Abounding Love And Compassion

Sathya Sai Baba

Sathya Sai Baba


Abounding Love And Compassion

Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba’s abounding Love is indeed the cause and the effect is His creation, and there are myriad ways for Him to express His bounteous Love to His creation. Every word, every gesture, every look of His is suffused with His Love and compassion. Every devotee knows that He cannot endure the pain of suffering of others that He pours out His heart in sympathy with the distressed, the weak, the downtrodden and the afflicted and that, it is this overwhelming Love of His that binds all to Him, in silken bond of affection.

It was Dasara at Puttaparthi, long ago, the fourth day, at about 9 P.M. Bhagawan sent word to a band of young men that they must assemble in the hall for some urgent work, and within a few minutes, there were double the number, eagerly awaiting His orders. Everyone wondered what that could be! Well, Baba came and explained that the buntings and flags with which the Nilayam and the garden were decorated since the first day of Dasara had faded slightly and become dull in colour and so they had to be replaced by fresh ones, to be prepared and fixed during the night! The work engaged everyone till the smaller hours of the night and Baba was with the party all the time, attending to every details. Some one dared asking Him the reason for the extra attention upon the 5th day of Dasara and the reply he got was this: “Don’t you know that tomorrow your Bandhus come for the feast?” and this everyone knew! For, the next day was the day the poor, the Daridranarayanas were coming to the Nilayam to receive Prasadam and Vastram (clothes) from His Hands! But, who could imagine that His Love was so great, so deep, so all embracing as to celebrate the arrival of the poor by this ‘de novo’ decoration? When some one told Him that the feeding of thousands of people and the distribution of hundreds of saris and dhotis should be published in the news papers, He turned towards him and asked “What! Do you publish in papers the news that your friends and relatives came to your house?”! We have, everyone of us, to learn the lesson of those flags.

Verily, it has been truly sung, “Karuna (compassion) indeed is He; He is indeed Karuna”. In the Viveka Chudamani, the Guru is described as Ahethukadayasindhu; His Grace is showered on all without interruption and without cause! Such is our Master, our Beloved Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. Truly His Love is all conquering and His Grace is overwhelming that bind us in silken bond of affection.

Source: Sanathana Sarathi
Reference

Sathya Sai’s Sixteen Divine Attracting Powers

Sathya Sai Baba

Sathya Sai Baba

SATHYA SAI’S
SIXTEEN DIVINE ATTRACTING POWERS
Ghandikota V. Subba Rao
Prashaanthi Nilayam
1 January, 2000

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All Is Sweet That Ends Sweet

All Is Sweet That Ends Sweet

Priya Mani With Sai Baba

Priya Mani With Sai Baba


“Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba is Omnipresent, Omnipotent and omniscient” is something I had grown up hearing, ever since I joined Swami’s school. In open-mouthed wonder, my little mind (Ms. Priya Mani came under Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba‘s fold as a young girl of 11 years) would try to fathom these stupendous attributes of God.

I am reminded of a ‘sweet’ experience, that takes me back to my 10th grade, when I was sitting for darshan in the 1st line with a couple of students. It was a rain-kissed Onam morning and we were seated for special festival blessings. Given the crowds and the program, it seemed highly unlikely that Swami would even come our way.

Each of us must have been praying to Swami; in a moment of desperation, I decided to bribe Him with the lure of a much-loved sweetmeat. “Please, Swami, please,” I pleaded, “If You bless us today, I will give up eating Gulabjamuns for ever.” As our good fortune would have it, Swami did come our way and did bless us!

2 years sped by. We were in our 12th grade diligently preparing for our approaching Board examinations. It was the dry and dismal month of March with Swami away at Brindavan. One night, Swami appeared in my dream. I saw Swami seated on a chair in our school lobby, and we students were seated on the floor facing Him.

With an ever so slight gesture of the index finger, Swami pointed to one of the students, asking “What is your favorite sweet?” The student replied, “Swami, sohanpapadi.” Swami then posed the same question to another student, to which the response came ‘badurshahi’. Swami then asked me, “What is your favorite sweet?” I replied, “Swami, gulabjamun.”

The Lord then remarked to the gentleman seated beside Him, “Do you know how foolish some people are? They try to please me by giving up sweets!!!”

I woke up delighted and thrilled beyond words. Later on, during the day, we were greeted in the dormitory with joyous shouts that Swami had sent prasadam (sweets) for us from Brindavan and that we should go downstairs to collect the same. It was sohanpapadi! “Wow! What a coincidence. Well, well, all’s sweet that ends sweet.”

But Swami was in no mood for endings. The next day, He sent prasadam again. This time, it was badurshahi! This set me thinking. Part 1 and 2 of my dream had found fulfillment. And I was wondering how Bhagavan was going to execute Part 3. Would He dispatch barrelfuls of rosy gulabjamuns to school tomorrow from far-away Brindavan? Inconceivable by all standards of reason!

Yet, I waited in anticipation for the next day. I did not have to wait for too long. For the very next afternoon, as we were plodding away with our books, our Headmistress Aunty walked in with a huge bowl of gulabjamuns she had prepared exclusively for us, the 10th and 12th grade students. She said we had been slogging too hard, so she had decided to sweeten our labors with a savory surprise!

This incident taught me 2 lessons. One, God defies all definitions of possibility and probability. When He decides to do something, he will find the ways and means to do it. Time and space cannot limit Him and His will. It is we who need to keep our minds and hearts open to receive that Will and Grace. Two, Swami does not desire our paltry offerings by way of giving up a much-desired food item.

