A Conversation with Sri Sathya Sai Baba

Sri Sathya Sai Baba

Sri Sathya Sai Baba


A Conversation with Sri Sathya Sai Baba

The following conversation between a devotee and Sathya Sai Baba took place in Prasanthi Nilayam many years ago and was first published in an early issue of the Sanathana Sarathi, the official ashram magazine.

Devotee: Swami! The world is very cruel to me.

Sathya Sai Baba: That is its nature. The purpose of the world is frustration; it has to engender need. When the need is strong enough, the individual seeks fulfilment.

Devotee: And fails!

Sathya Sai Baba: Only when he seeks fulfilment without! Within him, he can get it. The within is accessible always; it is ever responsible. There is pain only so long as attachment for outer forms remains. Ultimate relief from pain can come only with the loss of ego, the neutralisation of that which reacts to something as pain and something else as pleasure, whose memory, whose conditioning, helps to recognise the dualities of joy and grief.

Devotee: But the world, Swami?

Sathya Sai Baba: The world is pain. Expect nothing from the world but that. I willed the totality of your conditioned existence to be pain, in order to draw you to me.

Devotee: Which I can, at best, only hope to attain.

Sathya Sai Baba: God asks for neither hope nor despair. They are subject to relativity. Universal Being is beyond both hope and despair, both certainty and doubt. It knows no lingering in its conclusions. It is ever flowing, in all directions, and in none of them.

Devotee: What then shall be my direction?

Sathya Sai Baba: Take what works today for today. What works tomorrow for tomorrow. One day at a time, each day for itself, each moment for itself, without a past, without memory, without conclusions.

Devotee: Conclusions?

Sathya Sai Baba: Yes. Conclusions bind; they press on the mind. The newborn baby is not confined to conclusions. All conclusions enslave. Most men are slaves to the conclusions into which they have fallen.

Devotee: Does that mean I have to give up my practice of concentration?

Sathya Sai Baba: The question that bothers you is one of fixity. You tried to fix your thought and attention on a word and later on a form, but you discovered that nothing lasts, that everything has to change. But I tell you; awareness can remain, even when form subsides, even when the word melts away.

Devotee: I find it difficult to hold my attention on form or word.

Sathya Sai Baba: Because when you try to meditate, the very trial invites the success-failure conflict onto the scene. You say to yourself, it is good to meditate on this and not that, or to meditate on that is wrong or foolish. Practise choicelessness; no objective, no intention. Be yourself. Choose no particular form, for all are equally His. Choose no particular word or sound, for all are His.

Devotee: I am often tossed between contradictory beliefs.

Sathya Sai Baba: Contradictions are inevitable. It is the very nature of this world and of the mind. But you can choose, either to be buffeted endlessly by the apparent contradictions or to remain in the calm centre of the cyclone. This is the problem of all problems, the problem of peripheral or central being.

Devotee: The circumference or the centre, the rim or the hub of the wheel?

Sathya Sai Baba: Yes. The hub is calm, steady, unmoved. But the mind will be drawn along the spokes, the objective desires, to revolve over mud and stone, sand and thorns. It will not believe that it can get bliss from the centre, rather than from the circumference, without undergoing a rough journey over turbulent terrain.

Devotee: Ultimately, it means the conquest of the mind?

Sathya Sai Baba: Learn to let all the conflicts spawned by the mind play themselves out, and cancel each other out. Be the witness to the holocaust. The ultimate solution to the conflict is not decision or even choice, but passive being. Dare to remain inconclusive. See the endless quandaries of the mind as a divine leela, God’s sport, as the natural function of the bundle of desires called mind. Do not believe in mind; do not rally to its assertions and appetites. Watch the mind from a distance; do not get involved in its tumblings and turnings. Then everything becomes insignificant. When everything recedes into meaninglessness, you are in the hub, in equanimity.

Devotee: Swami, you are the hub, the spokes and the rim.

Sathya Sai Baba: Do not be concerned with who I am! Concern yourself with who you are and how you can be ever aware of that truth. Do not be a willing captive of the endless stratagems of the mind. Abstain from all that draws you into its web. I will lead you, if you rely on me. The alternatives of the world will not bring you happiness, for the mind, which revels in alternatives, is but a will-of-the-wisp, flitting before your vision. I do not judge you for what is never yours, really. Your imperfection is no obstacle for me.

Devotee: I confess that I have not always observed the rules of conduct of the Sathya Sai Organisation.

Sathya Sai Baba: Your mind keeps asking for rules. But when you get the rules, you find you cannot keep them. Rules engender rigidity, they force. They do not bloom out of love or spread love. There is always a way of doing a thing without the strain of a rule. See how unperturbed I am with your restlessness! I live thus, so that I may afford a lesson for you to learn.

Devotee: I am restless, Swami, because I yearn for rest and do not get it.

Sathya Sai Baba: It is your reaction to restlessness that is bad, not the restlessness itself. Restlessness is only the rise and fall of a wave on the ocean that you are. Nothing matters, so long as the depths are secure. Success is not important: failure does not matter. The river of eternity is flowing ever into the ocean of the Supreme Will.

Devotee: How long am I to be torn apart from that Supreme Will?

Sathya Sai Baba: You are a fraction of that Supreme Will. That is why you are afflicted with the hunger to seek It and to merge in It and to find fulfilment and bliss thereby. Turning to the world for solace and sustenance to appease that hunger has been tried by countless generations, including your own, but the hunger is gnawing still.

Devotee: What then is the proper reaction to the attractions of the world?

Sathya Sai Baba: Let go. Don’t cling. Be still. Establish yourself in the homelessness of the mind; physical homelessness will not earn the victory. There are many spiritual aspirants still caught in the coils of greed, envy, pride and power seeking. They have not escaped from their homes. They have built prisons around themselves. I describe homelessness of the mind as mind abiding nowhere.

Devotee: And wandering everywhere?

Sathya Sai Baba: Do not exclude anything. Be the witness of everything. The exclusive cannot endure. God is all. Your restlessness came from exclusion, the pressure exerted by the excluded into the area from which it was excluded. All is God; how can you push God out of His Domain? Your mind concludes that the cause for the restlessness is whatever concerns it at the time. The actual cause is not that. You limit God by your assumptions, hence the restlessness. For you too are divine, and your reality protests against that limitation.

Devotee: Swami! Sometimes I feel so sad that I am so strange, so different in habits from the rest of those that come to you for succour.

Sathya Sai Baba: If your path contrasts entirely with those around you, believe that it is my will for you. Every way is my way and ways seemingly indirect may be the most direct for some spiritual seekers. For me there are no impossible cases, no incorrigible cases. Practise choicelessness as hitherto prescribed. Choicelessness is constant contentment.

Questioner: Swami, I am addicted to tea drinking, which hurts me. How can I stop this practice?

Sathya Sai Baba: Heaven is not refused to those who drink tea! A rajasic person is rendered hyperactive by tea, but to an invalid it is a welcome lift. But do not adore tea as the only reality. Now with regard to these habits that have gripped you, there are two methods by which you can discard them. The first is deprivation, denial. This can yield only temporary success. When one’s determination relaxes, the habit reasserts itself and it becomes difficult to resist. The second method is to become so absorbed in something far more pleasing that the habit falls off by itself. Remember, what is transient is not important. What is important is eternal. My prescriptions are varied; they differ from person to person, from stage to stage, even in the case of the same person. All prescriptions work. Let people come to me through Bhajan, through Japa, through Meditation, through Mantras, through Tantra or Seva ­ as I ordain. Every one will come to me; everyone has to come to me. There are no exceptions.

Devotee: We rely on your grace Swami, we yearn for it. Make us aware of it.

Sathya Sai Baba: I never asked you to earn me. I want only that you should need me. Your path is not one of merit. Bring the recurring desires of your mind to me, every time they emerge. They cannot shock me, for I willed them! Bring me your confusion, your fear, your craving, your anxiety, your inability to love the world, your hesitation to serve, your jealousy, all the deficiencies that defy your spiritual disciplines.

Devotee: How are we to do seva if we feel the urge to do so? What if the urge is absent?

Sathya Sai Baba: There are many ways to serve the world. You can serve, if not actively, at least by your serenity. Everyone need not do all things. Your Western heritage reveres active work. But if your being tends towards serenity and solitude, take it as the best. Do not be sorry for it. Only a small minority can delight in serenity and remain still. God has willed it so, otherwise, how could the world function? If stillness is your destiny, dare to be so. If you are a recluse, be a recluse, but a recluse with me. You may not be a saint, but you can peacefully be nothing. Let each be as he is, remembering, however, his source and his reality. None is as he is but for me.

Devotee: I have yet much to learn.

Sathya Sai Baba: You wish to learn from me. Well, if you are preoccupied by the body’s needs, by the arrangements for its travelling, its accommodation and the food it demands, time will fly. That student learns best and fastest who does not spend his time constantly shifting from one classroom to the next. You will learn everything worth knowing in my classroom. I will expose you to all states of being, so that you may learn to rest in me in all of them. There are no insurmountable obstacles to me; there are no pre-requisites for me. I am unconditional.

Devotee: But you are absent so often and away for so long at your headquarters.

