereby implying that ultimately he has to face the consequences of good or bad deeds done by him.

Ravi: Hmm. I think I had heard or read this earlier. But as I studied it more closely now, I am struck by the comparison of Karmic fruits/consequences going to a particular person (among millions and billions of persons), with that of a calf finding and going to its mother among thousands of cows! I mean, I can imagine, for the sake of easier understanding and which should not be taken literally, the Karmic consequences of a person's actions floating around somewhere in some ether while the concerned individual lives out his/her life or multiple lives. Then, I can imagine, at an appropriate time one of these Karmic consequences detaching itself from its group and zeroing in and latching onto a particular individual (among millions and billions of individuals) like the calf would zero in and latch on to its mother cow (among thousands of other cows)! Hmm. Interesting visualization of karmic consequences of deeds done eventually fructifying and impacting the doer!

Here's another Subhashitha chanted in Sanskrit and then explained in Malayalam by Dr. Unnikrishnan: Subashitham 01, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a3Ub58UOxuk. The description states: "Dr.K Unnikrishnan Namboothiri, HOD , Dept.of Sahitya ,Govt.Sanskrit College,Trivandrum,Kerala,India".

[I thank mcjoshi21.blogspot.com and have presumed that they will not have any objections to me sharing the above short extract from their website on this post which is freely viewable by all, and does not have any financial profit motive whatsoever.]

Happy to note that Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis is not seen in Muddenahalli group Navi Mumbai hospital sort-of inauguration event

Last updated on 1st Dec. 2018

As a former Mumbaikar and Dombivlikar, I was pleasantly surprised to note the absence of Hon'ble Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis in my quick browsing of Muddenahalli group video of the event on 27th Nov. 2018: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y2ekuvbqY5A.

They have termed the event as "Commencement of Medical Services, Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani, Navi Mumbai". They have not used the word, 'inauguration', but it seems like an inauguration event to me.

I am glad that Maharashtra CM Fadnavis did not attend and so did not share the stage with Cheap Imitator Madhusudan Rao Naidu. I don't know whether this was a conscious decision of the CM or simply a scheduling issue.

Now other Muddenahalli (MDH) group people were there. I guess these are people who need some physical form person to be able to relate to Sathya Sai and find it difficult to relate to Sathya Sai without some human mediator. That's their way in this post-Mahasamadhi period - we have to just accept it. I also think Indian freedom of worship laws give them that freedom of belief. Note that Madhusudan Rao Naidu's identity theft of Sathya Sai is different which I think can be challenged legally in Indian court of law if somebody is willing to file the legal challenge. But worshippers of Madhusudan Naidu who want to view him as Sathya Sai cannot be stopped from doing so, I think, as per my understanding of freedom of religious belief laws in India.

But if the Chief Minister promotes Madhusudan Rao Naidu's FALSE CLAIMS then it is a different matter. The CM is essentially accountable to the people of Maharashtra. He can be questioned on the matter on Maharashtra assembly floor. Further, he will also need the votes of people of Maharashtra to get re-elected and sometimes their support to stay in power.

So the CM has to act in a judicious manner and cannot blindly get associated with outrageous claims like that made by Madhusudan Rao Naidu, especially in a state like Maharashtra that is famous for its great lineage of saints and for Shirdi Sai Baba.

Now who knows, we may still see CM Fadnavis share the stage with Madhusudan Rao Naidu in future. But I hope and pray that that does not happen.

I must also say that I have no issue whatsoever with CM Fadnavis and Maharashtra government providing all necessary support for the free medical service done by this Muddenahalli group Navi Mumbai hospital. In fact, I think it is the duty of the CM and Maharashtra government to do so, as it benefits the citizens of Navi Mumbai and Maharashtra. But CM and Maharashtra govt. can do so without associating in any way with the outrageously FALSE CLAIMS of Madhusudan Rao Naidu wrt Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.
============================================================

On my Facebook post, https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2352000238349873, associated with this blog post, in response to a comment, I (Ravi) wrote (slightly edited):
--Name-snipped--. Thanks for your comment. Regarding my MDH stand your comment on my post: In light of Muddenahalli group planned inauguration of Navi Mumbai hospital, a detailed explanation of my stand on Muddenahalli group and their medical service activities, https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2349693545247209, states that "your above article clarifies my doubts and is ok". So I will skip that part.

Regarding Maha CM and Muddenahalli group and Sri Sri Ravi Shankar institution activities: I agree that it is the duty of every CM to support good (service to society) activities in his/her state. That is why I have clearly explained that I have no issues with Maha CM and Maha govt. providing support to Muddenahalli group hospital in Navi Mumbai offering free medical service to the poor. I have also said that that is the duty of Maha CM and govt.

The issue is Maha CM sharing stage with Cheap Imitator Madhusudan Rao Naidu and what message that sends to Maha people. Let me cover that in another comment. [I later put it up as a new post instead of a comment.]
----

In response to a comment, Ravi S. Iyer wrote (slightly edited): --Name-snipped-- ji - I prefer not to comment on funding related aspects of Prasanthi Nilayam ashram/SSSCT nor of Muddenahalli group. Thanks.
----

Monday, November 26, 2018

Trying to get more information about my great-grandfather, Sanskrit scholar Thuravoor Narayana Sasthrigal of Kerala

Last updated on 16th Dec. 2018
Update: Readers may want to see my later post: My great-grandfather Thuravoor Narayana Sasthrigal, noted Sanskrit scholar in grammar and poetry, and principal of Govt. Sanskrit College, Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum) from 1909-1911, https://ravisiyer.blogspot.com/2018/12/my-great-grandfather-thuravoor-narayana.html, 16th Dec. 2018.
I am trying to get more information about my mother's father's father - my great-grandfather - Thuravoor Narayana Sasthrigal, who, I have been given to understand, was a noted Sanskrit scholar in the late 19th and early 20th century in Travancore kingdom which is now part of Kerala state.

Relatives have told me that he was associated with Govt. Sanskrit college, Trivandrum/Thiruvananthapuram, as senior faculty/teacher.

I have dug up some information from the Internet about Govt. Sanskrit college, Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum) and his position there.

1) Contact number of the college: 0471 232 2930

2) Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/sanskritcollegetrivandrum. This page has some pics of the college.

3) It seems that the college does not have a website that is currently online.

4) Google search gives the page below which seems to be an archived page. Unfortunately as the college does not seem to have an official website, it is pages from such unverified sites whose information we need to rely on, when it comes to Internet based search on the college.

http://61.0.248.125/dcekerala/sktpalayam/succession-list/ has a page title seen on printing it: "Succession List – H.H.The Maharaja`s Government Sanskrit College".

It shows a list of principals where the 3rd entry is:
"Thuravoor Narayana Sasthrigal ( 1909-1911)"

The bottom of the page indicates that the page was developed by DCE - Directorate of Collegiate Education (Kerala). It also mentions a 2018 copyright. So this seems to be information that continued to be put up in this year 2018.

5) http://61.0.248.125/dcekerala/sktpalayam/ has a page title seen on printing it: "H.H.The Maharaja`s Government Sanskrit College – Palayam,Thiruvananthapuram,Pin:695 034"

Some of the text on the page which seems to be a Home page is as follows (slightly edited to fix mostly punctuation and small grammatical possibly typo errors):

The institution was founded in 1889 by Sri Mulam Thirunal Rama Varma, one of the most renowned rulers of the state of Travancore. The Maharaja went on a pilgrimage to Banaras and he had occasion to visit the Sanskrit college there, imparting instruction in various sastras. Thus in 1889, the Sanskrit College took shape in a temple at Mitrandapuram, housed within the Fort area and was run under royal patronage. The institution enjoyed the protection of the ‘Rajashri’ for a long period of 35 years. Sri Chithira Thirunal Balarama Varma who succeeded him took great interest in the promotion and propagation of Sanskrit studies. A new building with adequate facilities was built for the College by the Government during his regime.

।।विद्ययाऽमृतमश्नुते।।
Attains immortality through knowledge
विद्यां चाविद्यां च यस्तद्वेदोभयं सह ।
अविद्यया मृत्युं तीर्त्त्वा विद्ययामृतमश्नुते ।।
(ईशावास्योपनिषत् – II)


Principal’s Message

[Then it is followed by a pic of the principal - a lady named Dr. B. Prasannakumary. Note that the lady seems to have been succeeded as principal by another person in April 2016 and that the current principal seems to be Dr. K. Unnikrishnan (from 27th Sept. 2016), as per  http://61.0.248.125/dcekerala/sktpalayam/succession-list/. Text after the pic of Dr. Prasannakumary is as follows (slightly edited to fix mostly punctuation type possibly typo errors):]

Education is all about creating an environment of academic freedom, where bright minds meet, discover and learn. One would experience and learn all about Sanskrit college, Trivandrum. The relentless methodological process, support and positive attitude of the teaching faculties are the key to the success of this institution. We offer UG and PG Courses for five different branches of Sanskrit language namely Jyothisha, Nyaya, Sahithya, Vedanta and Vyakarana. I warmly welcome all to learn this divine language here in this prestigious institution having a history of 125 years.

