It was a very cold morning, about four degrees. After a delicious breakfast, Bhagawan proceeded to the Amagi Chapel for the last Satsang of the trip. Over 200 eager devotees had once again gathered. It was also going to be red lettered day for Japan, as Bhagawan was going to announce an Ashram in Niigata, 200 kilometres North of Tokyo, which is the capital and the most populous city of Niigata Prefecture. It lies on the northwest coast of Honshu, the largest island of Japan, in the Chūbu region and faces the Sea of Japan and Sado Island. Devotees of Niigata City took a place in a building for Satsang and Bhajans, and Swami lovingly named the group Sai Hridayam, during His visit to Japan in 2016. But the owner of this building said he will demolish this building after three years.
A ninety-year-old Japanese lady, who does not know Bhagawan, nor has heard about Sathya Sai Baba in the past, but is blessed to communicate with angles for many years, has been helping people by communicating the voices of divine beings in the celestial worlds, and also helping the deceased spirits through her prayers. She told the owner of a construction company that he has to build a Shrine after three years, and that people from all over the world will come and benefit by visiting this holy place. This contractor has a group of friends who are ready to work for this shrine construction, among whom are some devotees of Sai Hridayam. They wondered if this shrine may be one of the Ashrams that Swami is constructing in different countries, and they wanted to ask Swami about this. The devotee who was managing the Satsang group prayed to Swami if he could bring the lady. The Lord accepted his prayers, and the lady came, in fact she was very old and frail, and had to be carried.
When the lady was in the interview room, Swami revealed everything about her past, and also how the angel told her about the spiritual centre for all faiths for the redemption of the Japanese. This was typical Swami’s style of revealing unknown things, and making Himself thus known to even those who had never seen or met Him earlier. Needless to say that the lady was overwhelmed and so were all the people in the group. The love energy was so high that all of them were reduced to tears of gratitude!
As Swami entered the Chapel, Bhajans were in progress. As soon as Swami was seated, He commanded Sri C Sreenivas to address everyone, who began by saying that a life of continuous example is truly leadership. He quoted what Swami had once written in a letter to His MBA students of the University, “Leadership is example.” He said, “We look up to a leader who should be an example. Uniformity of thought, word and deed defines leadership.
Our lives should be an example, and this is the message of Swami in this visit. That every moment we have our eyes open, we see this beautiful world with love; that every waking moment our heart beats and feels not just for ourselves, but for the whole world. And every act that we engage in becomes an act of service and worship!”
Sri B N Narasimha Murthy in his speech began by saying that Swami lives in the highest accordance of divine love. That also sums up the essence of every divine Master whether it is Lord Buddha or Lord Jesus. That Iove expresses itself in every moment, in the form is little words and acts of love, and more importantly in wonderful, wise teachings.”
Sri Narasimha Murthy narrated how when Swami emerged from His room in the morning after breakfast, He had lovingly asked Brother Makino whether he had eaten his breakfast. In a lighten vein, Swami further went to advise him that he should be eating three portions of breakfast, as he would be translating three talks. Sri Narasimha Murthy said that this was the unmistakable sign of divine love of the Master. He said, “Whatever our intellectual levels may be, this divine love makes all things possible. Love makes the divine Master put the highest truths in the simplest manner, like a mother who wants even her youngest child to understand the highest of the truths, and helps them to understand.” Sri Narasimha Murthy narrated a story which Lord Buddha used as an example to tell young children about a great lesson He had learnt, the law of Karma, the law of action and reaction, which Buddha expounded later in His teachings. “If you hurt others, it will come back to you. Similarly. If you help others, it will come back to you. Buddha also taught the highest truth in the simplest way.
“Selfless service and helping others is the only way by which we can be happy. This is one of the reasons Swami is establishing Ashrams in many countries, an opportunity which is being given to devotees, so they can derive happiness by serving fellow men”, he concluded.
Swami in His divine message started with a Telugu poem, “A water bubble is born in water, floats in water and finally bursts and merges in water. Similarly, man is the water bubble and God is the water. This is the truth, the word of Sai.”
A water bubble does not exist without water. In fact it is born in water, lives and merges in water. This whole creation is born out of God, lives in God and merges in God. The process of creation, sustenance and destruction is happening due to God and in God. Therefore the existence of man is only until there is air in the bubble. As long as the air fills the bubble, the bubble has a separate existence from water, and it reflects all that is around on itself. The moment there is no more air in the bubble, the bubble bursts, looses its identity and becomes one with its basis. Likewise, man is born out of God, lives in God and merges in God, and his separate existence is only as long as he is filled with this identity of body, which is an illusion. Like air, the mind which thinks it is the body, makes the bubble different from water. A body filled with the mind thinks all that exists is true. As long as the mind fills the body, it makes it different from its source.
The scriptures declare that the mind is the basis of one’s bondage or liberation. The mind that is filled with body consciousness, makes it a separate existence. The moment the mind is merged with God, the separate existence disappears immediately and it becomes one with divinity. The whole effort of Sadhana is to turn the mind which is going outward filled with body consciousness, to inwards which becomes filled with divine consciousness. Divinity is purity and selflessness. Therefore, all that is selfless is pure and divine.”
Swami then commanded a programme to be organised in Japan to benefit the youth and children, and help them realise that they are not just mere mortals, but they are truly divine. He said, “It is My will that a ‘Human Development and Spiritual Centre’ open to all religions and all faiths, be opened in Japan, which will serve as a lighthouse that guides ships to the shore!
The Vedas say, ‘Sahasra Sheerasha Purushaha, Sahasraaksha Sahasrapaath’.
The Purusha (Universal Being) has Thousand Heads, Thousand Eyes and Thousand Feet. But there is no one being with so many eyes, hands and legs. But all together is that being. Similarly, let that cosmic form or Vishwa Roopa Darshanam come to Japan, and may thousands of you work together!”
Thereafter, Mangala Arati was offered to the Lord and lunch Prasadam was served to all devotees. Soon after lunch, Bhagawan and His entourage drove past the Shimoda Port, along the scenic Pacific Ocean to see the early Cherry blossoms.
Cherry blossoms, known in Japanese as sakura, are one of the iconic flowers of Japan. In Japan, when you say ‘the season of cherry blossoms’, most people would tell you that it’s at the beginning of April.
Bhagawan alighted from His car and walked with His entourage and posed for a few photographs. It was a memorable evening, spending it with the Creator amidst His stunning creation! Everyone returned to Amagi Sanso around 7 p.m. and after dinner Bhagawan’s entourage packed to leave Japan the next morning, for the final destination, Taiwan.