He doesn’t even need them. What can we really give Him that belongs to Him already? We can only offer ourselves to Him, heart and soul.

More importantly, Swami was gently reminding me as ever that He was privy to my every thought, word and deed; that ‘Forgetting’ was a word that simply did not exist in the Divine Dictionary!

That I would ‘get’ and ‘forget’, but He only ‘gave’ and ‘forgave’.

Sai Baba With Priya Mani

Sai Baba With Priya Mani

Ms. Priya Mani, an alumna of the Sri Sathya Sai University, Anantapur Campus, joined the Sri Sathya Sai Primary School for her 6th grade. She later went on to complete her graduation and post graduation in English Language and Literature from the Anantapur Campus, securing a Gold medal in both the courses in the years 2002 and 2004 respectively. She currently lives in Dubai and works as a freelance writer.

Shiva Sai Mahadeva

Shiva Sai Mahadeva

Shiva Sai Mahadeva


Shiva Sai Mahadeva
By G. V. Subba Rao

EKAM SATH. God is one.
VIPRAAH BAHUDHAA VADHANTHI. But the sages call Him by various names.
DHAIVAM MAANUSHA RUUPENA

The Divine comes down in human form in order to elevate the human, the crown of his creation, to the level of the Divine. Divine incarnations over the vast scale of Time are many: Avathaara Hi Asankheyaah, as the VishnuPuraana states. Although each of the Avathaars possesses all divine powers, they exercise selective powers as appropriate to the specific periods, purposes and problems required to be tackled.

SHIVA & SAI SIMILARITIES
We try to fathom the nature of a particular Avathaar by comparing and contrasting, and establishing similarities, equalities or congruences with an established Divine Personality in respect of their mutual characteristics, metaphysics or philosophy, powers, activities, appearances, including their names and their meanings; we then come to an inferential conclusion that the given divine manifestation or Avathaar closely approximates or resembles the primordial Divine principle or Form described in our ancient scriptures.

Using the established criteria for such comparisons, twenty five elements or considerations are elaborated below pointing out that the Sathya Sai Avathaar closely resembles the Shiva principle. Hence the appropriateness of the ending of the Haarathi (waving of lights) song with the expressions, Shiva-Sai-Mahaa-Dheva.

SHIVA’S BOON TO THE GREAT SAGE, BHARADVAAJA!
That Sathya Sai Baba is an incarnation of Shiva-Shakthi is attested by the Bharadhvaaja-incident, when the great sage, visiting Kailash, thought he was neglected by Shiva and Shakthi involved in their cosmic dance; later, Shiva graced sage Bharadhvaaja with a boon that He would be born thrice successively in the Bharadhvaaja Gothra or lineage: first, Shiva alone as Shirdi Sai, then Shiva and Shakthi together as Sathya Sai, and Shakthi alone as Prema Sai.

SAI NAME AND MEANING : SHIVA-SHAKTHI
The name SAAYEE itself means: Shiva-Shakthi. Etymologically, the first letter Sa(h) signifies the supreme Divinity (Eeshvara) or Shiva. Ayee, the second word signifies Shakthi, Ambaa or the universal Divine Mother.If the two letters are joined, the euphonic combination becomes Saayee: The great Vedhik scholar and seer of the holy Manthra, the Sathya SaiGaayathree, the late Ghandikota Subrahmanya Shaasthry versified in Sanskrith as follows:

Shivah Sah Ithi Anena Ukthah
Ayee Ithi Ambaa Prakeerthithaa
Thath Samyogah Shivas-Saambah
Saayee Ithi Prathipaadhyathe

Baba has repeatedly declared the same, that his essential form is Shiva Shakthi. In an unusual interview Baba graced Shaasthreeji and myself (his son), Svaami created a tri-colour picture containing His bust in the middle of a Shiva Linga seated on the coils of a divine serpent, which covered the top of the Linga with its seven hoods (symbolic of the seven worlds or seven levels of consciousness). Svaami stated that this Saayeeshvara picture represented His “true form!”

If the word Eesha is reversed in its Sanskrith rendering, it becomes Shaayee, further reducing to Saayee or Sai, for short. Thus Svaami’s name as well as its meaning point in the direction of Shiva.

SHIVA SAI’S UNIVERSALITY
Baba draws to Himself devotees from all classes, castes, creeds, cultures, conditions, countries and from all types of people, just as Shiva whose devotees include both angelic as well as demonic persons. He is equally accessible to one and all, unlike Vishnu whom Dhevathas adore, but whom Raakshasas abhor. Vishnu, in charge of maintaining the world, uses DHANDA – the big stick and massive weaponry to bring into Dhaarmik line the wicked and the demonic.

SHIVA SAI’S ACCESSIBILITY
Baba is easily accessible and also easily pleased just as Shiva who is called BholaShankar. He is Sulabha Prasanna and Aashu-Thosha. Baba daily walks around the lines of devotees graciously accepting their letters; He reaches them Himself with materializations of sacred ash, Vibhuuthi. He ministers individually to the needs and requirements of His devotees by loving grace of love-filled miracles.

In the famous Vedhik hymn, Namakam or Shath Rudhreeyam, Shiva is adored as Kruthsna Veethaaya Dhaavathe Sathvanaam Pathaye Namah! “Salutations to Shiva who rushes to the help and to the rescue of the devotees.” So does our Svaami, as attested by innumerable devotees from all over the wide world. Just as Shiva is termed as Adhya Vochath, Adhivakhaa i.e., one who eloquently praises and vouchsafes for his devotees, Baba praises even a small “mustard-like” service rendered by them in terms of “pumpkin-size” encomiums!

