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Features | Experience of the Divinity of Bhagavan by Devotees | Group VI | Dr. Sharada Subramanyam

Dr. Sharada Subramanyam
Senior Lecturer in Philosophy,
Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning,
Anantapur Campus.

Dr. Sharada Subramaniam, Senior Lecturer in Philosophy in the Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning, Anantapur Campus narrates her experiences of the Divinity of Bhagavan in her own words.

'My parents first came to Bhagavan in the late 1950s. They often came to Swami to seek His blessings and find a solution to their problems. It so happened that, one day, my brother had run away from home as he had failed in his class VII examination. He was missing for two days. We had absolutely no clue as to where he had gone, even after a lot of search. All of us, the siblings, were too young to understand the gravity of the problem. It was a moment of trial for my parents. So, my parents immediately rushed to Brindavan to see Swami and tell Him about this mishap. By the time they reached Brindavan, it was past 6 p.m. and the mandir gate was closed. As they approached the gate, the watchman stopped them and said that darshan was over for the day, and Swami would not come until the next morning. But my mother insisted on remaining there until she could talk to Swami and pray for her son.

To the utter amazement of my parents, the corridor lights were suddenly switched on. The watchman, too, was surprised when he saw Swami walking towards the gate. He rushed and opened the gate for Swami. Swami came straight to my mother and said 'don't worry Amma, your son will be back in a day. I will take care of him. I am always with you. My blessings are always with you.' My mother's spontaneous, candid and unquestioning faith in Swami and His words brought back her son, hale and hearty, in a day.

My father worked for the Military Engineering Service (MES), where transfers were regular and frequent. On one occasion when he received the transfer orders, he fell at Swami's feet, expressing his apprehension about coping in a city like Bombay with a big family and meagre income. In his anxiety and ignorance, he told Swami 'I am in ksheenadasa (a hopeless state), Swami.' No sooner had he uttered this, than came a profound message from the lips of our Compassionate Lord 'My devotees will never face such a situation in their lives.' He allayed my father's fear by materializing vibhuti-prasadam. He then assured him that 'He is always with us everywhere', and so he could accept the orders and move to Bombay with the family. As per the Divine declaration, everything went on well in due course of time.

In those days, whenever my parents went to Swami either at Prasanthi Nilayam or Brindavan, they never returned without a personal audience with Him. During one of their trips, my mother planned to put forward all her desires to Swami and get them fulfilled. Being young, she naturally craved for materialized objects such as a locket, a ring, a chain or a watch from Swami. Moreover, she considered that such an object would be a privilege or a sign of being His devotee. Finally, the day of interview came. She was sitting in the outer interview room along with other devotees. Swami looked at her several times, and asked her what she wanted. Each time He asked her this question, she was unable to answer immediately, and so He continued His conversation with others. She then decided that when Swami took her family into the inner interview room, she would list out her desires to Him.

Strangely enough, when she entered the inner interview room, and when Swami asked her 'what do you want, Amma?' all her innumerable worldly desires got transformed into one profound prayer 'I want you and your blessings alone. I pray that You draw all my children to Your Lotus Feet.' Indeed, the boon which He granted then has made a world of difference to all of us now. It is verily because of this boon that all of us have been at His Lotus Feet, serving Him in different capacities.

Very often, Swami expounds profound principles through tiny tales. Once, to a group of devotees, Swami explained the Stalactite - Stalagmite phenomenon which occurs rarely in a cave. A stalactite is a deposit made by calcium carbonate. It has the shape of an icicle (a long piece of ice that hangs from the roof of the cave). A stalagmite is a similar deposit that resembles an inverted stalactite. It is formed on the floor of the cave, and it grows upward. Very rarely, the two formations - stalactite from above and stalagmite from below - join to form one piece in course of time. This exceptional formation is usually preserved in the cave as a rare phenomenon.

Swami used this analogy to epitomize the purpose of God's descent amongst mankind. God descends to enhance man's ascent to God. The compassion seeping from the stalactite of God drips on the individual to draw him / her closer. And, the individual, through his / her effort, grows up like a stalagmite. In the long run, the two movements result in the merging of the stalactite - God and the stalagmite-man. To enable the devotees to understand this phenomenon better, Swami created a model of the same in fossil stone.'

-- Dr. Sharada Subramanyam

(As extracted from the souvenir Ananta Prematarangini published by the Anantapur Campus of the SSSIHL on the occasion of the 80th Birthday of Bhagavan)