[The bottom of the page indicates that the page was developed by DCE - Directorate of Collegiate Education (Kerala). It also mentions a 2018 copyright. So this seems to be information that continued to be put up in this year 2018.]

--- end text of what seems to be an archived Home page ---

For more about Sri Mulam Thirunal Rama Varma, founder of above Sanskrit college, please see his wikipedia page here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moolam_Thirunal. He was the ruler of Travancore state, a Hindu kingdom in what is now part of Kerala state of India, between 1885 and 1924. I believe that Travancore kingdom was a protectorate of the British during this period. Here's the wiki page of the successor of Sri Mulam Thirunal Rama Varma, namely Sri Chithira Thirunal Balarama Varma, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chithira_Thirunal_Balarama_Varma, who is also mentioned as a patron of the college in the above archived Home page.

My family elders have talked of King Mulam Thirunal Rama Varma presenting a gold ornament of some sort to my great-grandfather Thuravoor Narayana Sasthrigal, when the latter chanted Sanskrit poem/verses composed by him in honour of the King, in front of the King. As the family in later generations and years, got into some financially challenging times, that gold present seems to have got lost or got sold to help the family financially (perhaps to meet expenses of one of the daughters' marriages).

About the Isavasyopanishad shloka shared in the Home page

After Chandogya upanishad, the Isavasyopanishad has been a very important scriptural guiding light for me. In particular in 2010, I was able to have a more knowledgeable understanding of a part of it which led to clearing up a major doubt that I had with respect to Upanishads vis-a-vis the other great collection of Hindu scripture which is the accounts of the Avatars captured in Bhagavat Purana, Ramayana and Mahabharata. For Sathya Sai devotees like me, authentic Shirdi Sai literature and Sathya Sai literature are also accounts of Avatars namely, Shirdi Sai Avatar and Sathya Sai Avatar.

I am very happy to note that what seems to be the Home page of Govt. Sanskrit College, Thiruvananthapuram, is having a shloka (verse) from the Isavasyopanishad. It is verse 11 (not verse 2). To confirm see Isavasyopanishad in Sanskrit with Shankara commentary in Sanskrit, https://sanskritdocuments.org/doc_upanishhat/Ishaa_bhaashhya_Shankar.html. The verse can be put in Latin (English) script as:
Vidyaam cha avidayaam cha yasthathdvedobhayam saha
Avidyayaa mrityum theerthva vidyayaamrutamashrute
The English meaning of it as per Swami Krishnananda, https://www.swami-krishnananda.org/disc/disc_186.html, is:
He who knows these two – vidya and avidya – together, attains immortality through vidya, by crossing over death through avidya.
In the above context, I think the right translation of vidya is eternal knowledge whereas the right translation of avidya is worldly knowledge which is emphemeral/not eternal when viewed in a larger context of cycle of life and death. In this context, I do not think that avidya being translated as ignorance is a correct interpretation/translation.

Here is wikipedia's take on vidya and avidya words in Isavasyopanishad:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isha_Upanishad#Vidya_versus_Avidya. An extract from this section is given below:

Mukherjee states that Isha Upanishad in verse 11 is recommending that one must pursue material knowledge and spiritual wisdom simultaneously, and that a fulfilling life results from the harmonious, balanced alignment of the individual and the social interests, the personal and the organizational goals, the material and the spiritual pursuits of life.

[Ref: S Mukherjee (2011), Indian Management Philosophy, in The Palgrave Handbook of Spirituality and Business (Editors: Luk Bouckaert and Laszlo Zsolnai), Palgrave Macmillan, ISBN 978-0230238312, page 82.]

--- end wiki extract ---

Ravi: I find Mukherjee's statement above to be a good comment/interpretation of Verse 11.

The college's motto seems to be "Attain immortality through knowledge" and which seems to be derived from this verse of Isavasyopanishad. The knowledge referred to here, it seems to me, is Vedantic knowledge or spiritual knowledge based on Vedanta/Upanishads.

What I am looking for

1) A confirmation that Thuravoor Narayana Sasthrigal (who I am told is my great-grandfather) was principal of Govt. Sanskrit College, and for the period mentioned above (1909-1911).

2) I am keenly interested in knowing whether Thuravoor Narayana Sasthrigal wrote any books (whatever language: Sanskrit or Malayalam or something else) and if so, whether those books are available with Govt. Sanskrit College, Thiruvananthapuram. Even if they don't have the books but have information about any of his books like book title, publisher, year of publication etc., it would be of great interest to me.

3) I also would like to know if, by any chance, a picture/portrait of Thuravoor Narayana Sasthrigal is available with Govt. Sanskrit College, Thiruvananthapuram. If such a picture/portrait is available, I would be very interested in having good pictures of it, taken say by a decent smartphone camera.

I request any readers who can help me in this regard to please do so.

Today, 26th Nov. 2018, I tried to call up Govt. Sanskrit College, Thiruvananthapuram at above mentioned contact number sometime in the late afternoon but there was no response. I intend to try again in the coming days in the morning and early afternoon.

Today, I also sent a Facebook message to its Facebook page but that message has not been marked as read, let alone responded to, so far.

I will update this post with information that I get on this matter. Thanks.
================================================

27th Nov. 2018 Update

My cousin, whose late father's grandfather is Thuravoor Narayana Sasthrigal wrote me over email, "My father used to say that a portrait of his grand father was put up in the College."

Ravi: This is very useful information.  Person(s) who are able to visit the college should be able to use this info. to request college staff to help them locate the portrait and then take pics of it. I thanked my cousin for the info.
----

I called up Govt. Sanskrit College twice today, 27th Nov. 2018, around noon and around 3.30 PM, at their contact number mentioned above in this post, but did not get any response.
----

A file of interest from Google Search for Thuravoor Narayana Sasthrigal is http://www.govtsanskritcollegetvm.ac.in/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/SSR-pdf.pdf. However trying to access the link gives an error "This site can’t be reached" and "www.govtsanskritcollegetvm.ac.in took too long to respond."

But I was able to access the cached copy that Google had of this document in HTML format. Here's the link to that on my browser (hopefully it will work for others too): http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:orF7mlggMqwJ:www.govtsanskritcollegetvm.ac.in/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/SSR-pdf.pdf

This document is of around 200 pages. The cover page states the following (slightly edited):

GOVERNMENT SANSKRIT COLLEGE
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, KERALA

SELF STUDY REPORT FOR ASSESSMENT
AND RE-ACCREDITATION

Submitted to
NATIONAL ASSESMENT AND ACCREDITATION COUNCIL
(NAAC)
MARCH 2017
--- end cover page text ---

Ravi: So it is a report submitted to NAAC which is a UGC funded accreditation body for universities and colleges administered by UGC in India. UGC is the top higher education administration body for Science, Arts and Commerce higher education institutions in India. The Sanskrit college, I think, would be viewed as an Arts stream higher education institution.

The report is dated 30th March 2017 and is submitted to NAAC by the Principal, Dr. K.Unnikrishnan.

Under a section titled, "HISTORY OF THE COLLEGE", the report states on Page 8 as follows:
"Renowned scholars such as Prof. A. R Raja Raja Varma, Dr.T.Ganapathi Sasthrigal, SriThuravoorNarayana Sasthrigal, Sri Narayan Sastri and many other famous scholars served as the principals of the college."

Ravi: Presuming that this is the report submitted by Principal, Dr. K. Unnikrishnan of Govt. Sanskrit College, Thiruvanantapuram, Kerala to national accreditation body NAAC, in March 2017, we can then confirm that Sri Thuravoor Narayana Sasthrigal was indeed the Principal of the college, and that he was a renowned Sanskrit scholar then.
======================

Further Update on 27th Nov. 2018

I was able to establish contact with Dr K. Unnikrishnan, Principal, Govt. Sanskrit College, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala. He is out-of-town now and expected to be back at the college in a few days time. Once he gets back to the college, he has kindly agreed to help me regarding information about my great-grandfather Sri Thuravoor Narayana Sasthrigal's association with Govt. Sanskrit College as its Principal.


