Memories Of Swami Sai Baba For Christmas Week

 

Swami

The fire of Wisdom has the power to transform anything. Does not a piece of black coal when subjected to fire lose its natural form, and take the form of a piece of burning ember? Similarly, though God’s flames of compassion are cool, once they blend with the flames of bhakti, the heat thereby generated increases. Fire is born from water, which is a medium used to put down fire. The reason is when the water flows incessantly in circular motion, it generates a new power that we call electricity. Similarly when we think of the name of God and repeat it incessantly, power is generated from the friction. This is the essence. To procure that essence, practice is necessary for that practice, God’s name is the basis. ~Baba

 

Whether one remains in the affairs of the world (samsaara) or renounces it thinking that everything depends on God’s will,  and offers everything to God and performs one’s karma, there is nothing one can do beyond this.  Just as the quantity of bread depends on the quantity of flour, so is it  jnana of the divine realm that one attains, and  depends on the devotion (bhakthi) that one has gained. It is an act of insanity to search for jnana in a place where there is no dedication or true worship to God. Undeterred faith is essential for God to reveal himself. Undeterred faith in chanting His name and is essential for the revelation of God. Discriminate between the permanent and the transient. To kill others, one may require swords and spears, but to kill oneself –  is not a small needle enough? In order to preach to others, one has to study many scriptures (shastras) in order to attain revelation of God; repetition of a single mantra is enough.  ~Baba   from the book Sathya Sai Sath Sambhashana

 

 


The old darshan area in the sand.
The old darshan area in the sand.

 

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On Communicators:   Swami knew everyone  gathered close to him. He was aware of every feeling they carried in their hearts. Every sad thought. Every moment we cried or laughed. No matter what our moods  joyous or angry, he was fully aware. He knew our doubts and in his own way often addressed them. There was nothing he did not know about us, wherever we sat for darshan. Darshan could not only be felt in the mandir in Puttaparthi but also when we were away in Bangalore, or even thousands of miles away from him, at home. I had my last darshan at home on 24th November, 2010. Swami never needed help in any way from a communicator/medium. How can we even entertain the thought that he would! He used to, when alive,  speak directly to people or sometimes he used telepathy when he wanted to convey guidance or help. He is no diffent in that regard,  than all the other saints, sages, avatars who have come before.

 

aaswami

 

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Following on from my previous post, The Old Mandir – Puttaparthi, here’s several more memorable photos and quotes posted above. The quotations come from the book Sathya Sai Sath Sambhashana. The book was published a few years ago, although its not sold in Puttaparthi as far as I know. The entire took is an authentic translation of Swami’s words written originally in his native Telugu,  then translated “precisely” into the English language. Although at first glance, the words and sentences are not easily understood by English speakers, due to the phrasing used at the time the book was translated.  But the book is all Swami. From my point of view, the simple and beautiful translation is more meaningful than many other translations of his collective works to date.

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Here’s Sai Baba chanting the Gayatri Mantra in his soft beautiful voice. This You Tube is certainly worth watching. I remember being in darhsan many times while Swami or someone else chanted the mantra. I also have to thank Baba for being instrumental in my learning it. I remember one particular time in Brindavan, where all I could do was chant the “Gayatri” quietly to myself. I suspected at some level, Sai was prompting me to learn and recite it. I am so glad he did. Sai Ram

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Old Mandir – Puttaparthi – History and Photographs

 

Photos and You Tube from Old Mandir-Puttaparthi page on Face book with thanks. People interested in the early years of the Sai Baba’s journey, might like to visit the page so lovingly set up with all details of that time including a wealth of very old photographs.  During my stay in Puttaparthi in 1992, I visited the Old Mandir once or twice and was thoroughly delighted by the way it had been kept faithfully to those early days. Sadly a few years later they demolished the old Mandir to replace it with the modern one we see there today. I wish they had not ruined such a priceless piece of spiritual history, that would have been of such interest today, especially  to a new generation of young people who never knew Sai Baba.

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my photo taken this year in the garden of rocks where there are several wonderful painted rocks. Here is one of Sai Baba. the garland, I could not quite place over the rock as I would have liked.
my photo taken this year in the garden of rocks where there are several wonderful painted rocks. Here is one of Sai Baba. the garland, I could not quite place over the rock as I would have liked.

