|Sai Chittaranjan receiving the All Rounder Gold Medal from the Revered Founder Chancellor at the Convocation of Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning - November 22, 2009|
Of all the wonderful things in God’s creation, Love is the best. It is the unseen cord uniting two hearts and a bonding relationship among people. It is only because of love that a mother cares for her child, a father brings up the child, the brother or the sister plays with the child and kith and kin adore the child. The five elements are the basis for this creation but love between the creatures is responsible for its sustenance.
Of all forms of love, mother’s love is most valuable. It knows no limit when it is extended towards her child. She is ready to give up anything for the sake the child. If we are in a good condition today, it is only because of mother’s love. Swami says that our mother is the first teacher. It is only she who can guide us on our path to success and see us through our happiness and sorrow. In fact, the pain she undergoes in bringing us up is reflected in a beautiful Sanskrit verse,
Yam Mata Pitarau Klesham Sahate Sambhavenranam,
Na Thasya Nistikruthih Karthum Varsha Shathai Rapi
(The pain our parents undergo to give birth and bring us up can never be compensated, even in a hundred years.)
The hidden force behind our success is our mother’s love and encouragement. Bhagavan takes care of the entire family of the students studying here as their Divine Mother. He acts as our guardian and gives us His assured protection. The following incident tells us how:
Preparations were on in my home for a trip to Bangalore to have Swami’s Darshan. The bus reservations were made for my mother and me to go to Bangalore. Everything went on well till seven in the evening. It was at that fateful moment that there was a power cut. My father sat down to fill the gaslight cylinder from the cooking cylinder. While filling, the candle that was nearby fell down igniting the cooking gas and the whole place burst into flames. I was sitting nearby on a wooden bench and the flames engulfed me. My mother who was little further away cried out to the Lord, “Sairam, Sairam” The fire died away shortly. My father’s face, legs, and hands were burnt, but I was sitting on a wooden bench in the middle of the flames and yet nothing happened to me! My mother applied Swami’s Vibhuti on the burnt parts of my father and he was made to lie down. We cancelled our trip as we did not want to leave when my father was in such a bad state. At around 1.30 a.m., my father got up and insisted that we should go to Bangalore and thank Swami for He was responsible for saving his life. So my mother and I left reluctantly. After two days, Swami called the Anantapur Campus final year students for an interview. Since my mother was a lecturer, she too went in. When she told Swami about the accident, Swami said, “It is only because of Swami’s grace that your husband is living now. Do you think that the fire was a normal thing?” I am grateful to Swami for saving my family on that fateful day.
Every day of our life is a boon from Him for which we should thank Him. Only thanking Him does not help. We should also aspire to do something for Him. To whom much is given, much is expected too. We should take part in His glorious mission. Bhagavan stresses a lot on service. Service is love in action. Love and service are two side of the same coin.
Our ancient scriptures direct us to help everyone. I am reminded of a beautiful verse:
Ashtadasha Puraneshu Vyasasya Vachanam Dvayam
Paropakaraya Punyaya Papaya Parapeedanam
(The essence of the eighteen Puranas by Vyasa can be summed up as: helping others gives merit and hurting others is a sin.)
God is our mother, father, brother, sister, kith, kin, teacher and everything our lives. He knows what is best for each one of us and grants us exactly that. We should always be content with what we have. There is a beautiful quotation on this that reads, “I cried for new shoes until I saw a man with no feet.”
It was September 22, 1998. It was my birthday and I went for Bhagavan’s blessings. That day I sat with a few other boys whose birthday fell on the same day, but Swami did not bless us. I was very sad and depressed. It was for the first time since childhood that Bhagavan had not blessed me on my birthday. I was totally dejected and slept with a heavy heart. On the next day, I went again for blessings. This time Bhagavan blessed me and gave me a beautiful telephone diary with His own hands. Had Swami blessed me the previous day itself, neither would I have gone for His blessings again nor would I have got the beautiful present. I then thanked Swami for orchestrating the small ‘drama’.
On my fifth birthday, I was seated along with my mother. I was holding a tray of chocolates for Swami to bless (I had seen other boys of Swami’s school do this). Bhagavan came near me and with a loving smile asked me where my pocket was. I indicated with a look and with words as my tiny hands were busy balancing a huge tray. Then Bhagavan took a fist full of chocolates and put them in my pocket. He asked to show another pocket. I did so and he filled this one too. Then he filled my shirt pocket also. It suddenly struck me that I had got the chocolates as an offering to Swami and He had not taken any. So I told Him, “Swami, these chocolates are for You.” With a sweet smile Swami said, “Eat these chocolates, you are the birthday boy, not I.” I was thrilled and ate them all.
He cares for each and every one of us and takes care of all our needs like a father. He even cures all our ailments and shows us that He is the doctor of doctors. In my third standard, I slipped from the staircase and fell unconscious. It was a Friday and I was carried to the hospital. I returned to the Hostel on Sunday morning. As soon as my parents learned of this, my mother rushed to Bhagavan and informed Him about this. Bhagavan materialised Vibhuti and gave it to her to be given to me as Prasadam. After I partook it, I felt much better and recovered soon. As His students, we are lucky to have the good fortune of seeing countless miracles day after day, and having personal experiences with the Lord. We learn many lessons directly from Him, from the miracles that we see and indirectly from the experiences that we listen to from others. One of the several names of Bhagavan is ‘Kalateetaya’ (the One who is beyond time). He is beyond time and can increase or decrease one’s life span. Not even a blade of grass can move without His will. It was predicted by a famous astrologer that I would live only for 13 years. As many people would, I brushed it aside calling it a humbug. But my parents took it seriously and reported it to Bhagavan. He replied, “Who are they to predict his life? He is My son, I will take care of him.” Saying this, Swami said thrice, “Chiranjeeva, Chiranjeeva, Chiranjeeva”. I turned 14 on September 22nd, 2000 and stood testimony to Bhagavan’s words that He alone determines the future. If I am able to share my experiences now at the age of 26, it is purely due to Swami’s Love and Grace.
A speaker once said, “The eyelids act on reflex and protect us. We cannot see it, but others can. Likewise, we do not know how and when Swami saves us, but others know.” With full faith, when we surrender to Swami, He takes over the reins of our lives and directs the chariot of body, mind and intellect in the right direction. Once we look up to Him, we need not have any doubt whether He will take care of us.
- K. Sai Chittaranjan
Student (2008-2012), Department of Management Studies
Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning, Prasanthi Nilayam Campus
Currently, Assistant Professor, Department of Commerce
Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning