Who says that anything spiritual has to be serious, sober, dull and boring?? The atmosphere at the Youth Meet, one of the functions celebrating Dada?s 89th birthday, was so full of verve and vivacity, so thick with joy and bliss that you could slice it with a knife.? Though, of course, the only cutting that took place was of the birthday cake, amidst loud cheering and applause.
The Bridge-Builders, an off-shoot of the Sadhu Vaswani Mission comprising of the youth, organised this wondrous evening.? The bhajans and kirtan by the youngsters were not only foot-tapping but touched the soul as well, hence, were enervating, yet filled one with yearning.? The love of these youngsters for the Divine made one?s hair stand on end and brought tears to the eyes.
The holy fire or ?Havan? was lit and was further purified by Dada?s offerings and chanting of the Gayatri Mantra.
Immediately followed the eagerly awaited question and answer session.? The queries poured forth fast and furious and Dada patiently and perfectly answered each one.? Some of them were ?
Q. Tell us the secret of the peace and serenity radiating from you?
Dada – This peace and serenity is not a secret.? What ever little I have is due to my broken faith in my beloved Master and in the Almighty.? There should be belief in the meaning of God?s mercy in everything happening to us.? This world is not a pleasure-hunting ground, but a school in which experience is our teacher, whether pleasant or not.? After learning the lesson, one moves on to the next until one grows in the wisdom of life.? Then one is never perturbed for the gem of serenity is within.
Q. Please provide practical suggestions for a teenager to stick to the right path.
Dada ? There are three ways to develop a strong will power ? refrain from doing what you like; pray to God for it is a gift from Him and read the lives and teachings of great men and women who have achieved will power.? A corollary to this is, spend time in the presence of realized sages and saints. Thus will your will power grow and prevent you from going on the wrong path.
Q. Dada, how did you become such a great saint and what inspired you to become one?
Dada ? (laughing) you have come to the wrong address.? I am but a mere servant of the sages.
Q. When will there be the next ?avatara? of Lord Vishnu?
Dada ? It depends on our cries of longing which can bring Him to us. ?Avatara? is one who does ?avateeran?, i.e who descends.? This descent can be hastened by our longing and prayers.? Alas! We are too busy doing many things and do not find the time to call Him.
Q. What would be a perfect birthday gift to give you, Dada?
Dada ? The perfect gift will be when all of you will stop eating food of violence.? We wonder at cannibals and their ability to eat human flesh.? Future generations will be amazed at how we could slaughter animals for food.
So touched and inspired was the audience that it led to pledges by around thirty-five people to turn vegetarian for life.? Seeing the enthusiasm and sincerity of those around him, Dada commented that this had been the best Youth Meet for his birthday, ever.? He was overjoyed at the immense positive response.
The look of ecstasy on the faces of the youngsters indicated that they had already understood and attained the true meaning of life.