Baba's Divine Reception, by Sudhakar Deva Rao

Here is a story about the inherent beauty of Prabhat Samgiita and how Baba created the scene whereby Prabhat Samgiita was used for His divine reception. 

Specifically, in my memory, I recall when Baba was living in Lake Gardens and Prabhat Samgiita was regularly sung to celebrate His arrival. Indeed, in those days, many times I went to see Baba in Lake Gardens. I remember that a few minutes before Baba was to come from His room, without delay the singing of Prabhat Samgiita would start. We would all be outside, standing around His car, singing - waiting for Him. When finally Baba would exit the house to go on fieldwalk, all the Dadas and margiis were encircling that area to see Baba, singing Prabhat Samgiita. This was the usual routine. 

Then Baba would graciously accept the mala and perform greetings with various margiis. Sometimes also He used to talk for a few minutes and give some guidelines. Of course all these customs He would do in a very charming manner. This was the normal scene when He was in the process to go out for His fieldwalk. Finally He would get into the car and take His seat, and the car would leave.

And after 15, 20, or sometimes 30 minutes later, Baba would to return back - after His fieldwalk was completed.

Then at that time, all the margiis and WTs who were busy in their work, sitting in the hall, or doing other duties, would immediately stop what they were doing as soon as they would hear the sound of Baba's car returning. They would rush up along the driveway - waiting for the car to pull in to greet Baba. And the greeting used to be done with the singing of Prabhat Samgiita. Of course, sometimes, we all were ready five minutes ahead of time. 

Those unforgettable memories still I keep alive in my heart. Sometimes those same visions and feelings come in my dhyana also. How Baba is coming, and greeting one and all, and blessing everyone with His folded hands. Then He was graciously accepting the mala, in a charming mood and with a smiling face. All the while everybody was singing Prabhat Samgiita for His divine reception. Baba was present with His folded hands and smiling face. Sometimes He used to talk or say something. It was His causeless grace that He would create such a blissful atmosphere and allow me to be present and participate in His divine play.

Sometimes also I saw that in the evening after Baba used to return from His fieldwalk, then He would sit for a few minutes on the chair in the driveway, next to His car garage. And there all the devotees sang Prabhat Samgiita. The Lake Gardens Baba's Quarter Madhuma'lainca was very crowded those days. Maximum people were attending. But the space next to the garage was perhaps a 100 square feet or so-- no more than that, as I remember. Plus all around there were flower pots and so many plants. So in true sense, there was hardly any space. Even then Baba used to sit there and listen to Prabhat Samgiita. What a blissful scene.

In this way, His liila was going on: Every day more and more new songs were being given by Baba. Baba would listen to those songs being sung by various margiis - as margiis were being called upon to sing those new songs. This gave the distinct feeling that Baba wants that the maximum number of sadhakas should learn Prabhat Samgiita and sing. Because He made Prabhat Samgiita for everyone. He did not like that just a few trained musicians should sing in a professional way and that everybody should just keep quiet. Baba did not like this type of approach.

That's why every day, when in Baba's presence, more and more margiis, from different corners & far distant places, were inspired to learn new songs. Then they would sing in front of Him. Or we can say, they were leading the song and others were following. This type of training was going on. The trend started in 1982 and it continued on up to '90 itself. 

Before 1982, when Baba would come from His room, the system was to raise the slogan: "Parama Pita Baba Ki Jai, Parama Pita Baba Ki-- Jai, Parama Pita Baba Ki-- Jai, Shrii Shrii Anandamurtiji Ki-- Jai, Shrii Shrii Anandamurtiji-- Ki Jai, Shrii Shrii Anandamurtiji Ki-- Jai, Ananda Marga Amar Hai, Ananda Marga Amar Hai, Ananda Marga Amar Hai, Parama Pita Baba Ki-- Jai! etc". This type of chanting and raising slogan was done those days. 

Hearing the the slogans, margiis would rush from a distance to have a glance at Baba. It was like one signal for many of us. When the slogan would start, it meant Baba has come out or He is going in. That time margiis used to run and to have a glance of Baba. That was so beautiful and blissful. 

Hence, since the very beginning, since the birth of AM, the system was in place to receive Baba by raising those slogans. And then the style changed in 1982 when Prabhat Samgiita came into being. And indeed the arrival of Prabhat Samgiita was something very charming. The singing of Prabhat Samgiita was done regularly for the reception of Baba. So Baba used to be received with the singing of Prabhat Samgiita. This was the very devotional way of reception for Guru. 

Of course both the systems were charming and had their own unique appeal. But overall, receiving Him with the singing Prabhat Samgiita was more heart touching, soft, and sweetly vibrating. Whereas the previous system of raising the slogan of "Parama Pita Baba Ki Jai!" had a certain strength and boldness. Naturally because of Baba's charming presence, that was also sweet. But receiving Baba with the collective singing of Prabhat Samgiita was more sweet and beautiful. At least that was my experience. What a devotional reception!

As I recounted above, Baba used to come sometimes in the evening after fieldwalk, and sit next to His garage in Madhumalainca. There, devotees used to sing a few Prabhat Samgiita. Due to the lack of space, most of the time the place was so crowded that margiis were finding it difficult to find a place to sit, often sitting on one anothers' lap. The air was charged with His magnificent Presence. Sometimes Baba used to listen to one song, and sometimes two or three songs. But always He used to sit quietly in very a gracious, charming mood and listen to Prabhat Samgiita.

I still feel the scene was as if heaven descended upon this earth. So blissful and charming, His presence was. Sometimes He would open His eyes and look around and then close His eyes and listen quietly.

When one song finished, if the song was new, then playing His divine liila Baba used to ask one and all: "Do you margiis all approve this song? Should I include it in Prabhat Samgiita?".

Then Margiis used to respond, "Yes Baba, it must be included! It is very good!".

Then, in smiling way, Baba used to say, "You are my guardians. If you don't accept, then I will tear it apart and throw it away."

Listening this, everyone used to smile. And Baba used to say, "Ok when you have approved this song, then it will be included in Prabhat Samgiita." 

He used to do this type of liila, divine play, regularly. I think He did this with each and every song. So gracious was His expression. 

One day when a Prabhat Samgiita finished being sung, then Baba asked,  

"Who was not singing?".

Hearing this, everybody became alert. When the next song started, everybody was very careful and VSS were watching. That very day I felt that Baba pointedly telling us that everybody should sing Prabhat Samgiita and nobody should think that Prabhat Samgiita is for Bengalis only or for a few professional musicians etc. 

By this way, by encouraging and attracting us all to step forward and sing, Baba used to come and bless us. And we used to sing Prabhat Samgiita. Those memories are unforgettable. This whole entire scene of His coming out and His reception with Prabhat Samgiita was so blissful. In my heart also I feel that Prabhat Samgiita is a special devotional gift of Baba - which has no comparison. 

So this was the glorious scene those days as I remember - and how Prabhat Samgiita was the way by which we would receive Baba. The conclusive idea then is that the reception of Baba is the greatest event. In the life of the devotee, the most cherished occasion, and most fortunate moment, is when they receive Parama Purusa. So when Baba Himself has transformed the process and specially designated Prabhat Samgiita as the chosen medium whereby devotees will receive Him, then that means Prabhat Samgiita itself has a special value. It has a sanctified role and unique stance.

So it is our duty to recognize this truth and uphold the sacred standard of Prabhat Samgiita.