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10th World Conference Resolutions

Background

Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba’s life, His message, His ideals and His humanitarian works can all be enshrined in two words—Love and Selfless service.  Baba has told us that selfless service is the single, most efficient and universal tool for understanding, experiencing and expressing Divine Love. With Bhagawan’s life and message as the guiding principle, the Sathya Sai International Organisation’s theme for the 10th World Conference is: Love is the Source, Love is the Path, Love is the Goal.

Study Guides & Pre-World Conferences

As a first step, two study circle guides, one on Love and another on Service were prepared and published in 2014 for in-depth study by Sathya Sai devotees all over the world. Intense study and discussions were held to dive deep into Bhagawan’s teachings in nearly 2,000 Sai Centres and Groups in every continent (except Antarctica). The second step was the pre-world conferences held in 16 countries – representing 11 zones of the SSIO. The two- or three-day conferences were held from January to September 2015 and provided a forum for Baba’s devotees to discuss these profound truths in practical terms, learn from each other, energise themselves, and move forward along the path laid out clearly by Bhagawan. Sathya Sai Youth were an integral part of the pre- world conferences. The Grand Finale events in South Africa and Mauritius drew about 1,600 and 2,000 eager spiritual aspirants, including about 650 Sathya Sai youth in Mauritius. 

10th World Conference

The 10th World Conference was held 25th–27th November in the Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning, Prasanthi Nilayam campus. About 900 delegates from approximately 80 countries attended this historic conference, including SSIO officers, devotees, Trustees of the Central Trust, other senior officials and Sathya Sai Youth. The programme included talks by members of Prasanthi Council, Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust, Sri Sathya Sai World Foundation, and many others from different countries, cultures, professions and backgrounds – united by the common thread of Swami’s Love. The main focus was on the role of the SSIO, personal sadhana, Bhagawan’s teachings and stories of personal transformation. The programme also included live musical performances and short skits. 

Another unique aspect of the conference was a series of nine workshops offered during the afternoon sessions of the first two days – to commemorate the 90th Birthday of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. The topics chosen allowed the delegates to delve deep into the conference theme, its relevance in daily life and practical applications. Another unique product offered at the Divine Lotus Feet, as well as the delegates and others was the landmark publication, Divine Nectar – a collection of key Bhagawan’s discourses related to the workshop topics. The nine chapters in this book, consisting of seminal discourses by Baba that capture the essence of nine important topics, will guide and inspire devotees all across the globe.

Several outstanding cultural programmes were offered by SSIO members from Dominican Republic, Brazil, Africa, Russia, Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan during the conference, reflecting local traditions and heritage. Bhagawan’s devotees from Indonesia, Africa, Russia and adjoining countries, Thailand, Turkey, Mexico and Central American countries, Dominican Republic, Brazil and Azerbaijan also offered brilliant performances in the Sai Kulwant Hall during the grand Birthday Celebrations.  Finally, an international group of Sai musicians will present Bhajans on this last day of programmes by the SSIO, for this period.

Exhibition

The SSIO hosted an International Exhibition during 20–27 November in the Ashram. The exhibition showcased the highlights of educational, spiritual and service activities around the world and the life of Bhagawan through audio, video and multi-media presentations and posters, skits and music programmes. Live programmes were also staged from many countries. One could see glimpses of the Divine glory of Baba through His life, Eternal Message and His work around the world. Articles and pictures of this wonderful display can be viewed on the SSIO websites, and in the Bulletins that were issued recently.

Resolutions

We are pleased to offer 32 items in the Conference Resolutions at the divine lotus feet of Bhagawan. These action items, recommendations and directions will help not only Sathya Sai devotees, but all spiritual aspirants and new-comers to realise the full potential of the Sathya Sai Avatar’s teachings and divine guidance.

We examined three main aspects of an ideal Sathya Sai Centre, which is the nucleus of the SSIO all over the world. The centres function is to help office-bearers, devotees and new-comers realise their innate divinity, following Baba’s teachings.

The leaders of SSIO should be exemplars of Sathya Sai’s teachings. They should practice the human values and lead by personal example.

Sathya Sai educational programmes spread Swami’s eternal and universal message to the young and the old, in many lands and cultures, to people of diverse faiths and backgrounds. It unites all, under the common umbrella of the five human values – supported by Love.

Women are the pillars of society. Their role is often not understood properly or overlooked. Swami has reminded us to give prominent attention to the role of women, for the highest good of all.

The youth are the future of the world, and Bhagawan put a lot of emphasis on developing the youth at an early age, so that they can become men and women of exemplary character.

In this day and age, it is important to practice Swami’s advice of “head in the forest and hands in the society” for inner peace and harmony to cope with the challenges of modern society.   

This is an important initiative of the SSIO in sharing Bhagawan’s teachings with one and all. Baba directed the SSIO and all His devotees to spread His message and help others move forward on their spiritual journey.

  1. Ideal Sathya Sai Centre

    We examined three main aspects of an ideal Sathya Sai Centre, which is the nucleus of the SSIO all over the world. The centres function is to help office-bearers, devotees and new-comers realise their innate divinity, following Baba’s teachings.