Sathya Sai Baba: Always, at every time, at every place, I am where you need me. All things without are subject to the limitation of time and space, to the material laws of Nature. My outer form is no exception! If you would perceive my physical form, it must come within the range of your gaze, so position yourself so that you can see it. And even then, it may not gaze at you. But, I am omnipresent! The limitations of the body and the outer senses do not hold for the inner vision. Therein, you can see me at any time and any place and receive darshan. The outer vision is purposely insufficient, instantaneous, transitory, casual, so that you may crave for and accomplish the inner darshan. If I have separated you from my physical image off and on, it was only to bring you to me and to establish my presence within you. That alone will replenish you and refresh you, I know. None of my absences was a rejection or rebuke. So far as you are concerned, I intended them all. And, always, I willed that you return to me.

Law And Justice

Sathya Sai Baba

Sathya Sai Baba


Law And Justice

Loving Sai Ram and greetings from Prashanti Nilayam.

Justice Dinakaran is a Judge of the Madras High Court. A scholar well versed in law, he recently wrote an article in a leading national daily entitled, Law and Justice. The article was supposedly secular but since it touched, unknowingly perhaps, a few basic aspects of Sathya Sai Baba’s teachings, we thought it might be useful to bring it to your attention.

Justice Dinakaran’s point is essentially the following. There is a thing called Law, consisting of rules laid down by Society, by due process of course, such as enactment by duly constituted legislative bodies. People are expected to follow the Law and when there is a breach, the Law is “administered” through the instrumentality of the Court. However, the Law is not supposed to be applied mechanically, but with human considerations, as Shakespeare points out powerfully in Merchant of Venice. In this context, Justice Dinakaran makes the following important observations:

Most of the legal rights and wrongs are relative to time and place. “A nuisance,” said Justice Sutherland, “may merely be a right thing in a wrong place like a pig in the parlour instead of in the barnyard.”

  • Justice means nothing else than conformity of the law of nature. Human law is subject to it, and if in any point it is directly contrary to the Law of Nature, it would no longer be law but a corruption of law.
  • The excellence of Justice consists precisely in the fact that it is compounded of the truth, the good, and the beautiful. Truth is the foundation of justice. Goodness is the end and beauty constitutes its essential quality.
  • Human law is a rivulet that flows from natural law, which, in turn flows from the Eternal Law.
  • Modern man has turned liberty into self-will and licence, which he has tried to justify with his marvellous powers of reasoning. In truth, the mind of modern man is severely blinded by the cobwebs of false reasoning and trivialised knowledge.
  • Times change, customs alter. But the history of mankind continues to testify to some constant and unchanging ideals, one of which is the concept of justice predicated upon humanitarian considerations.

Well, that in brief is the essence of what Justice Dinakaran wrote. What attracted our attention to his article were his references to 1) Eternal law, 2) the origin of “human law” in Eternal Law, and 3) Truth, Goodness and Beauty. All these have strong echoes in the teachings of Sathya Sai Baba, and that is what we would now like to discuss.

Sathya Sai Baba says that the human being is an Embodiment of the Divine Atma – in fact in earlier years He would always begin His Discourses with the word Divyatmaswaroopalara, which means exactly that. If we all are the Embodiments of the Atma, then it stands to reason that the actions expected of us ought to be in conformity with the nature of the Atma. Stated differently it means that our actions must be Selfless, Truthful, Righteous, Helpful and Compassionate, full of Love etc. We might loudly protest that all this is fanciful and not possible in this day and age. That is a different matter. The fact is that just as one expects a King or the Prime Minister to behave responsibly and with dignity, and not as a joker, serious pursuit of the Spiritual Path places on us the responsibility of ensuring that our actions are as close to the nature of the Atma as possible.

Now one might ask: “That’s OK, but what has all that got to do with Justice Dinakaran’s article?” We are coming to that, but first, we would like to introduce two key words closely related to the concepts discussed by Justice Dinakaran. They are: Atma Dharma and Para Dharma.

Atma Dharma is the Primary Principle that must govern the actions of one and all, from the King to the pauper, at all times, and in all circumstances. Para Dharma, on the other hand, is a derivative of Atma Dharma, and essentially spells out what specifically must be done by whom and when. Thus, while the Primary Principle that governs all actions applies to everyone without exception, the Derivative Principle is not only individual-specific but also time- and situation-specific. All this may sound very mysterious and so let us recall some of the examples Swami Himself has mentioned.

We will start with Atma Dharma, which is the Primary Principle. This just says that every individual, without any exception, must always act to be in harmony with the intrinsic nature of the Atma. Thus, considerations based on selfishness, hatred, anger, jealousy, etc. are summarily excluded – no justification available whatsoever. We hope that is reasonably clear.

What about ParaDharma? It simply means Rules of Conduct that are individual-specific; and these rules must not contradict the basic principle or AtmaDharma. Let us illustrate by taking the case of a Teacher. To begin with, the Teacher must start from the Primary Principle and thus make sure that when he performs his duties as a Teacher, his actions are not tainted by selfishness, greed, etc. Remember, no one is allowed to be selfish, greedy, etc., and that includes the Teacher. For example, if the son of the Teacher is studying in his class, he must not show that son of his any special favour. Likewise, he must not make private deals with backward students, offering them private tuition for fees, and so on.

Turning to the ParaDharma aspect or the Derivative Principle, here the do’s and don’ts are specific to his role in Society as a Teacher. Thus, he must be punctual, he must come fully prepared for his class, he must be neatly dressed and set a good example of behaviour to his students, he must go out of the way to help students develop their character and so on. In short, he must feel all the time that he is serving Society and through Society, he is serving God.

It all boils down to this: For all humans without exception, there is oneUniversal Guiding Principle governing every action in all situations and at all times; and that is what Swami refers to as AtmaDharma. AtmaDharma is also what Krishna explained to Arjuna in the BhagavadGita.

Para Dharma is the manual, which decodes this Universal Guiding Principle and explains how individuals apply that to specific situations. By way of highlighting how Para Dharma is very practical and situation-specific, Swami says that a man who is the Chief Justice must appear in the Court in formal Legal Robes but when he is at home, he can wear casual clothes. Similarly, when a person is say fifteen, his Para Dharma is that of a student. At thirty when he is married and has a family, his ParaDharma is that of a householder. At sixty, his ParaDharma is that of a grandfather and so on. Same person, but with change of situation, the rules of conduct change. Though the ParaDharma might change, at all times and in all circumstances, the person must be truthful and follow the righteous path – that is how the core principle always operates.

In passing, it is interesting to note the following: In the Rama Avatar, Sathya SaiBaba demonstrated to the world through every one of His actions, how ParaDharma must always be in sync with AtmaDharma. Later, as Krishna , Swami explained to the world what precisely is meant by AtmaDharma. Finally, in the current Avatar as Sri Sathya Sai, Swami is not only giving us a continuous demo of Para Dharma in action but also explaining to us on every possible occasion, what Atma Dharma is all about.

Now how does all this connect up with Justice Dinakaran’s remarks? In the following way: The learned scholar is of course concerned mostly about Law and its administration through Courts, but when he says man-made laws must be subservient to the Eternal Law, what he is saying is that rules for Society must be in conformity with a basic and fundamental as well as universal and Eternal Moral Principle. Many of today’s problems arise because law makers have distanced themselves from Morality. Thus, as a French savant once wrote, what is forbidden by Morality is now permitted by Law. This is reflected by the observation of many a Judge of the Indian Court that though they know the defendant is guilty, the loopholes of the legal system do not permit them to convict the person.

Gandhi declared most emphatically that there is a Moral Law governing the Universe. Time there was when people intuitively accepted this. Thus, thousands of years ago when Emperor Manu codified for Indian Society the rules of conduct for people in various walks of life, the so-called Manu Dharma, he was essentially giving manuals of ParaDharma that were in full conformity with AtmaDharma. Similarly, when Bhishma on his deathbed instructed Yudhishtra on the rules of proper governance, he was merely laying out the ParaDharma of a ruler, in accordance with the general principles of AtmaDharma.

In summary, while Justice Dinakaran has called attention to the fallacies of the modern legal system on account of their failure to respect the Eternal Law, we go one step further to point out what Swami tells us, namely that these days, most of the actions of humans are flawed because they are not in tune with the basic inner nature of a human being, that is the latent Divinity. As long as this true nature is forgotten, everything that humans do, in all spheres of activity, from governance to science, from business to arts, will be driven by selfishness and hence likely to be dangerous to the individual, to Society and indeed to planet earth. Thus it is that Krishna told Arjuna to always align his actions to AtmaDharma; Swami also gives us that very same advice.

AtmaDharma is not any hairy fairy concept; it is very practical and very much needed in daily life. There is no need to discover it the hard way when it has been explained to us so many times in such pitiless detail. Do you agree?

With Love and Regards,

“Heart2Heart” Team

The Divine Call From Sathya SaiBaba

Sathya Sai Baba Materialization

Sathya Sai Baba Materialization


The Divine Call From Sathya SaiBaba

When I thought of it, it was really an impossible task to bring my mother, an octogenarian, to the Abode of Supreme Peace and Love, from the distant Himalayan land of Sikkim. But no task remains impossible once His Divine Grace is showered in abundance. A comment passed by a close friend of mine is still vivid in my memory: “You should have taken your mother earlier. Now it seems to be too late for the journey because of her advanced age and ailing health and it may not be possible for her to travel. You may consider it as impossible a task as trying to fill a bamboo cane basket with water.” This in fact hurt my feelings since my dear old mother had been all the time wishing and praying to find refuge at His Lotus Feet in Prasanthi Nilayam for the last five years. Yet I did not lose heart but went on yearning and cherishing like a good optimist with all my unwavering faith in the Divine Grace of Sri Sathya Sai Baba. I had given up pessimism since the time I had come to know about Bhagawan; has HE not assured that He will not forsake those who seek refuge in HIM?

Time kept on passing swiftly and my heart too kept on throbbing all the time with a worry as to how to proceed on the long journey. Yet, with a firm and steady faith, I could muster enough courage with all the patience that could be squeezed out of an ever hopeful heart.

Ever since her young days, my mother had been allergic to the smell of petrol and she preferred to travel either on horseback or on foot rather than riding a motor vehicle in which she would feel very uncomfortable and suffered from nausea. Now, due to her old age and physical weakness, travelling by car was ruled out; more over, the doctors advised that she should not travel by plane either, because of her heart trouble. Yet, wonderfully enough, she had much courage in store to travel by all means with a sense of total submission to His Mercy. It was most encouraging to hear from her words that were steeped in devotion. “This time, the Lord will surely listen to my prayers and take me to His Divine Abode.”

In January 1979, I got the rarest opportunity again in my life to be blessed by Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba at Brindavanam. It was a wonderful Interview. My experience at the interview reminds me all the time that even our parents cannot love and care for us so dearly and selflessly as Swami does. His Love is impartial and infinite and He is ever ready to forgive our shortcomings and mistakes. His Love is for each and every being in Creation.

A Great Moment
I prayed to the Lord with hands folded, whether it was possible for me to bring my mother for His Divine Darshan. To my relief and satisfaction, Sathya Sai Baba told me that it was possible without the least doubt and that she could travel without any fear of sickness throughout the journey. A beautiful silver locket was materialised and given to me and Sathya Sai Baba said that I should take it home very carefully to be given to my mother so that it would protect her all the time while proceeding on our journey and also throughout the rest of her life. After this great moment, I was once again back to my home in Gangtok, the capital of our Himalayan country, Sikkim, although my heart did not permit me to leave the portals of His Abode. To be candid with my views and to dwell upon the true experiences of my life, I do not have the least doubt that it is just because of Swami that I have been blessed with a new life, in pursuit of the real Destination.

Dwelling on the first stage of the journey from Gangtok, I would like to share with all the fact that my mother had the vision of our Beloved Lord, who seemed to be keeping pace with the speeding jeep even when she was wide awake. This happened when we were on our way from Rangpo to Tista, the two main check posts on the route from Gangtok to Siliguri, the nearest railway station. It was late in the evening of Monday, the 31st January 1983, when He granted this vision to my mother. The effect was so miraculous that she felt very happy and quite at ease. All the time, she sat in her seat, lost in an inexplicable sea of joy. It was as though the Lord of Parthi had touched her with His Divine magic. She did not feel travel sick or fatigued even as we arrived at Siliguri in the late hours of the night. We found her still fresh, hale and hearty and the arduous journey through the twisting and winding roads had not affected her in any way. We knew that this was the most difficult part of our journey. Yet this visible sign of His care and Grace inspired us to proceed on our journey without worries and fear. After this, the journey was quite pleasant and comfortable, and we arrived at Prasanthi Nilayam, the Divine Abode of Eternal Bliss.

Gifts Of Grace
What followed after reaching Prasanthi Nilayam can only be described as the unfolding of another chapter of how He, our Lord Sai, lives every second of the day for giving His Love to His dear and wayward children, of how He draws them to Him with all the care of a mother nursing her first born child. He granted us interviews, chiding us to crave instead, for the inner-view of our Real Self, the grandeur of the spirit, which would confer upon us the gift of Paramananda. He gave a nice and cosy room for my mother to stay in and also other gifts of His Grace. What more can a child aspire for from a mother. Even to think that the Lord cares so much for every being, even insignificant people like us, who had not been able to offer anything to HIM and had always aspired to achieve His Grace, truly unfolds volumes of His Divine Glory.

Now we all feel that the bird has at last found its refuge. It has no more destinations to reach, no more vistas to explore. This is really the final `homecoming’.

The sentiment of heartfelt gratitude that wells up within the deep recesses of my heart cannot be described in words and yet I feel so grateful to the Lord for all times to come for having opened my eyes from the deep slumber of ignorance to bring me to the path of Light and Truth.

Reference

Sai Baba And The Irate Missionary

Sathya Sai Baba

Sathya Sai Baba


Sai Baba And The Irate Missionary

One March evening I found myself dropped like a hot cake within the towering grey walls of a convent school run by foreign missionaries in a Himalayan town and the gates closed behind me. I found myself amidst sons of ministers, aristocrats, diplomats, and what not. I found something missing in them. I could not help stealing away from their company. At times I felt lost in this big world, but slowly learnt to accept it as a part of my life. I kept myself at a safe distance from the stern looking missionaries. Not a day passed without my hearing the “whoosh! Whoosh!” of a cane and uncontrollable sobs and cries of some unfortunate child. I was destined to spend a fraction of my life there.

One day I received a rude shock. A photograph of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba which I had with me was taken away and was locked in a cupboard. In my loneliness I derived consolation from the book, “Sathya Sai Speaks” which was kept well hidden beneath my bed as I feared it would be confiscated too.

One cold night, just before supper, the warden came in with a grim face and announced, “Henceforth none shall keep any books beneath their beds. If books are found they shall be confiscated. Even if any religious books are found, they shall be torn into bits. The boys found guilty shall be caned severely.” My heart leaped on hearing this and it raced fast. The supper refused to pass down my gullets. I rose and walked out of the dining hall.

I tucked my gloved hands into the pockets of my overcoat and went out into the open grounds behind the convent. An icy wind from the snow covered mountains greeted me. I brooded, “what am I to do with that book of Swami. How could I give it away! It was my only source of joy and consolation, whose support and companionship I sought during those deserted moments.” My mind was now determined that I would continue to keep it beneath my pillow and face the consequences. I knew it was a severe test, and my Lord would make me pass.

A week passed and nothing happened. None had come to check. One night, it was roundabout 10. I was still wide awake in my bed. The cold wind from the Himalayas whistled outside my window and it made the glass window rattle loudly. All the boys in my dormitory were fast asleep, perhaps dreaming of angels and fairies, unaware of the terror that was to strike that night.

The lights of the dormitory were suddenly put on. There stood the warden with another missionary with a thick cane in his hand, that knew no compassion. They pulled the sleeping boys out of the bed and the beds were checked. Many had comics and fairy tale books which were found beneath their beds. Blows rained upon them. The cane fell upon them terribly, its sound came rhythmically, and the cries for mercy; equally kept pace with it.

While it was freezing outside, I was perspiring profusely. I covered myself and lay still and chanted the Gayatri Mantra frantically. I could hear the soft footsteps of the missionary approaching my bed. It was my turn now. I felt a light tap. My lips went dry. My tongue refused to chant any mantram. But I felt myself yelling within, “Baba! Baba! Baba!” I opened my eyes and tried to present an innocent look. I slowly got off my bed. The missionary gave me a sarcastic smile. I was afraid, surely not of the cane, as I was cocksure that my soul would jump out before the cane could land on me. I feared the dreadful fate that awaited the book. The missionary overturned my pillow with his cane and “Sathya Sai speaks” showed itself lovingly. He looked at me ferociously. He hit the book with the cane. I felt the blow, a little cry escaped from my lips. He asked me, raising his gruff voice, “What is that I see?” I remained silent. The boys stood motionless in dreadful silence, while tears streamed down the cheeks of some. The angry missionary pounced on the book, and took it in his big rough hands. The story of Prahlada and the saviour Lord Narasimha flashed back in my mind! I stood in terror expecting him to tear it into bits. But I found the book still safe in his hands. He was staring at it and kept muttering: “Sathya Sai Speaks! Sathya Sai Speaks! Sathya Sai Speaks!” He stared at it unceasingly and after a few minutes he opened the book. The picture of our benevolent Sai stared at him. He stared at the beautiful picture and it stared back at him. I wondered what had happened to him.

A few minutes later the missionary asked me softly, “Who is he?” I was silent, and felt I had lost my voice. He repeated his question again, “Who is He?” Finding my voice, I said, “SAI BABA!” The cane fell from his hand. He stared at the picture with greater concentration. I did not know what was happening to him. Even now I am at a loss to know what happened in those few fleeting moments between the missionary and Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. It remains still a baffling mystery to me.

The missionary placed the book gently on my bed, to the astonishment of all, and tip toed out of the room. Tears of joy and gratitude trickled down my cheeks, for my beloved Lord had made me feel the warmth of His Love even in the distant Himalayan region.

Reference

Sathya Sai Baba Discourse In Kodai – Realise The Principle Of Unity

Sathya Sai Baba

Sathya Sai Baba


Sathya Sai Baba Discourse In Kodai – Realise The Principle Of Unity

Creation emerges from truth and merges into truth.
Is there a place in the cosmos where truth does not exist?
Visualise this pure and unsullied truth. (Telugu Poem)

WHEN YOU LOSE FAITH, YOU LOSE GOD
Everyone desires peace and happiness. Nobody wants sorrows and difficulties. In his speech, Popat has said that all are the embodiments of God. God is one. There is no second entity. When you think there is a second entity, then it is untruth. Therefore, there is nothing like a second entity.

