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Features | Experience of the Divinity of Bhagavan by Devotees | Group VII | Mr. Harikrishna Vaidya

Mr. Harikrishna Vaidya,
E-176, Devadeep Nagar,
Old Padra Road,
Baroda -390 020.

Tel: 0265-2343558

      Mr. Harikrishna Vaidya (54), a retired Senior Bank Official, relates a few of his experiences of the Divinity of Bhagavan in his own words.

'Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba came to Navsari on March 31, 1967 when we all went and had His darshan for the first time.

Later in 1969, I came to Prasanthi Nilayam with a group of people. After entraining, I noticed that I had lost my ticket. I was praying to Bhagavan because I would be liable for double charge as penalty. But the Ticket Examiner who came into my compartment listened to me patiently, sympathised with me and allowed me to get down at the next stop to go out and buy a ticket. Bhagavan came to my rescue like that. Usually, Ticket Examiners do not listen to you at all and even if they do, they would not permit you to go and get a ticket in the next stop. For me that Ticket Examiner was Sai that had come in that guise.

One of our group was an aged person who was manager of a Mafatlal Group Company. He could not get up. Swami called him for interview and I was allowed to help him. To my pleasant surprise, Swami called me for a private interview.

'Swami' I asked, 'I am doing japam, but am not able to concentrate. What to do?'

'Feel Gayathri Mata in your heart' Swami replied, 'and then do japam.'

After my return to my place, I tried to put Swami's advice into practice, but however much I tried , I could not visualise Gayatrhi Mata in my heart. In her place, it was Bhagavan that was appearing to me without any effort on my part. Therefore, I changed the photograph of Gayathri Mata before me and kept the photograph of Bhagavan. After a few days, I noticed vibhuti on the photograph of Bhagavan.

In 1972, I came to Prasanthi Nilayam with my parents. Swami called us for interview. We had with us my sister who was sight-impaired. Swami materialised vibhuti and gave us. On return she felt that her sight had improved.

In 1974, He called me for interview. My parents were not happy that I was whiling away my time with Swami's seva samithi in which I became a member in 1972. I have been coming to Prasanthi Nilayam regularly for seva ever since.

In 1974, I had the good fortune to attend the summer course in Brindavan. I was luckily included in Veda group. Swami used to tell us not to think with mind but only with heart.

In 1976, I got married. I had two daughters and a son. It was my ardent desire to admit my son in Swami's school here. I used to pray to Swami about it.

In 1996, I had a dream. I saw Prasanthi Nilayam in the dream. I saw a long line of children coming out of the mandir and going to their hostel. I saw my son among them.

I brought my son after this for writing entrance test as I was not certain of his getting admission here. I wanted to pay the fee and get admission in a good school at our place as a standby arrangement. But my son told me not to do any such thing. 'Papa' he told me, 'I will definitely get a seat here.' He was confident, and he got admitted in Swami's school. And, I was near the back of Ganesh temple when my son, as a student of Swami, was passing in the long line before me waving to me. That was exactly the scene Swami had shown me in my dream four months earlier. My dream came true thus owing to His grace.

I was prone to get annoyed at the slightest provocation, by temperament. In the interview Swami gave us when I went with my parents, He told my father 'your son is a good boy, though, at times he gets annoyed.'

Then I resolved to keep my anger under check. In the office, I used to keep a photograph of Swami before me. Whenever I was getting ruffled, I used to look at Swami. His smiling face used to have a soothing effect on me. But, sometimes, I used to lose my temper and look at Swami's photograph. On such occasions, I used to find Swami's face changed to annoyance at me. Then I used to regret and try to regain my composure. This is how Swami trained me to get my angry temperament bridled with love and patience.

In 1996, my daughter Ms. Mitali got admission in Swami's college at Anantapur. In 1999, when I came to Prasanthi Nilayam, Swami called me for interview.

'Swami' I prayed to Bhagavan, 'I want to perform upanayanam of my son here.'