 

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A day at the Old Mandir-1

During those days there were no rituals like omkaram,suprabhatam or nagarasankirtan. Swami was everything for devotees. At 3 AM one could hear farmers going to their fields, singing folk songs. That was the Omkaram for devotees those days. At 5 AM one could hear milk vendors saying ,”Please buy my curd, milk and flowers”. This was the suprabhatam for devotees. In any case they had to get up by daybreak.

At dawn, Swami would rise, wash himself and drink the hot beverage devotees offered to him, and move happily with them and talk to them also. At 9 Am devotees would offer him the breakfast they would have prepared. Swami would taste a bit from each, joke a bit and offer the same as prasadam for everyone.

After breakfast, anyone could do padapuja to Swami. There was a old cane-chair in the Old Mandir which would be placed in the hall. Requesting Swami to place his lotus feet on a plate, devotees would wash the feet with scented water, wipe with kumkum. Then they would offer Swami naivedhyem which he would partake a little.

Devotees would then offer harathi to Swami and everyone would do padanamaskar. While doing padapuja, Swami would ask devotees to sing with devotion, instead of mechanically.

Bhajans would start at 11 AM. There was no regular bhajans those days…..just long songs. Any person could sing during bhajans. Swami would sit on that red stone and also sing. The hall was very small and men and women sat on either side. Some men sat behind Swami fanning him. Despite that, Swami’s robe would be soaked wet due to the scorching heat. At the end of the session, Swami himself would do harathi to please his devotees and then distribute prasadam to everyone.

At 1 pm, everyone would assemble for lunch. Swami would take a little food from everybody, mix it, eat a little and distribute the rest as prasadam. Later he would rest for a while. Even in those days Swami never took sweets, ghee, milk or curds. When pressed for a reason, Swami said he had had enough during Krishnavatar.

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the ten rupee note. The beginning of the Old Mandir
the ten rupee note. The beginning of the Old Mandir

 

THE GIFT DEED JULY-25 1945

When Subbamma heard of this offer, she quickly moved to invite Swami to move into a small hut on land owned by the Karnam family on the other side of the river.

Kamalamma then went to the ailing Subbamma and told her that their husband had planned to build a temple for the poor, but had died before he could get it built.

They agreed the land set aside for this could be given to Swami for his own use and the use of his devotees. A document writer was called and a deed of sale was drawn up. Next day, Kamalamma went to Bukkapatnam to have the deed registered.Swami went with her upto Chitravathi River. It was 25 July 1945.

Karanam Subbamma and Karanam Kamalamma gifted the land in presence of two witnesses.

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The backyard of the simple house where Swami was born.
The backyard of the simple house where Swami was born.

 

 

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THE SIGNIFICANCE OF PADAPUJA

In the Old Mandir anyone could do padapuja to Swami. There was a old cane-chair which would be placed in the hall. Requesting Swami to place his lotus feet on a plate, devotees would wash the feet with scented water, wipe with kumkum. Then they would offer Swami naivedhyem which he would partake a little.

When Swami went to the homes of devotees it was done with great reverence and devotion.

In Venkatagiri Padapuja was an elaborate ritual.They used to place Swami’s feet ina golden plate and wash them with rose water.Then sandlewood would be applied to his feet followed by kumkum.All this with the strains of music from the singers Raman and laxmanan.

When we were students we had our own version of Padapuja.We called it Padaseva.We would take turns massaging Swami’s feet in the interview room when we got the chance.

Once Swami was sitting with some of His students in the interview room and all the boys had the great opportunity to press Swami’s Feet. And Swami asked this question, what is Pada Pooja?

One of the boys seated next to Him said, Swami what we are doing is Pada Pooja.

Swami said, No, no… this is not Pada Pooja. And then someone had a little higher understanding of telling Swami – in fact our tears of gratitude are like ‘Toyam’ and ‘Patram’ and the Phalam are all our merits and demerits that we offer at Your Lotus Feet.

You know He wanted to give a little better understanding and Swami said no, no, no.

Swami went on to say that true Pada Pooja is when the Lord in human form leaves His Footprints – to walk in His Footprints.

 

 

The Sathyabhama temple in the early years
The Sathyabhama temple in the early years

 

 

Sai Baba as a young man -
Sai Baba as a young man –

 

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During the foundation-stone ceremony of the Old Mandir a very strange incident occured.

