Baba's Three Questions
An old merchant from
Kuppam arrived late one evening by car with his family. As soon as
Baba saw him, He asked, "How deep is the well?" I thought the
inquiry was about a well he was digging in his field, but his son
told me a very thrilling story.
V.R was suffering
from acute stomach pain for over ten days and the doctor in
attendance left him one dark January night about 10PM. Every one
went to bed and all was quiet. An hour later, it was noticed that
V.R was not in his bed! Minutes passed, he did not return. A
feeble voice was heard from the distance, "Amma! Amma!". The sons
ran helter skelter and discovered that the voice emanated from the
well! It was 50 yards away from the house, 10 feet across , with
water 25 feet deep, an irrigation well , with a wall all around,
slabs criss - crossing the depth, with a pumping set worked by an
electrically operated engine. The old man had fallen into it!
It was pitch dark,
but, with the help of a torch it was found that the old man was
most miraculously standing erect close to the wall with no
apparent foothold, more than half his body immersed in the water.
He was praying aloud to Sathya Sai, his only succour. Shuddering
and shivering, one of the sons got down the well and tied a rope
round the waist of the old man; others went about frantically
calling for help, but they could collect only two timid
individuals. Then, as luck would have it, or rather as Baba willed,
the Sub-inspector of Police (whoever could have expected him of
all people to pass that way?) butted in to find out the reason for
their commotion. He helped in the rescue, by letting down a sofa
for the old man and slowly lifting him up.
The doctor, who was
called in, was stunned because there was not a single scratch or
cut on the body; the patient was perfectly normal and unconcerned
and was reciting Baba's Name. He looked as if he had just returned
from a bath in the Chithravathi! How could he have stood erect,
clinging to the side of the well, with 25feet of water beneath him?
That was the wonder, the wonder of all who could not grasp that
the escape was Providential, nay, Sathyasaidential, to be more
A family came from
Nellore and stood facing the portico of the Prasanthi Nilayam.
Baba appeared before long and He asked them, "Where is the dog
that took your son up the Hill?" I thought the question referred
to some pet dog which was faithful and intelligent and I asked
them whether my surmise was correct. No; it was not. It seems his
son left the house one night with out notice, a week previously.
Since he was not in the best of health, either physically or
mentally, the parents were naturally very worried; they
telegraphed to Baba; they searched all likely and unlikely places.
In the morning, someone came and gave them a clue…. he might have
gone to Tirupathi. So, they hastened to that place and drove up
the Hill and arrived at the Temple, to discover the boy there! He
had climbed the steps in spite of his ill health, because, as he
said a lovely little dog had inspired him and guided his steps.
Its seems that dog appeared suddenly from nowhere just after the
first few steps; it would climb seven or eight steps and sit
looking affectionately towards the boy, encouraging him to do
likewise, urging him on, and intimating to him that it was all so
easy. Without knowing how, the boy had followed the dog, talking
to it and inspired by it, never doubting its intentions or its
authenticity as guide. A few yards from the Gopuram of Sri
Venkatachalapathi Temple, the dog melted away. That was the story
the son related to the astounded parents on the Hill and at
Puttaparthi to me, when I asked him about the dog, that was
mentioned by Baba, as soon as they came.
An officer who had to
tour uninhabited tracts and jungles for at least a few months
every year as part of his official duties came to Puttaparthi; he
was looking up the verandah on the first floor of the Nilayam, to
get a glimpse of Baba. Presently, Baba appeared and recognising
him, asked, "Did you get the lorry I sent?" I thought the man was
a businessman who had dispatched a lorry to Puttaparthi and was
expecting it back. But the man had a different story to tell!
He said that the
question revealed to him that the arrival of a lorry, along a god
forsaken jungle road to pick him up from his sick bed and convey
him to the nearest doctor, 40 miles away, was the act of Baba and
the saving of his life by that doctor's timely ministration was a
Satyasaidential act of mercy. It seems he had developed a septic
wound while in camp and that he had fallen into delirium on
account of the fever. It was raining terribly and thunder roared
overhead. He prayed to all the Gods he knew, including Baba, but,
found no ray of hope, for he was on the very center of no man's
land. Then, suddenly, he heard the noise of a passing lorry. Yes.
The driver had lost his way and was nosing his way about the
jungle tracks. His servants ran after it shouted desperately, and
caught it, by the side of a deep nullah, where it had perforce to
stop. That lorry saved his life.
And, now, he knew
that Baba had sent it!
(ARTICLE WRITTEN BY
LATE PROF.KASTURI, SANATHANA SARATHI APRIL 1961 ISSUE)
E-Magazine, September 15, 2004