    1. Centres need to host activities to intensify personal Sadhana.
    2. Centres need to conduct study circles to deepen the understanding of Bhagawan’s teachings. 
    3. Centres need to reflect the universality of Sathya Sai’s message through appropriate music and devotional singing.
  2. Leadership in the SSIO

    The leaders of SSIO should be exemplars of Sathya Sai’s teachings. They should practice the human values and lead by personal example.

    1. The officers should conduct regular meetings with members to increase awareness of SSIO structures and its activities globally.
    2. Delegates should present reports in their respective centres of the inspirational stories and projects from the conference and workshops to motivate others and offer opportunities.
    3. SSIO leadership should conduct comprehensive training of Centre officers. 
    4. Ideal Sai leader should possess the following attributes:
      • Ability (have the skills to perform the task),
      • Availability (have the time and interest), and
      • Affability (be cheerful with a positive attitude).
  3. Educational Programmes

    Sathya Sai educational programmes spread Swami’s eternal and universal message to the young and the old, in many lands and cultures, to people of diverse faiths and backgrounds. It unites all, under the common umbrella of the five human values – supported by Love.

    1. ISSEs and Sathya Sai Schools should make greater use of technology for public outreach, educational videos and sharing of resources. 
    2. Educational material in human values and other SSE resources should be translated into more languages for local use. 
    3. The education committee of the SSIO should assist in developing and offering parenting programmes for Sathya Sai Schools, as well as SSE and SSEHV communities.
  4. Role of Women in SSIO

    Women are the pillars of society. Their role is often not understood properly or overlooked. Swami has reminded us to give prominent attention to the role of women, for the highest good of all.

    1. All family members should recognise and respect women. 
    2. Women should identify ways to build self-confidence and be exemplars of Sai Teachings to inspire children and others to become good citizens. 
    3. Women should participate in various seva activities such as hospital visits, food for the needy, etc.
    4. Women should take up the role of SSE teachers as recommended by Baba.
    5. SSIO should encourage and support women to take up leadership roles at all levels of the organisation.
  5. Role of youth in SSIO

    The youth are the future of the world, and Bhagawan put a lot of emphasis on developing the youth at an early age, so that they can become men and women of exemplary character.

    1. Youth are our future leaders. SSIO should empower the youth to shoulder more responsibilities. Youth, should be encouraged to participate in the Sathya Sai International Youth Leadership Programme, which should also be replicated at national and local levels.
    2. SSIO should encourage the youth to contribute in their areas of expertise through their knowledge and talents. 
    3. Youth should conduct more retreats where they will deepen their understanding of Bhagawan’s teachings and also address the challenges faced in practical situations. 
  6. Balancing Family, Career and the SSIO

    In this day and age, it is important to practice Swami’s advice of “head in the forest and hands in the society” for inner peace and harmony to cope with the challenges of modern society.   

    1. SSIO member should give priority to Swami and His work and dedicate all actions as an offering to God. We should conduct a daily audit of our activities to ensure there is no wastage of time, energy or resources.
    2. SSIO members should try to see God in all aspects of their life – family, work and SSIO.
    3. SSIO members should always remember that Swami is the doer and that He has given us a blessed opportunity to be an instrument of His.
  7. Public Outreach

    This is an important initiative of the SSIO in sharing Bhagawan’s teachings with one and all. Baba directed the SSIO and all His devotees to spread His message and help others move forward on their spiritual journey.

    1. There is a need for more interfaith activities, e.g. devotional singing, seminars, service activities, drama festivals, choirs and orchestras that reflect the rich tapestry of faiths.
    2. The SSIO should hold effective public meetings to share Swami’s message and His love with local communities on a regular basis. New-comers should be welcomed and given information about SSIO activities.
    3. The SSIO should more actively engage with communities at the local, national and international levels to serve their practical needs. Online videos and public meetings are strongly recommended for enhancing community participation.
    4. The SSIO should promote Walk for Values, where it is accepted by the community. This is a fun-filled community activity, which promotes human values in a subtle way.  
  8. Effective and loving communication in the SSIO
    1. SSIO officers should remember that when we speak to others, we are speaking to God, the Sai within. We should practice active listening.
    2. We should respect other person’s opinion and practice “first understanding and then adjustment”. Personal communications are preferred to emails for resolving difference of opinions.
    3. Important news and information should be shared with internal and external groups in a timely manner with good audio-visual materials. SSIO should document and publicise centre, regional and national activities in a professional manner so that they are suitable for sharing with the general public. 
  9. Selfless service
    1. Healthcare, education, and other committee should share their best practices of local, national and global service initiatives to motivate others.
    2. Disaster Relief teams should conduct ongoing training programmes for disaster relief management and maintain certification efforts.
    3. Sathya Sai Centres should increase efforts to protect Mother Earth by bringing more go-green practices (recycle, reuse, reduce) at the Centre and all SSIO events, and by encouraging group prayers.
    4. SSIO should create a database of skilled and interested volunteers at local, national and global level for the different service initiatives.