When the servant, Gooni Venkata (Venkata with the hump) , dug at the spot indicated by Swami , so that consecrated stones could be laid as foundation, a large number of stone bases used as stands for lingams were discovered.

But strangely enough, no lingams could be found, though a vigorous search was made. Dozens of bases – but not a single lingam.

People gathered round Swami and sought the answer.

Swami told them, pointing a finger at his stomach, “The lingams are all here.”.

The first Lingodbhavam – 1947

This was the first time Swami manifested a Shiva Lingam.

There were less than a dozen devotees gathered at Puttaparthi on this auspicious day.

Swami was adorned in white and sat upright in his chair drinking plenty of water.

A swelling in his stomach was evident.

The ‘swelling’ moved up and emerged out of His mouth in time, as a Lingam.

Old photos of Sathya Sai baba - Old Mandir
Old photos of Sathya Sai baba – Old Mandir

 

Darshan on the men's side, Puttaparthi Ashram
Darshan on the men’s side, Puttaparthi Ashram – before the new huge Sai Kalwant Hall was built

 

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“Today scientists are trying to understand this power of attraction in
Nature. Take, for instance, a temple. Thousands of people go to the
temple for worship. The magnetic power in the earth extends to the
idol in the sanctum. The thoughts of the worshippers are also
attracted by the idol. Thereby the power of attraction in the idol
gets intensified. The rituals performed for the idol also enhance its
power of attraction. This process can be noticed if a couple of nails
are kept near a magnet. After two days it will be found that the nails
also have been magnetised. In the same manner when worshippers go to a
temple the power goes forth from thousands of worshippers, the power
or action in the idol gets immensely intensified. The idol surcharged
with this power is able to energize the worshippers.

Thus, in the world there is no object without this power. Atomic
energy is present everywhere. It is only when the true character of
this atomic power is understood that the power of the Divine can also
be understood.”

– Sathya Sai Baba

Truth Is My Name – Early Devotees

I hope this very old video made sometime in the 1970’s – 80? I am not sure when, brings joy to you.  We, who visited early on, all  watched this video, eyes glued and lost to our own world.  It revealed an enchanting ashram and a very lively Sai Baba performing pujas and bhajans.  To be perfectly honest we were  clueless to how Hindus worshipped. What most of us felt after watching this video, was a need to travel to India and meet Sai Baba. To speak to him and hear his words for ourselves.

I hear that Sathya Sai Baba is still on the critical list. It has been a long time. Strange that soon after he was taken sick, we had sickness in our family too.  My  husband sprained his  bad knee again and is now unable to walk. I expect he too will take some time to recover.  What a difficult year this has been for so many people.

While on the subject of illness. During the time Swami had his hip replacement in the  small hospital in Whitefield, he also had an operation for cataracts. We were staying in Whitefield at the time. Talking to several of the lad y devotees one day, we heard that several of them had lost their glasses or in the case of others, their glasses had been broken. A few days later, while my husband was in a rickshaw, his glasses flew off from his face and  fell on to the road. The rickshaw driver stopped to search for them, but they were never found. Strange, because there was nothing in the road and the glasses were quite large.

On Swami’s illness:
“Personally, I believe that the scheme of things is too large for us to arrive at a comprehensive understanding of the drama. All I know is that no matter how Swami chooses to unfold it, there is no place in the Universe where: my Lord can’t reach me or where I can’t find Him…Period! ( beautiful words from a student.)”

The Rama Bhajan

One summer’s afternoon in 1994, I was sitting in the front of block two in the Sai Ramash Hall in Whitefield, listening to one of Swami’s discourses. It was one of those days when everything had gone amiss and I felt a strong sense of being let down. In this negative state of mind, I sat with arms folded in an effect to prevent further pain.

At the end of the afternoon’s discourse, Swami began to sing his favourite Rama bhajan, then instantaneously He beckoned us to join in the singing. The cheerful crowd began to clap and sing with enthusiasm – in fact the entire hall seemed to come alive and move with the music. But I stubbornly remained motionless – still hugging myself.

