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Sri Sathya Sai Baba Articles

  Jaga's seva of Love in Poland

Date: 6/4/02

Dear Sai Family, I have just returned from this country (Poland) national meeting of Sai devotees (which was announced in SaiNews earlier last month). I joined the meeting only on the third day (on Saturday, the 1st of June). Here are a few short notes of information and some impressions. All these are 'unofficial' (I am not a member of the Organisation) and typed from still fresh memory.

The meeting of about 300 devotees (this number is, I believe, greater than for any of 9 previous such meetings) was dominated by Dato' J. Jagadeesan who, according to the programme, was to have four talks in the first three days, but has agreed to lead yet one more session of Q&A today, the fourth and final day of the meeting. So I was lucky to listen to two long talks (over 6 hours) instead of only one that initially seemed destined for me! Although each of Jaga's lively lectures lasted 2-3 hours he never slowed down or displayed other signs of fatigue. This is still more significant when taken into account that he left Malaysia with a flu or something similar and medicines would not help much. It looked as if the soring throat will spoil his participation, so he earnestly prayed to Swami for a grace of just being able to speak. And what performances he presented! You wouldn't belive. It was love, teachings and fun for hours non-stop. To illustrate one point he went as far as perfectly singing ... guess what ... quite a few lines of one of Elvis Presley's hits of 1960's! By the time I arrived he already could sing in ... Polish! It was a beautiful three language bhajan (in Sanskrit or Tamil, English and Polish).

At the conclusion of the Sunday's session, Jaga moved many devotees assembled literally to tears by the way he lovingly treated the President of Organisation in this country who (I learned later) had serious problems to deal with within the Organisation. The President himself, who until now served tirelessly as the translator, henceforth out of emotion could not continue this seva. I was talking to many oldtimers on their opinion about this meeting and they invariably expressed words of genuine appreciation stating that it was best one in recent years. This was attributed primarily to Jaga's presence, however the organisation of the event was also praised highly. I have got a feeling that this meeting is potentially a breaking point to a better future for Sai devotees in Poland after a few last years of trials and tribulations, which begun with the 'revelations' of Conny Larsson and last year led as high as the Parliament forum. Should my hopes come true, the success would be in a great measure thanks to this wonderful guest speaker. On Saturday evening I was leaving the place (only to return next morning) with a devotee who said (I noticed tears welling up in her eyes when she spoke) she have seen a true Apostle in Jaga.
You will appreciate yourself how busy is this saintly man if I mention after him that only in the last 3 months he travelled to two different African countries, USA, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Poland, each time for about a week.

To have an idea on sort of the stories he presented refer to an earlier interview with him by David Jevons which is available at


and the interview with Jagadeesan is specifically here:


If you did not read it yet, do so and you will not be disappointed. Necessarily, at the meeting there was much, much more then in the source indicated. Among more significant things Jaga tried emphatically to imprint on hearts of the leaders of Sai Organisation and the devotees at large during his last two talks (and presumably earlier as well) were these concerned general policy of Organisation of a country in view of attacks from forces opposed to Sai Baba and problems inside the Organisation itself. As a rule there should not be any advertising Sai while doing social seva. Let people and politicians recognise the goodness of the Sai movement by the work and fruits, then they will themeself happily spread the Name. Paraphrasing Jaga humorous presentation, when they ask who is this Sai Baba, tell them 'I cannot say this', 'Tell, please!', 'No, no!', 'Oh, please, please!', 'I'd better not' ... finally the devotee may graciously succumb to the pleadings: 'OK! Since you insist, ...' The idea is never talk unasked to nondevotees about Sai Baba. He spoke firmly on improper habit in our (in the West) regular meetings to have a big Sai portrait, as the main or only item on the altar. That repels e.g. Catholics (these are in overwhelming majority in this country) who hold dearest forms familiar to them rather than that strange figure of dear to us Sai. No wonder outsiders might develop unfriendly attitude. We know that what is important in Sai Mission is not that much His Person but rather the teachings, the human values. On similar lines we were advised to sing more songs/bhajans in native language rather than in Sanskrit or English but in this particular respect am not quite sure now - it could well be that somebody else so argumented during discussion. In Q&A session Jaga said it is quite bad practice to organize Sai events during national religious holidays since religious leaders (Chirch) would regard it as intentional means to draw their flock away from their faith (note that this meeting in Poland, as usually, begun on possibly third in importance holiday of Corpus Christi!). There were also strong words of Jaga about unity in the Sai Organisation. Members are free to suggest proposals for seva activities to their leader but here their role ends. One lider - one voice. What the leader decides must be respected by the members implicitly. Group/Centre leaders collect such proposals and alone decide which to submit to the national committee which may in turn choose a few from the pool submitted by the leaders. The chosen ones are then launched 'globally', on country scale. This way, if the sev a iscarried out systematically for a sufficiently long time, it must bear fruits on a coutry scale and will inevitably find recognition by one and all unlike many dispersed activities carried out locally. He underlined the importance of nishkama karma in seva - acting without expecting any form of personal reward, recognition or fruits.

Sai Ram, Kazik

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