[I thank Government Sanskrit College, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala and have presumed that they will not have any objections to me sharing the above extracts from what seems to be archived pages from their website on this post which is freely viewable by all, and does not have any financial profit motive whatsoever. I also thank swami-krishnananda.org and wikipedia for the short quote/extract I have shared from their websites on this post.]

Sunday, November 25, 2018

In light of Muddenahalli group planned inauguration of Navi Mumbai hospital, a detailed explanation of my stand on Muddenahalli group and their medical service activities

Last updated on 1st Dec. 2018

Muddenahalli group with Madhusudan Naidu who now falsely claims to be Sathya Sai, is expected to inaugurate their Navi Mumbai hospital perhaps tomorrow 26th Nov. 2018. Mumbai and surrounding areas, including Navi Mumbai, was where I have spent most of the first four decades of my life. I was born in Mumbai, educated in Mumbai, worked for a living in Mumbai and saved money for early retirement while I was working in Mumbai. For some of these years I lived in Mumbai city and for some years in a city on its outskirts - Dombivli - from where I would commute by train to Mumbai for education and later work. I deeply love and am very grateful to Mumbai, its surrounding areas and Maharashtra state in general for having given me a reasonably happy and good life in the nearly four decades that I lived there.

Now Muddenahalli group is establishing itself via its free hospital which I believe is a pediatric cardiac care hospital, in my former city and its surrounding areas! I am deeply disturbed by this expected development. I condemn Muddenahalli group but I do not hate them and I do appreciate their free service to the poor. As I think my stand is a nuanced stand which neither fits in the main Puttaparthi supporters group stand nor, of course, the Muddenahalli group stand, I felt it appropriate to give a detailed explanation of my stand now as specific points.

* I condemn the FALSE BELIEF propagated by Muddenahalli group that Madhusudan Rao Naidu is Sathya Sai spirit in Madhusudan's body OR Sathya Sai's so called chosen communicator. I condemn and am deeply disturbed by the misguidance of thousands of Sathya Sai devotees and even innocent non-devotees who now seem to view Cheap Imitator and Guru Drohi Madhusudan Rao Naidu as Sathya Sai. [Guru Drohi means somebody who causes harm to his own Guru and/or Guru's mission.]

* I condemn the dilution and distortion of the memories and teachings of my beloved and revered Gurudev, Kali Yuga Avatar, Shiva Shakti Swarupa Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, by Madhusudan Rao Naidu who I now label as Guru Drohi (of Sathya Sai).

* While I condemn the horrible division that Muddenahalli group, in particular the Guru Drohis Shri B.N. Narasimhamurthy and Madhusudan Rao Naidu, has created in Sathya Sai movement, I do not view Muddenahalli group as a rakshasa/asura (demonic) group. Rakshasas and Asuras e.g. Ravanasura, as per Hindu scripture, killed good people and defiled and interfered with Vedic Yagnas. As some of them were very powerful and were able to defeat all the kings including the deva-kings, God took form as Avatars like Rama Avatar to destroy/kill these rakshasas and asuras. I view Muddenhalli group as a misguided, false prophet led, Guru Drohi led, splinter group of Sathya Sai movement which has harmed Sathya Sai movement in a very big way by their false claims, Guru Droham and the division they created in Sathya Sai movement. But I will not say they are rakshasas or asuras (demons). That, in my considered opinion, is going too far, given Hindu scriptural view of rakshasas and asuras.

* I accept as inescapable fact that Muddenahalli group's free medical service through its pediatric cardiac care service, is of great benefit to the poor of some states of India, and now will benefit the poor in and around Navi Mumbai, and in the state of Maharashtra in general. I appreciate this free service given to the poor by Muddenahalli group.

* [28th Nov. 2018 Update: CM Fadnavis did not attend the sort-of inauguration event. For more, please see my post: Happy to note that Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis is not seen in Muddenahalli group Navi Mumbai hospital sort-of inauguration event, https://ravisiyer.blogspot.com/2018/11/happy-to-note-that-maharashtra-cm.html, 28th Nov. 2018. end-Update] I consider it tragic that the Chief Minister (CM) of my former state of Maharashtra, Shri Devendra Fadnavis, will be sharing the stage with Guru Drohi Madhusudan Rao Naidu, as that will be viewed as support from the CM and Maharashtra government for Madhusudan Rao Naidu. While I understand that the CM has to support free service to the poor like that done by Muddenahalli group, it would have been best if he provided support for the medical service work but without sharing the stage with Guru Drohi of Sathya Sai - Madhusudan Rao Naidu.

* I condemn the promotion of Madhusudan Rao Naidu as Sathya Sai or Sathya Sai's so called communicator (FALSE CLAIMS) by Muddenahalli group hospital institutions. So while I appreciate their service to the poor, I condemn them using this medical service to the poor to promote Guru Drohi Madhusudan Rao Naidu and his FALSE CLAIMS.

* I do not comment upon how Sathya Sai orgns. and institutions are funded, and that applies to Muddenahalli group as well. Many in Puttaparthi supporters group are critical of me for this. I am not upset by their criticism, and am OK with it. Essentially my view of Muddenahalli group activities is not a complete view and has this big hole of no mention about how they gather their funds. Some people may reject this incomplete view and they have every right to reject it.

[As a matter of policy, throughout my association with Sathya Sai movement, first in Maharashtra Sathya Sai orgn. from early 90s to 2002, from end 2002 to March 2012 in Prashanti Nilayam ashram institutions run by Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust (SSSCT) in Puttaparthi, and from mid 2013 onwards as an independent social media writer on Sathya Sai movement related matters, who is a well wisher of SSSCT and Sathya Sai orgn. but not associated with them anymore, I have kept away from money matters related to Sathya Sai orgn./institutions. Note that in all my associations with Sathya Sai movement mentioned earlier, I have offered free service and not asked for nor received any money from any Sathya Sai orgn. or institution.]
======================================================

Given below are some comments from my Facebook post,  https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2349693545247209, associated with this blog post:

In response to a comment, Ravi S. Iyer wrote (slightly edited):
--Name-snipped-- bro. Thanks for your comment. I am relieved to note that you have not attacked me :-).

I must also say here that one noteworthy thing for me in whatever little bit I viewed of the MDH Navi Mumbai event videos (2 events on 2 successive days), was a young lady who was compering the first day's event, (IIRC). She said words to the effect that she is C.Srinivas' daughter. I think this is the first time I am seeing a son/daughter of a Sai university alumnus, play a noteworthy role in a Sathya Sai community, even if it is MDH Sathya Sai community, event.

That was very pleasing to see. I pray to Bhagavan to continue to shower His Grace on her, though I also hope & pray that she does not get too caught up in belief in the imposter Madhusudan Naidu.
----

In response to a comment, Ravi S. Iyer wrote:
I assure you that I will be fair in my comments about MDH. Sathya & Dharma are dear to me, as has been taught to me by my family, by spiritual books that I have read since I was a child, as well as my beloved and revered Gurudev Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba (after my 30s), who (physical form) supported my following Sathya & Dharma in my hour of severe testing, brought about by some foolish spiritual practice I had got into. He did very sharply chastise me for my foolish spiritual practice. But he stood by Sathya & Dharma - and completely bowled me over by his adherence to Sathya & Dharma in my personal case. ... So I consider it is my sacred duty to Bhagavan to follow Sathya & Dharma when I write about PTP or MDH Sathya Sai related matters. Thanks.
----

In response to a comment, Ravi S. Iyer wrote:
One cannot say that Bhagavan is not in Muddenahalli. But Madhusudan Rao Naidu is NOT Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba and is not "communicating" the words of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. That is my considered view and consistent view since I started commenting publicly on this matter on social media from early 2015.
----

In response to a comment, Ravi S. Iyer wrote (slightly edited):

Hmm. So bro. --Name-snipped--, when are you going to start giving Darshan claiming that now you are Sathya Sai :-)! May be a little problematic though as Madhusudan may not fancy having competition!
...
Don't mean to put u into trouble :-). Just joking!
----

In response to a comment, Ravi S. Iyer wrote:
I have heard physical form Sathya Sai live in Sai Kulwant Hall saying that we should not take Padnamaskar of Him as we are God and He is God. So why should God take Padnamaskar of God! ... That was the awesome Upanishad level teachings and instructions that I have heard ***live*** from Sathya Sai (physical form). ... So if Madhu (or you) say that you now are God and have all powers like Sathya Sai's powers I will not get upset. I may or may not believe you but I will not get upset ... But Sathya Sai did not say that we all are Sathya Sai! ... See that's where the issue lies .... Madhu has clearly used the ****Great name of Sathya Sai *** to tap into ***mega-donors*** after Mahasamadhi... We know that history of Madhusudan even if you don't.
...
And bro. I was talking about you giving Darshan as Sathya Sai in Muddenahalli :-)! Not in Puttaparthi to me!
----

In response to a comment, Ravi S. Iyer wrote (slightly edited):

Yes bro. --Name-snipped-- Puttaparthi people will have very little tolerance for anybody who now gives Darshan as Sathya Sai .... But I am waiting for the day you will give that Darshan somewhere bro., if not Muddenahalli as that is Madhusudan turf now, maybe some other town in Karnataka. ... Now I think we will have to live with I-am-Sathya-Sai claimants like Madhu ... Then why be limited to just one guy ... The more the merrier :-) No?
----

In response to a comment, Ravi S. Iyer wrote (slightly edited):
Bro. --Name-snipped--, By the kind Grace of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba of Puttaparthi I am NOT interested in having darshan of I-am-Sathya-Sai claimants. So thanks for your kind offer - but no thanks :-).

