Volume 15 - Issue 08
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Posted on: Aug 10, 2017

The Story of Sai – 8

And the lessons for you and me


Part 1 || Part 2  || Part 3 || Part 4 || Part 05 || Part 06 || Part 07

His Story

Little Sathyanarayana became the darling of the entire village. Pedda Venkama Raju's house was always full of visitors who came on some pretext but stayed on to sing lullabies to Sathyanarayana; they wanted to rock His cradle and shower Him with caresses – this way they forgot their humdrum lives.


Babies are gods and goddesses. Aren’t they? You can look at them for hours without getting tired and bored. In fact, they fill you with so much joy, peace and happiness that they can make your tiredness disappear, your pretensions melt away and your anxieties evaporate.

Babies achieve this not by doing anything special but being their pure and innocent self. They thrill you with their transparency, they mesmerise you with their innocuous beauty.

Bring a toy near them and they smile. Should you take away the toy, they still smile. At other times, babies do nothing and revel in silence. And, suddenly burst out smiling again! They need no reason to be happy. They need no reason to make others happy. Just their presence makes it all happen – there is unbounded joy all around.

It was the same with Swami when you were with Him at close quarters. You could look at Him for hours without batting an eyelid, and be lost just gazing at His crystal-clear countenance.

Sometimes His fingers would gently move as if writing something in the air. At other times, a sudden sweet smile would envelope His lips. There were also periods when He would just be still for hours, like a placid lake.

His beauty and uncertainty, His purity and unpredictability were totally captivating. At times, simple things could fill Him with great joy; you were all at once amazed and amused.

For instance, once a senior member of the Sai family brought to Swami a brochure that portrayed His plans of building primary schools for the poor children in and around Puttaparthi. Within this leaflet was a picture that depicted a little girl sitting in the corner of a dark and decrepit room. The room was not completely dark though, for a beam of light radiated from the top and fell on the girl making her bright and resplendent.

The image aimed to graphically convey how Swami's Educare programme would drive away the darkness of ignorance and provide the light of quality education to economically challenged children.

It was an ordinary and unsophisticated picture. But Swami was so fascinated that He kept looking at it again and again admiringly, and then like a child carried it with Him and started showing it excitedly to everyone around, giving them full explanation of the inner import of the image. Only when He had enthusiastically demonstrated the picture to everyone present did He stop and looked content.

What you might construe as simple could be most beautiful for Him. At other times, what you think as ornate could be most ordinary for Him. Baba in fact is perfectly baby-like - blissful and beautiful, uncertain and uninhibited.

Now imagine Baba when He was really a baby! How delicate and delectable He must have been, how charming and spellbinding must have been His looks and moves, how enchanting and adorable must have been His smiles and signs!

No wonder everyone who came to Pedda Venkama's house did not want to leave. They just wanted an excuse to be there and hover around the baby for a few more minutes.

Children are godlike. And God is childlike. But when God really becomes a child, there is nothing like it in this world.

His Story

Subbamma, the wife of the village Karnam, Lakshminarayana Rao, had a special affection for Sathya. She was elderly and childless. The Karnam was of the brahmin caste. As Karnam, he was the hereditary village accountant in charge of land records and the collection of land tax on behalf of the government.

The Rajus and the Karnam lived two houses away from each other. When Sathya was an infant, Subbamma would pick Him up and hug Him to her bosom. As the Karnams family ate only vegetarian food, Subbamma would call Sathya to her kitchen and feed Him lovingly, much to the dislike of those who did not like a kshatriya boy being fed in a brahmin household. "This is a Brahmin child!" other women would say, both in wonder and fun, witnessing the enthusiasm with which Sathya would go to Subbamma.



Baby Krishna, in the Dwapara yuga, would slip into the houses of gopikas and dip into their pots of butter. This is something which always left Mother Yashoda clueless. She would wonder, “Why does this Mischievous One break into the homes of the cowherd ladies and gobble up their butter as if there is no butter in my house?”

The gopikas would then come and complain to Mother Yashoda. But their real intention was not to protest but use the incident as a pretext to catch Krishna, merely to spend more sweet moments with Him. In fact, if He didn't steal their butter they would feel utterly miserable and lost.

Swami has explained that little Krishna wasn’t as much drawn to the physical butter as He was to the butter-like hearts of the cowherd devotees.

Their hearts were so overflowing with pure love for the Lord that Krishna too longed to be with them and needed some ploy to play with them.

It was the same with Swami and Subbamma. Many years later, in a discourse Swami revealed:

“Subbamma's devotion to Me is unparalleled. Though she was not physically related to this body, emotionally she was closely attached to Me. She used to think of Me day in and day out. She attended to Me right from the beginning. She was even prepared to vacate her house for My sake. Many relatives argued with her, 'Being a brahmin, how are you allowing a kshatriya to stay in your house?'

“Unsparingly she replied, 'I don't go to anybody's house. None of you need to come to my house. It is enough if I have Sathya with me.' Her devotion and determination was matchless.”

Divinity surrenders to purity. This was probably why little Sathya relished the savouries that Subbamma made for Him even as He savoured her love for Him.

The other significant message here is how Bhagawan right from the moment of His advent has been covertly and overtly dissuading people from consuming non-vegetarian food. 'If you cook non-veg, there is no place for Me in the house' is the silent but solid directive He was sending out to the world.

In fact, soon after His divine birth, non-vegetarian meals turned miraculously vegetarian in the house. Later, as an infant His preference for vegetarian dishes in Subbamma's house was again a solid proclamation of this clear injunction.

Time and again Bhagawan has urged all devotees to eschew non-vegetarian food. Fortunately, there is also growing awareness in the current times about the detrimental effects, at the individual and global level, of a non-veg intensive diet.

If the world went completely vegetarian by 2050, there would be seven million fewer deaths every year. Not only that food-related greenhouse gas emissions would drop by around 60% and out of the world's total agricultural land (which is 12 billion acres) 68% can be used to recreate forests and native habitats, thus bringing back our bio-diversity.

Most importantly, it would save the world 2-3% of the global GDP in medical bills as there would be much lower occurrences of heart diseases, diabetes, strokes and cancer.

Everything that the Avatar practises and preaches is for the betterment of not just us who currently live in this world, but for the hundreds and thousands who are yet to be born. If only we diligently abide by His directions, our lives would be filled with delight, spiritually and physically.

Part 1 || Part 2  || Part 3 || Part 4 || Part 05 || Part 06 || Part 07

- Bishu Prusty,
Team Radio Sai

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