SHIVA SAI’S CORE TEACHING
In regard to metaphysics, the Shiva oriented principle of “SHIVOHAM” and the SathyaSai teaching of Soham are non-dualistic, reflecting the Mahaa-Vaakyas: Thath Thvam Asi and Aham Brahmaasmi – (Thou Art That, and, I am the Divine). In Shiva worship, it is laid down that the worshiper must develop the feeling of one-ness with Shiva, Soham Bhaavenapuuyajeth. In the case of Vishnu it is near-blasphemy to say “VISHNOHAM”!

SAI DHAKSHINAA MUURTHI
Shiva is the primal preceptor in the form of Dhakshinaa Muurthi. He is the Lord in Kailash facing the southern direction, Dhakshinaa Muurthi. He is the Lord of love and mercy, Dhaakshinyam. He teaches profound spiritual lessons by Chinmudhras or symbolic hand gestures, in which the right thumb (representing Paramaathma, the Supreme Self) closing with the index finger (i.e. Jeevaathma or individual self) indicates fullness or Puurnathvam. The other three outstretched fingers indicate the moving away of the wordy qualities of Sathva, Rajas and Thamas – goodness, passion and inertia. Through these divine hand-gestures Shiva, as DhakshinaaMuurthi boons the gift of Supreme Liberating Knowledge, Jnaana Dhakshina.

Similarly, the bed-rock of Sai’s teaching is Adhvaitha, non-dual equality of the individual and the Cosmic Self. Like DhakshinaaMuurthi, he is truly Adhvaitha Jnaana Bhaaskara, the Sun of the knowledge of supreme reality. Svaami’s silent, creative and transformational activities are effected, as it were, by His Shanmudhras or six types of hand-gestures or circling movements of the hand and fingers.

SHIVA SAI’S STATURE AND LOOKS
Shiva is described in Namakam as short in stature and handsome in form: NAMO HRASVAAYACHA VAAMANAAYACHA. He is also praised as being eternally youthful. NAMO MADHYAMAAYACHA APA GALBHAAYACHA. Baba can be described in similar terms of short stature and youthful and handsome in his divine demeanour! Short in stature but mighty in mind boggling miracles, as a U.N. diplomat in Delhi once stated: “How come! a five feet person draws five lakhs of people!”

SHIVA SAI AS JATAA JUUTEE
Shiva is described as JATAA JUUTEE, with curly (matted) locks of hair. It is said in Rudhram: NAMAH KAPARDHINECHA VYUPTHA-KESHAAYA CHA “Prostrations to the Divine with (matted) curly hair and who is also clean shaven“! Shiva’s hair is described as completely black, HARI KESHAAYOPAVEETHINE PUSHTAANAAM PATHAYE NAMAH. Similarly Baba’s hair is also curly, bushy, and black, bearing striking resemblance with the description of Jataa Jutee. He is also clean shaven, “Vyuaptha Keshi”, like Shiva.

SHIVA-SAI’S COLOURS
Shiva’s form is described in the Vedhik hymn: ASAU YASTHAAMRO ARUNA UTHA BABHRUS-SUMANGALAH i.e., crimson, red and orange which are the early morning colours of the Sun. These are the colours of Baba’s dress which is sometimes light red, sometimes deep red but almost always orange, the most auspicious colour.

SHIVA SAI AND VIBHUUTHI
Shiva’s body is adorned with holy. ash resulting from the burning of all desires as represented by Manmatha; it also signifies the truth that ultimately, every thing is not only transient but reduced to mere ashes or dust at the end. Shiva is therefore called Kaamaari, the destroyer of lust and also as Bhasmoddhulitha Muurthi, a divinity covered with holy ash. Similarly, Sathya Sai who is bereft of any selfish desire used to be covered with holy ash, gushing out as a stream from his empty hands during the Mahaa ShivaRaathri celebrations! It is well known that Baba creates at will, several times daily, in the view of thousands of people, undepleted amounts of holy ash by a mere wave of his empty hand. Like Shiva, Baba can be truly called a Vibhuuthi Sundhara (adorned by holy ash). Vibhuuti is the hall-mark of Shiva and so is SathyaSai’s. Vibhuuthi teaches us the lesson: “Dust we are and to dust we return.” This VairaagyaBhaava frees us from body oriented attachments.

SHIVA SAI AS LINGODBHAVAKARA
Shiva’s first manifested form took the shape of a mighty egg shaped column of radiant effulgence, the Jyothirlinga which represents the primordial source, force and fulfillment of all Life. Linga symbolises the loving union of God and Nature, Purusha and Prakrithi, the basis of all creation which is pervaded by Divinity. During MahaaShivaRaathri days, Baba used to materialise a variety of Lingas in His stomach and emit them from His divine mouth symbolising the cosmic creative act. He also creates Shiva Lingas of all types from his empty hand and gifts them to devotees. Furthermore, He has taken out the original Lingas underlying the idols in such holy places as Somnaath, Badharinaath etc, recharging them in the process and restoring them back to their original niches and pristine glory. Baba is truly a Lingodhbava-kara, because ShivaLingas continue to emerge, as willed by Him, from His mere empty palm.

