THE DAY I MET MY LORD... BHAGAWAN SRI SATHYA SAI BABA
Ever since I came to know of Sri Sathya Sai Baba, I had dreamed and wished for an opportunity to speak with Him in person. But, for many years, that never happened. The closest I ever got to His physical form was when I was given the chance to sit in the first row during darshan in Prashanti Nilayam in 2008. In one fleeting moment, He had passed by with the most beautiful smile and His eyes had penetrated deep into my heart. Other than that day, it was always from a distance... sometimes near, sometimes far, but those experiences had brought a lot of joy to me nonetheless.
So, when I was informed by our Sai Council president that I could present my Sai videos to Swami during Chinese New Year celebrations on Feb 20th 2010, I almost flipped! (Yes, I had deeply wished that one day He would call me but I never thought it would actually happen in this lifetime).
I have lost count how many times my monkey mind had travelled round the universe and back before the day actually arrived. The scenario of our meeting played over and over again in my mind, EVERY NIGHT, for several months prior to that day. And during all those meetings in my mind, I spoke every word in my heart that I wanted to tell Him. I felt every happy tear that trickled down my cheeks when I gazed into His loving eyes. My throat knotted every time I heard Him speak of His love for me. All these emotions I went through even before I met Him personally. Needless to say, there were times when even I thought I was going crazy!
I had printed a video booklet for that presentation day and my heart truly desired that Swami would autograph His Divine Signature on it. So I went into town and bought the best pens which I could find... I bought about 8 pens and took all of them to Puttaparthi!
For several days after I had arrived at Prashanti Nilayam, I saw Swami during darshan. His hands were shaking as He accepted letters from people. My heart tore into pieces as I felt His pain. I chided my silly mind for buying those pens. How could I ask Swami to sign my book when His hands were so weak. It would be so selfish of me. That immediately ended the desires that had plagued my mind for months.
When the presentation day came, I was still unsure of whether He would receive me... because I had not been as pure in thought as I should have been. What would I say to Him... 'Forgive me, Swami, for my desires??!!' I had never been so nervous before in my entire life as I was during that afternoon.
But the Lord Sai was all compassion and He came as He had agreed. I watched Him through the opening of the session but He did not look my way, not until my name was called. Then His head turned all the way to His left side (where the ladies sat) and He looked directly at me as I walked up to Him.
As I stood before Him, with almost twenty thousand people behind me, the whole world seemed to have disappeared. It was all gone... covered by a white fog. There was only Swami and me... and I felt my heart, right at that moment... it was completely EMPTY, no desires, nothing left. Then He smiled, and I smiled too. It was a happy moment when our eyes met.
I bowed and walked up to Swami... and as I was about to greet Him, I felt a pull on my tray from the left side. It was my husband... I was supposed to pass the tray to him. Oh dear, I had forgotten all about him!
So, both of us greeted Swami together and I handed a rose to Him. As He accepted the rose from my hand, a leaf fell onto His lap. Immediately, I wondered if I should remove it as it had dirtied His robe. (A thought came that I should not, because I am a woman). Then, Swami gave the rose back to me. I was quite shocked but accepted it graciously.
Next, I proceeded to show Him my book and explained to Him its contents. After I finished my 'rehearsed' words, I looked into His eyes and asked Him softly, "Swami, will You accept this humble offering of love from all your children?" He smiled and raised His hand to bless my book. Then, I asked again, "Swami, will You bless my books for me?" He reached out His right hand and touched the books in the tray held by my husband.
My heart melted with gratitude because I had waited so many years for Swami's physical blessing for the work I have done. That had meant so very much to me.
Finally, I made my last request, "Swami, may I ask for Your padanamaskar?" He nodded and smiled. I went down on my knees, kissed both His feet, then placed my head on them. I was so thankful that I have reached my HOME at Swami's Lotus Feet at last.
Feb 20th, 2010
Updated Note :
As I look back to this meeting with Swami in my memory, I realized that my life has literally been divided into three phases... spiritually speaking, that is.
The first phase was the time before I came to Him, the second phase was from the day I began doing His work till that moment I stood in front of Him, and the third phase was from that meeting date till today.
Of course, the first phase can be described as the 'dark' ignorant period before I found God. Oh, how turbulent indeed were those years!
The second phase was the busy time I seeked God on the outside... through work, service and prayers. It was during that time that I had to garner spiritual knowledge through every experience I went through. It was also then that I had yearned so badly for Swami's physical acknowledgement... that He was my God, the Doer in all my actions.... and the compassionate Lord had fulfilled ALL my limited human desires on that fateful meeting day.
At this present day, I am in the third phase... quietly going inward and finding Swami within. Life is truly beautiful... when God has made His presence in our lives. The world, as we know it, will not be the same again.
God is everywhere, in every being, in every object... both animate and inanimate. Challenges are still aplenty, in fact, the closer we get to God, the harder will we be tested. Yet, every suffering brings us even nearer to Him!
Thank you, dearest Lord, for giving me this wonderful human experience. You were there before, You are here now, and You will be there again in my future.
Love You, Swami... always and forever.
Sept 10th, 2013
(Video link : http://www.youtube.com/