All are One
Right from small ants, mosquitoes, and birds to mighty elephants, every being is the manifestation of God. Even the trees, hills, and mountains are manifestations of God. Such being the case, how can there be a second entity? A second entity is just your imagination and illusion. It is of your own making. Just think where your body has come from. You say that it has come from your parents. No, no. You have not come from your parents. You have come from yourself. There is only one entity. Where is the existence of the second?

But people today put their faith in diversity and not in unity. What does unity mean? It is not the combination of many; it is the realisation of oneness. When you have mirrors all around you, you see your many forms. These are all your different forms. But this is not the truth. The one who asks the question and the one who gives the reply, both are one and the same. All are one. Daivam manusha rupena (God is in the form of a human being). The same person appears in many forms. To consider these forms as different from each other is a mistake.

When I am speaking in the microphone, you are listening to My voice. The speaker is only one but the same voice is heard by many ears. Ekoham sarva bhutanam (I am the only Reality in all beings), Ekam sath viprah bahudha vadanti (truth is one, but the wise refer to it by various names). There is only one sun in the sky. But we see its reflection in many rivers, tanks, and vessels. Sun is only one. But wherever there is water, you see its reflection. Pour water in a plate, and you can see the reflection of the sun even in that water. Does it mean that the sun is there in this water? No, no. It is only the reflection of the sun. In the same way, Atma is only one. The mind, the intellect, the subconscious mind, and the ego sense are like different vessels. Therefore, divinity is one.

God can be seen in pure heart
Everything is God. If you think otherwise, it is only your delusion, i.e. maya. When the sun is shining above, you can see its reflections in all tanks. Even where the water is dirty, you can see its reflection. But when the water is totally dirty, then, of course, you cannot see its reflection. In the same way, when your heart is pure and clear, you can see the direct manifestation of God in it. But your heart is impure. When you thoroughly clean your heart, you can very well see God.

God is immanent in everyone. Right from a newborn baby to a grown-up and old person, He is present in everyone. A small baby grows up and ultimately becomes old. The baby, the woman, and the old lady are the same person. Because of their thinking, people see many different forms.

But God does not have different forms. In fact, He has no form. However, He has many names. Even though He has many names, they all correspond to the many reflections of the same divinity. You can see the reflection of the sun in flowing water and also in stagnant water. In the flowing water, the reflection appears to be wavering, but in steady water, the reflection is also steady. Your mind develops attachment to the world because of your delusion. Everything in this world is just a projection of maya.

Hiranyakasipu asked his son Prahlada, “Where is God? You are always chanting Narayana, Narayana. Who is Narayana?”

Prahlada replied, “Man himself is Narayana. Wherever you see, you see only Narayana. He is in me, He is in you, He is in all others.”

Hiranyakasipu asked, “Is He there in this pillar?”

“Surely, He is there in it”, replied Prahlada.

Hiranyakasipu took a mace and hit the pillar with it. At once he saw the manifestation of Lord Vishnu. Therefore, wherever you see, God is there. But people like Hiranyakasipu have no faith in God.

Develop the vision to see unity
Though there is total unity in creation, we look at it from the angle of diversity. We say, “He is my father, he is my mother, she is my elder sister, she is my younger sister.” We develop relationships on the basis of forms. Where have these relationships come from? Nothing can exist without the principle of unity.

Here is an example. A dog entered a room fitted with mirrors and saw many dogs in the mirrors. It was afraid to see so many dogs in the room, considering them as danger to its life. In order to escape from the situation, it jumped upon one of the mirrors, considering its own reflection in it to be another dog. As it did that, it saw that the dog in the mirror also jumped upon it. In the process, the mirror broke. Then, it felt that there was no other dog at the place and escaped from the room. It felt greatly relieved that it could save itself from so many other dogs. But where were so many dogs? It saw its own reflection in so many mirrors.

The same is the case with people today. If one sees all other forms as his own reflection in the mirror of the world, one will realise the principle of unity. So, there are no such separate entities like father, mother, brothers, and sisters. But one develops worldly relationships due to one’s delusion and says, “She is my sister, he is my brother, he is my father, she is my mother.” These are all only physical relationships and not the relationships based on your divine reality. Try to understand that the same Atma is present in all. But you develop worldly relationships, forgetting the principle of the Atma.

You say, “She is my wife” but prior to the marriage, she is separate and you are separate. Only after the marriage do you say, “My wife, my wife.” How you have developed this relationship of husband and wife? It is due only to your delusion. It is because of delusion that one makes many mistakes and indulges in many undesirable activities.

Wherever you see, there is God and God is one. People say, “He is Rama, He is Krishna, He is Shiva, He is Vishnu.” What does it mean? Does it mean that Vishnu, Shiva, Rama, and Krishna are separate entities? These are the different names of the same God. God appears before you in a particular form based on your own imagination. When you contemplate on the form of Krishna as portrayed by artists like Ravi Varma, God will manifest before you in the form of Krishna. In the same way, God will appear before you in the form of Rama. But God is neither Rama nor Krishna. Both Rama and Krishna are you only. The forms of Rama and Krishna are nothing but your own reflections. When you say, “I want Rama”, God manifests before you in the form of Rama. Similarly, when you say, “I want Krishna”, He appears before you in the form of Krishna. All these forms are nothing but your own reflections.

Reduce the burden of your desires
Both sorrow and happiness are in the world. When you are in difficulty, you say, “Alas! Why has God given me this difficulty? What sin have I committed?” On the other hand, when you earn wealth and are happy, you say, “It is my good fortune.” Neither this is your good fortune nor that is bad. When you have good thoughts, you will have good results. On the other hand, if you have bad thoughts, you will have bad results. Good and bad do not come from outside.

Everything is God. When people see a scorpion, they are afraid that it might bite them. But, in fact, there is God even in that scorpion. There is no being in whom God is not immanent. However, you have to get rid of your delusion.

People have too many desires. These too many desires are the cause of delusion. Therefore, people should reduce their desires. How should one do so?

All desires are the creation of the mind, which behaves in an arbitrary way. Manah eva manushyanam karanam bandhamokshayo (mind is the cause of bondage and liberation of man). You should make efforts to follow the path of liberation. Then, there will be no scope for delusion.

But people are full of desires, and the cause of all desires is the mind. Therefore, first and foremost, control the mind. If you do so, you will not have even a single desire. Therefore, it is said, Less luggage more comfort makes travel a pleasure. God will be pleased with you only when you reduce the luggage of your desires. More desires become great burden for life. With less luggage, you will be more happy.

When one is unmarried, one thinks, “Whatever I have, I can manage with it. I am not bothered even if I have to starve sometimes.” But when one is married and has children, one is burdened with so many worries. Where have the wife and children come from? They have come from the same source as you have come. You think someone is your wife because you develop attachment to her. Can you call every woman your wife? No, no. When you say so, you will be beaten. You cannot talk like this. The relationship of wife and husband is only a ‘body to body’ relationship. This physical relationship is the cause of many troubles.

A person with money is called a rich man. But the same person will be called a beggar when they lose his money. When you are wealthy, you are considered bigger; when you are poor, you are treated like a beggar. Therefore, the same person is bigger as well as beggar.

Develop equal-mindedness, and everything will become good for you. Even if somebody beats you, you should think, “The person who is beating me is none other than God. God has beaten me because there is some defect in me. This body has committed a mistake. Therefore, it has to receive punishment.”

Whatever we do, it will come back to us as reaction, reflection, and resound. All that we experience is the result of our own actions. It is not given by God. God does not give anything to people except ananda (bliss). Having experienced ananda, do not criticise the One who has provided it to you. Both happiness and sorrow are the reflection of your own actions. When God loves you, it means that God loves Himself.

God has no attributes. God has no such evil qualities like anger, hatred, jealousy, and hypocrisy, nor are these evil qualities given to you by God. These are all of your own making. Therefore, get rid of your delusion. If you develop unnecessary worries, thinking, “I don’t have this, I don’t have that”, you will deceive yourself. Reduce your desires. Then you will have not to carry too much luggage. Only then can you be happy.

Know the Atmic Principle
If you have real love for God, always contemplate on Him. If you have liking for Rama, contemplate on Rama. Similarly, if Krishna is your chosen deity, contemplate on Him. But always remember that Rama and Krishna are not outside; Rama is in your heart, Krishna is in your heart. Whatever form you consider as Rama, contemplate on that form with your eyes closed. You will certainly visualise that form. Ultimately, you will realise, “It is out of my delusion that I considered Rama and Krishna separate from Me. In fact, I am Rama, I am Krishna.”

When you contemplate on Rama, you see that form as a reflection of your thoughts. Similarly, when you think of Krishna, you see Krishna’s form. You think Rama and Krishna are different from you because of your delusion. Who has seen Rama? Who has seen Krishna? Artists like Ravi Varma painted the pictures of Rama and Krishna on the basis of the descriptions given in the sacred texts. These are mere pictures; they do not reveal the truth.

Everyone can call God by any name of their choice, like Rama, Krishna, Govinda, etc., and contemplate on a particular name and form. There is no mistake in that. I don’t ask you to give up this practice. But you should have firm conviction, “I am God. My Atma is God.” The Atma has no form. It has only a name. The Atma shines in everyone like the sun. It can be seen only in a heart that is pure. In the heart that is impure, you cannot see it.