Swami, who was not far away, looked down with concern as I sat there still and silent. Then all of a sudden, the hall turned a misty brilliant white. I gasped and looked around me but within a few seconds the assembled crowd, myself included, were engulfed in the gathering mist. I rubbed my eyes and blinked but the luminescence continued to gather. As I sat there watching, the mist seemed to take on a life of its own. It began to thicken and intensify in a manner that seemed to reflect the joyfulness of the singing. When the bhajan came to its climax, I could no longer see anything as the mist had completly enfolded me.

At the end of the bhajan, I glanced up at Swami. He, too, was encircled by the mist, but to add to my surprise, a powerful light shone around Him. Not entirely convinced I was seeing correctly I thought to myself, ‘someone must be shining a very strong spotlight on Him.’ I peered around the hall for signs of extra lighting but there were none. When Swami turned slowly around to preform Arathi, I clearly saw at the back of His head, and unattached, a milky white shiny disc. When He moved, so the disc moved with Him, never wavering from its position.  It quivered with some unearthly luminescence.

After the Arathi, Swami began to walk away and the disc became more apparent. I can only describe it as a halo, but unlike those seen on pictures of Christian saints. Swami’s halo had a radiance that I felt was somehow charged by His divine essence. When Swami reached the door, both the mist and the halo disappeared.

The memory of that long ago afternoon is as fresh today as it had been then. Swami had given me a wondrous insight to encourage me during a time when I felt like giving up and it was – ‘LIKE THAT HE TAUGHT ME’.


The Shirdi Sai Photo – Sathya Sai Memories Cont.

ღஜレo√乇♥ & GrATItUde ღ

Love in thought is truth.
Love in action is right conduct.
Love is understanding, is peace.
Love in feeling is non-violence.
Love is a bridge over the sea of change.
Do not build a house on it.

-Sathya Sai Baba


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Where there is Faith, there is Love;
Where there is Love, there is Peace;
Where there is Peace, there is Truth;
Where there is Truth, there is God;
Where there is God, there is Bliss.

-Sathya Sai Baba

A Silent Lesson from long ago.

Teachings are given in many different ways by Sai Baba. He often  ‘disguises’ his teaching lessons by changing his personal form,  from beloved Sai in an orange robe. to a  physical form we do not know! I have had this happen to me on 4-5 occassions. The ‘other’ ‘forms’ of Sai, are often strange or outlandish characters that one would not normally know or speak to. These characters appear to know everything about us. I find these experiences to be the most delightful of all the teachings that Sai gives to his devotees.

– Sathya Sai Memories


My Dutch friend and I were sitting together one morning in the old darshan area,   the time –  between darshan and bhajans. We both had our purses. They were allowed back then.

I  remember the experience clearly because it was a few days before my flight home. I had been clearing out my room in the ashram, given away my entire collection of Swami photos and posters. I had one more photo in my purse and a packet of vibuthi that I decided should go to my friend. Although I loved being with Swami, I did not see him as my guru, nor did I want to keep photos or vibuthi or any form of attachment to him.

My friend was reluctant to take the vibuthi and the photograph but as I insisted, she took them and put them away into her purse.

Bhajans began and the old mandir- darhsan area, filled with an enormous crowd of ladies.  At the end of the bhajans, Swami came out and blessed everyone, then if I remember correctly, he returned to his upstairs room in the temple. As soon as the signal was given for us to rise and leave the darshan area, the ladies rose altogether and scrambled to leave by the main entrance. The  horrendous rush caused chaos  up to and outside on the pathway. I had difficulty passing through without bumping into everyone…..

Once outside of the main gate, a little old lady dressed in white approached. She tugged at my arm, and when I tried to loosen myself, she grabbed my hand, placing a small photograph of Shirdi Sai Baba into my palm.

“You keep this,” she said.

I turned to her and motioned that I did not want a photograph. She looked at me in a pained way but  she  insisted I keep it. I remember her closing my fingers around the little photograph with much love. She gave me a beatific smile and disappeared back into the crowd.

I stood for a moment or two examining the photograph. When I turned it over, there was an interesting message on the other side.

“Look at me whole-heartedly and I, in turn, look at you similarly. Sitting in this Masjid, I speak the truth nothing but the truth. No Sadhanas, nor proficiency in the six Shastras are necessary. Have faith and confidence in your Guru. Believe fully, that Guru is the sole Actor and Doer. Blessed is he who knows the greatness of his Guru and thinks him to Be Hari. (God).”

