“Makara Sankranthi marks the movement of the Sun from the southern horizon to the northern horizon. This northward movement of the Sun has immense spiritual significance. The north is symbolised by Himaachala. Hima means snow. It is pure, untainted and soothingly cool. All these endow it with the quality of Prashanthi (perfect peace). Achala means that which is steady and unshakeable. Himaachala does not refer to the physical Himalayan mountains. It represents that which is cool, peaceful and steady. From this day the Sun is said to move towards such a state. The Sun symbolises the vision of man. The northward movement of the Sun is a call to human beings to turn their vision towards that which is cool, peaceful and unchanging, i.e. towards the divinity within.
– Divine Discourse: 14 January, 1994
The astronomical Uttarayana comes to you whether you strive for it or not; it is part of the law of nature. But for the real Uttarayana, you must make efforts, tremendous efforts. Know that there are only two entities: the substance and the shadow, (or, rather, only One and its appearance, produced by ignorance), the atma and the anatma, the seer and the seen, the rope and the snake. When this knowledge becomes part of the mental make-up, it liberates you from delusion, and you see Kailas (Siva’s mountain abode) at the end of the northward journey. Like Kailas, that stage is all light, all white. The path is straight and hard but the goal is glorious; it is nothing less than Illumination. It is when people forget this goal that the Avatar comes to save them.
Sathya Sai Speaks, Vol. 2 Ch. 29, January 14, 1962