Many Avatars came to propagate this truth. Divine incarnations come not for their own sake but to impart the knowledge of truth to everyone. Follow their teachings and understand the principle of the Atma.

The Vedanta proclaims that the Atma is the only reality. Waves are formed out of water. There can be no waves when there is no water. In the same way, there can be no form without the Atma. You should contemplate on the Atma and chant the mantra “Om Namo Narayanaya, Om Namo Narayanaya, Om Namo Narayanaya”. If you are unable to chant the entire mantra, it is enough to recite “Om”, because everything is immanent in Om. The word Om denotes pranava (primordial sound). The Upanishads describe it as the Atma.

The Taittiriyopanishad deals extensively with the principle of the Atma. The Ramayana, the Bhagavata, and the Mahabharata reveal the same truth through the stories of the Avatars. Everything is within you. Nothing is outside. The entire creation is one. Get rid of your delusion and try to understand the truth behind names and forms.

Name and form are inseparable. You chant, “Sai Ram, Sai Ram, Sai Ram …” The name “Sai Ram” has been given to Me. I am not born with this name. Similarly, the names Rama and Krishna were given to them by their parents. They were not born with these names. Did Rama come and say, “I am Rama?” No, no. He was the son of Dasaratha and was given the name Rama.

What does the word Dasaratha mean? It means the chariot of human body with its ten senses. Have control over your senses. When you have total control over your senses, there is no need for anything else. You even forget yourself. You forget even your physical body.

It is the mind that controls the body and the senses. The body and the senses are temporary. Even the mind is also subject to annihilation. We say, “mind, mind, mind.” Where is the mind? What is the form of the mind? It has no form. Mind itself is an illusion. Enquire on these lines and realise that God is one. This is the only truth. Everything else is delusion. In a cinema, you see many scenes on the screen. You see Sita getting married to Rama, Ravana abducting Sita, Rama waging a war against Ravana, and many friends of Rama taking part in the war. But all these are mere pictures. They are not happening in reality.

There are not many people. All are one. Ekam Sath … When you follow sathya (truth), dharma (right action) will emerge from it. When sathya and dharma come together, santhi (peace) will manifest. Where there is peace, there is bliss. Light is produced when negative and positive charges come together.

Love emerges from peace. One who lacks peace cannot have love. When love manifests in us, we consider everyone as our own. All are our own forms. All are one. Be alike to everyone. Make efforts to realise this truth.

When the wind blows, the dry leaves are blown away, but not the green leaves. They remain with the branches. Your humanness should not be like a dry leaf, which is blown away by the wind. Everything is a divine mystery.

The stories of Lord Rama are amazing,
It purifies the lives of the people in all the three worlds,
It is like the sickle that cuts the creepers of worldly bondage,
It is like a good friend who helps you in times of need,
It is like a shelter for the sages and seers doing penance in the forest. (Telugu Poem)

Develop steady devotion
Do not allow your mind to become like a dog, which is deluded by its own reflection. The dog is deluded thinking its reflections in many mirrors as many dogs. There are not many dogs. You may consider a dog a dog, but God is in it also. Without vibration, even a dog cannot live. What is that vibration? It is the vibration of life. Due to this life principle, the dog eats and moves around.

Do not observe any differences such as “He is an outsider, he is a rich person, he is a beggar.” All are one. See unity in all. Only then will you have steady and true devotion. Otherwise, you will have bumps and jumps. Your devotion will waver from moment to moment.

Many people consider themselves as devotees. As long as they have faith in God, their devotion remains steady. When their devotion wavers, their mind also wavers. Real faith does not waver under any circumstances. Come what may, your devotion should not waver, even if you are cut to pieces. That is steady, unwavering, and unsullied devotion. Develop such steady and selfless devotion.

The same is the teaching of Jesus also. God is one. You have to cut your individual ego to attain Him. This is what the cross symbolises.

Never give up your faith. Hold on to it firmly. Then you will certainly realise your true identity. Man is born to establish humanness and not to destroy it. Develop human qualities of sathya, dharma, santhi, prema (love) and ahimsa (nonviolence). When sathya combines with dharma, santhi and prema are born there. It is love that unites all. Will you kill your son in a fit of anger? No, no. You will scold him, but you will not harm him. Likewise, when you have love, you will treat everyone as your own. Treat all woman as your mothers and sisters.

Forbearance is the real beauty in this sacred land of Bharat.
Of all the rituals, adherence to truth is the greatest penance.
The nectarine feeling in this country is the feeling of love toward one’s mother. (Telugu Poem)

Develop such sacred feelings toward all women. When you marry a woman, only then do you call her your wife. Otherwise, all women are like your mothers and sisters. Similarly, all men are like your brothers. God is one. He is the only purusha (male). There is no other male except Him.

Once the gopikas (cowherd maidens) came to Krishna’s house to meet Him. When they tried to enter the house, the watchman prevented them, saying women cannot enter the house. The gopikas questioned him, “How come you are there?” Then he replied, “I am a male.” The gopikas said, “You cannot call yourself a male merely because you are wearing a male dress. The five elements and the five life principles are the same in you and us. Merely because you are wearing a male dress and we are wearing a female dress, we can be different from each other. The same divinity is present in you and us. In fact, Krishna alone is the Purusha, all others are females.”

To Love God is the Main Goal of Life
Today this equality and unity have become extinct in this world. Due to lack of unity, we are unable to see divinity. Consequently, hatred is on the rise. Today the world is in the grip of differences and fighting due to lack of love. Man today has forgotten even his humanness.

First of all, understand that you are essentially divine. When you say, “I am person and He is God”, you observe duality. When there are two entities, the third will also find place there, and that is the mind. That will bring about your total ruination.

Husband should be treated as husband and wife should be treated as wife. Each one should discharge their duty. In English, duty refers to a particular work. The duty of a human being is not merely doing some work. Duty connotes nishkama karma (selfless work).

A selfish person is worse than a fish. Fish is better than selfish. Therefore, never give room to selfishness. You can realise the Self only when you give up selfishness. When you become a slave to your senses, you will always remain selfish. Therefore, give up selfishness. Help everyone.

As I said on the day of Rama Navami, God is one. There is apparent diversity in the world. In fact, man is God Himself. Develop faith in this truth. Let your faith not waver even a bit. When you lose faith, you lose God. Whatever may happen to you, never become selfish. When you conduct yourself in this manner, you will realise your divinity. Then you will have no delusion that Rama, Krishna, Easwara, and Vishnu are different from each other.

The names like Rama and Krishna are given by us. In fact, all names are given by us. Everybody is born from God. God is one, not two. Right from today, make efforts to do away with all differences. When you love God, worship and follow Him. This is the main goal and true purpose of your life.

– From Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba’s Divine Discourse in Sai Sruthi, Kodaikanal on 29 April 2009 (Reference).

Also see:

Gold Trophy For Sathya Sai School In Ndola Zambia in 2005

Gold Trophy For Sathya Sai School In Ndola Zambia in 2005

Sai Ram to you all Brothers and Sisters:

I am pleased to inform you that Sathya Sai School of Ndola has been awarded the International Gold Star Award for Quality in terms of leadership, innovation, training and excellence in education. We received this precious trophy at an international gala dinner at the prestigious Hotel Concorde, La Fayette in Paris on 30th May 2005. Only Sathya Sai Baba could have made this possible.

Attached please find the scanned copies of the trophy and certificate.

Kind regards

VICTOR-KRISHNA KANU

Sent: Wednesday, June 08, 2005 2:31 AM by Suresh Bachheta

Zambia Sathya Sai School Certificate

Zambia Sathya Sai School Certificate


Zambia Sathya Sai School Trophy

Zambia Sathya Sai School Trophy

Concerning The Avatar

Sathya Sai Baba

Sathya Sai Baba


Concerning The Avatar

Loving Sai Ram and greetings from Prashanti Nilayam.

This Sunday, we thought we would put together many of the things Swami has said at various times about Avatars in general and about the Sri Sathya Sai Avatar also.

Krishna has no doubt explained in a few crisp Slokas in the Gita why God comes down to earth as an Avatar. Krishna says that God comes down as man to give humans an important lesson and adds that since man forgets that lesson, God has to incarnate repeatedly. But Sathya Sai Baba has added many crucial footnotes such as this one:

To elevate man to the level of Consciousness, God has to incarnate as man. He has to speak to them in their own styles and languages. He has to teach them the methods that they can adopt and practice. Birds and beasts need no Divine incarnation to guide them for they have no inclination to stray away from Dharma. Man alone ignores the goal of life.

And Sathya Sai Baba goes on to explain what precisely the word Avatar means:

The word Avatar means descent. It is not coming down from the peak of a mountain or the top story of a building. It is a descent from the state of the Atma to the state of the body. The descent of the Avatar means the Divine coming down to the level of the human. No blemish attaches to the Divine as a result of the descent. There is no diminution in His puissance. Here is the example of a child playing on the ground. If the mother feels it is beneath her dignity to bend and calls upon the child to leap in her arms, the child cannot do so. But out of love for her child, the mother stoops to pick up the baby. Likewise, the Avatar descends to the level of the human to bless and rescue those who cannot rise to the level of the Divine. It is an act of benediction.

