Sai And His Students - By S.K.P.M. Ajay Ram


On 20th October 1940, a 14-year-old boy from a small village made a famous declaration - a declaration, which changed the world, that “I am Sai Baba.” The declaration brought a revolution? No! A Sai revolution in this world. That declaration initiated the great Mission by the Poorna Avatar, Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba of fostering the eternal - values of Satya, Dharma, Shanti, Prema and Ahimsa in the hearts of the people. None other than God could undertake such a Mission. We students are very fortunate to witness such Divinity to our entire satisfaction. 

Today, evil qualities are on the ascent. Man has strayed away from the path of Dharma, and is swayed away by Kama (desire), Krodha (anger), Lobha (greed), Moha (infatuation), Mada (pride) and Matsarya (envy). If this were the trend of human life in the future, mankind would soon come to an end. So God descends to protect His dearest creation from extinction. In the Treta Yuga, Rama descended to eliminate the evil demons. In the Dwapara Yuga, Krishna incarnated to kill the evil people. In Kali Yuga, God came down to earth in the form of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba to eradicate the evil in the minds of people. 

“Dharma Samstapanarthaya Sambhavami Yuge Yuge”
“For establishing Dharma, I incarnate from time to time.”

These are the golden words of Sri Krishna as told to Arjuna. Our beloved Sai Krishna stands as a testimony to this Divine message. Bhagavan Baba is the - Sarva Devata Swaroopa. (The manifestation of all Gods) There are innumerable instances when Swami revealed this truth by appearing in the forms of various gods and goddesses to various people. He is Lord Dhanvantari who eradicates the diseases of many people. The following incident illustrates this: 

About forty years ago, there was a thirty-year-old woman who was suffering from cancer. She did not know about Bhagavan and her father was completely against Bhagavan. But the family was deeply devoted to Lord Rama. She was admitted to the famous hospital at Vellore. The doctors treated her, but it was in vain. Her condition grew worse and the doctors began to lose all their hope. While she was in the room, half conscious, she saw a man wearing the dress of a doctor with a red robe and a big halo of hair. She had seen him in a calendar somewhere and recognized him as ‘Sai Baba’. He came near her and did something, but she could not make out what has happening. After sometime, he disappeared. The next day, the doctors opened her room and were astonished to see their patient, who a day before was no even able to utter a word, sitting on the bed and talking. When they performed the tests, they found that she was completely cured! Later, she recovered completely and eventually became ardent devotee of Swami. 

Bhagavan Baba is Lord Dakshinamurti - the storehouse of knowledge. The main aspect of His mission is educating people in human values and making them spiritually rich. This was the main motivation behind the establishment of wonderful centers of learning by Him. I consider myself very fortunate to study in His school at Prasanthi Nilayam. 

I would like to narrate the way I was admitted to Sri Sathya Sai Secondary School. Even though some of the members of my family had been ardent devotees of Bhagavan for a long time, I was not very much devoted to Swami. Right from my birth, I used to fall ill very frequently. Each time it was the Divine grace of Baba that saved me. 

When I was in tenth class, may be it was due to the Divine Will to draw me towards Him that I had to suffer from a serious illness. On the advice of some well-wishers, I was brought to Prasanthi Nilayam. That was my first visit to Prasanthi Nilayam. It was in January 2001 that I saw the Divine form for the first time in my life. I was thrilled at the sight of Bhagavan. After the Darshan while I was going out of the Mandir, an old lady asked me, “Are you a student in Sri Sathya Sai Institute?” Obviously the answer was “No.” But this incident sowed in me the desire of joining Swami’s Institution. So I applied for a seat in the eleventh class. In course of time, I had a wonderful experience. 

I kept Baba’s photo as the background picture of my computer screen. It was on Mahasivaratri day. When I went to work on the computer, I was surprised by what I saw. There was Vibhuti on the computer screen and some of it was scattered around! It was definitely a Divine sign. After a few days, I received the call letter for the written test. I got through the examination and attended the interview. But I felt that I did not perform satisfactorily in the interview and was very disappointed and wept the whole night. But Swami’s Grace admitted me to the Sri Sathya Sai Higher Secondary School. 

After coming to this school, I have learnt many things. The first thing is that just an admission in the school or Institute does not make one a student. Only when one follows the teachings of Swami does one become an ‘Ideal Sai student’. I had the good fortune of listening to Swami’s Divine discourses on the occasion of every festival. All His teachings can be condensed into just four letters: LOVE. Each and every word of Swami reveals a great truth and His Divine Love. In Prasanthi Nilayam, I believe that each and every particle of air, each and every sand particle, each and every tree and each and every heart is full of love. Moreover, the treasure house of love - Sri Sathya Sai Baba - whose love is equivalent to that of a thousand mothers, nay, innumerable mothers is living with us, leading and guiding us to liberation from worldly matters. 

Swami’s first message to mankind is Love. There is a proverb in Telugu, “Manava Sevaye Madhava Seva” meaning service to man is the service to God. Service is the main part of a Sai student’s life. The Grama Seva, organized every year, is proof of this. The service being done by the Sri Sathya Sai Seva organisations is enormous. The service programmes spreading worldwide include provision of free education, free health and free water. None other than our beloved Baba can take up such massive projects. Swami’s second message to mankind is Service. Swami puts His message beautifully in a simple sentence: Love All; Serve All. This is a universal dictum. 

We have to learn many good aspects of life from Swami. His simplicity, His love, His compassion, His confidence, His determination and His sacrificing nature are truly noble for mankind to follow. The first message that I received from Swami is, “Never fail to discharge your duties whatever may be the circumstances.” This message was not told in words but shown to me, and to all, practically, when He took over the mumps of a small boy during the Gurupoornima celebrations. Many of us would have seen the swollen face, which might have been very painful for Swami. But He never failed to give His Divine Darshan, Sparshan and Sambhashan to His devotees and the students in spite of that pain. He always says, “My Life is My Message.” 

The students of Sai have a great responsibility upon them. The primary source of energy, the Divine conflagration is present here. We are like candles. We have to light ourselves with the fire of spiritual knowledge and clear the darkness of ignorance from our minds. The whole world is gathering at the Lotus Feet of Swami. He is the fertile soil and we, the plants. We emerge from the soil, grow, proper and again merge in the same soil. But the cattle of ignorance, lust, greed, anger, hatred and violence may eat us away before we merge. So we have to consume the manure of Love and protect ourselves with the fence of Devotion. 

Oh Divine Lord Oh Master of Masters!
You are the boatman; make me Your oar,
You are the Divine farmer, make me Your plough,
You are the Divine mechanic,
Who came down to repair this world.
Make me your tools,
And use in Your Divine mission.
Swami, my Beloved,
I love You, I bow to You.
I pray to You, I surrender to You. 

- S.K.P.M. Ajay Ram
Student (2007-2009), Department of Physics
Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning
Prasanthi Nilayam Campus
Currently, Post-Doctoral Fellow at IIT, Italy


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