Bay Area receives words of wisdom from Didi Maa

Sadhvi Rithambara
Sadhvi Rithambara

FREMONT, CA: More than 300 people received the blessings and listened to the poetess and modern sage Sadhvi Rithambara, affectionately known to her followers as ‘Didi Maa,’ at a short two-day notice. Trustees & volunteers of Fremont temple and more than 100 devotees gathered at the temple entrance to welcome Didi Maa with aarti and the traditional chanting of mantras by the pundits. After the ceremonious welcome, Didi Maa addressed the gathering where she asked the devotees to not only ring the temple bells and conduct the aarti and havans, but also to worship the divine through service (seva) – the Karma Yoga.

At Sunnyvale Hindu temple also devotees were waiting eagerly for her blessings and her speech. Didi Maa’s short public programs at both the temples had her usual poetic wisdom, her soothing melodious songs and her incessant flow of knowledge filled with anecdotes and metaphoric verses in flawless Hindi.

She talked about Paropakar – altruism – in the most sublime manner. If a cow is nurturing her calf with her milk, it is not because she wants to do a favor to the calf, but because she has an urge to express her love and affection to her own little self.

“Jab paraya koi hai nahi to paropakar kaisa?” When we all are one and everyone is mine, where is the question of helping anyone? We help ourselves.

Her other tidbits of wisdom included a clarion call to reduce consumerism. ‘Duniya parivaar nahi, bazaar ban gaya hai’ – she complained; the world is no longer a family, but a marketplace.

She said “Hum vastuon ko istemal karte the aur vyaktiyon ko pyaar; Aur ab hum vastuon ko pyar karte hain our vyaktiyon ko istemal” – We used to love people and use objects and now we use people and love objects. She urged us to have a rich heart like the monk of India – the Fakir – who showed what richness meant to the dying Alexander the Great in the desert who wanted a glass of water in exchange for his entire kingdom. The Fakir is said to have ridiculed Alexander that his entire kingdom was equal to a glass of water. She asked us to look at wealth like a monk does – ‘Fakir Ki Drishti’

Audience at Didi Maa's Program
Audience at Didi Maa’s Program

Chandru Bhambhra, philanthropist and community leader, who was coordinating the program, said that “Dr. Romesh Japra (Cardiologist), founder and current Chairman of Fremont Hindu temple, is a community leader who follows Sadhviji’s definition of Pooja by offering his Karma Yoga to the community for over last three decades. Didi Maa then blessed him by putting on him a Dupatta. Didi Maa also gave blessings to Rajesh Verma, Co-Chairman of the Fremont Hindu Temple, Manorama Joshi, Deepak Chhabra and many other volunteers and devotees.

At Sunnyvale Temple also, Chandru Bhambhra informed the audience that Shri Raj Bhanot, the Founding member of the temple has been helping the community for last several years and that the Priti Bhoj for the program was sponsored by Sunnyvale Hindu Temple.
Didi Maa then called upon Shri Raj Bhanot and gave him blessings. She then called upon all the key volunteers of the temple like Shri Mohinder Sethi, Shri Bodhraj Saini and Shri Satnaam, who sponsored the sound system.

Didi Maa also blessed Smt. Swasti Pandey who played harmonium, Smt. Sonali Srivastava who played tabla and Smt. Vijaya Varma, who follows Didi Maa offering her beautiful voice to sing the bhajans and kirtans in her events. Didi Maa then also blessed Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh volunteers like Gaurang Desai, Sukhanandan K.,Yagnesh Pathak, Girish Thobbi, Manoj Jawle, to name a few, who helped to make the program successful.
Her Vision – Vatsalya Gram

Chandru and Sajni Bhambhra with Didi Maa
Chandru and Sajni Bhambhra with Didi Maa

Didi Maa, Sadhvi Rithambara is the inspiration behind the vision that has created Vatsalya Gram – a village of affection for the homeless children of God and women that are neglected part of society. Five girls, three boys, a mother and a grandmother, none of them with any blood relationship, come together to form a home with a spiritual relationship that is beyond any other bond.

She has built a Vatsalya Gram, where the kids are not up for adoption but are sought after by decent families as brides and grooms to be married to their own sons and daughters, because they can make the best daughters-in-law or sons-in-law due to the love, care, values and good education imparted to them by Didi Maa and her volunteering sevavrutis.

Didi Maa nurtures destitute women abused by their spouses, women sexually assaulted by men on the street and the senior women beaten up by their adult children.

They are picked up and given training for six months to first heal themselves, and then get ready to start a new life of care giving and self caring in Vatsalya Gram home with 7-8 children who may have gone through similar trauma in their little lives.

Didi Maa sees every child in Vatsalya Gram as a flower to be offered at the feet of Bharat Mata – the Goddess Mother India. Her Bharat Mata is not the geographical India with her ethnic population, but the idea of Mother India that has created the sages who proclaimed – ‘tena tyaktena bhunjitha’ – enjoy only after renouncing and use only as little as you need; ‘Sarve Bhavantu Sukhinah – may all be happy; Om Dyau Shanthi Rantariksha Gwam Shanthi; Prithavi Shanthi Rapah Shanthi Roshadhayah Shanthi …’ – May the skies, earth, trees; waters, cows and animals; cosmos be at peace; It is the Mother Bharat that is a symbol of global peace through goodwill and righteousness who is being worshipped and the children of Vatsalya Gram are the flowers nurtured with care and with the values of the heritage of such India.
Ashwini Surpur highlighted various projects run by Vatsalya Gram and helped with impromptu fund raising for these projects

Some highlights of projects run by Vatsalya Gram include:
• Female Feticide awareness program – Awareness movement in rural areas. Many women have boldly claimed to keep their female fetuses when they get pregnant.
• Traditional Diary System – Saving and breeding the original breed of cows that are real satvic cows whose existence is now threatened due to hybridization.
• Vocational Training – Children from Vatsalya Gram to become self-dependent adults with dignity of labor. Teaching them to fish instead of feeding them fish.
• Community College – Children who can now avail degree colleges for getting right education
• Yoga and Philosophy – Creating healthy environment through Yogasana and holistic living in accordance with yoga philosophy
• Girls Hostel – A safe environment after the girls come out of Vatsalya Gram for their higher studies.
For details about Vatsalya Gram, visit

India Post News Service

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