Humans are used to thinking of God as being supremely powerful, who can do all sorts of things. And yet, when they see God in human form, many doubts assail them such as, “Is the Avatar really as powerful as the unseen God?” Sathya Sai Baba gives the answer:

The attributes and the powers of the Divine remain unaltered in their pristine amplitude. The Divine manifests His powers according to the needs, the circumstances and the conditions prevailing at a particular time or place. Take, for example, the case of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. He has the power to protect and to punish. These powers can be exercised when he sits in the judicial chair. The same Chief Justice, when he is at home, confers joy on his grandson by letting him ride on his back. By allowing the grandchild to play in this manner, does he forfeit his powers as a Chief Justice? Similarly, the Avatar does not forego any of His supreme powers merely because He lives and moves among human beings as a man. An Avatar is capable of all things at all times. Yet the Avatar will not undertake to demonstrate His powers at all times. An Avatar will undertake to such powers when exceptional circumstances demand it and will shed His Grace on deserving persons only.

It is common for humans to accept that God knows everything; however, when it comes to the Avatar, there are all sorts of doubts. For example, we frequently find devotees wondering whether Swami would be aware of the good deeds they have done, etc. Such doubts are a reflection of the duality inherent in Creation. While at their core, all humans ARE Divine, yet their perception is mostly dictated by their senses. In other words, humans function mainly through “human Consciousness” whereas the Avatar exhibits both the Divine as well as human Consciousness as the Divine Drama dictates. This is how Sathya Sai Baba comments on this:

Because the Lord takes the human form, we find that He exhibits human consciousness along with Divine Consciousness. Ordinary people cannot grasp the Divine aspects of an Avatar. God appears to be an ordinary human being to the limited intelligence of lay people because of the co-existence of the Divine and human consciousness in the Avatar. Human comprehension is restricted by the limits of human consciousness. But the sages who were divine human beings were able to comprehend Divinity. They recognised the Formless God in the visible form, because they had imbued themselves with Divine Consciousness. Thus, according to their levels, different people regard the Avatar as a mere human being or Cosmic Reality.

Turning now to Krishna’s declaration about the decline of Dharma, the appearance of the Lord in human form, etc., Sathya Sai Baba has this to say:

Avatars never come to re-establish Dharma. Dharma was never destroyed but the practice of Dharma periodically goes into decline. It is to rekindle the practice of Dharma that God appears on earth as man.

A common doubt: Rama fought with many demons and annihilated them. Krishna in His own way, helped to eliminate many of the bad guys. Right now, the world is full of these bad guys who would make the earlier ones look like saints. Why on earth then, is the Avatar not slaying them? Why has He come without any weapon? A popular question and here is the answer:

In this Kali Age, the wicked have to be reformed and reconstructed through Love and Compassion. That is why this Avatar has come unarmed. It has come with the Message of Love.

Coming to think of it, it is a bit surprising that when humans who are talking about eliminating weapons of mass destruction, want the Avatar slay the wicked, without realising that if the Avatar were to do so, there would be a HUGE blood bath! Then there is the question, favourite with overseas devotees: “Why does God have to incarnate only in the sub-continent? What about Europe, America, Japan, New Zealand, etc? Are they not good enough for Him?” This is what Sathya Sai Baba told Dr. Hislop:

Where gold is found, there gather the geologists, engineers and miners. The gold is mined there and then it is taken all over the world.

Satya Sai Baba constantly emphasises the human aspect of the Avatar, as the following quotes illustrate. In this context, we strongly urge devotees to read carefully the book Summer Roses on the Blue Mountain, which contain the discourses Swami delivered during the Summer Course conducted in 1976.

The essential quality of an Avatar is to teach you to make good and proper use of your thought, word and deed. Depending on the conditions in the country and the environment, the Avatar comes to teach you and show you the right use of all your organs.

This is the reason why Krishna came in human form, created a bodily relationship with Arjuna and others, and pretended as if He was the brother-in-law of Arjuna…. Krishna wanted to deal with Arjuna in a manner in which a human being will deal with another human being.

If we regard Krishna as God, we will never be able to understand the inner significance of the Mahabharatha. It is only when we pay attention to the human aspect of Krishna and look at the whole story from the angle of Krishna in the human form, that we will be able to understand His greatness.

Every Avatar has His detractors and this Avatar is no exception; in fact, this is a part of the Divine Drama! What does Swami have to say about that? Just read this.

In an Avatar, there will never be a situation in which you can find fault with Him. The individual who accuses an Avatar will be hurting himself in his eyes with his own fingers.

People think that just because the Avatar has come, He will “fix it all”. No way! He has come to “fix our minds” because that is where the problems all start – the human mind! So, it is OUR business to use the opportunity to get transformed and then go about fixing the problems we humans have created in such abundance. This is what Sathya Sai Baba has to say on this matter:

The best that a guidepost can do is to tell you that if you travel that way, you will reach such and such a destination and if you travel another path, you will reach another destination. But the actual ups and downs along a particular path will be understood only by people who undertake the journey.

Decade after decade, Sathya Sai Baba has been tirelessly teaching us, but most of us seem more preoccupied with wanting to see miracles or getting fixes for our own particular problems. And when sometimes there is disappointment , then doubts also set in. All this is because of a lack of understanding of the nature of the Avatar and the purpose of incarnation.

With regard to Sai, some people draw conclusions based only on external appearances. They are not making any effort to recognise the basic truth, the unchanging qualities such as Sathya, Dharma and Prema that are in Sai. All powers are in the control of Sai….

There is no limitation to My power. Infinite powers and infinite Grace are present in My hands. To state these things with regard to Myself becomes necessary at times.

Because I am like an ordinary individual when I am talking with you and playing with you, many people do not understand My true nature. Even people with great strength of mind cannot recognise the difference between the external appearance and the internal aspect.

Sai knows everything. That people are in doubt is due to the Maya of the Avatar.

Since you see Me in close proximity, you are not able to assess Me properly. Familiarity has deceived you to the point of delusion. Swami’s Form is BIG, VAST, ………. INFINITE!

Commenting on the uniqueness of the Sai Avatar, Swami says:

During the lifetime of Shirdi Baba, not much attention was paid to Him. Recognition of Him as an Avatar, and interest in His life developed only after His “death”.

This Sai Avatar is the only such where His Divinity is known to people of all religions. Never has there been that before. With Krishna, only the Gopis were aware of Him as God; but they were Rishis reborn.

Sri Krishna Avatar

Sri Krishna Avatar


This Avatar is obviously different, with people being aware of His Divinity in real time, all across the globe, as Sathya Sai Baba pointed out to Dr. Hislop. Is Swami partial? He may appear so to some but He really is not.

The name Sai Baba means Divine Mother and Father. Like mother, I will be tender and soft and like father I will punish you. If an individual who has good qualities comes close to Me, I am sweet to him. On the other hand, I am harsh to one who has bad qualities and I do not let him come close to Me. It is not that I like one more than the other but I give medicine to cure bad qualities when they are present.

So what do we do when the Avatar is around? Any work for us? Sure!

There is considerable change in human outlook that I have to bring about. No one can stop Me or deter Me from fulfilling the task for which I have come, namely the establishment of the one unchanging Truth. In this task, you have a part to play…

Once again, an Avatar is an Avatar – God in human form. No merit in trying to argue which one is “better”.

Rama, Krishna and Sai Baba appear different because of the dress each has donned, but it is the self same Entity, believe Me!

If there is one word that describes Sathya Sai Baba fully, that is LOVE!

Divine Love is associated with Immortality. It is to teach mankind the truth about this Divine Love that Love itself incarnates on earth in human form.

With Love and Regards,
“Heart2Heart” Team

Why Are We So Desperate About Exceeding The Speed Limit?

Sathya Sai Baba

Sathya Sai Baba


Why Are We So Desperate About Exceeding The Speed Limit?

Loving Sai Ram, and greetings from Prashanti Nilayam.

We are sure the title of today’s piece would intrigue you. Undoubtedly, questions like: “What speed limit?”, “who is exceeding it?” etc., are crossing your mind right now. In a minute, we shall address them, but first we would like to mention that this particular Sunday Special is inspired directly by a profound remark that Swami made in one of His daily Divine Discourses, during the recently-concluded Athi Rudra Maha Yajnam. Sathya Sai Baba of course always says profound things but two remarks of His in one of these daily Discourses attracted our special attention and what follows is the result.

Sathya Sai Baba said : “Man today is living life at a dangerously fast pace. This is not good for him.” The second remark is in a sense related to the above and we shall come to that later. For now, let us spend a few minutes on the above remark. For people who are young, the pace of modern life may appear normal but that would be because they have never experienced anything else. If we go back say forty years, and we are sure many of our readers can do that, then it would be recalled that life moved then at a much slower pace than at present. In fact, in the West life had become so comfortable with newer and newer labour-saving gadgets, that many speculated that soon there would be four or even three-day working weeks, the rest of the week being available for leisure and relaxation. People even went to the extent of drawing up various schemes for how to get the maximum out of this bonus of leisure that seemed just a few years away down the road.

But suddenly all that changed and today, people are not only working more than ever before but at a more furious pace too. Several factors, both market forces and technology, working together, have brought about this huge change in style and mind-set. In terms of technology, the phenomenal growth of TV, especially via cable and satellite TV, the advent of the internet and the mobile, the emergence and the dominance of the PC, appearing later in many forms like the laptop, Palm-pilot and so forth have made people madly rush here and there, doing many things they did not do before.