On Mahaa ShivaRaathri of 1961 Baba took out from his mouth the Aathma-Linga as a visible evidence of the Aathmik principle of Divinity, which inheres in all. During the 1974 Mahaa-Shiva-Raathri festival, Svaami manifested a ten-inch long, Aathma Linga. He then made the astounding declaration that the sight of this AathmaLinga, which is described by Kapila Maharishi, would free one from the transmigratory cycle of births and deaths! That Linga assumed different colours every ten minutes!

SHIVA-SAI’S SIMPLICITY
Simplicity and an austere bearing are the hallmarks of Shiva who is called Alankaara Varjitha free from ornamentation, unlike Vishnu who is praised as AlankaaraPriya or the one pleased with decorations. In the entire Vedhik pantheon of deities, every deity except Shiva, are bedecked with ornaments, practically from head to toe. Shiva, although without ornaments, showers all rich ornaments on his devotees; Kubera owes his proverbial wealth to Shiva.

Similarly, Baba is simple and austere, does not even wear a watch, although he creates time-pieces at will! Like Shiva, he is truly AlamkaaraVarjitha, bereft of ornaments, and also AhamkaaraVarjitha, with no trace of egotism. While Himself free from ornaments, Baba graciously materialises, day-in and day-out, jewellery, gold chains, lockets, wrist watches, icons of gold and precious stones for his devotees. He, like Shiva, is a divine jeweller showering Vibhuuthi, Lingas and precious ornaments. These articles serve as talisman of protection from the ills of body, mind and ego.

SHIVA SAI’S ADORNMENTS
The adornments of Shiva are only natural entities, like the crescent moon radiating cool rays, the serpents round his neck and arms and the thousand-hooded Divine Serpent over His Linga (NaagaLinga ) symbolising His mastery over the Mind (Moon) and the myriad senses (serpents). In the tri-colour picture created by Svaami for the Vedhik scholar Pandith G. Subrahmanya Shaasthry, the seven-headed divine serpent hovers over the Linga in the midst of which Baba’s bust is manifested!

Similarly, Baba’s head is covered, according to Dr. Baranowski, an expert in Kirilian photography, by a large aura, a mass of shining bluish rays. Devotees see visions of Baba as a moving column of effulgent light, radiating cool rays like the Moon!

SHIVA SAI’S MULTIPLE FORMS
Like Shiva who is adored in the Vedha as VIRUUPEBHYAH VISHVARUUPEBHYAH, Baba can take any form, assume different names appearing in several places, simultaneously. Baba, when He was young visited Viruupaaksha temple along with a party of relatives and the then Chairman of Bellary Municipality; it was vouchsafed that He was seen simultaneously inside the sanctum sanctorum of the Deity as well as under a tree outside the temple at one and the same time! Sai literature has numerous instances of Baba’s simultaneous multiple appearances at far away places!

SHIVA-SAI AS GANGAA DHAARI
Baba, like Shiva, is a Gangaa Dhaari, the bearer and giver of Ganga waters, Baba in His early teens used to being given by His mother, an oil bath on His birthdays. On one such occasion, Baba declared that there was no need for pouring any water over His head; and lo and behold! Water started flowing from the top of His head and spilled over the mother and an attending relative!

Long afterwards in 1997, Baba gifted safe, piped drinking water supply to a million people in the parched Ananthapur district. He is truly a Gangaa Dhaari like Shiva who is associated closely with the lifes-supportinve waters, as mentioned in several hymns of Namakam dedicated to Shiva.

SHIVA-SAI AS JALA MUURTHI
Shiva is called Jala Muurthi, the life-supportive water-form. This is extensively hinted in the holy Vedhik hymn of Rudhram or Namakam.

Namah Suudhyaayacha, Sarasyaayacha
Namo Naadhyaayacha, Namah Kuupyaayacha;
Namah Sikathyaayacha Pravaahyaayacha;
Namah Theerthyaayacha Kuulyaayacha.

Salutations to that Divinity
which is closely associated with lakes,
rivers, wells, reservoirs, and water falls.

Once I told Baba that hydrologists are sceptical of the long-term viability of water supply to the proposed Sathya Sai Water Project in the dry Ananthapur district and that the abiding solution is the inter-basin water transfer from the far-away Godhaavari river. Baba then made the astounding declaration that He guarantees water supply to the project for many centuries provided the water pipe-lines are built strong enough to last that long! In any case, the Godhaavari originates in Thryambakeshavara and he pointed out to His heart as the true place of origin of these waters!

SHIVA SAI: THREE-EYED?
When Svaami was in his early twenties, a restless youth who was an incorrigible cricket fan, was given the task of attending to Baba. Baba was reeling out cricket scores of a match being played in far away Madras in order to keep the youth happy! Even then, the boy kept asking questions of Svaami, particularly about the third eye of Shiva. Svaami looked intensely at the young man, when a jet stream of Vibhuuthi shot out with gale force from the middle space of the eye-brows of Svaami suchwise, that the youth was catapulted to the other end of the hall! The story is narrated in “Man of Miracles” and also reconfirmed to me recently by the then youth, now in his early sixties. Shiva is adored as Thryambaka the three eyed as in the famous hymn of liberation “ThryambakamYajaaMahe”, and so is Sai Baba a Thrayambaka the three-eyed one with his Jnaana Nethra, the third eye of wisdom, always open.