What a surprise to read such a  message and what shocked me more was the photo of Shirdi Sai now in my hand. The lady seemed to know how I felt and by giving me the photo, she’d indicated my lack of faith in Swami. This had to be clearly the case, for the message on the backside of the photo also seemed to be telling me as much. It  most likely was an  indirect message from Swami himself.

Some years later I found the very same message in the Shri Sai Satcharita on page 98. The message is incorporated in the story of one, Mrs. Radhabai Deshamukh, who visited Shirdi to be with  that earlier Sai Baba. She wanted Shirdi Sai to give her a mantra but he would not – and Shirdi Sai tells her during a long discussion how he himself, was not given a mantra only the unabated love of his guru.

The Sathya Sai Prayer – Sai Memories

krishna


O Lord, take my love and let it flow in fullness of devotion to Thee.


O Lord, take my hands and let them work incessantly for Thee.


O Lord, take my soul and let it be merged in  oneness with Thee.


O Lord take my mind and thoughts and let them be in tune with Thee.


O Lord, take my everything and let me be an instrument for Thy work.


The little prayer written above was the first one I learnt from the Sai Baba books. I remember reciting it often at  darshans way back when we could be close to Sai. It was as if I felt the love in my heart would spill over, such was the longing.  Yet, the love we feel for the spiritual guide is never ours. It is something that is created by him to help us speed up the process of longing for the divine.

We stay with the the spiritual guide because our hearts want to. The heart and the higher self knows better what is good for us. The spiritual guide will tell us that love is created. The devotee cannot love like this by himself. For it is not a  question of human love. It is something entirely different. And the relationship with the spiritual guide is a very difficult one.  So love is created and it goes on…. Sai Baba used the term “I manufacture Love! – that is my job.” During my time with him, this certainly held true.


A long time ago Story about Sai Ram – Early Devotees



It was in 1943, when Baba was seventeen years of age. One Full Moon night, about 9 P.M., five of us intent on `examining’ Him, persuaded Baba to walk out with us to the sands of the Chithravathi River. He led us to a place where the dead are buried! We asked Baba, in Pun, “Well, Baba! Why have you brought us to the burial ground?” “Why? Are you dreading to go through it?” He questioned us. We said, “Yes, Baba. But, we are counting on Thy Grace, and our luck,” and sat around Him.

Whenever we ask for anything, Baba used to answer, “Oh” “Right” “Why doubt about it?” “We shall see,” or some such similar word or words. So, one of us said, “Swami! Give us something to eat!” Baba laughed within Himself, and cast His glance on all of us in turn. I said, “Are you Sai Baba or not?” He replied quickly, “I am; what is it that you want? Hot Laddu? Boondi? Masaladosa? Poli? Do you want Suggi? Ask for whatever you desire to eat!”

Those were the days when mangoes could not be had anywhere. So, we planned to ask for mango. “We want here, from these sands, fine mango fruit,” Baba sang two lines from an old song, “Yathna Prayathnamul, manavadharmamu jayapajayamul daivaadheenamu”

“To try and struggle is man’s duty; to give or not to give man victory is God’s will.” He said, “Try; you will get them.” So, one of us took a few steps forward on the sand, as if to pick up the fruit, and shouted from where he stood, “Are they here? Or there? Tell me where they are, and I shall dig the sand in that place, to take them.” Baba replied, from where He was sitting, “Dig anywhere.” So, he bent low and sat on the sand and dug into it about three feet, in great earnest. He said at last, “Swami! I do not see any mango here!” Baba said, “Boy! You can get it there! Try, reciting the Name of God! Kashte phale” (Fulfilment only through tireless labour)!


So, my friend dug a depth of a few more inches, saying aloud, “Sai Ram,” “Sai Ram”. All of a sudden He was shocked into a strange terror when his fingers touched something soft and cold! For, it was the burial ground; it might well be a corpse! Seeing him, Baba (young Boy that He was) rolled on the sand laughing loudly at his plight. We too laughed with Him. “My dear fellow! It is not a dead body” said Baba, and asked me to go and help my friend. “It is a fruit, a fruit,” He told us.

