News from Prasanthi, February 2003
Sai Ram, Brothers and Sisters!
We've had a very busy time here
at Sathya Sai Baba's ashram at Prasanthi Nilayam! The weather is
about 85-90 degrees with lovely breezes. Sunsets have been
exquisite...we have to side-step the monkeys sometimes coming down
from the coconut trees. They are rascals and can get into your
room if you don't lock them well.
So busy! We've been up at 3:30 each day...trying to catch naps so
we can last for lectures and other meetings and to bed by 9p.m.
In one week we had Ladies Day (19), Our Diploma Graduation (20),
Convocation for the Sathya Sai School graduation (21), Baba's
birthday (23), and our tour of the local SS School, with a group
interview yesterday (25)
Baba has been incredibly sweet; he's looking younger---everyone
has marveled about it. Daily he passes out boxes of delicious
apples, sometimes candy!
There have been about 50,000 people here. The canteens never know
how to prepare to feed so many, but they always manage to feed
everyone with food left over! He has also been passing out
hundreds of saris to the ladies.
Our graduation was absolutely wonderful. There was some jealousy
from some of the organization people around Baba about we
foreigners and it was debatable whether we were going to receive
our diplomas from him as we did last year. But Dr. Jumsai stood
firm and continued to ask Baba each day and kept getting "yes". So
it did go forward; however, in the eleventh hour, we were still
uncertain if personal diploma awards from Baba would even happen.
We did after all receive them, and everyone was so very, very
Baba personally connected with each and every one of us.
Individual photos were taken as they were last year.
He has chatted with me twice so far. At our graduation, I was
seated in front of our team, close to him. He walked up to me and
said, "Thailand?" I said yes.
On the 21st, the President of India came to give a keynote address
during Convocation.I was amazed that he is Muslim. There was quite
the elaborate processional of bagpipes(Baba loves bagpipes), a
brass marching band, and other performanes! There were many, many
dignitaries. Usually Baba wears a crimson robe that day, but he
preferred to be in his usual simple cotton orange robe. Then on
his birthday, everyone expected him to be in his white robe and
again, he preferred his simple orange robe.
He's been spending much time with the ladies...he frequently is
manifesting vibutti after taking so many letters. He is also
patting ladies on the head! The last two days he has resumed going
to the men's side more.
Yesterday, he agreed to Dr. Jumsai (the director for the school in
Thailand) for an interview for our group--there were about
200--including the group from Zambia, all the international
diploma students, and the Thailand school. Baba arranged for us to
use the back Mandir--beautiful Krishna temple.
I was brought up to sit with the older ladies represeting Thailand,
Zambia, and Australia. I was about 8 feet away from Baba.Then
yesterday I heard him say "Are you staying?" (Since the Thailand
group was leaving today!) While he stood in front of me--only one
foot away--I felt such tremendous love and sweetness!! I said, "Yes."
Later, my group said they heard him say "USA?"
Strange we heard different things.
Dr. Jumsai gave a brief introduction with praise of Baba and Baba
rolled his eyes as if to say, "Enough already"! Everyone laughed.
He is quite delightful and fun to jest with.
He told one man and wife in the room that they argue too much and
to try to stop. Then he told the men they represent knowledge and
the women represent energy. That knowledge without energy is
He manifested two green-stone rings--one for a young Thai man
another for a Zambian man. He manifested two lovely lockets for
the ladies. One was a crucifix (cross) for a lady who is an
ordained Christian minister and another for a little girl. His
conversation with the little girl was really cute. He asked her
name and chatted with her. Asked her what he could give her and
she said "A book". Everyone wondered how Baba would do this! He
smiled lovingly and with a few circles of his hands manifested a
brilliant gold chain with small locket of book with his picture
imprinted on it.
He passed out packets of vibutti to everyone and a special Indian
sweet. He was so loving! He kept asking "What can I give to you?"
People would be dumbfounded not knowing what to answer. One young
man said, "I just want to help my students find peace and manifest
intelligence." He manifested the ring for that young man.
Today we are all a little dizzy from our proximity with him.
Blessings to all of you...I hear the taxis beeping away and the
smell of chapathis cooking somewhere.
Love, love, love.