SHIVA SAI AS DOCTOR OF DOCTORS
Shiva is worshipped in the ShathaRudhreeya Hymn as being Prathamo DhaivyoBhishak as the primordial divine doctor. In the same Vedhik text Shiva is adored as Vishva Bheshaje, Vishvaaha Bheshajee, Shivaa Rudhrasya Bheshajee. He is the expert physician curing all the ills. Another hymn praises Him as the Lord and Master of the world of Medicines, Bhuvanthave Vaarivaskruthaava OSHADHEENAAM PATHAYE NAMAH.

Like Shiva, Baba is the doctor of doctors, effecting innumerable cures of many illnesses of the Body, Mind, the Intellect and the Ego as well by his mere divine touch; Svaami materialises Vibhuuthi with curative properties, as well as actual medicinal tablets; He performed miraculous surgeries, including the materialisation of the necessary Surgical implements as asserted, confirmed and reconfirmed, particularly in Howard Murphet’s writings.

SHIVA SAI AND BRAHMACHARYA
Shiva as DhakshinaMuurthi, is a complete celibate, teaching by silence the non-dualistic unity of Jeevaathma with Paramaathma. He is surrounded by the eternal celibates: Sanaka, Sanandha, Sanath-Kumaara and Sanaathana, the four mind-born sons of the creator Brahma. Thus Shiva is called Brahma-Charyaashrama Priya (fond of celibacy).

Similarly, Svaami is a complete celibate, Brahmachaaari, who is in constant integrated Braahmik consciousness, teaching non-dualism all His life. He is also surrounded by the student Brahma Chaaris, BrahmachaariPariveshtitha. Svaami repeatedly declares that His only property is His students.

SHIVA SAI AS YOGEESHVARA
Shiva is the Lord of Yogis, Yogeeshvara; while Vishnu (Krishna) is the Lord of the Yogas, Yogeshvara (vide the 18 yogas in the BhagavathGeetha). SathyaSai is Yogijanapriya, the darling and nourisher of the Yogis. He closely instructs, guides and sustains them to achieve perfection as in the case of the Yogik practitioners in the NarayanaGuha, to whom He gifted a vessel producing food and drink whenever needed!

SHIVA SAI AS MRUTHYUNJAYA
Shiva is the master or conqueror of death; he is called Mruthyunjaya. Baba protects and saves devotees from untimely death i.e., Apamruthyuhara as in the case of Mr. Cowan in Madras, Mr. Raadhaakrishna of Kuppam and Pandith GhandiKota Subrahmanya Shaasthry in August 1985.

SHIVA SAI’S SEATING:
Shiva is seated on a tiger skin, Vyaaghra CharmaAaseena, suggestive of the control of cruel animalistic qualities. Svaami, in Prashaanthi Mandhir, is daily seated on a chair underneath of which is a tiger headed skin. In his wandering youth days, Svaami’s only luggage piece was a tiger skin (with a pair of towels)!

SHIVA SAI’S SELFLESS SERVICE
Shiva is an ascetic, a renunciate, a Mahaa Viraagi and dedicated to LokaSangraha, the welfare of the worlds (E.g. He swallowed deadly poison and saved the world). Svaami, likewise, is supremely detached within and intensely active without and performs loving selfless service, through free educational, medical, humanitarian relief activities, such as provision of drinking water supply to lakhs of people.

He tirelessly teaches SaiShadvarga, the six human values of truth, righteousness, peace, love, non-violence and selfless service/sacrifice for Lokasangraha in order to counteract the poison of Arishadvarga, the six inner enemies of Lust, Anger, Greed, Attachment, Pride and jealousy.

SHIVA SAI, THE ATHYAASHRAMI
Svaami like Shiva is universal, transcends caste, class, creed, country, culture etc. He is beyond all orders and categories; He is truly an Athya Aashramee, like Shiva. He teaches universality:

“There is only one Race, the race of humanity; only one Religion, the religion of love; only one Language, the language of the heart and only one God and He is omnipresent!”

SHIVA SAI: YANTHRA, MANTHRA AND THANTHRA
For each aspect of Shiva, there is a symbolic Yanthra or numerical (and geometrical) representation. In the case of Shiva, the Absolute, it is number nine. Letter “Shi” in the science of Manthras is signified by the number of five and the letter “va” equals number four, making a total of nine. Eeashvara connected with creation is signified by number eight. And an Avathaar is signified by number seven, which is the hall mark of ShivaShakthi. Sai is Sapthamayee, with seven fold powers, principles, and purposes.

Similarly, for each manifestation of Shiva there is a Manthra or sacred sound-formula. As Rudhra-ShivaMahaa-Dheva, the Manthra in the Gaayathree form is:

Thathpurushaaya Vidhmahe,
Mahaa Dhevaaya Dheemahi
Thanno Rudhrah Prachodhayaath.

In respect of Bhagavaan Baba, the Gaayathree manthra is as follows:

Om. Saayeeshvaraaya Vidhmahe
Sathya-dhevaaya Dheemahi,
Thannah-sarvah Prachodhayaath

We realise that Sai is Eeshvara i.e., Shiva.
We meditate on this God of Truth.
May That Almighty, All in-All personality, lead us toliberation.

Similarly, for each manifestation of Shiva, there is a Thanthra, a schema of adoration, worship and prayer. In the case of Shiva, the adoration is through the chanting of the Shatha Rudhreeyam; the worship is done by pouring water over the holy Linga, called Abhishekam, and the prayer is contained in the Vedhik hymn of Chamakam. In the case of SathyaSai, there are similar forms of adoration, worship and prayer: Sathya Sai Gaayathree chanting, Sai Ashtothara Naama Puuja and Haarathi with the waving of lights. The Haarathi song is addressed to Shiva-SaiMahaa-Dhevaa! and finally comes the distribution of Vibhuuthi, which is the hall-mark of both Shiva and Sai, the-visible manifestation of ShivaThathva being the non-dualistic principle of “Soham” (Sah + Aham = I am Divinity): SaiShivoham.

Baba has repeatedly asserted the innate Shiva Sai principle in the following verse:

Sarva Naama Dharam, Shivam
Sarva Ruupa Dharam, Shaantham
Satchidhaanandham Adhvaitham
Sathyam Shivam Sundharam.

The supreme Felicity which bears all names;
The supreme Serenity which assumes all forms;
The non-dual Divinity, the Being-awareness-Bliss
That is Truth, Goodness and Beauty.

In conclusion, we meditate on SAI SHIVOHAM, the five lettered, non-dualistic PanchaakshariManthra. It signifies oneness of Shiva, Sai, and our Self; this is in contrast to the dualistic manthras of Namasshivaaya.

SAISHIVOHAM means that this Sathya Sai is the visible living manifestation of the unitary Shiva principle of the identity of Jeevathma and Paramaathma, of the individual Self with the Supreme Self; this is the teaching of both Shiva and Sai and also the supreme teaching of AdhvaithaVedhaantha taught in the Upanishaths.

HARI OM THATH SATH

MAHAASHIVARAATHRI
GHANDIKOTA V. SUBBA RAO
MARCH, 2000 PRASANTHI NILAYAM

Reference

Sai Spiritual Showers – Issue 70

Sathya Sai Baba

Sathya Sai Baba


Sai Spiritual Showers – Issue 70

How often do you get to ask Bhagawan some of the most intricate questions seeking clarification? Late Ms. Peggy Mason, an ardent devotee of Bhagawan from the United Kingdom had an opportunity to seek Divine clarification on some of the most intricate things about Jesus in a series of three consecutive interviews granted by the Lord. …and thus after 2000 years of his advent, humanity got to hear the Divine Whispers revealing the truth… Excerpts from Ms. Peggy Mason’s article The Interviews, published in Sanathana Sarathi, Sept 1980.

The Questions
I wished I had asked Swami more questions. Yet when one really thinks about it, many questions which leap to mind regarding past events are of academic interest compared to the here and now, and the living reality of the divine principle incarnate in Sai Baba at this most crucial period of the planet’s evolutionary history. There was, however, a question which was most vital to us – to hear from Swami’s own lips – and Ron “plucked up courage” to ask it.

“Swami, you are reported as saying, on Christmas Day 1972, that Jesus said: ‘He who sent me among you will come again. His name will be truth. He will wear a blood red robe. He will be short, with a crown (of hair).’ Does this mean that it was you who sent Jesus into incarnation?”

With ineffable simplicity, never moving his eyes from Ron’s, and in his soft, gentle voice, Swami nodded and said, “Yes.”

Ron took a deep breath. “Then, in that case, are you what Western Christians call `The Cosmic Christ’?” (the Cosmic Christ spirit)

Again came that simple, gentle reply, “Yes.”

As long as I live I shall see His face as He gave this answer in a manner no ordinary human being could assume—so direct, so simple, so gentle, and completely egoless. For a few moments we said nothing, overcome by the impact of His reply.

Everywhere men and women of goodwill are expecting and praying for the Second Coming of the Cosmic Christ spirit. But whether they recognise it or not, it is here amongst us in the embodiment of selfless love.

Carols in the Rain
The most touching darshan I have ever witnessed took place this Christmas Eve, in the late afternoon. Thousands of devotees from all over the world had gathered to spend Christmas with Bhagawan Baba. It had been threatening rain all day and by darshan time there was a steady drizzle.
I gazed across the darshan line and saw a sea of people sitting in the rain. There was absolute silence; no one stirred. They all sat, soaking in the rain, as water dripped from their heads to their faces. Each one was determined to have Swami’s darshan.

Their love seemed to touch the heart of Swami. He came out on the verandah, looking at all these apparently “God-Crazy” people sitting in the rain. Bhagawan moved from beneath the sheltered verandah, walking ever so slowly in the rain, giving us darshan, and letting us know’ by His action that He is always experiencing every thing in life with us. Not once but twice He walked past – showing us that for each deed we do for Him, He blesses us twice.

The wet crowd all dispersed after darshan, and re-appeared in clean clothing for bhajans. The rain had stopped in the interval. The Overseas Devotees’ Christmas Choir sat in front of the Mandir prepared to sing carols during the allotted Bhajan time. All the overseas devotees sat together next to the choir. Swami filled the verandah with all the boy students and placed His red chair amongst the children, at the western edge of the verandah facing the choir.

It began to rain. The more it rained, the stronger the voice of the choir determined to go on with the programme. Swami swayed and tapped with His hands to the rhythm of the songs. He seemed to enjoy us all sitting in the rain at His Divine Lotus Feet.

When the choir finished their programme, Swami signalled us to continue by singing Bhajans. After arati, one person said, “We have had a complete Baptism!”

In between darshan and bhajans my eyes fell on this quote:

“When I sprinkle your face with rain and wash the earth, the first smell of clean rain, I am cleansing you – THINK OF ME!”