However, I look forward to seeing bro. --Name-snipped-- giving darshan to ***others*** claiming that he is Sathya Sai now, in some youtube videos, perhaps in some famous London setting. How about Trafalgar Square? Come on bro. you can do it :-)!

Just joking! I don't want to put you into trouble. So please don't do it - that's my genuine advice.

P.S. Was not aware that you have kids! Hmm. All the best with raising them well bro. with good grounding in Sathya, Dharma, Shanti & Prema values! Not an easy task in these days, whether one lives in London or Mumbai or New York City ...
----

In response to a comment, Ravi S. Iyer wrote (slightly edited):
Thanks for your invite bro. --Name-snipped--. But I have dropped anchor in Puttaparthi. Nonetheless, thanks for the invite. Take care!
----

In response to a comment, Ravi S. Iyer wrote (M is a reference to Madhusudan Rao Naidu): Well, M may have some siddhis. So if M had become M Baba and demonstrated his siddhis and acquired a following, I would have no issues and would not label him as Cheap Imitator, Imposter and Guru Drohi of Sathya Sai. ... The problem is that he claims to be Sathya Sai (or his communicator) - that is a claim some of us have examined very closely, and based on Sathya Sai's own public declarations that he never will possess another person's body or use that person as a medium, we are sure is a false claim.

M is a big test in post-Mahasamadhi phase. Those who succumb to M's claims, in my considered opinion, expose their shallow exposure and understanding of Sathya Sai, even if some such persons have been physically close to Sathya Sai for decades. ... Note that Judas was also physically close to Jesus and yet betrayed him! Judas failed the spiritual test.

If you are getting attracted by M then you are in danger of falling into MDH false belief trap - that is my considered view. Then it is upto you and your destiny. Jai Sairam!
----

In response to a comment, Ravi S. Iyer wrote (slightly edited):
--Name-snipped-- bro. Faith is the big issue here! For me, one of the biggest benefits from having had Darshan, Sparshan and Sambhashan of physical form Sathya Sai, was how he solidified my faith not only in Him but in other Avatars and Hindu scripture in general. Today, I not only believe in Sathya Sai Avatar, but also in Shirdi Sai Avatar, Jesus Christ, Krishna, Rama ... and even Narasimha Avatar the man-lion who emerged out of a pillar in response to the devout prayer of the boy Prahlad who was challenged by his demon-father and which demon-father Narasimha killed!!! That is how Sathya Sai has solidified my faith in divinity and divine intervention in human lives and in society at large. ....People who are not Avatars but are realized souls and saints, I am sure, also would be of great benefit to sadhakas who go to them ...

Now sadhakas (jignyaasu) are a minority among the people who flock to sadhus and Avatars. It is the arthi and arthaarthi who are the majority - people who desire money and people who have some worldly desires to be fulfilled/worldly problems to be solved. Even for the worldly people, faith gets bolstered by association with genuine sadhus and realized souls, and even association with the good.

This I think is the truth ... Now there are fakes .. many fakes who misguide people who come to them and take them for a ride. But I think it is a great mistake to be so skeptical that one tars all saints and Avatars with the same brush and calls them all as fakes.

When mature worldly people buy some important and expensive worldly item, they make proper inquiries and get a proper assessment before they buy it. Otherwise there are many poor quality and conman type shops which will rip a worldly person off. A fool and his money are soon parted!

Similarly, before one goes to spiritual masters and saints and commits to them as a devotee/follower, one needs to make proper inquiries and make a proper assessment. ... Some people though get desperate for their worldly problems to be solved. Such people are prone to get trapped by fake spiritual so-called masters and so-called Swamis.
----
In response to a comment, Ravi S. Iyer wrote (slightly edited):

--Name-snipped-- bro. My view is that if you have strong faith in your sadhana and are clear about what is to be done, then you can do it on your own. But most people are not so sure. Doubt is the very big issue in spiritual path. They want some spiritual master type figure to tell them, to reassure them, that they are on the right path. I think this reality of life cannot be ignored.
----

In response to a comment, Ravi S. Iyer wrote: Bro. I have a different view from yours which is very skeptical. But I do not have anything further to add. You are entitled to your view.
----

What is the Sathya-Dharma-Shanti-Prema way and only Sathya-Dharma way of reacting on social media when someone calls you a vulgar word?

Last updated on 3rd Dec. 2018

Now I must first say that since Sathya Sai Mahasamadhi (end April 2011) and me becoming active on social media (from Sept. 2011) - first blog and then additionally Facebook - I have been forced by my inner urges to focus on Sathya (Truth) & Dharma (Ethical behaviour) in my words and actions, sometimes losing out on Shanti (Peace) and Prema (Love). Even in Sathya & Dharma, I do not claim to be perfect. Note that Dharma is a very wide-ranging term and I think it varies from community to community as the social norms vary from community to community. But I try very hard to follow Sathya & Dharma as I perceive it.

In social media, mainly on Facebook, sometimes I have got into arguments. I have my human flaw of anger and do get provoked at times by comments that I view as grossly unfair to me. So I give back through my comments. But I limit myself to words like joker, weird, nonsense etc. when I have to respond to grossly unfair and harsh words directed at me by somebody else.

Now, at times, the language can then descend to the gutter-level with vulgar words being used, as is not uncommon in social media in general. That's a red line for me. So if I am called a vulgar word by somebody, I prefer to disengage from the conversation, and block that person on Facebook. I feel that I should not descend to the same gutter-level and show the other person that I too know many choice vulgar words and throw it at that person. I think that will be inappropriate not only from a Sathya-Dharma-Shanti-Prema way but also from an only Sathya-Dharma way.

Vulgar-name calling against a particular person is pure aggression without any logical reason. Once a social media conversation descends to pure aggression without logical reasoning, I think it is better to disengage with the person, and to prevent further provocation, simply block the person on Facebook. If a person is not capable of conversing on social media without resorting to vulgar-name calling against me then it is better that I cut off all social media interactions, as well as real life interactions, if any, with that person. That's my view.

Any comments including dissenting views from readers are welcome.
=========================================================

My Facebook post, https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2349286385287925, associated with this blog post, has some comments saying that not responding to such comments, which is what I did, is the right thing to do.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Legal case should be filed in India against Guru Drohi Madhusudan Rao Naidu for claiming that he now is Sathya Sai

Last updated on 1st Dec. 2018

So far I had reserved the Guru Drohi label only for Narasimhamurthy. Somehow as Madhusudan is a former student of SSSIHL, and Swami, in end 2002/early 2003 had graciously accepted my prayer to serve Him in SSSIHL where as staff and teachers we viewed students as precious property of Swami whom we should serve, I could not bring myself to call Madhusudan Rao Naidu as a Guru Drohi. But that has changed now.

In this latest event, it is clear that Madhusudan Rao Naidu has approved of Mr. Sumeet Tappoo saying on stage at Swami birthday function on 23rd Nov. 2018 in Muddenahalli that:

* "Swami has assumed the body of brother Madhusudan. There is no difference."

* "He has made the grand declaration a few minutes back that he will be in Muddenahalli in the body of brother Madhusudan for the next ten years .."

* "When you see brother Madhu, it will be Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba."

Readers can view this themselves from at around 2 hrs 58 mins 30 seconds in this video: "Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba's 93rd Birthday : 23 November Evening, Live From Muddenahalli", https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1UhF8ZfLBCk .