“Go and see,” He ordered me and so, I went and peeped into the hole. O, the fragrance of ripe mango! Baba said, “He sees a corpse; you say it is fragrant! Whose word is true? Dig a little more, and bring me what you get!”

We made a wider hole and dug a little deeper; we called out Sai Ram, often. We got a nice Mulgoa mango, cold to the touch as if it had been taken out of a fridge just then. We took it to Baba and asked, “Swami! How can this one fruit suffice for five of us?” Swami had a knife in His hand (wherefrom it came, we could not guess). He started slicing the fruit and distributing the pieces to us, the taste was unimaginably sweet and lasting. Our stomachs soon became overfull. “Enough, Baba! Enough!” we cried.

Swami said, “There is half the fruit still with Me. Who will eat this?” We prayed to be excused. “Impossible, Swami! We cannot eat any more,” we swore. But, Baba did not yield. “Look here! The cremation ground, the burial place is here. I shall call ghosts to terrorise you. Eat, without protest,” He commanded. As the mother feeds the child persuading it to swallow each morsel threatening it with `a tiger’ or `thief’, Baba fed us the entire fruit that day!

Extracted from an article by P. Lakshmiah in Sanathana Sarathi, May 1970

Ramana Maharshi Story – Arunachala Stories and Pilgrimages


When I look at this YouTube of Ramana , I see only love. His eyes fueled by the universe speak of love, gentleness and a great compelling compassion. I’ve visited Ramana Maharshi’s ashram many times and always I’ve found there a sense of him in the peacefulness of the surroundings and in nature. I have not visited in 15 years now – maybe it has changed. I hope not.

♥.•`*•♥.•´*.¸.•´♥


IN 1948, I WAS in my thirty-ninth year. I lived in Madras in a good
place, with my wife and four charming children. I was the Madras Branch
Manager of a large British firm with its Indian Head Office in Calcutta.
Being in happy circumstances, I did not feel the need for any religious
practices or spiritual inquiries. I was contented and enjoyed the
good life, accounting that as the purpose of living.

On an official tour with Inspector Parthasarathi, I was on the platform
of Villupuram Junction on a hot April day, waiting for the train to
Katpadi Junction. We were to visit Tiruvannamalai. While Parthasarathi
and I were getting into a first class compartment, we saw a young
man of about 25 years, trying to enter the same compartment through
the next door.

The man was so fat that he found great difficulty getting aboard.
He heaved his huge body this way and that, while another man on the
platform, obviously his servant, pushed him forward. The man was perspiring
profusely and looking ashamed at the curious way people, including
Parthasarathi and myself, watched his sorry state. He got in somehow,
and occupied the cubicle next to ours.

When the train had run for some minutes the man join us. He introduced
himself as Ratilal Premchand Shah and started talking about himself.
Ratilal was a Saurashtra Gujarati Vaishya, born and brought up in
Gondal. The only son of his father who was one of the richest merchants
of that city. He had been married for six years. Corpulent from his
tenth year, he had been unable to do anything useful since that age.
Now at 25, he was just a huge mass of fat and misery.

Ratilal had left school at the age of 12 after passing standard four
with great difficulty. He never read books or periodicals. In the
last week of March, Ratilal had a vision while asleep. He saw an ascetic
dressed in only a loin-cloth, smiling and beckoning to him for quite
some time. He stood clearly before Ratilal’s mental eye when he awoke.
Ratilal did not speak to anyone about the vision. Two days later,
his wife was reading a Gujarati magazine, and Ratial looking over
her shoulders, saw the picture of the ascetic he had seen in his vision.

His wife told him that the ascetic was Bhagavaan Ramana Maharshi of
Tiruvannamalai, and that the Maharshi possessed rare spiritual gifts.
Ratilal at once went to his father and arranged a journey to Tiruvannamalai
with the trusted family servant. He knew nothing about Bhagavaan,
only what his wife had told him from the magazine article. He felt
sure though that all of his suffering was going to end as soon as
he reached the Guru’s Ashram.

Parthasarathi said that he had Darshan of Bhagavaan many times and
also read a great deal of books about him. He assured Ratilal that
the lad’s faith would prove to be worthwhile. The two young men talked
all the way to Tiruvannamalai, which took more than two hours. I was
reading a novel, but was really listening intently to their conversation.
At Tiruvannamalai Station, Ratilal was received by a local merchant
with whom his father had arranged his stay. Parthasarathi and I proceeded
to the Travellers’ Bungalow.