Reference

Christmas 2008 At Prashanti Nilayam

Christmas 2008 At Prashanti Nilayam

Curtesy Sri Sathya Sai Books & Publications Trust
Christmas Celebrations, 24-25 Dec 2008, Images

Curtesty Radiosai

Friday, December 26, 2008
This evening, children from overseas presented songs and a musical play on the works of Jesus. After His darshan round at 4.30 pm, Swami came to the stage from the interview room at 5.10. and began the programme. Half an hour of songs were followed by the half-hour musical play. As they concluded, Bhagawan came down from the stage and blessed the participants with clothes and a group photograph. He then gifted photo-frames to the children who sang. The conductor and accompanists were also blessed with clothes. Swami interacted with the group for nearly half an hour before He went back onstage to accept Arati. Before He returned to His residence at 6.50, He blessed Mr. John Behner, the Christmas co-ordinator, also with clothes and raised both His hands in blessing all the devotees.

Thursday, December 25, 2008
This Christmas morning, the devotees from overseas gathered in the Sai Kulwant Hall and carolled after Nagarsankirtan as scenes from early morning darshans from Christmases past were projected on two screens atop the Mandir. Later, Bhagawan arrived in Sai Kulwant Hall at 8.35 in a white robe seated on His golden chair led by a procession of children from overseas dressed as the characters in the Nativity. When He reached the verandah, He blessed the cakes arrayed there and came onstage to begin the programme. The University brass band was the first to perform. After 10 minutes of Christmas-themed music from them, the violins of the Primary School took over. As the young boys finished their performance with ‘Jingle Bells’, young ‘Santa’s came up to Swami to get their gift bags blessed. Swami threw a few toffees to the boys nearby, and the Santas completed the job, running around the hall. Christmas songs by the students began next. The 40 minute song bouquet was interspersed with a commentary in the form of a dialogue between two of Christ’s apostles and a young boy. Two more ‘Santa’s arrived to throw toffees, and more traditional prasadam was distributed too. After Arati at 10 o’clock, Swami blessed students who came up with pictures of the Senior Students Hostel, Christmas day being the Hostel anniversary day too. More students with cards and birthday trays were blessed too before Swami left for His residence 10 minutes later.

In the evening, Bhagawan arrived at 4.40 pm. The programme got underway once He came onstage with an introduction and thanksgiving by Mr. John Behner from Latin America. Two overseas speakers were blessed to present talks – Ms. Gisele Sebastian from Germany and Mr. Ted Henry from the USA. Following their moving talks, Bhagawan delivered His Divine Discourse at 5.45 pm. After His Discourse, Swami asked the students to sing a couple of Bhajans, following which He accepted Arati and returned to His residence at 7 pm.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008
This evening, the Christmas eve celebrations began with Bhagawan arriving at 4.30 pm in His chair. After a full round of the Sai Kulwant Hall, Swami came onstage after a brief visit to the interview room. The conductor of the Western choir came up to Bhagawan for blessings, and their hour-long programme began. When they finished all the songs in their printed schedule, Swami asked them to sing more songs, so they sang some traditional carols like ‘Silent Night’ and then began an encore of selected songs from their programme. Prasadam was distributed and Swami called up the conductor to bless her with a chain before accepting Arati. He then asked the students to sing bhajans. After the first couple of bhajans, He asked them to sing ‘Sarva Dharma Priya Deva’. A couple of multi-religious bhajans followed before Swami accepted Arati once again and returned to His residence in the car after spending more than 2 hours in Sai Kulwant Hall.

Curtesty Spirit Reflections

Christmas afternoon in Prashanti Nilayam;

Hmm, I decided to enter the darshan hall by the top gate, and I was going to wander down to the back of the hall; an old Seva Dal pointed to me to go and sit somewhere at the front; I said, “No, I am going down the back” , and he said “No, you go and sit there only”.  

Well, I went and found the foreigners sitting and went and sat in an open space, about three rows from front line. Some people told me it was the space for the canteen volunteers and a seva dal told me to move. And another seva dal told me to go back and sit down. So I did, three rows from the front, closest I have been to the front on the men’s side. 

The atmosphere and energy in the darshan hall was gay, in the original sense of the word; it was joyful, it was happy, there was a humdrum of conversation, and we were waiting for Sai Baba to come. Happy devotees from every country, I had people from Scotland and South America around me, and children everywhere. Apparently I was sitting nearby the Children’s Choir. 

Swami arrived around 4.30pm; there were about five people walking behind Swami, and he stopped and spoke to members of the Ladies Choir; also stopped and spoke to some men, immediately he arrived on the mens’s side, and took letters. Swami: I was close, how to describe? 

Well, that chair moves slowly, and Swami looks left and right; his hair is just so; his robe shows the ironing creases, he sits and looks right across the men as he passes; hands go up in pranams; did our eyes meet? I think so, but I was three rows back. A sere smile on his face, hands raised in blessing as he passes by. Yes, Swami looked very happy as he passed us by. At the top of the walkway before he turns right to go across the front of the Mandir, he paused and spoke to some of the old students, who were seated there; Swami was talking for quite some time before he moved across and around to the other side of the Mandir, where he pauses for a long time in front of the primary school children; quite some conversation there. Then Swami came to the front of the porch and there was silence. John Behner kneels beside Swami and gives him details of the afternoon program. 

John Behner, Coordinator from Latin America, introduced the afternoon’s proceedings.  He spoke of the teams who had prepared the Darshan Hall, the devotees from South California, Nevada, and so on. The group of 200 Indonesians, who prepared the prasadum, the 160 ladies involved in sewing and decorations, the containers from China, the planning for the Christmas decorations. All planning had been submitted to Swami, and Swami had personally seen and approved all the decorations. The canteen and their work, decorations and the Christmas meal; the choir and their 9 days of preparation.   Last, but not least, the men who did the dirty work were acknowledged.  Big round of applause. 