A little while later in the video, Madhusudan also sat on the chair meant for Swami. So very clearly he was showing the assembled people there and those who watch the video, that he now considers himself to be Sathya Sai and so he can sit on Swami's chair.

Here is a quote from physical form Sathya Sai discourse on Shivaratri of 1962 :

Some others are swept off their feet by hysterical demonstrations by certain weak minded individuals who are described as My speaking through them or acting through them! Take it from Me, I am not given to such absurdities! I do not use others as My media; I have no need to. I do not swing from side to side and prattle! Why, even those who torture their bodies and suffer the pains of asceticism for years until ant hills overwhelm them and they become as stiff as tree-stumps find it difficult to realise the Lord. How then can these idlers, who eat their fill and wander about as slaves of their senses, earn that status so cheaply? Their gestures, words, and actions are hollow and vain; those who bum incense before them and revere them are turning away from Me and running after falsehood.

How can the Full ever dally with the paltry and wear the habiliment of the trifling? When God has come assuming form, take it from Me, it will not fill inferior vessels or embellish tawdry stuff or enter impure bodies. So do not extol these falsities and ruin those unfortunates. Deal with them severely, and they will be cured. Those who have seen the brilliance of the diamond will not be misled by glass trinkets. The Lord is like the diamond, call it by any name. But a trinket cannot be turned into a diamond, however loud the praise and however adamant the claim.

--- end quote of Sathya Sai ---

Source: http://www.sssbpt.info/english/sssvol02.html with the associated pdf file being: http://www.sssbpt.info/ssspeaks/volume02/sss02-31.pdf

Madhusudan Rao Naidu is committing great sacrilege by claiming that his body is now Sathya Sai! This is an utterly FALSE CLAIM. He is going completely against what physical form Sathya Sai has said. Now he will use this FALSE CLAIM status to further misguide thousands of Sathya Sai devotees as well as innocent non-devotees using the HOLY NAME of our beloved and revered Gurudev, Kali Yuga Avatar, Shiva-Shakti Swarupa Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. Therefore, even though it causes me great anguish to do so, I have to label Madhusudan Rao Naidu, former gold medalist MBA student of Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning as a Guru Drohi of our Gurudev Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. [Guru Drohi means someone who causes harm to his own Guru.]

Now how do we counter this. Prayer, of course, is one vital way. But I reiterate my view first expressed in Oct. 2015 in this post of mine: http://ravisiyer.blogspot.com/2015/10/satyajit-opens-up-on-narasimhamurthy.html, that a Public Interest Litigation (P.I.L.) case should be filed against Madhusudan Rao Naidu. I reproduce the relevant part from that post below:

I now RECOMMEND that a P.I.L. be filed in Karnataka High Court by Indian national Sathya Sai devotees who are in a position (financial and otherwise) to do so. The P.I.L. should focus on STOPPING Shri Madhusudhan Naidu from using the name and/or image of Sri Sathya Sai Baba of Puttaparthi, for his so called communicator activities. The P.I.L. should NOT get into the funding and running of the social service institutions associated with Muddenahalli group. It should also NOT get into any attempt to penalize Shri Madhusudhan Naidu for his past misdeeds (my view is that we can leave that to his Karma).

The case may have grounds to be a P.I.L. as so many hundreds, or perhaps a few thousands, of people are being DELUDED by the HIMSELF-DELUDED Madhusudhan Naidu. I think the evidence in the form of the above reliable eyewitness account at Swami Mahasamadhi time, and video/TV clips of so called Muddenahalli based Swami subtle body darshan and discourses, should be strong enough to prove that Shri Madhusudhan Naidu is himself DELUDED and is DELUDING hundreds/thousands of innocent persons including young students.

Perhaps Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust (SSSCT) would face some constraints in filing such a PIL. Perhaps they would prefer to avoid negative kind of publicity that may arise if they do so. Therefore I am suggesting that interested Indian national Sathya Sai devotee(s) should file the PIL.
--- end extract ---

If P.I.L. is not possible, then at least a case should be filed in a lower court or trial court - I don't  know the legal terms properly but what I mean is the lowest level court that an Indian citizen can approach. Note that PIL can get filed directly in a higher court, I believe, thereby having quicker results.

I should also state here that due to various limitations, I am not in a position myself to join as a party in filing such a case. I am sorry about that. But that's my serious limitation in this regard and I would like to be upfront about it.
=========================================================

Given below is a comment of mine from my Facebook post,  https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2348669938682903, associated with this blog post:

In response to a comment, I wrote (slightly edited):
Well, --name-snipped--, I find that Sai orgn. in India and internationally, and Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust have very little transparency in this matter. They may have very good reasons for that. I am not being critical of them for lack of transparency on this matter - just stating my view of how they are, based on my work in this area from early 2015 onwards. ... From sometime in early 2017, I decided that the best approach for me, an independent social media writer who is a well wisher of Sai orgn. and SSSCT, was to not get involved with contacting or mentioning names of SSSCT trustees or Sai orgn. heads (except in cases where we have to expose any contact/association they seem to have had with Muddenahalli group in the past as seems to be the case with Mr. Nimish Pandya and his wife). ... So I am not the guy for the suggestion that you have. --Name-snipped-- you are free to share my post text with such orgn. top office bearers. If you send me your email id as a private message, I will forward you my mail on this post which you can simply forward to whoever you want.
----

Transcript of inspiring speech by Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu at Prasanthi Nilayam on Sathya Sai birthday 2018

From around 3 hr 56 mins in: 93rd Birthday Celebrations of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba from Prasanthi Nilayam - 23 Nov 2018, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u2a5cDBNn-A, Hon'ble Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Shri N. Chandrababu Naidu gives a speech for around 20 mins. For more on his visit including some screenshot pics, please visit my post: https://ravisiyer.blogspot.com/2018/11/honble-chief-minister-n-chandrababu.html.

Given below is a transcript of most of CM N. Chandrababu Naidu's speech (slightly edited):

By seeing all of you I am getting the memories of when I met Sai Baba. Today, I am really happy that same dedication is continuing in this institution - [applause] - same enthusiasm and also energy levels.

Physically Sai Baba is not with us. But always He will be with us. Whenever you need any guidance, you pray to Him. He will guide you. I don't have any doubt about it. [Applause]

Just now I had a detailed discussion with the Trust (Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust) members. I am very happy - the amount of dedication in Trust members is amazing. I am (having) so much of satisfaction.

Today I am coming to this centre after a little bit of delay. But today is a very auspicious day. Baba birthday! I came here today. I am here. That means Baba called me on this auspicious occasion to do better service or [applause] to work with all of you.

It is a great legacy. And also it is a great product. What he left with us or what is guiding us. Always, His presence is eternal. Everybody has to think that. If He is not guiding us you cannot sit here.

I came here. Generally when He was alive also I used to come from the same way (points to Dasha Avatar gate from where he came in today). I have seen from the beginning to now, the amount of dedication, the amount of discipline, the amount of spirit - what I used to see at that time - same spirit I am seeing even today, even at this moment. [Applause]

I went inside (to the interview room). When Baba used to meet all of us, (it was) in that small room. That room even today I remember - what I discussed with Him, how he blessed me. All these things I remember on so many occasions. When I sat there, the same experience I am getting even today, even (at the) moment. [Applause]

I am confident that everybody is getting same experience here.

So He left a very good product. I am very happy. Even today, in around 120 countries - not just one or two countries - in 120 countries, people are following Him. Some of them - they don't know Baba's history. Or they never heard about Baba. But you ask about Baba. They will say - yes, we believe Him. That is the driving force that is driving (people) all over the world.

So many new devotees are coming now. We are all having experience with Him - physical experience. But so many people - they don't have physical experience but they are having real experiences in real time about what is the beauty of His message! And also that is how He said very clearly - even I (physical form) may not be here but I will guide you whenever you want any guidance from me. You pray to me. I will guide you. That is the message He has given. That is the indication He has given.

Around 120 countries. They are all from different walks of life. Well learned, and also well established! Some of them are billionaires. Some of them are having excellent profession. But profession may give professional satisfaction. For business people, business will give monetary satisfaction. But real satisfaction only Baba is giving for all of us.

What is human life? He has preached realities in life! Nobody can take money. Nobody can take his profession also. What we have served in this lifetime that will be remembered for ever. That is what He taught all of us. Even today if you see here - there are around 700 districts in the country. 500 districts have very staunch followers (of Sathya Sai) and very good organization is there from Sathya Sai sangam (organization).

