by Sri B N Narasimha Murthy.
Isn’t it stunning to know that though Bhagawan is not seen, His actions are seen in the form of these wonderful institutions, which have come up in the education and healthcare space? A few years back, Sri C Srinivas and I were granted a divine interview, in which Swami told us “when I was physically there, starting a free super specialty hospital was one thing. But establishing the Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani Hospital, when I am not present in my physical form, in one of the most backward states of India, Chhattisgarh is another thing”. What more proof do we need for our Lord’s presence? All the educational institutions such as Sri Sathya Sai Vidya Nikethanam at Gulbarga, Sri Sathya Sai Sharada Nikethanam at Mandya, Sri Sathya Sai Divya Nikethanam and Shri Sathya Shri Nikethanam at Jayapura for boys and girls (separate campuses), Sri Sathya Sai Ananda Nikethanam at Mudhol, Sri Sathya Sai Prema Nikethanam in Bijapur and the Sri Sathya Sai Sathya Nikethanam in Hassan district as well as the hospital in Raipur started functioning within nine months.
This is an unmatched and unparalleled phenomenon. Every day Bhagawan is guiding us. From executing these Himalayan tasks to overlooking the minutest details such as the design of the medals given as awards, it is completely Bhagawan who does it all. Did you know – the designs of all the decorations we see were chosen by Him? The colour of the curtains was chosen by Him. And every one of the wonderful Swami’s sayings with His photographs was chosen by Him.
It is absolutely amazing that such a thing is happening. One day, when I was asked to speak ahead of Swami’s Divine Discourse, I said, “Swami has come back to us. We have to rejoice. The world of devotees can celebrate this.” But later on, in His discourse, Swami clarified it, and said, “Where did I go to come back? I have always been there. All of you my devotees went on saying that Sathya Sai Baba is God, it was only lip service. If you truly believed that Sathya Sai Baba is God, where can He go? I never said I am the body. I never said I am the mind. I am the Divine Paramatma. There have been great devotees who are on the dais and off it. All it takes is a pure heart. For such hearts, it would not take more than a single moment to connect with Swami when He is in the subtle form.”
Earlier in Muddenahalli, in some of the institutions, tuition fees were being charged. Swami called me a couple of years back and told me that we either remove the name, “Sri Sathya Sai” from educational institutions or refund the fees collected. Is there a parallel in any educational institution where the money which was collected as tuition fees got refunded to the parents? And now all education institutions running under the name of “Sri Sathya Sai” are absolutely free.
Swami gives the classic example from the Mahabharata, when Draupadi was humiliated in the court of Kauravas. She first appealed to her husbands, but they could not do anything for her. She then called upon the elders there such as Bheeshma Pitamaha and Dronacharya, imploring them that they were all the embodiments of Dharma, and how can such a thing happen in their presence. But they remained mute. Only after exhausting these options, did she call upon God, Lord Krishna, for help and was blessed with inexhaustible dress to protect her modesty.
This is a great lesson for all of us. When we are in crisis and distress, it is only God and God alone, Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, who will come to our rescue. Draupadi appealed to Krishna. But did you know Krishna never appeared there? Swami went on to explain this beautifully. While in the films these days, this episode is shown as if Krishna appeared on some staircase, lifting up His hand and sari materialises from His palm and clothes Draupadi. Nothing like that actually happened. Nobody saw Krishna. Even Draupadi did not see Krishna. But everybody saw that her sari became inexhaustible.
There is a learning in this for all of us. Proof of God’s presence is in His actions. No wonder Swami often reiterates, “The proof of my existence is in my actions – the institutions, which have been coming up and which are going to come up”.
Therefore, the message of Lord continues. And it is the same. Practise love, compassion, harmony, brotherhood and peace. Swami may not have His body anymore, but it is the same Swami that any true devotee can connect to.