FIrst speaker is Mrs Geesje Sebastian of Germany, a Human Values teacher, Regional Coordinator, SSE Teacher. Mrs Sebastian spoke in slow, careful English and told the story of her coming to Swami, how she did not know who or where this Sai Baba was, and how he entered her life and saved her eyesight. Mrs Sebastian finished with a beautiful song. 

Second speaker was Ted Henry, a retired TV Broadcaster from Cleveland OHIO, and Ted has been interviewing people for many years, and making videos. Ted told that the fruit of all this was not the change in the people he was interviewing, nor the change he had hoped for in those who might view his interviews on Radio Sai Global Harmony; no, the real changes came in Ted himself, it was his heart that was pierced with Love. Ted is a great speaker. 

Then silence. John Behner went to Swami, knelt and spoke and then got up and went back to his place. We all looked at Swami. Swami turned his head, and looked around, then an imperceptible nod; there was going to be a divine discourse, and a great round of applause burst out. 

I have never seen Swami sit and give a discourse before, but, you know, it was really no different; Anil Kumar was beside Swami, always turning his head to Swami and waiting for him to finish before looking up and translating. AK took the microphone from the stand and held it in his hand (he gave up writing, as usual).

Swami spoke in English a lot. He never said Sathyam, Sathya, shanti, he spoke in English a lot. Swami told (in my inaccurate recall) (these are the English bits)

  • The body is a container, we have to look after it
  • Truth is God; Truth is Love, Truth is the basis of the Universe
  • God is above you, below you, around you, in you (all in English)
  • Hurt Never, Help Ever
  • Love is everything, give love, only love
  • You are three people, the one you think you are, the one others think you are, and the One God sees
  • I,I,I, don’t say I am this, I am that, say I am God
  • People ask “Who are you, don’t say I am the body, don’t give body-name, say I am God, and tell them YOU ARE GOD TOO, (all in English) (tremendous applause)
  • Swami spoke about Jesus on the Cross, and Mother Mary at the foot of the Cross, weeping, crying; Jesus told Mother Mary not to weep, all this was fore-ordained
  • Swami spoke about the mind, he never said manas or tapas, he kept on speaking in English, Mind is a bundle of thoughts, master the mind, do not think you are the mind, do not think you are the body. Swami really spoke a lot about the body and how it has to be taken care of so we can do service. 

And that is about all I can recall now. Then Swami sang Prema Muditha Manasa Kaho (Chant the name of the Lord with Love) … then he began Bhajana bina sukha shanti nahi .. it was really funny, we all sang the first line with Swami with both of those bhajans, just the first line, it was a teriffic feeling to be singing that so softly and sweetly with Swami …

After singing, Swami spoke again and lauded the singing of the Choir, and said something like their effort was blessed and pure and of wondrous quality.  He really praised the Choir and we all gave them a round of applause. 

It was dark, now, around 6.50pm, and a magnificent singer sang some strophes, and then into two bhajans, they were marvellous, Swami blessed the prasad and students ran out to collect and distribute; then the pujari stood and gave arathi, and I could see Dorothy of the UTurn school waving the arati flame along with one or two other ladies, on the ladies side. 

It was dark now, and Swami left in his car, a most blessed Christmas in Prashanti Nilayam.

Prashanti Nilayam – Christmas 2008 Childrens Christmas
Prashanti Nilayam Add commentsIt was the time for the Children’s presentations in the darshan hall; they had been waiting in there for many hours. First, it was the choir, and their first song was magnificent; the words are still going around in my head. so high was their energy. They also sang a very fast version of “Take me away oh won’t you carry me” with few verses I had not heard before. Also, their rendition of Why Fear When I am here was magnificent; their refrain was “So says Baba, Sai Baba and Jesus, Why fear when I am here”. Marvellous.

I still haven’t got the new Samasta Loka right in my head, and when it comes at the end of Bhajans, I am slightly non-plussed for a few moments, then I catch on; the children’s choir integrated this into “May the Love we’re sharing spread its wings” and came in with Samasta Loka sukhino Bhavantu, Bhavantu, and the second bhavantu is really high with emphasis and volume; it sounded really good.

I had to laugh at one stage. Something caught my attention during the Childrens Play, I saw snow falling onto the choir in the darshan hall. The adult choir members were sitting near the walkway and some heads were covered with snow, and I could see waves and waves of snow falling all over the choir… then I looked up to the roof and there were two “snow boxes” up there, and snow was just billowing out from them. People were reaching up and brushing the snow off their heads and shoulders; there really was a lot of it.

Lovely energy with the Children, the Lord Jesus had a thick mop of black hair and a fulsome black beard, there was a boat, and nets, and Peter went out and walked on the water with Jesus. The diction and delivery of the lines was excellent, it was rich and full of energy.

The darshan hall was chock full of children from everywhere, overseas and local children; it was a wonderful, graceful and joyful atmosphere in the hall this evening. Swami sitting up on the front of the porch, following the play very attentively, reading the program, and holding the HUGE RED ROSE presented to him by the Producer of the Childrens’s presentation. The Childrens Choir sang sacred songs during the scene changes in the play, and the whole presentation was very inspiring and edifying; it very nearly brought me to tears several times, so sweet was their energy.

Puttaparthi is dark, the wind is blowing, and buses are leaving. And more buses arriving.

Lovingly shared by a Sai Devotee

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