Report by Santanu Patra; Texas: Guruji Shri Chandra Bhanu Satpathyji mesmerized the audience at a gathering of devotees hosted at Mason Creek Community Center, Katy, Greater Houston, Texas by the Odisha Culture Center, Houston on September 16, 2012 that was attended by all members of the Odisha Culture Center, other members of Orissa Society of America along with participation of devotees from various communities in Greater Houston metro area, Dallas and Chicago.
The audience joined in ceremonial prayers offered by Shree Satpathyji marking the start of the event. Guru Bandana by Suratha Ratha of Houston followed. Thereafter, Sarbeshwar Rout of Dallas sang Bhajans dedicated to Lord Jagannath and Shree Shirdi Sai Baba. Sonakshi Shree, a student of University of Houston gave a brief introduction about Guruji’s selfless service towards mankind and his accomplishments.
Addressing the gathering, Guruji took the audience on a historic and spiritual journey of Odisha’s history and culture originating from Lord Jagannath. Going into details from the time of the Kingdom of Toshali, He dwelled into details of cohesion of various cultures in different periods into the Jagannath culture starting from around 2nd century BCE. Talking about Shree Jagannath temple, He said that is one place where any one of any caste can come without any differentiation or restriction and the culture of sharing food from one plate or vessel still exists. Regarding Shree Sainath Maharaj, He said that a Perfect Master (Sat-guru) need not be bound by a definition of any caste, creed or religion. They are much beyond these limited definitions attributed by mankind.
They experience all religions, all people, all cultures as all these relative truths reside within them. Going beyond these relative truths, they stay in the realm of permanent truth. They experience everything around them as various images and handle the situations accordingly, but they do not become that (images); and because of their existence in the higher plane, they can easily handle all this. He further added, Shree Sainath created no trust, left no heir, had no money, yet the explosion in growth of Shirdi Sai movement is because it is self-multiplier. It is not bound or dependent on anyone and self-inspired individuals or groups are building Shirdi Sai temples and institutions all around the world.
An interactive question and answer session followed after Shri Satpathyji’s address. Responding to a question on national morality, Guruji clarified the meaning of nation and morality of human beings and stated that a nation is a political formation with boundaries which has no relevance with spirituality or morality. Responding to another question on the conflict within a devotee of following one’s own family deity over Shri Shirdi Sai Baba, Guruji answered that everyone is free to follow and worship their own deities and that was the message of Shri Sainath. The root of all paths of any practice or any religion should lead to happiness of the being and people around. He also advised that one’s devotion towards Baba or one’s deity should not propel one to convince someone else to follow the same path. Everyone is free to follow their own devotional path as said by Shri Sainath.
Tapan Padhi of Dallas, convener, Orissa Society of America and Suratha Ratha of Houston honored and felicitated Guruji on behalf of the society for his selfless service to humanity combined with spiritual, artistic, literary and philanthropic excellence. The program ended with vote of thanks by Hari Patro and Jagannath Rath who had come from Dallas. The event came to end with distribution of Prasad to all.
Dr. C.B. Satpathy ji, reverentially addressed to as “Guruji” is an author, lyricist, music
composer, philanthropist and spiritual guide to millions of followers of Shri Shirdi Sai Baba across the world. His work has been pivotal in the globalization of Shirdi Sai movement with over 200+ Shirdi Sai temples in and outside of India including USA. His books in English titled “Shirdi Sai Baba and other Perfect Masters” and “May I Answer” have been translated into various Indian languages. His papers, short articles and write ups are regularly published in over a dozen periodicals every quarter in different languages. His most recent book “Shree Guru Bhagabat”, a spiritual treatise, originally written in nine letter poetic meter in Odia and translated into English and Hindi, is a four part book series, depicting the glory of the Perfect Masters, the Spiritual Masters, and the Disciples, with various divine aspects of the master disciple relationship and related topics. His other book “Shristhi-tatvanu-chintam” translated into Sanskrit from Odia focuses on the essence of Creation, Nature, Cosmic and Divine principles in a style and language in use today.
His music compositions have been rendered by such famous Indian vocalists as Suresh Wadkar, Shreya Ghoshal, Shaan, Kailash Kher, Shankar Mahadevan, Sukhvinder Singh, Sadhana Sargam, Rekha Bharadwaj, Mohit Chauhan, Shilpa Rao, Ajit Kadkade and others. The premier music company in India, Times Music has released his Hindi albums “Living With Sai”, “Aao Sai” and “Sai Mantra – Thubyam Namami” under its banner in 2010 and 2011, whereas another leading music company HMV Saregama has released his Mantra albums “Shri Sainathaya Namah Namah” and “Hiranyagarba Shriman Narayan Sai” earlier this year. His musical compositions have also been rendered in various albums in Odia and Telugu.
His literary and music work has been recognized by famous accredited universities in India who have conferred on him degrees of Honoris Causa (D. Litt. – Vacaspati), D.Litt. and L.L.D. Well known cultural institutions of India have appreciated his service and honored him with recognitions. Guruji Dr C.B. Satpathy ji will be honored and presented with “Building bridges across nations” award at the Washington State summit on US-India Trade & Commerce, September 27th at Seattle Cultural Center, Seattle, Washington for his service to humanity across nations.