As for market forces, the emergence of the so-called service sector has a lot to do with it. There are many angles to this and we certainly cannot go into all of that here but let us consider one example. Earlier, people manufactured goods in one place and from there they shipped these goods to all parts of the world. This still happens but the manufacturing sector is no longer the only dominant contributor to global economy. There is now, a very strong sector called the service sector, where tasks play the role of components in the manufacturing industry. Take the auto industry. To build a car, one needs many ancillary components like spark plugs, tyres, windscreens and so on. Big manufacturers like Ford, did not make all these; instead, they procured them from satellite industries and to start with, most of these industries were located not far from the main manufacturing plant to reduce cost and time of transportation. But when it came to tasks, the ballgame changed, to use a common metaphor.

The service sector revolves largely around tasks. Say there is a physician in America . He sees many patients and notes down his findings. He then dictates his remarks into a Dictaphone. Later, his secretary listens to the recording, types the remarks and makes out a record of patient data. This is the way things worked for years, until the communication, revolution that is.

When the revolution occurred many said:

“This task of transcribing the doctor’s remarks and preparing reports – it could be done cheaper in India than in America . People might ask what about the huge distance? Well, in the internet age, distance is no problem. All the doctor has to do is to send his recordings to India by internet. And there, a service provider will arrange to have the recordings transcribed, reports prepared and have the reports sent back to the doctor’s office in America . Thanks to the 10-12 hour time difference, the doctor there can go home in the evening after sending his recordings to India . While he sleeps, the job is done and by the time he is back in his office next morning, the reports are all ready, sitting in his computer. All he has to do is to print them. And the cost of all this would be much cheaper than hiring a secretary.”

That is how tasks have become mobile. As everyone knows, so many tasks can be shipped overseas. This includes answering customer calls, helping with on-line travel bookings and so on. All this is fine but how on earth does it affect life style? That is not difficult to understand. Consider just one example, the Call-centre business. There are a huge number of them in India and people working in these are young people, most of them between the ages 20 and 30. They are awake throughout the night, night after night. This strains the body and when they get a break, the young people try to wind down by “living it up”; they can do it too because they have money to “enjoy”. This goes on week after week and soon the body begins to feel the strain due to sustained irregular hours, lack of sleep, serious disturbances to body rhythm and so on. When these people get married, the problems multiply immediately. And when children come things get even worse.

A large part of the IT industry revolves almost entirely around tasks, and since tasks are very mobile, there is automatically a lot of tension. The customer say in America can easily switch the task from India to China or Philippines or whatever. For the customer, it is all a case of who offers the best deal. But for the vendor of services, it is a tense existence. The people in the IT industry have to do a lot of travelling, frequently across continents, which is not as exciting as it might seem, especially when one is in a highly competitive industry.

The stress spreads across the board. Parents want their offspring to be successful and highly competitive. So they try to get them into the best schools even though the fees may be prohibitive. While the parents work hard to make the money needed, the children have to slog to get into the school. Indeed, even getting into Kindergarten has become a highly competitive affair, so much so kids of the age of five are now beginning to be stressed heavily.

Travel business is soaring but at the same time thanks to rising costs, especially of oil, many airlines are losing heavily. So people in the airline business are beginning feel the strain heavily. Faced with losses, many airlines in America are asking their staff to take pay cuts, which of course the staff is not willing to accept.

And so on it goes. Influenced by advertisements, people buy heavily on credit and when they are not able to pay the monthly installments, all kinds of problems arise. In short, people are working much more, faced with great job insecurity. In many countries, they have to hold several jobs to make both ends meet.

The point is that the thanks to all these post-1980 events, life has become very fast, subjecting all those caught in the rat race to face immense stress. The worst part of it that due to percolation effect, all members of the family including kids get heavily stressed. And that is what Sathya Sai Baba was commenting about.

One might argue, “Listen. We know all this. The point simply is that life has become complicated. Fast pace is inevitable. There is nothing we can do about it.” We agree that there is some truth about it. But if we reflect calmly and carefully, then we would be forced to the conclusion, that if we take seriously Sathya Sai Babas’s advice on Ceiling on Desires, then automatically, the stress level we have to face can and indeed would come down.

Many would hotly contest this, arguing “What on earth does ceiling on desires have anything to do with it?” Well, consider this simple example. Highly stressed people want desperately to make the maximum of the weekend breaks, vacation etc. They furiously make all kinds of travel plans, rush from work to vacation and then rush back to work when the break is over. In other words, even vacation has become a rush! In fact, many in America take their so-called Black-berries with them while on vacation; result, even vacation becomes tense, thanks to business pressures!

We would not dwell on this anymore, leaving you to think about it. May be we have not put across the arguments properly and convincingly and there is a better way of explaining what Swami means. We would certainly welcome hearing from you. Let us now move on to the second point made by Swami in the Discourse referred to earlier. Swami said that the body is no ordinary thing but a special “dress” worn by the Indweller; in other words, said Swami, the body is the dress of God. And this “dress” must not be soiled by misusing the body; and let us remember that these days, people have no inhibitions about misusing the body, in fact in every possible way.

Suppose a person has an expensive suit, say costing $3,000/-. We gather that three are suits that expensive! OK, so a person is wearing such a suit. Does one expect that person to say allow ketchup to spill on to his suit while he is eating? Will the person wear the suit and walk in the rain along a muddy road? And yet, when we look carefully at all the things we tend to do, often unthinkingly, making the body grow obese, straining the eyes beyond limit by excessive TV watching, and so on, we would be able to understand what Swami means. In fact in the Gita, Krishna too says something similar. He says fools ill treat the body by excessive starving saying they are observing austerities when in fact they are torturing Him!

So if we put it all together, simply by leading an unnecessarily fast life, we are driving the body far beyond the pace it was designed by the Creator for. Moreover, the body that we most casually tend to misuse does not belong to us; it is God’s Dress. Our Ego makes us think it is “ours” and leads us to believe that the body being ours we can do what we want with it including leading a fast life.

Sorry, the body is NOT “ours” and we just cannot do what we want with it, least of all, drive it a pace it was NOT designed for. Well, that is how we understood the essential point of Sathya Sai Baba’s Discourse.

With Love and Regards,
“Heart2Heart” Team

President Of India Visits Sathya Sai Baba At Prasanthi Nilayam

President Of India Visits Sathya Sai Baba At Prasanthi Nilayam

President Of India Smt Pratibha Devisingh Patil Visits Sathya Sai Baba At Prashanti Nilayam

President Of India Smt Pratibha Devisingh Patil Visits Sathya Sai Baba At Prashanti Nilayam


This day happens to be a special day in the annals of Prasanthi Nilayam as Her Excellency The President of India, Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil visited Prasanthi Nilayam. The President who came by a chartered Indian Air Force Aircraft was received at the Sri Sathya Sai Airport by the Collector of Anantapur, Secretary of Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust, Sri K. Chakravarthi, Vice Chancellor of Sri Sathya Sai University Sri Vishwanath Pandit, Former Vice Chancellor Prof. G. Venkataraman and other dignitaries.

The President who came into the Sai Kulwant Hall at 4:35 p.m. for His Divine Darshan was blessed by Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba with a half an hour audience. At the end of the interview Bhagawan blessed the Presidential support staff with Vibhuti Prasad. After the President and her entourage left the Nilayam, the three students who had performed Burra Katha on the previous day on the life of Mother Easwaramma gave another performance on the life of Shirdi Sai Baba.

As is the custom, the artistes began their performance by offering their salutations to Lord Ganesh. As they were offering their salutations to Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, the traditional garlanding took place. The students began their interesting narration on the life of Shirdi Sai Baba supplementing it with songs and humour. Delineating on the birth of Shirdi Sai Baba, the artistes said that He was born to Hindu parents Devagiriamma and Gangabhavadia. The Divine couple Parvati-Parameswara appeared before Devagiriamma and Gangabhavadia and foretold that He would be born to them as their third child. The couple who were childless till then gave birth to a daughter and son. On 28th September 1835, Shirdi Sai Baba was born in the village of Patri. Though born to Hindu parents, Shirdi Sai Baba was brought by a Muslim couple. As a child, He used to go to a Hindu temple and proclaim about Allah and speak about Rama in a Mosque. He advocated the concept “Sabka Malik Ek Hai” (One God governs all).

From the year 1858, Baba lived in Shirdi. He spent his early days under a neem tree and later lived in the Masjid which he named as Dwarakamai or Mother Dwaraka. Baba used to feed the fakirs and devotees and even cook for them. Baba had a profound love and compassion for suffering humanity. The master used to personally attend to the needs of the sick as a physician and a nurse. Baba distributed the holy ‘Udi’ – the panacea for all troubles to his devotees. ‘Udi’ is the ash from the perpetual sacred fire – Dhuni lit by Baba. The Udi is the token of His divine grace to all who come to Him for help. He begged for alms and shared what he got with his devotees and all the creatures around him.

Once during the festival of lights, Deepavali, Baba wanted to light lamps in Dwarakamai. As the shopkeepers refused to give Him oil, Baba just poured water on the lamps and lighted them. One can call it was only a tip of the iceberg. Baba performed many such miracles in His lifetime. He lived for 83 years and attained Samadhi in the year 1918.

Thus ended another beautiful narration by the three artistes. Bhagawan blessed the Prasadam to be distributed to all the devotees. Arati was offered to Bhagawan at 6.00 p.m. before He retired to His Abode.