There are so many organizations who are all doing service. Only one organization - Sathya Sai centre (organization) - I am telling you - everybody is willingly,not only willingly but with Sai Baba's advice or guidance, everybody is doing service. They will do more productive service. They will do wonders in their lifetime.

So all of us have to pledge now to rededicate ourselves for service. He left us one of the best products of service.

And also in Telugu if you see - Aa roja aayana oke maat cheppyadu. Okate kulam manavata. He made it very clear there is only caste - that is humanity. Okate matam - only one religion that is love. Oke basha - that is what he said very clearly - only one language that is (language of the) heart, that is (language of the) soul.

Oke devudu (anthaka) unnadu - He made it very clear. Only one God that is everywhere.

If you see in this beauty - this is only one spiritual centre where Hindus, Christians, Muslims - all communities - are coming. That is what Baba taught us. [Applause] Not only teaching - He practiced. That is the beauty of this place.

Here, there is no particular religion. All religions are here. That is the greatest asset of Puttaparthi. That is what Baba has given to us. [Applause]

Then ultimately - Aayana eppudu oka maat cheppevadu. Seva margam. Manavatamto unnadame mahanottam. Mahonottamga unnadmgane manavatvam. This is the message He has given.

And also one more message He made it very clear. Eppudu nenu unta. Anantarupamai toda unta. Meeru piluste palukata. Hridayamlo Chaitanya deepamaiyi veluguta. Deenajanalo sevalo premarupamai nilusta. Viswa manavaluki na anuraga sandesham ide. Ani chala spashtamga aayana chepparu.

Ante ee roju aayana cheppindi mana okasaari chuste - all respected people are here. This is the greatest product He has left to us. Even if you see one more quotation of His. Love alone can reveal the divinity (latent) in all. Love is God. Live in Love. Love lives by giving and forgiving. Self lives by getting and forgetting. Love is selfless. Selfishness is lovelessness. Do not waste your life pursuing narrow interests of the self. Love, Love. Become what you truly are - the embodiments of love.

This is what Baba has taught. And also one more (quotation). Sathya Sai organization has been established to enable man to rediscover the path of divinity.

So this is a very strong product He left us. On this auspicious day, I am requesting all of you - we are having more responsibility now to take his legacy for eternity. For generations to come. Decades to come. Across the borders of the globe. Not only India. Not only Puttaparthi. Not only country specific. Everywhere in the world, for a better world and better happiness. So I am requesting all of you - You have experienced today in whatever manner you have experienced here. I am having my own experience here.

This experience we have to share with others. Then they will have an experience. Ultimately all of us have to take this mission to the logical conclusion. That is what I wanted to request all of you. I am confident because Baba is there to drive us, to guide us, to bless us, to take all of us - this mission to the logical conclusion. Not only for individual benefit but for a collective benefit for the global community. This is what I am using (saying) here. For global community benefit He is going to guide us. We are only messengers. We have to carry this message continuously then people will benefit from His legacy or the great product.

I used to see at that time. Somebody will have a problem. They will come here. And then they are totally forgetting about their problem. And also, if they stay here for four or five days they are totally recharged. They have discovered the solution for the problem. That is the great achievement here.

For all of you, if you are having any problem - one day, two days you be here. Somebody is having any problem - to find a solution, for one week you be here. Then I am assuring you Baba will bless you. He will give a solution for your problem. Now it is with you how to find a solution here.

All of you will get a meaningful life if you follow Him. I wish you all the best. I will come very often.

From my side, I am assuring you, as Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Baba (was) born here as a human being. That is, He gave a message. As a human being though He is an incarnation of God, He made it very clear that one has to face all problems. That is the message He has given very clearly.

But ultimately what all He wanted to establish, He is able to establish with all of us. So when I am seeing all this, I do not want to leave this place. That is the feeling I am getting now.

That is an experience. One should, in life, get happiness. Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, ultimately one should have that happiness. Only for eating, all these things we do for maintenance of our body. But happiness will come only with our spirituality. That is what Baba has given to us.

So, many more times I am seeing this environment from end to end. Really, olden days, I am recollecting myself. I am getting so much of energy and also dedication and also happiness. [Applause]

Whenever I am having any problem, I will come here and also whenever I am getting some fatigue I will come here to charge myself. And also take divine blessings of Baba. I will come here very often and take the blessings to do good things for the society. Again I am telling you - to do good things for the society. [Applause]

I am confident that all of us collectively will take this mission to a logical conclusion.

With this, I am thanking all of you. Thank you. Thank you one and all.
[Applause]
--- end of speech --------

Hon'ble Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu visits Prasanthi Nilayam as Chief Guest for Birthday

At around 3 hr 23 mins in 93rd Birthday Celebrations of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba from Prasanthi Nilayam - 23 Nov 2018, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u2a5cDBNn-A, you see Hon'ble Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Shri N. Chandrababu Naidu enter Sai Kulwant Hall.

Chief Minister Naidu speaks at around 3 hrs 56 mins, for around 20 mins. He speaks from the heart, remembering his many interactions with Sathya Sai. He lavishly praises Bhagavan and the Sathya Sai organization. In particular, he congratulates Prasanthi Nilayam ashram institution for keeping up the good work of Bhagavan. He also praises Bhagavan for promoting all religions - Hinduism, Christianity, Islam etc.

CM Naidu's speech was inspirational from Sathya Sai mission perspective. He exhorted listeners to serve in the mission so that there is benefit to global community and said that he as CM of Andhra Pradesh would provide full support to the Sathya Sai mission work.

The transcript of most of his speech has been put up here: https://ravisiyer.blogspot.com/2018/11/transcript-of-inspiring-speech-by.html.

CM Naidu is later invited to cut the birthday cake. Not only does he cut the cake but also gives cake pieces to dignitaries. Lot of nice loving gestures from CM Naidu sir.

I was very happy to watch this speech of CM Naidu garu (sir) and his whole visit in general. I think the Central Trust, Sathya Sai orgn, and Prasanthi Nilayam deserve to be heartily congratulated for having got CM Naidu to visit Prasanthi Nilayam and lavish such praise on them.

As a devotee of Sathya Sai and as a resident of Puttaparthi, I thank Chief Minister N. Chadrababu Naidu for this visit and his support to Puttaparthi and Prasanthi Nilayam.

I took some screenshots of CM Naidu's visit and have added it to this post.

[To open pic in higher resolution, right-click on pic followed by open in new tab/window. In new tab/window you may have to click on pic to zoom in.]










All screenshot pics are courtesy Radio Sai Global Harmony. Please note that this post is freely viewable by all, and does not have any financial profit motive whatsoever.

Friday, November 23, 2018

My FB posts & shares on Sathya Sai birthday

Sathya Sai quotes from 1962 Sivarathri discourse

Some quotes from Sathya Sai Speaks, 4th March 1962 (as per http://www.sssbpt.info/english/sssvol02.html) with the associated pdf file being: http://www.sssbpt.info/ssspeaks/volume02/sss02-31.pdf

Looking at this vast sea of faces, I do not feel like speaking to you; I wish to derive bliss (ananda) by just looking at you from here; looking at your devotion and your faith. Your looking at Me, Me looking at you — what else is needed for bliss to well up?

[Ravi: In spirituality, it has been my experience with Sathya Sai physical form that "the eyes have it"! I have seen the Indian Lok Sabha (Parliament) votes being assessed by the Speaker and then declaring, "the ayes have it" meaning the yes-votes have it. I then got "the eyes have it" phrase to express this aspect of my spiritual experience.

In particular, for many months of 2010 and first three months of 2011 before Sathya Sai physical form was admitted to Super speciality hospital in end March 2011, I have had wonderful - sometimes happy but sometimes not-so-happy yet still wonderful - eye contact interactions with Sathya Sai during darshan rounds, usually at a distance of 10 to 15 feet between Swami and me, and sometimes slightly lesser than 10 feet. At that distance the eye contact interactions were very clear, even if they were for only a few seconds. I used to sit in the old students block during this period.

Swami was a master of giving messages by the look! During this period I have been guided largely by his looks at me, but at least at one time by his look message followed by his discourse where he focused on one of the big doubts that I had regarding his teachings and views, and cleared it up completely. What an awesome spiritual teacher Sathya Sai physical form was!

And here I read Swami having spoken about Him and devotees looking at each other and having bliss! And this was before I was born. I was born in the same year - 1962 - but in some later month of the year.]

...

