This pictorial survey of the first fifty years of Sri Sathya Sai Baba’s Earthly tenure records both the fast moving and exponential spread of hid message and mission as well as underlines the unchanging nature of its inspiration the undying power of love in the heart.
As the expression of love embodied Sathya Sai in this book demonstrates the unshakable nature of the divine from the very first portrait taken in an age when photography was unaffordable to the rural population the same steady glow of an inner poise which character the young master as is witnessed today after eight decades.
Remarkably this inscrutable youth form the beginning could look directly and unselfconsciously straight into the camera because being fully conscious of the self the young sai was unaffected by anything other than that reality residing within him.
Divided into sex sections the first covers the largely unrecorded life of Shirdi Sai Baba in Shridi. Thereafter the life story of an encore in puttaraparthi unfolds and with the ever increasing archive of photographic material this first volume had to be limited to 1980, Sathya Sai Baba’s 54the year on earth.
The miscellaneous arrangement of this collection allows Sathya Sai Baba to be seen in a wholes range of situations in a variety of different moods. Form close familiarity with the poor and unprocessed to awarding audiences to the rich and powerful Sathya Sai live out his message that declares the same inexhaustible source of love flues all our lives irrespective of our condition or station in it.
It is this one pointed advocacy of the supremacy of love that each of these photographs reflects. Whether in the Himalaya or the Deccan plateau the message is the same that the divine is close at hand and to find it we need to not outside ourselves but turn inwards.
The effect of this book is to build a meditative atmosphere in the viewer and through visual stimulus experience the oneness Sathya Sai’s life exemplifies. We only escape illusion when we are asleep but the art Baba wishes to teach is that we wake to our unlimited potential. We take birth to celebrate our divine inheritance and Sathya Sai’s presence is a consternate reminder of the compassionate state of being which every human beings can attain.
Volume two of Sri Sathya Sai’s spiritual Journey from 1981 to 2010 witness the adventurous out flowing of his mission from backward rural India to some 180 sophisticated established and consolidated his base at prashanthi Nilayam and made his mark by travelling all over India Sai Baba opened his heart ad mission response was phenomenal. Having activated widespread interest in the traditional fakir figure of Shirdi Sai Baba he was able then to expand on this compassionate theme in a more modern Farbm appealing to an emerging globalized world with its demand for evidence of the oneness of life. His timing was perfect to demonstrate through constancy of being how love is the sole unifier of human aspiration. Baba as exemplar of love sovereign hold showed by his presence where the seat of life most hallowed mystery Lay not in any particular nation but in our awareness of the sacred nature of selfhood. His central teaching of mankind divine potential made and other doctrine superfluous and underlined the truth of his regular assertion: “My life is my message; my message is my life.”
This message both simple and profound found its way into the array institutions Sri Sathya Sai founded his target audience being youth with its idealism and altruism. His prashanthi mandir which traditionally had boasted a privileged scattering of old devotees on its veranda now was crowded by eager students who flocked there after their classes. This change in emphasis was echoed in the increased avain population. Each twilight from the handful of crows who had nested in the palm trees now came thousand of egrets and mynahs to join in the evening Aarthi and nest safely in the trees surrounding Baba’s residence. Alone with educational institutions powered by human rather than commercial values come super specialty hospitals catering to the poorer sections of society and whose up to date treatment came free of cast. The compassionate bounty of Sathya Sai Baba peaked in the provision of piped drinking water to one thousand villages in the interior of rural Andhra Pradesh the work being completed in record time. As a boy Baba had been made to carry water on a yoke over his shoulders and his body still bore the weal’s. He knew better than anyone the sufferings of the poor and the blessings of piped water. Other projects followed and in Tamil Nadu the Sai Ganga canal bringing water from the river Krishna to the citizens of Chennai was commissioned by Sai Baba.
I Am God &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp; So Are You
The source of life and meaning remain a mystery to the wisest of philosophers.
Yet, what these intellectually endowed minds have struggled to grasp, a seemingly simple village boy from a backward rural area of the southern Deccan understood fully and even more remarkable has put into practice daily for the last eighty years.
Sri Sathya Sai Baba of puttaparthi declares the source of life is love and the purpose of life is to express love. He uncompromisingly identifies love as the flowering of the divine self and encourages us to find that flower within ourselves.
At the same time Sathya Sai insists that the suffering of humanity has to be addressed and the compassionate regard for the oneness of life translated into charitable efforts. However, social service while contributing towards change lacks the transforming attitude engendered by love which alone effect a lasting solution. Then not only the person in need to help is assisted but the helper is also brought nearer the goal of oneness.
Born in and dedicating himself to the development of the backward area of Rayalessema in Andhra Pradesh Sri Sathya Sai Baba proves how faith in his fellow human beings can move mountins and how the harnessing of the miracle of love can make the desert bloom. A century earlier Shirdi Sai Baba in the northern Deccan and stirred the most profound devotion in the hearts of his disciple of many faith with his profound devotion in the hearts of his disciple so many faiths with his profound and pithy insight “Sab ka Malika Ek” (We are all products of the same Creator). This extraordinary fakir forged inseparable bonds with his disciples and on occasions of dire need would performs astral journey to offer them succor.
Displaying from an early age the same spiritual authority and psychic abilities Sathya Sai Baba promised his devotees to look after their weakness Sathya Sai urges us to assert our individual freedom and celebrate the truth,
Sole sense of sin in thee
Is note to know thine own divinity.
The second generation of the Sri Sathya Sai Baba mission (1981-2010) witnessed the unfolding of the universal appeal of India’s Sai avatar. It was entirely due to the presence of Bhagawan Baba at puttaparthi that wide interest in the Shridi fakir was stimulated. Prior to the 1940’s few had heard of shirdi Baba. Till the advent of Sathya Sai he had been viewed as a regional saint whose teachings mainly in Marathi had restricted his following to Maharashtra.
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