Reference


Prez Has Darshan Of SaiBaba

President Pratibha Patil being given a warm welcome on arrival at Puttaparthi on Thursday.
Express News Service
First Published : 08 May 2009 09:30:29 AM IST
Last Updated : 08 May 2009 11:42:41 AM IST

PUTTAPARTI: President Pratibha Patil today had a darshan of Sri Satya Saibaba and later had a private audience with the Holy man for over 30 minutes at the Prashantha Nilayam here.

The President arrived here at the Satya Sai Airport from Banagalore at 4.10 p.m. and straight away drove to Srinivasa Guest House in the Prashanthi Nilayam. After spending some time at the Guest house, Pratibha Patil drove down to Sai Kulvant Hall.

She first had the darshan of the Swamy and later went inside the green room and had a personal talk with Satya Saibaba for about half hour. She left Puttaparti for Bangalore at 5.20 p.m.

Satya Sai Central Trust members, Industries Minister Geetha Reddy, Ananatapur ZP chairperson T Kavitha, Collector V Anilkumar, Rayalaseema IG R P Thakur and SP MK Singh received the President with official honours.

Police made elaborate bandobast for the visit of the President. Srinivasa Guest House was taken over by the SPG. Besides dog squads and bomb disposable squads, Armed Reserve Police, seven DSPs, 14 CIs, 26 SIs and 400 constables were deployed for the security.

Express Buzz Reference

God, Man And Society

Sathya Sai Baba

Sathya Sai Baba


God, Man And Society

Loving Sai Ram and greetings from Prashanti Nilyam. This Sunday and in the one that follows, we wish to dwell on two important and strongly related topics. Together, they highlight how pertinent, important and vital are Sathya Sai Baba’s teachings to today’s world and the innumerable problems it faces. Swami’s Divine Discourses invariably dazzle us with their overpowering torrent of Divine Love and we become so dazed at the end of it all that we seldom sit back to reflect on the subtler nuances of the Message that Bhagavan Baba’s Discourses always carry. If we were to do that, we would discover any number of crucial lessons that humanity must take seriously if it is to survive. Today, we shall explore some of them.

As we are all aware, on many occasions, Swami has called attention to the quartet – Vyashti, Samashti, Srishti and Parameshti and their inter-relationship. We too have commented on that many times. Not withstanding that, we wish to examine once more the connection between the Individual, Society and God.

If we go back to ancient times, the scriptures did mention Society, Nature, and God and their inter-relationships. However, by and large, the emphasis usually was on the individual, his or her duties and responsibilities, how the individual must relate to God, how the individual must strive to purify himself or herself and become one with God. The relationship of the individual to Society was no doubt mentioned but not heavily stressed. Instead, the focus was primarily on the individual and his/her salvation.

Times have changed. But does that mean that the individual does not have to bother about the goal of salvation? By no means. However, certain new parameters enter into the picture, making the goal of salvation acquire a totally new perspective. Why all this change? That is what we shall now explore.

Let us start by listing the types of security that people normally expect and even demand. The list would include: life security, water security, food security, accommodation security, education security, job security, property security, family security and so on. While in some countries people take all these for granted, in many parts of the world, they hardly exist.

Let us now go back say a hundred thousand years or so to the time of the caveman. Whatever security the caveman wanted, he had to provide it himself. If his life was threatened, he had to protect himself. If he wanted water, he had to go in search of it himself. If he wanted food, he had to provide it himself. As for accommodation, he had to find his own cave or put together stones and create his own dwelling place. May be all this is obvious, but we do have to mention them to make our point.

Cut now to modern times. Today, everyone wants “Society” to guarantee various securities. We want to walk safely on the street? Then Society must guarantee safety. We want job security? Then “Society” must do something about it. We want healthcare? That is the job of “Society”. We want social security in old age? What’s “Society” there for? Does it not have duties and obligations? So on it goes.

So you see, somewhere between the era of the caveman and modern times, an entity called “Society” has emerged which has great relevance to the individual. This emergence is the result of civilisation, and is the direct result of co-operation between individuals. Co-operation is vital for progress and peace, which is why the Vedas stress co-operation.

Society is a kind of a macro representation of the individual. If the individual is the microcosm, then Society is the macrocosm – that is an important lesson that Swami has been giving lately, particularly because the population of the world has swelled and the world has become very inter-connected. To put it differently, the individual and Society are two sides of the same coin. By the way, if God resides in the individual, does it not imply that He is also present in Society? Can we then afford to ignore Society?

In the modern world, the individual has come to expect Society to provide all kinds of security to him or her. In this highly-interconnected world, Society must care for ALL its citizens in EQUAL measure. If some segments of Society become very powerful , then there can be all kinds of trouble – in brief, the collective power of Society can be hijacked to serve narrow interests.

Just consider this. There is a lot of clamour these days for giving market forces a free hand, cutting down Government and all that. But let a huge earthquake happen or huge tsunami strike or a huge hurricane strike . Then will the companies and corporations come to the aid of people? So, whether we like it or not, in today’s highly connected world and a world dominated by technology, we DO need an agency that would care for the common good of ALL people, especially those in the weaker sections. That agency is what we call Society. Please note we are not trying to equate Society with Government. Rather, we are taking Society to be the collective will of all people, aiming at the common good of all in equal measure.

And this is where Swami’s teachings relating to the individual on the one hand and Society on the other, enter the picture. This connection must be fully understood. Some readers may wonder why on earth are we digging up all kinds of “social issues”, when we really ought to be talking about “Spirituality”.

There is a reason for such doubts, which arise from the traditional perception of “Spirituality”. For many, Spirituality simply means rituals, scriptures, Bhagavad Gita, Discourses, Bhajans etc. This is an age-old view, and when that is adhered to, many feel comfortable; this is perfectly understandable. On the other hand, when Swami talks to students, He often dwells on what people would call “practical” matters. Why? For a very good reason.

Consider, for example, Sathya Sai Baba’s Mission in the area of education. When Swami established His University, there were already 108 Universities in the country; why then one more? If we examine carefully, we would realise that Swami has done this to highlight one of the many responsibilities that Society has to bear. Through His University, Swami is giving Society three important messages. They are: 1) Character development must always be at the core of all educational programs. 2) It is not enough to stuff the brain; the body and the Soul also need balanced development. 3) Education must be available free, and students should not be made to pay to pay through their nose, as is increasingly becoming the case. In other word, education must become the responsibility of Society and not be abandoned to market forces.

Similarly, through His amazing Hospitals, Swami is sending the same message in regard to healthcare. Society must assume responsibility for the healthcare of its citizens, and not let citizens fend for themselves.

Space limitations prevent us from going into many important details concerning all this but we would like to point out that when Swami talks of practical knowledge being more important than bookish knowledge, what He implies is that practical Spirituality is far more pertinent and important than textbook Spirituality; which is why He often says that hands that serve are holier than lips that pray.

As Swami repeatedly tells His students, we are what we are because of Society; and therefore we owe a deep debt to Society, all the time. When He went to Delhi in March 1999, Swami delivered a powerful Discourse wherein He gave a new and very practical meaning to KarmaYoga. In ringing tones He said, “People think Seva means taking a broom and sweeping the village roads. That is NOT necessarily the only way to do Seva. In fact, the best Seva you can do is to do your job properly, earning every penny you are paid. Do honest work, do hard work and work such that people are not swindled or cheated but benefited. It does not matter whether you work for a company or in a Government Department. All Karma [action/duty] must be performed reverentially, in the belief that duty is God; work would then automatically get elevated to worship.” Similarly, in Bombay when leading industrialists complained about the growth of crime, He severely reprimanded them for living in skyscrapers and not doing anything for the slum dwellers who lived right below. In fact, so fiery was His speech that next day, the Times of India reported the speech with the headline: Sai Baba Thunders!

Sathya , Dharma, Shanti, Prema, and Ahimsa acquire full meaning only when they prevail in Society, and that would happen only when individuals relate to Society in an intensive way. This is the way individual’s purity would lead to RamaRajya or Utopia. It is because individuals tend to be in their own private shells today that corruption, violence, child labour etc., are rampant in Society.

If Society chokes with Adharma, then the individuals cannot survive for long unless they counter it by making Dharma prevail. That is what our students are taught and that is how when they go out they slowly but invariably make a difference to the work place they are in. Innumerable are the examples of our students standing firm on corruption, whether they are in a company or in the Income Tax Department. In due course, H2H would carry those inspiring stories.

Dear Reader! The tone of these Sunday Specials is likely to make you wonder whether we have forgotten Spirituality and lost our way in social activism. Nothing of that sort. On the contrary, we are trying in our own little way to give you a sampling of the concerns that Swami often shares with His students these days, both present and past. Be assured that we are not making this up!

There is a lot that needs to be said on these topics. For the moment, we would like to take your leave by reminding you that each of us has to realise that we are a part of Society, we are a child of Nature and we are the Embodiment of Love that God is. Thus, all our actions must be such that we do not harm Society; rather it must help Society because Society is God! Similarly, our actions must not go against Nature and must always be filled with Selfless Love. This is the only way we can help mankind solve its problems.

We must be involved but at the same time detached. There is a lot of difference between non-involvement and detachment. Karma Yoga is all about intense and sincere action but without attachment. That is what Sathya Sai Baba’s life proclaims every single minute and if He can be actively involved with Society, why should we duck?

Think about it! Jai Sai Ram.

With Love and Regards,
“Heart2Heart” Team