A little child sits with a book of the Upanishads on its lap and turns over the pages, intent on the printed lines and watching the curious types, deliberately, slowly and with great care. A monk does the same. Can you equate the two and say they are both engaged in the same act? The child is unaware of the treasure it holds in its hand; the monk gets into immediate contact with the spiritual power the lines convey. Find out for yourself whether your spiritual practices have also been purposeful and sincere, wakeful, and worthwhile.

[Ravi: As an Upanishad loving semi-monk/semi-sannyasi [not full monk/sannyasi :-)], I am just blown away by how simply but so effectively, Bhagavan conveys the spiritual power of the Upanishads felt by the monk but the same Upanishads not having much impact on most people. I have tasted the spiritual power of the Upanishads, and, to be honest, am a little scared of its power.]

...

Above all, do not give room for the cancer of doubt. Why argue over Me, over this point or that concerning Me? Who exactly is the Baba who you discuss and debate! What does it matter to you who I happen to be? You are concerned about your goal, your ideal, your experience, your effort, is it not? Why then worry about My origin, My nature, My mystery, My miracle? The basic thing is the hand, and the cup it holds is secondary. The supported is less in importance than the support, the Basic Reality, the Pure Existence. When you cannot reach down to your own Basic Reality, why waste time in exploring the essence of Godhead? As a matter of fact, you can understand Me only when you have understood yourself, your own Basic Truth.

The gross can grasp only the gross; its categories of knowledge can proceed only as far as that. Fish die when they have to breathe the air above the water. Children can learn the alphabet only with the help of boards, slates, pencils, and pieces of chalk. Spiritual aspirants, going through the primers of spirituality, need symbols, images, and rituals. You cannot discard Name and Form until you transmute yourself into the Nameless and Formless — just as the fish needed water and could not come up into the atmosphere as long as they did not transmute themselves into land animals, giving up their aquatic nature. That is the why the Nameless and Formless has often to assume Name and Form and come before humanity with limitations imposed by its own Will, so that it may be loved, respected, worshipped, listened to, and followed, so that the purpose of humanity may be fulfilled.

[Ravi: The Avatar of the age explaining how devotees should view Him and why the Nameless and Formless God (Parabrahman) takes form (took His form of Sathya Sai) with self-imposed limitations, to put humanity on the right track and so that its "purpose" is "fulfilled".]

...

Spiritual practices have to be done after attaining a good character; that is very important. In the midst of impurity, wickedness, and evil, spiritual effort will be fruitless. It is as the jewel in the head of the cobra, in the centre of poison and cruelty. Some come here and earn peace and joy, but after years of sharing and serving, they fall prey to waywardness and fall back into the old morass, declining to such an extent that they deny their very experience and play false to their own conscience! Not that I am anxious that they should worship Me or adhere to Me; far from it. I ask only that truth be proclaimed, regardless of the company you have fallen into; there must be courage of conviction, which will help you to overcome the temptation to deny your cherished joys.

[Ravi: Even in 1962, some people had got associated with Sathya Sai movement in Puttaparthi/Prasanthi Nilayam and then had fallen back into their "old morass" denying their experience of Sathya Sai! Hmm. Such is the reality of spiritual endeavour - the danger of slipping into doubt is always there even in presence of the living Avatar.]

...

Some others are swept off their feet by hysterical demonstrations by certain weak minded individuals who are described as My speaking through them or acting through them! Take it from Me, I am not given to such absurdities! I do not use others as My media; I have no need to. I do not swing from side to side and prattle! Why, even those who torture their bodies and suffer the pains of asceticism for years until ant hills overwhelm them and they become as stiff as tree-stumps find it difficult to realise the Lord. How then can these idlers, who eat their fill and wander about as slaves of their senses, earn that status so cheaply? Their gestures, words, and actions are hollow and vain; those who bum incense before them and revere them are turning away from Me and running after falsehood.

How can the Full ever dally with the paltry and wear the habiliment of the trifling? When God has come assuming form, take it from Me, it will not fill inferior vessels or embellish tawdry stuff or enter impure bodies. So do not extol these falsities and ruin those unfortunates. Deal with them severely, and they will be cured. Those who have seen the brilliance of the diamond will not be misled by glass trinkets. The Lord is like the diamond, call it by any name. But a trinket cannot be turned into a diamond, however loud the praise and however adamant the claim.

[Ravi: In 2018, the above quotes of Sathya Sai fully apply to FALSE CLAIM Cheap Imitator Madhusudan Rao Naidu of Muddenahalli group!

I am stopping the quotes here as I did not want to have many quotes on this post.]
------

Audio has Dana Gillespie singing Happy Birthday to Swami; Video has a montage of clips of Swami over time Happy 92nd Birthday Swami!, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_8g_eedclHc, around 5 mins, published in Nov. 2017.
----

Audio is (as per video description) 75th b'day song in Hindi, Telugu and English; video has montage of clips of Swami darshan, around 10 mins, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wH5WYJwC-Wg
----

This is from a youtube channel called Sai Darshan Official. Before putting up this video I first checked whether the channel seems to have any association with FALSE CLAIM Muddenahalli group but could not find any in the quick checking that I did. [If readers know more about the background of this channel and whether it is or is not associated with Muddenahalli group, please let me know.]

Have presumed it is not associated with MDH group and so am sharing this video. Shankar Mahadevan sings a birthday song for this 93rd birthday of Swami, published a few days back on Nov. 15th this year, around 7 mins: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Rlg36jgLu8
----

Good video documentary of 80th birthday of Swami (2005) by Gene Massey: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uk2qumQZIl0, around half an hour. I saw half of it and plan to see the next half a little later. I think it gives a realistic capture of the event. Hope this documentary gets archived and made easily available (besides this youtube channel) for generations in future who may want to know how Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba's 80th birthday celebration was, in a half hour video.

What extraordinarily technologically advanced times we live in! So easy to see and even feel the Avatar of the age through such realistic capture videos, at a particular stage in his career.\
----

[I thank sssbpt.info and have presumed that they will not have any objections to me sharing the above extracts from their website on this post which is freely viewable by all, and does not have any financial profit motive whatsoever.]

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Single 135 MB Zip file having all my writings data as of at least Sept. 2018 is publicly shared on my Google Drive

My public Google Drive folder here: https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B3Pcd4RD_n8LcTlEQWFINVBXZ3c has a zip file named: 20181121-MyWritings-Data.zip of size 135 MB having all my writings data. This file can be downloaded by anybody on the Internet.

Note that the above Google Drive public folder has some folders and files besides this zip file. The full filename may not be displayed by Google Drive in its default mode. Hovering the mouse over the initial part of filename will show the full file name.

Further note that as the zip file size is very big, Google gives a warning message that it cannot do a virus check on the zip file. However, I have anti-virus on my PC and, so far I have not seen any virus reports. So I think the zip file can be presumed to be virus free. To be doubly sure, after the zip file has been downloaded, users can run anti-virus software on it before using the file.

Alternatively, the share link of the zip file can be used: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1yaxkEKVjuoTxkn2OKsYEnBFPJtjitmMR . Note that this shows a Download option but also shows the message "Oops!" .. "There was a problem with the network".. "Retrying...". I tested the Download option to the point that clicking the download link it shows, starts the big download. So I think the network problem message part can be ignored.

This zip file was created on 21st Nov. 2018 though the latest files within the zip file are of an earlier date. I think the latest files of each blog in XML or pdf format, are not earlier than September 2018.

The zip file has the following contents in zip format or unzipped format:

a) Latest-Blog-Export-Files folder having latest XML (data) backup (export) files from which blogs can be recreated.

b) BooksNBlogBooks-Authored-By-Me-Latest-Versions folder having human readable pdf files (mainly) having my blogs content and my books. Note that it was not possible to get single blog content pdf file due to freeware software limitation and so each blog's content is split into multiple pdf files.

c) Permission to Reuse Books n Blogs.txt text file giving free reuse permission to my content of my books and blogs.

This zip file can be downloaded from above Google Drive public folder. Note that the download takes time as the size is 135 MB.

Note that during viewing of zip file contents (or during unzip of zip file) sometimes one gets a filename too long error. Resolving that error at zip file viewing time is simply copying the file from the viewer into a higher level directory e.g. Desktop, where the filename can be easily accommodated. To resolve the error at zip file extraction time, first copy and paste the zip file to a higher level directory e.g. Desktop, and then do the unzip at that level.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

The scary and risky, warranty and indemnity clauses in publisher agreements for authors; Unknown and less known authors are typically forced to accept it

I started regularly writing online public posts on my blogs from around Sept. 2011 onwards. Prior to that I had put up very few technical review and how-to posts on one blog but under a pseudonym (Gabbar Singh).

