Volume 15 - Issue 10
October 2017
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Posted on: Oct 13, 2017

How Krishna Recreated Brindavan

Dr. K. Anil Kumar

Part 1

An alumnus of Bhagawan's University, Dr. K. Anil Kumar came to Swami as early as 1971 when he was just six years old. He joined the Sri Sathya Sai College of Arts, Science and Commerce in 1979 for his 11th grade.

Thereafter he did his Bachelors in Sciences in the Brindavan Campus of the Institute. He then moved to Prasanthi Nilayam to do his Masters in Sciences which he completed in 1986. After this, Bhagawan permitted Him to pursue Ph.D in His presence.

Once he completed his doctorate in chemistry in 1991 Swami gave him the opportunity of serving as a faculty member in the Department of Chemistry, Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning. For nearly two decades he taught and mentored the students, and in 2011 he moved to the city of Pune in the State of Maharashtra, India where he currently heads the Tata Chemicals Innovation Centre.

In 1996 Dr. Anil Kumar was conferred the Young Scientist Award by the All India Council for Technical Education, Government of India, for excellence in academic teaching and praiseworthy research work. Throughout his stay at Swami's lotus feet he was a leading member of the Prasanthi Vedam Group, and had the opportunity of innumerable personal interactions with Bhagawan on matters mundane to divine.

Presented below is the edited transcript of a 'Fleeting Moments Lasting Memories' conversation with him in March 2015.


Sairam. It is always wonderful to recapitulate the moments that we spent with Bhagawan.

When we say ‘Brindavan’, we are instantly reminded of Lord Krishna. As we all know, Krishna was the playful Lord but at the same time He was the Jagadguru. Bhagawan too loved to sport in Brindavan!

Let me recapitulate a day in Brindavan during the period 1979-1984.

'Trayee Brindavan' was not yet constructed and Swami used to reside in the old building which was more like a bungalow. There was a big porch and in front of which devotees used to make beautiful floral rangolis. The smell and fragrance of the natural flowers used to fill the air.

Swami used to come down from the first floor and we students used to be standing down, waiting for Him. The staircase directly led into the Bhajan Hall and outside this hall there were big windows.

So two or three of us would be standing at each window with our hands stretched. Swami used to sometimes hit on our hands playfully and then walk out.

At other times He would stand in the middle of that big floral rangoli. It was a sight! Even now that image is so vivid in my mind. It was so beautiful.

He then used to walk down to the old 'Sairam Shed'.

Humming Him All the Time

On one occasion, I had secured one window. Whoever ran the fastest got it.

That day as Swami came down the steps, He was humming the lines ‘Anand Ram Balaram Ji Ke Bhaiyya, Giridhari Nandakumar Kanhaiya, Madhuvan Ke Mohan Murali Bhajaiya.’

I was pleasantly shocked because till then I had never heard Swami singing bhajans other than during His discourses.

I remember this with so much fondness. Swami was so playful and full of energy as He was singing. Swami does not need to sing God's name. He Himself is Krishna! But He wanted to convey this message to us: “While you do your work, hum His name, think of Him and sing His glory.”

“Am I Looking OK?”

Sometimes Swami would go into the safe room before going for darshan. We used to call it the ‘safe room’ because there was a big safe inside, that's all!

That was a room where Swami used to spend time in a casual manner with students or guests. It was on the ground floor of the bungalow.

There was a big mirror in that room. One day I happened to be inside that room with Swami. It was darshan time and He got up to go for darshan. He then came near the mirror, arranged His hair and then turned around and asked me, “Am I looking ok?”

Wow! That is how friendly and relaxed He was with us. Swami used to never make us feel that He is the Lord of the Universe!

Glued to His Love

What was our routine? In Brindavan when Swami was downstairs, He would be in the Bhajan Hall or the safe room or the interview room. So we used to stand waiting for Him because He could come out suddenly anytime and speak to us or go to the deer cage.

Swami used to spend time with us whenever possible and we didn't want to miss even one opportunity of having His darshan or Him looking at us. So we used to be there all the time till He retired.

The bungalow was wonderfully built with three rooms on the first floor. We used to call it first room, second room and third room—Swami's bedroom, dressing room and sitting room.

The rooms had huge windows. In fact in the sitting space there was a big grill with curtains. We students knew when Swami would be in which of these rooms and so we used to stand in the garden below watching these windows because He had the habit of opening the window once in a while and looking out. Sometimes He used to talk to us from there and at other times He would smile. We didn't want to miss that one glance.

In fact we used to pine for that, so we would stand for hours below watching those windows. We were in total attention with absolutely no deviation! That was our Brindavan life, if you ask me.

Swami too used to constantly maintain this uncertainty! We would never know when He would part the curtain. Some days He would not part it at all while on other days He would part it many times.

On some days He would speak to us from above. We used to be very reluctant to go for even breakfast or lunch because during that period when we were away, Swami could part the curtain and speak to someone else present there. So we would run to the hostel, eat something very quickly and return.

There was no certainty about what Swami would do on which day. If I look back and really think about this, whether He was in Puttaparthi or Brindavan or anywhere else for that matter - all of us were ‘enjoying’ Swami's uncertainty.


Even during darshan, we never knew when Swami would come. After darshan and interviews, we never knew whether He would come outside. So He kept everyone on their toes all the time.

This uncertainty led us to focus all our attention on Him. I heard that Swami in fact told this to some of the earlier devotees like Mr Kutumba Rao, who was the caretaker of the ashram in the early days.

During Shivaratri, Swami used to take out lingams from His being and He had given one to Mr Kutumba Rao which he worshipped every day.

One day Swami sent word for him and he was a little late. Swami asked, “What were you doing?” and he replied, “Swami, I was doing abhishekam to the lingam.”

Swami then said, “Why do you want to do pooja when I am here?”

That was the case with each one of us. When Swami was physically there, we didn't need to do any other pooja or sadhana because our full attention was only on Him. Isn't that the purpose of all sadhana?

Swami would make this happen in His subtle and beautiful Krishna-like way. It happened naturally for every devotee.

That is the factor we are missing out now. I think God loves being uncertain. In the Atma Suktam there is a line ‘Parokshapriya ivahi devaha’ which means ‘God loves to be anonymous’.

Swami loves to appear for a while and then disappear in a moment. In the Bhagavatam we have heard that Lord Krishna used to be like that. Now in this Yuga we have seen Swami being like that. So now we know God loves to be like that!

As I thought about this, I got this insight - internally too we need to constantly focus on our connection with Swami. Why? This is because Swami may be giving these darshans and sambhashans internally to all of us. We never know!

Unless our attention is totally focused on Him we will miss these. You may ask: till when should we do this? In the Gita, beloved Lord Sai Krishna says ‘Nivasishyasi Mayyeva’! We need to do this till we live inside with Him every moment. Once we become one with Him there is no uncertainty anymore!

What Bhagawan has done in the physical external world, we have to translate it into the internal world. We have to be alert all the time because He is constantly giving us messages from within, giving us darshans and guiding us but many times we may miss these just like we would have missed Him when He was parting the curtain and we were not alert.

Part 2 | Part 3

- Radio Sai Team

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