'I will be performing mass upanayanams in April' Swami said. But Swami performed mass upanayanams at Prasanthi Nilayam in February 2000 itself. My son was also included. I used to think 'Swami told me April. How come it took place in February? How could Swami's word go wrong?'

In April 2000, Swami performed mass upanayanams in Brindavan. Then I realised that His word was fulfilled. He did not tell me He would perform my son's upanayanam in April. He only mentioned that He was going to perform mass upanayanams in April. And, He did.

In 2001, many of my colleagues were opting for VRS. I did not. Moreover, I was arguing with them not to go on voluntary retirement. So I did not apply. Every year, I used to attend the Annual Sports Meet at Prasanthi Nilayam. In 2001 also I applied for leave. They decided earlier that no leave would be granted to VRS applicants. I was not one of them. But, to my shock, they refused leave to me. I prayed to Swami to bless me with a visit to Prasanthi Nilayam for Sports Meet. I told my people in the Bank that, leave or no leave, I would go to Prasanthi Nilayam and that they could do whatever they wanted. I started. However, the whole episode made me think of VRS. If continued in service, I would not be able to go to Prasanthi Nilayam whenever I wanted, if the Bank refused leave. If I opted for VRS, I would be a free bird. Our Manager reported to higher-ups against my going without leave, but no action was taken against me. The most interesting part was that his report did not reach the higher-ups at all owing to His grace! I gave a letter to Swami. 'I want apply for VRS' I wrote, 'in that ease, the marriages of my two daughters have to be done by You.' Swami took the letter.

In 1995, Rural Branch pension scheme came. To be eligible to get full pension under it, one had to complete 28 years of service. Had I applied for VRS earlier, I would not have been eligible. But, because of my applying for VRS after my return from Prasanthi Nilayam, I became eligible for full pension. He made me think against VRS earlier. Had I applied then I would have not get full pension. Later, He made me think of it only after I became eligible for full pension.

When I received my terminal benefits, I invested them for longer periods. Later, they went on reducing the rate of interest, but my investments continued to earn the original higher rate. The scheme allowed me to make further investments also at the same higher rates of interest. This was also His grace.

I was thinking of getting my daughter married. In 2004, I came to Prasanthi Nilayam. I went to the shopping-complex. There I ran into Mr. Badari Narayan who was originally from our parts but settled in the South. 'I want to get my daughter married' I told him during our chat casually, 'could you suggest any alliance?'

'Why not' he said, 'my son is here. See if he fits into your requirement.'

In five minutes, the alliance was settled.

I wrote a letter to Swami. Swami took it. Swami blessed my daughter and my son-in-law. Though there was no time to mobilise funds for the marriage, money came as if it had come by itself. It was Swami's leela. This was in 2004.

Earlier, in 1976, we came to Prasanthi Nilayam. Swami called my father for interview. He was sitting in a corner when he was called. In the interview, he sat near Bhagavan's feet. Swami materialized a ring and put it on his hand Himself. 'What do you want?' Swami asked my father.

'Pray give me darshan' my father asked Swami, 'when death knocks at me.'

Later, he passed away peacefully.

In 1977, I came to Prasanthi Nilayam. I asked Swami 'what happened to my father after death?'

'He has been with Me' Swami answered.

I was getting padanamaskar regularly till Swami stopped it.

In 1999, I came to Prasanthi Nilayam. Earlier He was giving padanamaskar to sevadal at the end of their seva period. That year, He moved along the lines, but was not giving padanamaskar though, till then, no declaration banning it came. That morning, I had chest pain. I prayed to Swami in the darshan line. 'Chest pain' Swami said touching my chest and rubbing over it smoothly and softly, 'no chest pain.'

From that day I have had no chest pain.

Swami gave us a flat in Prasanthi Nilayam in 1974.'

-- Mr. Harikrishna Vaidya

    (As narrated to Mr. B. Parvatala Rao at Prasanthi Nilayam on 18.07.2006)