Blogger and Wordpress were, and continue to be, my main blog platforms. As far as I know and can recall, neither Blogger nor Wordpress asked me to indemnify them for any legal problems they may face due to my posts. I mean, I don't recall reading that in any user agreement or having to check a box saying that I indemnify them. On Facebook too, I don't think I have been asked to indemnify Facebook for any legal problems with posts that I put up on Facebook.

I realized that I am legally responsible for my blog and Facebook (social media) posts from both copyright and defamation perspectives. Over time, I read up on copyright and defamation laws in India and I think I now have a decent idea about these laws in India. I try hard to ensure that my posts, even when they criticize somebody, are within copyright and defamation laws in India. That gives me the confidence that if somebody files a lawsuit against me in India, for my blog (and other social media posts like Facebook), I will be able to successfully defend myself in such a lawsuit.

So it is a little scary in India to write critical posts against named persons due to the lawsuit possibility. But if one knows what criticism is permitted and what isn't by Indian law, then though it is serious stuff one need not be so scared if one writes criticism within the bounds of Indian defamation law.

But it is when one self-publishes a book or I think even when one publishes a book in the traditional way with established publishers, that the legal exposure for the author becomes very scary and theoretically limitless, with direct negative impact possibility on an author's financial situation.

I recently came across a few USA articles on how publishers unfairly force authors to sign potentially risky, broad warranty and indemnity clauses. It was good in a way to know that other authors too have felt that way and expressed it in the USA. Here are the articles:

1) Stop Forcing Authors to Take Unlimited Financial Risks, https://www.authorsguild.org/industry-advocacy/stop-forcing-authors-to-take-unlimited-financial-risks/, 18th December 2015

2) Writers and Editors (Pat McNees's blog) , http://www.writersandeditors.com/blog.htm?post=869703, 13th August 2012

3) Indemnity clauses leave freelancers open to lawsuits, https://www.poynter.org/news/indemnity-clauses-leave-freelancers-open-lawsuits, 1st May 2015

4) Reduce the Sting of Warranty and Indemnity Clauses in Publishing Contracts. https://www.sidebarsaturdays.com/2016/10/22/httpwp-mep7vddb-mx/, 22nd Oct. 2016

The same issues apply for self-publishing platforms in India. Due to concerns related to indemnity clause with Pothi.com that I had to agree to (check box selection, if I recall correctly) as part of the process of using Pothi.com for self-publishing paperback version of my book, I have limited shipment of the paperback book from Pothi.com web sale page to India only. This way I am exposed to Pothi.com indemnity related legal risks only in India (for the paperback book which sells at some price - not free), which I think is something that I can somehow manage, as I am sure that my book content is well within laws in India.

I also put up my free ebook on Pothi.com besides other sites. The ebook (free download) page on Pothi.com does not allow me to restrict downloads to India. So I think that download is possible for all. Does that expose me to Pothi.com indemnity legal risk outside India too? Perhaps. I think I should discuss this with them. Note that other sites like archive.org, OpenLibrary.org and self.gutenberg.org where I have put up the free ebook, did not ask me to indemnify them, as far as I can recall.

The indemnity clause means that I have to bear Pothi.com's legal expenses if any legal suit is filed against my book!!! That is scary for me. I am OK with me bearing legal costs if anybody files a legal suit against me directly for the book. But paying Pothi.com's lawyers is something that would make me very uncomfortable. Anyway, I don't have a choice. Unless I agree to the indemnity clause, I cannot self-publish the paperback version of the book using Pothi.com self-publishing platform (or any other Indian self-publishing platform as this indemnity clause seems to be a standard practice). So I have crossed my fingers and have hoped for the best. But I want to play somewhat safe by limiting my Pothi.com indemnity risks for the book to India only.

I would be very happy to put up my "Who am I? I am I ..." ebook on Google Books for free. But Google Books requires me to indemnify them! And that's an international indemnity clause sign-off (via web form) with a mega international company! Far more scarier than sign-off on Pothi.com for books sold in India only.

Amazon does not allow free ebooks, I believe. But even if it did, it also has the same indemnity issue.

Most people simply agree to the indemnity clause as there is no other choice when it comes to companies like Google who will refuse to modify even one word for an individual and unimportant user.

The saving grace is that companies like Google and Amazon will face a lot of bad press if they casually use the indemnity arrangement to force authors to pay significant money to them (Google and Amazon), for legal expenses incurred for frivolous and patently unfair cases filed against Google & Amazon for authors' books. But the authors essentially have to depend on Google or Amazon doing the right thing in such scenarios. Legally, Google and Amazon need not do the right thing - they can simply charge the author(s) for expenses incurred by Google and Amazon for even frivolous lawsuits filed against the books (on Google and Amazon).

Not a happy state of affairs for authors. But that's life. Perhaps I too may give in to the power of Google Books platform and agree to their indemnity clause, so as to put up my free ebook on Google Books. Then I will just hope and pray that nobody files lawsuits against the ebook on Google Books and that even if they do, Google Books does not burn a big hole in my finances by charging me for their legal expenses.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Malibu Hindu Temple seems to have got saved from Woolsey fire thanks to brave work of California firefighters and grace of God



Above pic is Hindu temple near Malibu, California, USA. Pic courtesy:  http://malibuhindutemple.org/home.aspx.

I came to know of this matter from a recent post shared by Lisa De Witt, https://www.facebook.com/divinebynature.tattwamasi/posts/941798246019569 (Original FB post is by Facebook user: Ashtar-Athena SherAn).

https://heavy.com/news/2018/11/malibu-hindu-temple-fire-woolsey/ article provides more pics and also gives the background to the original FB post by Ashtar-Athena SherAn.
----

Here's a pic I got on the net which seems to show Woolsey fire smoke threateningly close to the Malibu temple: https://scontent.fhyd6-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/46255393_10209769502273421_8072682953169174528_o.jpg?_nc_cat=100&_nc_ht=scontent.fhyd6-1.fna&oh=ed1fbc46d85610169be3e1922f326fb1&oe=5C693FAC

Pic courtesy seems to be: Joe Apicelli

Facebook post that shared this pic: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10209769502233420&set=a.1437709801889
----

I found the website for the temple - malibuhindutemple.org. They have not put up the note mentioned in the first shared post above. The latest fire-update note there is this: http://malibuhindutemple.org/temple_and_fire_update.aspx, dated 13th Nov. 2018.

I have given below the main contents of this note:

November 13, 2018

To the members and devotees of the Temple:

We continue to be encouraged by the news that the Woolsey Fire has been 35% contained as we write this e-mail to you. At the same time, we are also fully aware that the conditions in the neighbourhood of the Temple are far from being normal. The surrounding area is still cordoned off and is under mandatory evacuation orders. We, therefore, do not have access to visit the Temple at this time. We are also encouraged to hear that possibly sometime on Wednesday, November 14, 2018, the Santa Ana winds will subside and the mandatory evacuation orders will be lifted in the area surrounding the Temple. We are very blessed to have the authorities, particularly the firefighters, protecting our properties and lives at such a difficult time in the history of our state. While praying for the well-being of the Temple, we urge you to also pray for the personnel who are doing everything to protect our interest and secure our properties.

It is still our intention to reopen the Temple for service on Saturday, November 17, 2018. We will make every attempt to undertake the cleaning up operations expeditiously and have the priests perform the necessary rituals prior to commencing our regular services. We wish to thank you for your patience and for your prayers. In the meantime, please continue to stand by for further updates. You may also find updates posted on our website: www.malibuhindutemple.org

Thank you.

Sincerely,

Nadadur S. Kumar

General Counsel and Chief Administrative Officer

Hindu Temple Society of Southern California (HTSSC)

--- end extracts ---
----

Ravi: My comment below presumes that the temple is safe and not directly damaged by the Woolsey fire as of now.

Good to know that this temple, where, it seems, prayers are made for well being of all humanity, has not been damaged by the Woolsey fire. My prayers to God to help protect and nourish the brave firefighters and other people who are at the forefront of battling this fire and doing the associated rescue and rehabilitation work. My prayers to God that this temple serves as a beacon of hope, love and light for all the residents of Malibu and nearby areas, irrespective of which faith they belong to and including those that do not have faith in God, as they take on the very challenging work of rebuilding their homes, their businesses and their lives, after the enormous destruction wreaked by the Woolsey fire.

[I thank malibuhindutemple.org and have presumed that they will not have any objections to me sharing the above extract from their website on this post which is freely viewable by all, and does not have any financial profit motive whatsoever.]