"How many brothers do you have?"

Sunday, June 18, 2000 (Evening)

Swami came out for Darshan in the afternoon at 1.30 pm to talk to some school children from Anantapur. However, the regular Darshan was at 4.00 pm. During Darshan…

Swami : (To a student) Hum 1.30 Ko Aya (I came at 1.30 pm). Boys Ko Pants, Shirts Diya. Readymade. Watches Bhi Diya. Teachers Ko Saris Diya (I gave readymade pants and shirts, and watches to the boys, and saris to the teachers). (Pointing to a student) This boy needs to be sent to mental hospital. He is bringing same Vibhuti packet for the last five to seven days!
(Smiling) Three weeks treatment is enough! Primary School boys can get like that but not you. (Swami is always particular that senior students should behave in a matured way.) (To a teacher) This boy needs three weeks treatment, but you need one week treatment. I am standing for the past three hours. I came at 1.30 pm. School boys (from Anantapur) have come. I was speaking to them in Telugu.

Teacher : Swami, from where have these boys come?

Swami : From nearby villages, 500 boys and girls. They have come from our schools.

Teacher : Swami, the schools which Swami built?

Swami : Yes. Next month, boys from these villages will be coming. 
(Swami mentioned the names of Harijana Wadas, a locality on the outskirts of the village where people belonging to the socially backward strata reside.) These boys have to go to schools. They do not have proper dress. So I have given them pant and shirt, and watches too. (After this, Swami enquired from Prof. Anil Kumar and Prof. S. Krupanidhi 

(Prof. S. K.), Department of Biosciences at Swami’s University, about the repairs going on in the teacher’s quarters.) Are your houses being painted nicely?

Prof. S. K. : Yes, Swami, they are doing masonary work and then the painting will be done.

Swami : (To Sri Bhagia) Tumhara Ghar Thik Hai? (Is your house fine?)

Sri Bhagia : Yes, Swami. (Sri Bhagia offered a kerchief which Swami lovingly accepted.)

Swami : (To the teachers) The staff quarters have been made like the Dhobi-Ghat (a common place for washing clothes by the washerman community). Dirty! (Swami said that children of a particular School in Russia held a strike because their teachers were not clean. The next day onwards, the teachers wore proper dresses and came to School. The teachers must make their hearts clean before they can become worthy of acceptance by their students. After that, Swami called a devotee Sathyanarayan, who was His classmate in Class VI.) How are you? How is the Kalyana Mandapam construction going on? I am building for your satisfaction only.
(To students) He was my classmate in Class VI. There were six in all. All others have passed away. Only he is here. From the beginning, he is Swami’s devotee. He was the Samiti President (in Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organisation). (On seeing his grandson) Nee Manavadaa (Is he your grandson)?

Devotee : Yes, Swami.

Swami : How is your wife?

Devotee : Swami, You have given her a second birth. (Then the devotee recollected how Swami had cured his wife’s kidney problem.) Swami, please come to Bukkapatnam to inaugurate the Kalyana Mandapam.

Swami : You were complaining that the Kalyana Mandapam was small. How is it now?

Devotee : Now, more than a thousand can be accommodated, Swami.

Swami : Nowadays, thousand people won’t come for a marriage. Are the people happy?

Devotee : Swami, they are very happy. Swami should come to inaugurate it.

Swami : Santhosham (I am happy). (To students) I am Sathya Narayana (Swami’s name as a School student); he is also Sathya Narayana. He was the Samiti President. He used to go on tour and spread Swami’s teachings. Now he has retired. (Swami went to the birthday boys and blessed them. He then asked one Primary School student his name. The boy answered. He was holding a pen and a photograph of Swami for an autograph.) Keep it. 
(Later Swami signed it) Where do you come from?

Student : From Assam.

Swami : Assam! You have come all the way from there. How many brothers do you have?

Student : All are my brothers.

Swami : (Looking at the Collector and other guests) See, he says all are his brothers. Good boy! (Pointing to an Institute student) Who is he?

Student : Swami, he is a brother.

Swami : Good boy. How many sisters do you have?

Student : No sisters.

Swami : No sisters! (Jokingly) How many wives do you have?

Student : No wife.

Swami : Why?

Student : Swami, I am still a small boy.

Swami : Don’t you want to go to Assam?

Student : Swami, only in holidays.

Swami : Why? Don’t you like Assam?

Student : Swami, here it is more nice.

Swami : (To the guests) See, he says it is more nice here. (To the student) Why is Assam not nice?

Student : Swami, there are no friends.

Swami : (To the guests) He has no friends there. (To the student) Who is your friend? (The student keeps quiet. To another student) Where do you come from?

Student : Swami, Meerut.

Swami : (To another student) You?

Student : Swami, Hyderabad.

Swami : (Pointing to Vineet Basotia, a Research Scholar from the School of Business Management) See, that boy is also from Assam. Have you seen him? 
(The student nodded in negative.) He is from Guwahati. Do you like apples?

Student : Yes, Swami.

Swami : Do you get apples in Assam? How big? (The student nodded his head and showed the size of the apple with his hands.) Hey, not so big, still small. Is it not? (Then the student showed a smaller size. Swami went inside the interview room and got few apples.) Do you get these big apples in Assam?

Student : No Swami, much smaller.

Swami : (Swami gave him an apple, which had a sticker on it.) What is there on it? (The student tried to decipher but could not. Meanwhile, Swami was looking at another apple.) Sun and moon. Is it not? Are you going to eat it alone?

Student : No, Swami. I will share it with others.

Swami : Good boy. (To the guests) See, he is going to share it with others.
(To the student) How many boys are there in your room?

Student : There are 30 boys in my class.

Swami : Not classmates, room-mates?

Students : Swami, we don’t have rooms. We have dormitories.

Swami : Oh! You sleep on those multiple cots. (Swami explained to the Collector how Primary School students sleep on multiple cots, with the smaller ones occupying the lower berths. Swami then asked the student) How old are you?

Student : Swami, eight years.

Swami : How do you know?

Student : Swami, last year I was in second standard and I was seven years old. Now I am in third standard and therefore I am eight years old.
Swami : (Swami was smiling and facing the guests) Last year he was seven. This year he is eight. (The student casually put his palm behind his neck.) Aiyyo Papam (Oh! Poor thing). All this time you were looking up, your neck must be paining. (Swami gently rubbed his neck.) What about your future? What do you want to do? (The student answers in a low voice.) What! Science! What is the meaning of Science?

Student : Swami, Science is a subject.

Swami : But what is the meaning?

Student : Swami, I don’t know.

Swami : (Very lovingly explained) Split of Love is Science. Spirit of Love is Spirituality. The modern scientists are cutting everything into pieces and pieces. (Swami said something softly to the boy.)

Student : Swami, I don’t know History.

Swami : History is a mystery. Which subject do you know?

Student : Swami, Mathematics.

Swami : How many marks?

Student : Swami, 99.

Swami : (Pulled both his cheeks and told the guests) See, he has got 99. (Looking at the student) Why not 100? Didn’t the headmistress give you? You should ask for grace marks. (Smiling) Nowadays, everyone gets grace marks using influence!

Student : Swami, I made one mistake. So, I lost one mark. 

Swami patted him and went inside the interview room. After some time, He came back and gave the students wrist watches. Still one watch was left in His hand; Swami gave it to a guest.

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