It was four o.clock when we took our rest and had tiffin. Parthasarathi
knew that I was a business-like Manager, and not likely to waste a
single moment. He said we could visit the market, if I wanted to now,
and was very surprised when I said: “No, Parthasarathi! We will go
and have Darshan of Bhagavaan first. Then if there is time, we will
go to the temple. Let the Company’s business wait!”

It was about five o.clock when Parthasarathi and I entered Ramana’s
Ashram. Where we walked around Bhagavaan’s Mother’s samadhi. (grave)
Then we walked towards the verandah. There were some fifty people
sitting there. Ratilal, his servant and his host merchant were also
there. Bhagavaan though, was not. The visitors talked in whispers,
trying to find out where he was.

After waiting for some ten minutes, and still no Bhagavaan, Parthasarathi
suggested that we view the Ashram compound.
After our inspection, we were on the way back to the verandah by another
side, when we heard a childish voice, “Chee! Asaththe! (Chut! You
naughty!).” We could not see any children around, and therefore cast
our eyes carefully to find out where the voice came from? Then we
observed some movement among the leaves of the Bringal, and other
plants in the kitchen garden, aside the verandah’s end. Looking at
the quarter more intently, we saw a small goat, a little monkey and
a squirrel, and Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi! He was sitting on his haunches
with his legs folded.

The goat nestled between Bhagavan’s knees; the monkey had its head
resting on his right knee; the squirrel sat perched on his left palm.
He picked ground nuts from a piece of paper with his right hand fingers,
and one by one fed the goat, the monkey and the squirrel, and himself
last, strictly in that order.

His remarks appeared to have been addressed to the monkey which had
tried to snatch the nut he was going to place between the squirrel’s
lips. As we watched, the foursome went on enjoying the nut meal. All
the four members seemed to be equally happy, and the way they looked
at one another and kept close together was very touching. The goat,
the monkey and the squirrel, and Bhagavan too, had obviously forgotten
their differences in species.


And we too, looking on, saw all the four only as four varied forms
of the same creation. I cannot find words to describe clearly the
thoughts and feeling which passed through my mind then. The vision
of the Supreme Cosmic Consciousness appeared as a flash of lightning,
and disappeared in the grossness that I was. The split second of the
duration of that vision contained the essence of all existence, knowledge
and bliss, Sat-Chid-Ananda!

The nut meal was over. Bhagavaan threw the paper away, and said, “Ponkoda!”
(go away, brats!) just like any common man speaking to his wee grand-children.
The goat the monkey and the squirrel left. Bhagavaan got up. Parthasarathi
and I slipped off hurriedly, feeling guilty of trespass into the Divine,
but not sorry.

Soon after we resumed our seats on the verandah, Bhagavaan came to
his cot. He stood still for a few minutes, facing us. But I cannot
say he looked at us. His eyes appeared permanently fixed on something
far above and beyond the confines of this earth. They did not seem
to be instruments for looking at all, but screens to shut out the
material world from him, so he might concentrate more on the Light
within. Sparks of flame shot out through the holes of the screen at
times, sparks which cooled the objects on which they fell, and penetrated
all the coverings of gross material around the objects and lighted
up the wicks of consciousness inside them.

All of us got up and fell at full length towards Bhagavaan. He held
up his right palm till we had resumed our seats. Then he sat on his
cot, reclining on the pile of cushions at its head, putting his left
palm to his temple. We sat and looked at his face. It wore the same
expression, or lack of expression, with which he had stood before
us. He continued to sit in the same position and with the same look;
we continued to look at him. No one spoke or made any attempt to speak.
But the confrontation was not a dead silence; it was a very live experience
in which the innermost being of each one of us communed with the Glory
of the Supreme Cosmic Consciousness which Bhgagavaan was.
I was numb with the appalling realisation that the Glory resting on
the cot was the same that had dwelt in the form of stillness, that
I had seen minutes ago, eating groundnuts in the intimate company
of small animals.

 


Bhagavaan got up from the cot. Then we all stood up. As we left, I
felt a strange and hitherto-unknown peace and joy inside me; the faces
of the others showed a similar condition of mind. There was a new
spring in Ratital’s gait as he walked to the Ashram gate; Bhagavaan’s
Grace had obviously started working inside his body.

Many things have happened to me since that memorable day in April
1948, causing domestic and financial troubles. But my inner life has
been always happy. Whenever I feel low, a vision of Bhagavaan in the
kitchen garden takes care of it.


In 1953, when I was in Rajkot, and employed as a Manager for an automobile
firm. One day, a man of about thirty came into my office and accosted
me with the question, “Don’t you recognise me, Sir?” “No, please,”
I replied, truthfully. The man continued: “I am Ratilal of Gondal,
Sir! Do you remember the Darshan of Bhagavaan Ramana Maharshi five
years ago?” I looked more attentively at the man. He was lean and
wiry, with his face aglow with health and happiness. I shook his hands
heartily and told him to be seated.

He complied and said: “Sir, Bhagavaan fulfilled his promise wonderfully
well. You see me. I am now managing our family business. I have a
son and another is on the way.” Ratilal closed his eyes in gratitude
to Bhagavaan. I too, closed my eyes, and relived that wonderful day.


Submitted by Mrs. M. Manwering, Cheshire.

The Lingam Flower – Sathya Sai Memories

 

about the youtube:

We have always been blessed to rejoice in His glory of divine, compassion, purity, might, spirit and grace when the Sai avatar walks.

This video is yet another humble attempt to map our Life’s journey of heavenly fortune and fulfillment with the Lord in His glorious divine mission which has always been a priceless treasure of our hearts.

The Avatar of our age is admist us operating at various levels of existence and not only the physical plane that we are aware of and serving us for our own emancipation. He has come to us as a light projecting vast universe… bright and clear. Bright to show many of us the way and clear to tread it.

The coming of an Avatar to make us realise that we are divine is the highest gift of illumination to mankind in the shortest time..

Baba’s own life is His message to humanity. Hope this video helps you reminiscence your own sweet relationship with the Avatar of our age, inspires you to become a part of Avataric Divine mission and to find fulfillment in your lives by making “Love All Serve All” the undercurrent of life

Created with  love, and gratitude at the Lotus Feet of our most beloved Divine Master Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba

 

Sai Ram

aaswami 


The Lingam Flower – An Experience from the Past

The year 2003,  the place, Sai Ramesh hall after morning darshan. I sat down quietly beside the Ganesha statue just below the stage. I remember ‘The Ganesha’ being covered with beautiful garlands of jasmine and marigolds. The smell of the flowers wafted into the air and mixed with that of the smoke streams of perfumed incense burning at the base of Ganasha. A feeling of elation came over me, I didn’t want the moment to go. I wanted to stay forever in this  surreal atmosphere of splendid serenity. It was during my repose that a little old lady dressed in an outmoded, faded, green checked sari appeared. Her worn face,  smiling, exposed gaps where her teeth had once been. Her small frail body, all too bony for lack of proper nourishment, seemed out of place in the exotic Sai Ramesh Hall.

She sat down beside me and her great eyes shone with such a brightness, that I could not take my eyes from hers. Moreover, she looked at me adoringly. Why an unknown peasant lady would look at me with adoring eyes, I had no idea. Still, I thought, she is rather like some other old ladies I’d met before and were, in fact, other forms of  Sai Baba – (the Sai phenomena). Sai Baba often took on other forms during those days to interchange with a devotee. Like he says ‘all forms are mine’ and often he proved this is true.

A seva dal began to distribute the lingam flowers from the base of the Ganesha statue. The huge orange  flowers had a centre that looked exactly like a lingam. They are simply, very exquisite flowers and ones that I prized. The seva dal gave me one that looked freshly cut, and then another smaller one. He missed the little old lady out altogether. I asked him to give her a flower but he refused. She uttered something quickly to him and he responded with a command that I could not understand.

Feeling sorry for the old lady, I gave her one of my flowers. She happily took it and placed it inside her sari fold across her chest. I’d not seen ladies put flowers in the upper fold of their saris before, but I took it that is was an Indian custom. She continued to stare at me with her adoring eyes and for a time our eyes locked.

Suddenly she stood and leaned over and placed her hand on my head as if in a blessing. Then she was gone……where I have no idea. She just disappeared……….