Moments with Sri Sathya Sai at Kodaikanal - By Prof. G. Nageswara Rao

Nageswara Rao receiving gold medal from Sri Sathya Sai during the 
Third Convocation of Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning (1984)

Living with the Lord is an occasion when we are exposed to many spiritual teachings. Once in Kodaikanal, Bhagavan asked, “What is the greatest Sadhana?” Giving the answer Bhagavan said, “Following the Lord’s command is the greatest Sadhana.” Hanuman was near and dear to Lord Rama because to him the greatest Sadhana was to follow Rama’s command. Not following Bhagavan’s command is acting like the bus conductor who, for the sake of Rs. 2, accommodates more than the capacity of the bus the result of which is a flat tyre, adding Rs. 2000 to the cost. Bhagavan narrated an incident to show how following the Divine command will benefit us. Mr. X was president of Andhra Bank. Once all the Andhra Bank employees went on a strike demanding the fulfilment of their conditions. The president consulted Bhagavan and according to His guidance he did not budge. Days went by. One day Prime Minister Indira Gandhi phoned to Mr. X and asked him to come immediately to Delhi. Bhagavan told him not to go. Mr. X told the Prime Minister that he was not coming. The Prime Minister asked him, “With what courage are you talking?” He told, “Bhagavan asked me not to go.” The Prime Minister phoned the next day and told Mr. X, “You did a good thing not coming. The labour union leaders were waiting with machine guns and pistols at the airport to shoot you.” The Prime Minister congratulated Mr. X for his not coming.

Dr. G. Nageswara Rao with Bhagavan in Kodaikanal (1988)

I was suffering from an allergy problem for several years. Even if I touch, cut or eat brinjal, I used to get swelling and itching all over the body. A small piece of cauliflower was enough to cause allergy. In 1997, Bhagavan took a group of students and teachers to Kodaikanal. On our way to Kodaikanal we stopped at Salem for lunch. One of the curries served was cauliflower, which I did not touch. Bhagavan finished His lunch and moving among us, came to me. Pointing towards the cauliflower curry He said, “This is vegetable, good for health. Take.” With hesitation I ate the curry. I was expecting allergic patches on my face the day and worried how to show my face, which would be swollen, to Bhagavan. The next day I was surprised to find that there was no allergy! After that I started eating all vegetables I was allergic to, like brinjal etc., and by Bhagavan’s grace the allergy problem never came back!

In the evenings after Bhajans, we used to sit with Bhagavan to listen from Him the stories of Rama and Krishna. Bhagavan narrated some of the stories, which were not recorded in the Puranas. Surpanakha after being punished by Lakshmana did Tapas and her desire was fulfilled when she was born as Kubja and was blessed by Lord Krishna in the Dwapara Yuga. The dhobi who spoke ill of Sita in Rama Avatar was born as a dhobi in Dwapara and was killed by Krishna when he was taking clothes from Kamsa’s palace.

Lord Krishna and Balarama
Bhagavan also narrated how the eight queens were wedded to Krishna. In the kingdom by name Avanti, there were six powerful and ferocious bulls, which were harassing and killing many people. It was difficult to subdue those bulls. After many unsuccessful attempts to overpower these bulls the king made an announcement that whosoever would subdue the bulls would be given half the kingdom and the King’s daughter Bhadra in marriage. Many kings tried their best to subdue the bulls but failed. One day Krishna along with Satyaki single-handedly subdued the bulls. Krishna held the bulls by their horns, swung and hit them on the ground and killed them. The king gave his daughter in marriage to Krishna and presented a ring. Bhagavan created that ring and showed us. It had bullhead shape and there were eighteen gems (diamonds) studded in it making horns, eyes, nose, etc. Bhagavan mentioned that figure ‘18’ is very significant in Mahabharata and this came from this. There are 18 chapters in Bhagavad Gita and 18 Akshauhinis (a unit of the infantry and cavalry) army participated in the Kurukshetra Battle.

One day Bhagavan narrated the story of Revati. Revati’s father Kushasma was the king of Kushasthali. Once he was attacked by Rakshasas and was defeated. Then he went to forest, losing his kingdom. He performed Tapas. Brahma appeared and asked him to express his desire. King Kushasma prayed to the Lord for the bright future for his only daughter, Revati. In response, Brahma gave a medallion, which contained a golden Hamsa (swan) fixed on a gold base. “Ask your daughter to wear this in her neck. The person who defeats your daughter in single combat will be her husband. He will defeat the demons and bring back your kingdom.” Telling this the Lord disappeared. Revati learnt both secular knowledge and martial arts under Sandeepani. One day Sandeepani arranged a show where his disciples participated in a martial arts competition. Revati was an expert in mace fight. Balarama was the only one equal to her. Balarama fought with her and defeated her in the combat. Along with Krishna, Balarama defeated Danavas (demons) and gave back the kingdom to Kushasma. Later Balarama was wedded to Revati. Bhagavan created the Hamsa ornament and showed it to us. In the stomach of the Hamsa Bhagavan’s head was there! 

One day Bhagavan narrated the story of Kamsa. Jarasandha, father-in-law of Kamsa performed Aswamedha Yagna. He requested Kamsa to go behind the Yagnasva to conquer the opposed kings. He gave a ring ‘Vijayanguli’ (given to him by Lord Siva) to Kamsa. The person wearing it would be victorious in the battle. After the Yagna the ring was with Kamsa. Bhagavan materialised this ring also. It was a big ring with a green gem.

The Darshan of Bhagavan is an elevating experience. Let me narrate an experience of my father. After my mother’s passing away, my father did not recover from the grief and suffering for a long time. Few months after the incident, he came to Prasanthi Nilayam. Bhagavan graciously granted him an interview. Bhagavan told me that father was suffering from grief and thoughts of mother’s death were tormenting him all these months. After the interview I asked father about this and he said, “Yes, all these months my mind was filled with sorrow and grief. But when I sat for Darshan on the first day of my arrival and had Bhagavan’s Darshan, all the grief in my mind vanished. Now I am completely free from the traces of that grief and I am now happy.”

- Prof. G. Nageswara Rao
Student and Doctoral Research Scholar (1982-1988)
Currently, Head Department of Chemistry 
Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning
Prasanthi Nilayam Campus


  1. Nageshwar Rao Sir was/is one of a kind of a teacher who always put Swami first, students next and himself last. It was lovely reading his experiences with Bhagavan, May Swami continue to shower His abundant grace & love on him.

  2. Sai Ram

    How you are so fortunate to move with Bhagawan. Pl keep all of your experiences with Bhagawan informed and shared

    Thank U

  3. Sairam. Thanks for the wonderful article

  4. Sairam Sir, Thanks for sharing this beautiful stories of our Bhagawan!!

  5. What a precious Gem not revealed in Scriptures but is unfolded here by Swami.
    Those witnessing the materialisation of all these'Special Rings' are deeply blessed indeed.
    You are indeed our Eternal lord of Lords Swami!

    Jay Shri Shri Sathya Sai Ram

    Shekar (Mauritius)

  6. SAIRAM Dr.Nageshwara Rao Sir.I felt Very Happy reading your experiences.Thank you for sharingsuch wonderful incidents.Please do share more such Leelas of SWAMI.Mahesh Babu.A.S.

  7. Thank you very much sir,



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